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Equivalent to ActionWords ActionPad

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I'm thinking of switching from ActionWords to Macro Express Professional but ActionWords has a key feature for me that I haven't found yet in Macro Express. By pressing Ctrl Space in ActionWords I can bring up something called the Action Pad, as you can see in the attached file. I can then type in a Shortkey into the Action Pad to invoke a macro, which is very fast.


Is there a equivalent to this in Macro Express? I realize that Macro Express has short keys, but I think you need to have a program open first to type the short keys into. I know that you can select a macro in Macro Express from a floating dialog, but the selection process isn't as quick.



Wayne C.


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There is no ME equivalent of the ActiveWord ActionPad, but there are ways to use ShortKeys that are quite cool. For example, if you opt to use prefix shortkeys and change the default prefix from ## to a single character such as Q or comma, you can create scripts that are activated simply by typing a "word." In many cases, it does not even matter whether you type into a document or field.


I use the comma as a prefix because no "real" words start with this character. Here are examples of macros:


,x = close window

,word = open Word

,x = open Excel

,f = open firefox

,sig = insert my name and address


The only time these Shortkey macros screw up is when typing into a window where backspace does something other than deleting a character to the left of the insertion point. In Windows Explorer when focus is on the list of files, or in IE when focus is in the active window, pressing backspace is the equivalent to clicking the "Back" button.

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Shortkeys work anywhere. Even if nothing is being echoed in a window.


Hot keys are what I use mostly. But I also use pop-up menus. In those you can use accelerator keys and this gives a great range of things one can do. EG I have a macro that 'compresses' text for SMS by converting common words to SMS shorthand. When I need it I hot key CTRL+Keypad1 which brings up a menu of a large number of macros and then I type "s" for SMS crunch.


Bear in mind pop-up menus are different than floating menus and can be configured to be very svelte.


You could also open Notepad and use it as your Action Words.


Lots of options.

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FYI I opt for suffix activation. I did a lot of research on it and we had a thread here where we discussed it in detail and the upshot is that you can essentially use uncommon key combos to give the prefix like activation (you just have to actually include them in the activation text) but suffix give you several orders of magnitude more sensible combinations due to the pesky habit prefix has of stepping on each other. EG if you have a short key "p" you can't have any other short keys that start with that letter.

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