a2 – the first humble steps

My wannabe ac’tivAid replacement script framework a2 is finally getting some momentum!:

Still heavily wip! But at least now it actually does something!!
I also made an animated diagram to show how the a2 cycle rolls:
a2_layoutBut well, that’s probably not too obvious, is it? So first things first. Since I never posted about this:
What is this about!? ac’tivAid was already some kind of framework to put together Autohotkey scripts.

AutoHotkey (AHK) is a free, open-source macro-creation and automation software for Windows that allows users to automate repetitive tasks. It is driven by a scripting language that was initially aimed at providing keyboard shortcuts, otherwise known as hotkeys, that over time evolved into a full-fledged scripting language.

ac’tivAid bundled a whole bunch of those in one Autohotkey runtime and you could enable/disable them, make settings and all that. Why am I talking in past tense? You can still download latest ac’tivAid dev version from Michael Telgkamps homepage. It’s still kinda nice but things start to break and really nobody is maintaining it.

But fear not: I’m about to present you the future! :] on the github wiki I put together some of the goals:

  1. decoupled ui and runtime
  2. use of latest Autohotkey_L
  3. active open source development
  4. easier contributing, setup, better flexibility

And actually I tackled all of those points already to some extent. The ones that recently make me jump in circles out of coding excitement are the following:

  • new script creation (with meta data) and editing
  • support for global and context sensitive hotkeys
  • instant change of hotkeys

Next up: some improvements to the scope and hotkey setup, making sure there’s only one ui and one ahk-runtime at a time, implement setting variables (fields, checkboxes) and a looooot of security checks. Currently it’s super easy to blow yourself up. So it will take a wile until this can go puplic.

I’m really looking forward to making some videos on how to use and how to develop for it.

8 thoughts on “a2 – the first humble steps”

  1. cooool, i’ve waited for a successor of activaid. And i should have known that you will be the guy doin’ that 🙂

  2. Well.. you know there is no official assignment ;] I’m just doing it because I’ve been talking about it for the last 5 years… but yea! I’m pretty excited about the future of this! 🙂

  3. Hi Eric! Thank you so much for the hint about the NP++ Plugin. I just updated the article and at the bottom you’ll now find a AHK-Code-Snippet for opening any selected text anywere you want 🙂

  4. As I can see here, it’s a long way of development. I found and installed A2 some days ago. And it seem to me that it work very well. But what I really miss is some stuff of description for new/silly users.

    The best tool isn’t usable, if you don’t know how. So is there a chance that you write some instructions next time? Or can you trigger the guys on ct, perhaps they are glad if the project is going on.

    e.g. I humple at so silly things as an hottext for:
    Mir freundlichen Grüßen
    Georg Krämer
    In notepad++ the CR will not work. In my eMail it will work, but in both cases I get it twice, if I press Return twice:

    Mir freundlichen Grüßen
    Georg KrämMir freundlichen Grüßen
    Georg Krämer

    Also I wanted to implement some javascript with value Replacement. Failed also.

    Testing example from https://ahkde.github.io/docs/Hotstrings.htm
    FormatTime, AktuellerZeitstempel,, d.M.yyyy HH:mm ; z. B. 21.6.2011 15:10
    SendInput %AktuellerZeitstempel%

    doesn’t work

    So all in all, it would be really nice if you could extend the wiki with some basic descriptions. Also what’s the meaning of “Mode”? How to use?

    Thanks Georg

  5. What’s CR? Character Replacement?
    Can it be that there are 2 instances of the a2 runtime active?! I’m having some problems myself with that lately. For some reason the Autohotkey Reload functionality does not remove an old instance. I’ll put that on the list. https://github.com/ewerybody/a2/issues/228

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