Glen Mazza's Weblog

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https://web-gmazza.rhcloud.com/blog/date/20170218 Saturday February 18, 2017

Using AppleScript to quickly configure your work environment

At work, I use Mac OS' Script Editor to create and compile AppleScript scripts to quickly configure my desktop depending on the programming task at hand. Each compiled script, or application, I place in the desktop folder so it appears on my desktop and can be activated with a simple double-click.

Three tasks I commonly have that I include and adjust as needed depending on the task:

  • Activating a terminal window with tabs pre-opened to various directories and running various commands. A script that opens up three terminal windows in the specified directories, and optionally runs any commands in those directories, would look as follows (see here for more info):
    tell application "Terminal"
    	activate
    	do script
    	do script "cd /Users/gmazza/mydir1" in tab 1 of front window
    	my makeTab()
    	do script "cd /Users/gmazza/mydir2" in tab 2 of front window
    	my makeTab()
    	do script "cd /Users/gmazza/mydir3" in tab 3 of front window
    end tell
    
    on makeTab()
    	tell application "System Events" to keystroke "t" using {command down}
    	delay 0.2
    end makeTab
    
  • Running IntelliJ IDEA. Simple:
    activate application "IntelliJ IDEA"
    
  • Opening Chrome with a desired number of tabs to certain webpages:
    tell application "Google Chrome"
    	open location "http://www.websiteone.com/onpage"
    	open location "http://www.websitetwo.com/anotherpage"
    	open location "http://www.websitethree.com"
    end tell
    

Script editor has a "run" button allowing me to test the scripts as I develop them. Once done, I save the script both standalone (so I can edit it later if desired), but also export it as an application. Exporting it allows for a simple double-click to directly run the task, rather than bringing up the Script Editor and requiring the script to be run via the "run" button.

Comments:

mac os is fork of BSD(as far as I know), but I am using ubuntu as my desktop and loving it, very easy to customize,total control, drivers(for printer/scanner) installation /anti virus(like window) not needed. Thanks for sharing about apple script. Anant

Posted by Anant Jaynarayan on February 26, 2017 at 05:19 AM EST #

Yup, I've been using Ubuntu at home for over a decade now. Mac OS is my work laptop.

Posted by Glen on March 12, 2017 at 12:36 PM EDT #

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