🖼 Simple but Effective Window Management

Managing your window layout can be a huge boost to productivity and efficiency. With a quick press of a hotkey, you can maximize a window, read a document on the left, and edit another to the right. When you have multiple monitors, this becomes even more beneficial, almost necessary. For effective layout using hotkeys my choice is Magnet. It’s a simple tool that works wonders. Out of the box, the most common action will be to maximize a window. Not quite the traditional “full screen” with the menus missing. The menu bar and Dock remain visible. You can quickly set app windows to take up the left or right half of the screen, perfect for looking at documents side by side. For other types of apps like Slack, Discord or Messages, the window can be moved to the top right, left, or bottom. You can also do half-sized windows or put them in the center. My layout is usually an […]

⌘ Filling in forms with Keyboard Maestro

I’ve run into this situation multiple times, in working with a website, for some reason I can’t understand, they don’t allow information to be pasted into a field. It needs to be typed and tools like RoboForm and StickyPassword are thwarted. It seems to deliberately block them, which makes no sense, because form filling tools provide far more accuracy and consistency than typing by hand. To get around this inconvenience, I’ve employed the help of Keyboard Maestro. Using the Insert Text by Typing, it’s now possible to paste text consistently and not be victim of “fat-fingering” an important piece of information. There is another function I have found to be beneficial to add, the Pause Until Conditions are Met action. Couple this with The Left Mouse Button is Pressed. This allows me to click into the field, then the text is typed. This can set to run with a hotkey button or by bringing up the Keyboard Maestro, Trigger Macro […]

Upgrading to Keyboard Maestro 10

I wasn’t expecting this, so a nice present for the end of the year. There is a new Keyboard Maestro 10 available, and I’ve wasted no time in upgrading. When I purchased my license in 2019, I debated and wondered if I would really use Keyboard Maestro. I read one review after another, and while all of them had praise, they painted a different picture of what Keyboard Maestro could do and what it was used for. With the trial version installed, I was presented with a tool that looked a lot like the built-in Automator. Familiar, yet powerful. But, as I read the Wiki, and looked at some of the examples in the forums, I began to see the power and benefit of Keyboard Maestro. It took a little while for it all to click. Yes, it could launch applications. Yes, it could record keyboard actions. Yes, it did have a clipboard manager. Yes, it could be used as […]

⌘ Alfred or Keyboard Maestro? Productivity at it’s finest.

Since they overlap, which tool should you get, Alfred or Keyboard Maestro? Yes to both. Even though they share some features, they provide enough different and complimentary functionality that you won’t regret using both. Use Alfred to quickly launch apps, find files, and perform focused searches. Use the Workflows feature to unlock snippets, clipboard history, quick calculations, access to handy system functions, and customized autocomplete. Those features are built in and ready to use. If you want a bit more power, download application workflows or spend a little time with Shell, Javascript, or AppleScript, and write your own. This is a bit more complex, but can yield some incredible results. Even with a small bit of AppleScript, you can accomplish a lot. Just as easily, call out to Java, Groovy or Python for more complex tasks. Next, use Keyboard Maestro to build custom workflows and application macros. Add batch processing to applications that don’t natively support it. Use the building […]

⌘ Batch processing images, even when it’s not supported

This is exactly why I love working with the Mac. With the power of macOS and Keyboard Maestro all sorts of magic is possible. I’m a huge fan of the apps/plugins from JixiPix, especially Spektrel Art and Portrait Painter. To that end, I want to process several hundred images, but the JixiPix apps don’t support batch processing. Fear not, with a little help from Keyboard Maestro, it’s possible to write a macro to handle the job with 99% accuracy. This does take a very small amount of prep work. Spektrel Art needs to be open with an image. A preset needs to be selected. Under Preferences, the Last Saved Location option needs to be checked. And at least one image needs to be saved in the output location. Then within Keyboard Maestro, the macro runs like this. Using the For Each Item in Collection action in Keyboard Maestro, get a list of all the files in the folder. Open that […]