Primarily Keyboard Maestro is a macro program. A macro consists of a sequence of actions and a set of triggers. When any of the triggers occur, Keyboard Maestro executes the actions. Keyboard Maestro provides a large range of actions that allow you to control applications, type keys, click the mouse, resize windows, control I Tunes, execute scripts and much more. Keyboard Maestro also provides a range of triggers, the most common being the Hot Key trigger, but you can also trigger a macro by typing a string, when an application launches or quits, at a specific time, from a floating macro palette, from your iPhone, via the built-in web server, or using AppleScript. Keyboard Maestro also provides access to a powerful window switcher, program switcher, and clipboard history, allowing you to store and later paste more than just one clipboard, as well as multiple named clipboards. Keyboard Maestro can automate and streamline a wide variety of tasks.
Many of Keyboard Maestro’s facilities require access for assistive devices, so you should ensure it is enabled in the Universal Access system preference. Primarily Keyboard Maestro is a macro program. A macro consists of a sequence of actions and a set of triggers. Keyboard Maestro includes a faceless background engine so you only need to launch Keyboard Maestro to make changes. When any of the triggers occur, the Keyboard Maestro Engine executes the actions, even if Keyboard Maestro is not running. So you should ensure the engine is launched when you login. In the General Preferences pane enable the checkbox. You can now quit Keyboard Maestro and the engine will continue to run, so you can execute macros such as the one we setup earlier that opens a document when we press F6. Over the next few days, whenever you find yourself repeating an action, consider launching Keyboard Maestro and creating a macro to automate the task.
In this tutorial, we will show you how to create a complex macro that will allow you to save clippings to a text file. First, launch TextEdit and create a new empty file and save it. Next, launch Keyboard Maestro and create and name a new macro. Then add a hot key trigger. Now add the actions. First, copy to the clipboard. Next, open the Clippings file. Record a command-Down arrow. Insert a header for each entry, including the current date. Paste in the clipboard. Record the keystrokes for Return, Return, Save, Close. And finally switch back to the last application. Quit the editor, and then try it out in the Finder. Adding the current selection to your Clippings file is now as easy as pressing F2.
Thanks to Dan Benjamin for doing the fantastic voice overs on these tutorial videos.