Tuesday, February 25, 2014

10 Ways to Use AutoHotKey

If you are into productivity on your computer, you probably already use your keyboard and its shortcuts as much as possible. And if you’re on Windows, you’ve probably also check out the awesome potential of AutoHotKey, which can make your keyboard hum like nobody’s business.
But most people haven’t tapped into the true power of AHK, and explored all the ways it can turn the keyboard into a productivity machine.
For Mac users, you already have the fantabulously wonderful Quicksilver, and if that doesn’t completely meet your needs, try TypeIt4Me for text expansion.
To learn more about setting up AHK scripts, text expansion, shortcut keys, macros and more, see this tutorial.
Here are 10 ways to use AutoHotKey to rock your keyboard:

1. Multiple sigs. If you use different signatures for work, personal use, blogging, etc., use AHK’s super handy text replacement feature to make shortcuts for each sig. For example, I have wsig and wsig2 for my two different work signatures, bsig for my blog signature, and psig and psig2b for my two different personal signatures. Type in 3 or 4 keystrokes, and it automatically expands to your full signature.
::wsig::Your Name{enter}Your Title{enter}Your Company Name{enter}Your Contact Info
2. Favorite folders. Do you open a few folders several times a day? End the endless double-clicking by setting up shortcuts to your favorite folders. I have about 5 folders I use every day, and their shortcuts save me loads of time. The following example sets up the Windows key + 0 to open a folder (the “#” symbol stands for Windows key in AHK scripting language).
#0::Run C:\Documents and Settings\YourUsername\My Documents\YourFolder\YourSubfolder
3. Websites. Do you have favorite sites or pages that you go to numerous times a day? We all do. While Firefox has a great keyword bookmarking feature, AHK’s shortcut keys are even faster. I have about 10 sites set up for all my favorite web pages.
#l::Run http://www.lifehack.org
4. App launcher. Throw away your favorite app launcher. AHK eliminates the need for a separate program for launching applications, because you can tie any application to any keyboard shortcut.
#f::Run Firefox
5. Common documents. You’re starting to see the theme here. Any documents you use often, such as a letter template or certain spreadsheets, can also be given shortcuts.
#4::Run C:\Documents and Settings\YourUsername\My Documents\YourFolder\Letter.doc
6. Common emails. If you type a lot of the same emails, day in and day out, set up simple text expansion scripts (such as the signature example above) and put in the text of your common emails. See this article for more info.
7. Autocorrect in any application. Blogger Jim Biancolo used Wikipedia’s list of the most common misspellings as a starting point to create this script, which autocorrects your misspelled words as you type — in any application. He added to the list the autocorrected words in Microsoft Word, plus a bunch of his own common misspellings. Very handy.
8. Quick Google or Wikipedia searches. Again, Firefox has the very cool smart keyword search feature, but AHK can put your common searches in any app. Highlight the work, press you hotkey, and voila! The following scripts allow the user to search for a particular word or phrase using Google or Wikipedia. After selecting the text from any application, pressing the configurable hotkey (Win + g for Google search, Win + w for Wikipedia) will open the default browser and perform the search.
#g:: Send, ^c Run, http://www.google.com/search?q=%Clipboard% Return
#w:: Send, ^c Run, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Special:Search?search=%Clipboard% Return

9. Blogging markup. If you do a lot of blogging or html coding, you know that typing html codes or having to press buttons to put the codes in can be very repetitive. Automate it by having AHK automatically type the beginning and ending codes for you. Then all you gotta do is write great content. Adam Pash compiled a handy little script for bloggers here.
10. Use Insert for Clipboard tool. I don’t know about you, but I never use the Insert key — in fact, it just messes me up. Biancolo did this little script to remap the Insert key to give it some super-useful functionality: it adds whatever you have highlighted to the clipboard.
For even cooler scripts, see this list for ways to configure or enhance your keyboard.
Source: http://www.lifehack.org

Fifteen helpful google search operators


Include “site:” to search for information within a single website. This one in particular can be a godsend when trying to match styles, specific spellings or usages to a client with a website full of already published works, for example.
Example: [ site:foodfortranslators.com books ]


Include a word or phrase immediately after the operator “define:” to find the definition of said word or phrase. Just like a dictionary. Simple.
Example: [ define:food ]

“” (double quotes)

Use quotes to search for an exact word or set of words in a specific order, without normal improvements such as spelling corrections and synonyms. Extremely useful for searching for proper nouns, expressions and examples of usage, etc.
Example: [ "read a book written over 100 years ago" ]

* (asterisk)

Use an asterisk (*) within a query as a placeholder for any unknown or “wildcard” terms.
Example: [ Food * Translators ]
Tip: You can combine this with double quotation marks to try and find variations of an exact phrase or to remember words in the middle of a phrase:
Example: [ “beat * the bush” ]


If you want to search for pages that may have just one of several words, include OR (must be capitalized) between the words. Without the OR, your results would typically show only pages that match both terms.
Example: [ olympics location 2014 OR 2018 ]
Tip: Enclose phrases in quotes to search for either one of several phrases.
Example: [ "world cup 2014" OR "olympics 2014" ]

- (minus sign)

Add a dash (-) before a word to exclude all results that include that word. This is especially useful for synonyms like mountain lion the large cat species and mountain lion the Apple OS.
Example: [ mountain lion -apple ]
Tip: You can also exclude results based on other Google search operators, like excluding all results from a specific site.
Example: [ books -site:foodfortranslators.com ]

~ (tilde)

Normally, synonyms might replace some words in your original query. Add a tilde sign (~) immediately in front of a word to search for that word as well as even more synonyms.
Example: [ ~food facts ] includes results for “nutrition facts”


Include “filetype:” to search for files of a specific type, such as PDFs.
Example: [ filetype:pdf chicago manual of style facsimile ]

.. (two periods)

Separate numbers by two periods (with no spaces) to see results that contain numbers in a given range of things like dates, prices, and measurements.
Example: [ paralympic gold medalists 1996..2012 ]
Tip: Use only one number with the two periods to indicate an upper maximum or a lower minimum.
Example: [ paralympic gold medalists ..2008 ]


Type a URL after “info:” to be presented with a short description of the site and a list links to other information related to the site in question.
Example: [ info:www.proz.com ]


Type a URL after “related:” to be presented with a list of pages that Google considers to be related to the one you’ve entered.
Example: [ related:www.atanet.org ]


Use “allintitle” to restrict a search so that all of the keywords must appear in the page title.
Example: [ allintitle: books for translators ]


Use “allintitle” to restrict a search so that all of the keywords must appear within the body of the text on the page, rather than in any of the titles, etc.
Example: [ allintext: signs and symptoms of translators dementia ]


Promised a client that you’ll have a finished piece of work with them before 3pm? Is that 3pm in their country or yours? What time is it in their country now? Or what time is it in your country for that matter?  4am? …isn’t it about time you went to bed?
Example: [ time:London ]


Well, we couldn’t very well leave this one out now could we…  Type a word or phrase in another language after “translate:” to see an English translation (presumably produced by the same system that powers Google Translate) of said word or phrase.
Example: [ translate:翻訳者 ] *Is it a verb? Is it a plane?
Source: http://www.foodfortranslators.com

Top 5 Free Screen Recording Softwares For Windows

Screen recording can be useful when you need to record a how-to video to help someone learn how to use a program, record a game walkthrough, or prepare for a presentation. Record here means you can create a video of whatever you are doing on your desktop, save the recording as a video file and send it to a friend or upload it on YouTube.
We’ve featured screen capturing tools before, and you know a few ways to take screenshots on your computer. For something more than just a still image, here are 8 free screen recording programs that will help you record every action you make on your Windows desktop.
Free programs at times come with drawbacks or limitations, and watermarks are common in many free screen recording softwares. However, the following list of programs has been tested to not have any watermarks and can export to a file format recognizable to most video editing softwares.

1. Ezvid

Ezvid is a screen recorder program that comes with an in-built video editor where you can split your recordings and add text in between two clips, creating a slideshow effect. There is no way to export the video you recorded. However, you can upload the video to YouTube through the program itself.
Ezvid Program
For gamers, there’s an option to enable ‘Gaming mode’ where it records the windowed mode of your game. The program comes with a few music clips. However if you decide to have no music, it will be replaced with a ‘Silent machine’ which sounds like a small fan from a computer. You can add in other pictures and video clips, as well as add in your voice after you’re done editing your clip.

2. BlueBerry FlashBack Express Recorder

BB (short for BlueBerry) FlashBack Express Recorder lets you use your webcam to record yourself while recording the activities that are happening on your desktop. After you have stopped recording, it creates an FBR file which can be edited with its packaged video editor.
Flashback Express
If you did not enable your webcam, you can skip the video editor program and export it to the AVI file format right away. Otherwise, you can use the software to position and resize your webcam box before exporting it. Although it requires you to register (for a free account) after 30 days of usage, it still provides you with all of its functions before you register.

3. Screenr

Screenr is an interesting way to share a screencast (recording of your screen) online without installing a program on your computer; it requires Java to work. You select an area on your screen which you want to record (max: 5 minutes). All recordings are saved into your account.
Screenr Webpage
After recording you’ll be given a link which you can share. You can also export your video to MP4 or upload it on YouTube.
Screenr also provides a bookmarklet so you can record without going to the website. Register with your Facebook, Twitter, Google, LinkedIn, Yahoo or Windows Live account in order to use Screenr for free.

4. Rylstim Screen Recorder

Rylstim just records your screen after you hit the ‘Start Record’ button. This will be useful for people who do not want to configure anything and just want a basic recorder. This program does not record sound from input devices like a microphone.
Rylstim Program
The only options available determine if you want to show your left or right mouse button clicks in the video. If you enable the mouse click options, a red ripple will appear at your cursor when you left click and a green ripple appears for right clicks. This mouse click ripple effect will only be visible when you view your recording.

5. CamStudio

CamStudio comes equipped with many options to tweak the way it records. There are options to enable or disable your mouse cursor, record sounds from programs or a microphone (or have no sound at all) and the option to enable custom screen annotations.
CamStudio Program
You can also choose to record a particular area on your screen or a program window so that the rest of your desktop isn’t showing on the recording. It can record at different frame rate speeds; for example 1 FPS (frames per second)to create a time lapse video effect, or 30 FPS for a smooth video.



Webinaria is another easy-to-use screen recording software with basic options for your recording needs. It can record your entire screen, a program window or a custom selection. You can choose from 3 frame rate options; 5, 10 and 15 FPS (frames per second).
Webinaria Program
Videos are produced in AVI file format. If you were using Google Chrome before running Webinaria, Google Chrome will be detected as the program window for recording.

DVDVideoSoft Free Screen Video Recorder

This program has a simple user interface carrying 9 icons. The first 4 is for screen capturing, the next 4 handles screen recording and the last icon opens the options of the program. It also exports its video to an AVI file format. What’s good about this program is its automatic file naming options.
DVD Video Soft
It gives you options to include the specific date and time in the filename of your recorded video. Users who need to keep track of many screen recordings back to back will find this automatic file naming option useful.

Krut Computer Recorder

Krut does not require installation but uses Java to run. After downloading, you’ll have a folder where you have to run the ‘KRUT.jar’ file to get started. The capture area and recording frames per second can be set by the user.
Krut Computer Recorder
There is an option called ‘Follow Mouse’ where it captures the area around your mouse, wherever it moves to. When using the ‘Follow Mouse’ feature, you can enable preview mode to see the captured area as you record. This program outputs to three types of files: the WAV file only has the audio recorded, while of the two MOV files; one has no audio and the other has both audio and video of the recording. Source: http://www.hongkiat.com

How to copy command prompt outputs to the Windows Clipboard

The Windows command prompt or line is not really something that many Windows users need to work with on a daily basis, or at all, anymore. While it can still be helpful at times, for instance to quickly look up your IP address or display open connections, it is probably fair to say that the majority of Windows users have little to no command prompt experience.
That's not necessarily a bad thing depending on what the computer is used for. If you are just using it to browse the Internet and use Office, then there may never be a need to dive deeper into the inner workings of the system.
I have to admit that I'm also not using the command prompt that much anymore. I do use it occasionally but not regularly anymore as I do not really need to use it for the things I'm doing.
I learned a couple of tricks over the years though, for instance that you can write the output of any command to a text file by adding > textname.txt to the end of the command.

copy windows command prompt clipboard

There is however another possibility, and that is to write the output to the Windows Clipboard. This is done with the clip command that you add to your command that you want executed.
Basic examples of how this looks like are dir | clip to write the contents of the directory to the Clipboard, or ipconfig | clip to write the ipconfig information to it instead.
You can use parameters in the command as you see fit which are executed just as before.
It depends on the data output if you should write the output to a file or the clipboard. If you want to paste it in an online forum, chat or other program then you may want to use the clip command to speed things up. If you need more control over it then a text file may be more appropriate.
There is also an option to write text file data directly to the clipboard. This is probably only useful for batch files though as you can open the document to copy its contents as well in the Windows gui.
Anyway, to copy the contents of a text document to the clipboard use the clip < textname.txt command. Source: http://www.ghacks.net