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Automate your Mac with Keyboard Maestro (Part 2)

It’s again time to automate some stuff. Because Keyboard Maestro is such a trigger powerhouse we’re doing this automation again with this handy, but unobtrusive, tool.
Just a quick sidenote: You don’t have to necessarily or exclusively use Keyboard Maestro for this. As I mentioned in the Keyboard Maestro Tips 1 screencast I’m using most of these in LaunchBar as well. So I could either run them from Keyboard Maestro with a trigger or from LaunchBar with an abbreviation. It’s totally up to you how to implement this stuff into your workflow. But because Keyboard Maestro is just so powerful and always at hand I decided to show this stuff with Keyboard Maestro rather than LaunchBar.

Contents Of This Screencast

  • Filter Clipboard Action to:
    • Manipulate selected text
    • Get character, line and word count of selected text
  • Edit in TextMate
  • Select Files
  • Rename Files

Filter Clipboard

Keyboard Maestro is able to manipulate text on the clipboard. It can do several things like making text UPPERCASE or Title Case or lowercase, but also more sophisticated stuff like encoding HTML entities, which is quite handy, and counting characters as well as words.
That way counting words in a selected text becomes a breeze.

Edit in TextMate

TextMate comes with an Input Manager which is called Edit in TextMate. This Input Manager installs a menu entry in the edit menu which simply takes text and opens a new document containing that text right within TextMate.
We probably all know that Input Managers are evil. They aren’t supported since Leopard and became even worse to support since Snow Leopard came out. Personally, on my machine I don’t use any Input Managers anymore. But it always bugged me that this neat Edit in TextMate feature is not available to me anymore – because I just simply decided to stick with not using Input Managers. So I came up with a little trick. I use Keyboard Maestro to select all text, copy to the clipboard, go to TextMate, open a new document and paste the text there. Then I can edit as usual and afterwards I trigger a second Macro which takes the (edited) text back to wherever I was.
Sidenote: If you’re using this only with Safari. You might want to replace the Action Switch to Last Application with Activate Safari.app, which should work better than Switch to Last Application, because now you can even switch applications while editing text.

Select Text

lselect is a handy AppleScript which uses Glob pattern matching to select files in the Finder. Since Keyboard Maestro 4.3 came out Peter decided to make changes to the way how dialogs are displayed in order to make Keyboard Maestro more stable. So I modified lselect a bit to make it compatible with Keyboard Maestro.

Rename Files

I also put together, very quickly, to AppleScripts to quickly rename files. The one is called Replace This With That, which replaces one string with another one. And I have a more specialized version where I (or you) can predefine what should be replaced. So the second version is for straight renaming without having to worry about what should be replaced and the other one is for explicitly renaming something.



Keyboard Maestro Tips 2 Scripts

Keyboard Maestro Macros

Keyboard Maestro Tips 2 Macros