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Articles With Tag <em>Shortcuts & Automation</em>

Articles With Tag Shortcuts & Automation

September 6th, 2012

Spark: Venerable Shortcut-Manager Freeware Gets A Rewrite

March 31st, 2012

SpeedUp: A New Launchbar/Quicksilver Tool Debuts

April 19th, 2007

A New JavaScript Library Handles Keyboard Shortcuts

March 3rd, 2007

KeyCue: Your [Intrusive] Keyboard-Shortcuts Assistant

January 20th, 2007

AutoCompleter: An Early Take At Autocompletion for Mac OS X

October 4th, 2006

Relaunch: Menubar Shareware Launches Apps in “Snapshot” Groups

October 2nd, 2006

Assorted Geekery’s Fine Archive of AppleScripts

August 20th, 2006

LiteSwitch X: Venerable App Switcher Won Me Over!

July 26th, 2006

NuLOOQ Tooldial: Radial Menus Go Commercial

July 7th, 2006

Best Tips for Working with Text in Cocoa Apps

June 12th, 2006

Tell Me One Thing You Can Do With a Mac that I Can’t Do With Windows! (Part 3)

3. Use Real Productivity Applications To Get Work Done Faster, Easier

Automator Rides on ApplescriptAs inventors of new tools have done throughout human history, the visionaries who designed and built the first personal computers saw them as tools that would provide an immense boost to human productivity. And they weren’t just thinking about business productivity, folks. They were also thinking of personal productivity: Getting more things done faster so we’d have more leisure time.

Today, in our Microsoft-Windows dominated world, we use the term “productivity application” to refer to Microsoft Office, and we think of the personal computer as a business tool. (Quick: Do a Google search for that term–”productivity application”–and see what you get.) But has Microsoft Office provided us with more leisure time? Of course not. Microsoft Office is a business tool that replaced prior, non-electronic tools like the typewriter and pencil. If it has enhanced productivity at all (and that is arguable), the productivity gain has come in the form of more output per worker… not more leisure time for the individual. In any case, whatever productivity impact Microsoft Office and its ilk had on the business world was completed many years ago. Yet even for businesses, productivity didn’t stop with improving our ability to prepare reports and memos, or compile numbers in spreadsheets, or do overlays for a presentation in PowerPoint.

Productivity goes up whenever you can suddenly do a task in less time than before, either at home or at work. Since its beginnings with the original Apple computer, Apple has appeared to be pursuing a vision that steadily expands the personal computer’s potential to save you time… to do complicated things simpler. Apple’s operating system recognizes that this kind of productivity gain begins with the simplest interface to the computer: Finding things, opening applications, printing, opening documents, organizing information, and the like. As a result of this vision, Mac OS X has two built-in features that are simply lacking in Windows, and they enable “productivity” applications that are truly the envy of the Windows world:

Applescript and Application Services.

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June 1st, 2006

TextExpander: Looking for a Great Shorthand Typing Tool?

April 25th, 2006

xCuts Dashboard Widget: Tripping the Light Script.aculo.us

xCuts widgetI’ve been writing for some time now about the kinship between Apple’s Dashboard Widgets and web pages. I’ve recently written a time or two about Ajax and the various wonderful dynamic HTML (DHTML) JavaScript libraries that are now available to web developers. And when I first starting compiling the lists of available Ajax/DHTML JavaScript libraries, I was planning to grade Apple’s Widgets library along with all the rest. In explaining why I didn’t, here’s what I wrote last month about Widgets and DHTML pages:

It’s interesting that 2 months after an Adaptive Path essay coined the term “Ajax,” Apple released Mac OS X 10.4 “Tiger”, with its amazing and powerful dashboard widgets system. Within a couple of months, there were over 1,000 widgets available on the web, and these little babies were capable of completely replacing (almost all for free!) a number of system utilities, menubar items, and whole applications on the Mac. I’m tempted to think that awareness of Apple’s widgets helped promote awareness of, and interest in, what could be accomplished with rich Ajax/DHTML toolkits. After all, widgets are simply little Ajax/DHTML programs running in a special layer of Mac OS X called the Dashboard… They use exactly the same technologies as all of the Ajax/DHTML libraries, and in fact you can run them inside of Safari outside of the Dashboard.*

And so, it was fitting that when I finally found time to work on a widget I’d been planning to build since last summer, I decided to use one of the leading Ajax/DHTML toolkits rather than Apple’s own, for most of the widget’s functionality. Having done most of my recent DHTML web work with Prototype and its light-hearted, freewheeling sidekick, Script.aculo.us, I naturally turned to those libraries to help me out.

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April 19th, 2006

Command+Q, Command+W, Alt+Tab and Other Keyboard Stories

March 22nd, 2006

CocoaSuite: Customize Your Cocoa Apps

March 20th, 2006

Explaining and Customizing the Cocoa Text System

Just Say No To Flash