Definitions A shortcut, according to iKey's developer, is made up of three main parts:
Commands A command is the action, or series of actions, that you want iKey to
perform. An example of a command is: Open Photoshop and start a new document.
Contexts The context is the circumstance in which your shortcut can be activated. Most
commonly, the context is set to "universal" so that it will work regardless of which
application you are in. However, you may wish to set a hotkey for use only in Photoshop,
so in this case the context would be set to Photoshop.
Launchers The launcher activates your shortcut. Most commonly, it is a hotkey or
date/time event. For example, launch Windows Media Player to play your favorite news
and views station by pressing a keyboard combination, or arrange to have it load for you at
a predetermined time each morning.
Okay, you get the idea. After a bit of a learning curve, you'll likely be able to create shortcuts for
your most irksome multi step tasks.
Tell your computer to launch, switch, show, quit, and re launch software applications, or to
open specific documents.
Simulate both keydown events and mouse events (i.e., control the computer as if someone
were physically using the keyboard and the mouse).
Copy, paste, and add text or images to the clipboard.
The information provided by iKey's developer, both on the website and in Adam C. Engst's
outstanding manual, is rich with proposed uses and examples of the product's versatility.
My Test Saga Continues
Accessing my favorite radio stations By reading and following the tutorial, I was able to
produce two hotkeys to access my music from anywhere on my computer. (Not easily the first
half dozen times, but the software interface grew on me as I became familiar with its ways.) To
quickly access my two favorite FM stations, the shortcuts I created were a good news bad news
situation. The good news is that my learning curve was shorter than when I created my first
FileMaker Pro contact list database. The bad news is that I have a faster and more effective way
to access both my favorite public radio stations, but that's not the fault of the developer.
(Years ago I installed a haxie called Fruit Menu from Unsanity
, software that gives me the ability to customize both
my Apple [e.g.,
] Menu and my contextual menus. The product out Apple's my Apple menu
from what I was able to do in Mac OS X 9.x. As a result, I have the aliases to all my favorite
Internet radio stations stashed in a folder that appears at the top my fruit menu list. As a result,
I'm a mouse click away from all of them, just as if I'd created a set of hotkeys for all of them,
my substitute for using iKey.
MPN, LLC 2005 macCompanion
August 2005, Volume 3 Issue 8