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OS X - Apps and Games Discussion of applications and games available for Mac OS X.

Automator Virtual Input


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abcncrr

 
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Hi, I'm having a frustrating morning trying to automate some analysis steps in my lab. I've downloaded Automator Virtual Input V3.0 with the understanding that it can be used with Automator to replicate mouse clicks. According to the AVI documentation, I just have to add an action to my Workflow called "Run Virtual Input" then input x,y coordinates for my cursor. I can't find any such action in the automator list. Is this a Watch Me command? Please help me work AVI or let me know if it's no longer supported.

Thanks,
Jeff
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ARSkemp

 
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I don't know about mouse clicks but if your trying to press a button or something you may be able to get away with an applescript in automator that simulates key strokes. For example you could have the applescript code press "tab" however many times its needed to reach the button then "enter" to select it.

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abcncrr

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ARSkemp View Post
I don't know about mouse clicks but if your trying to press a button or something you may be able to get away with an applescript in automator that simulates key strokes. For example you could have the applescript code press "tab" however many times its needed to reach the button then "enter" to select it.
Right. I have tried this without luck. I need to do some batch exporting of videos from iMovie. I've read several websites that say this can't be done. If anyone has a workflow solution, please post. I'm now wondering if I could export the whole thing as one video, then easily split it later. I welcome all ideas.

Thanks,
Jeff
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Slydude

 
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Thanks I love Automator stuff but didn't know about that program. Have you seen the suggestions on this FAQ page? Automator Virtual Input V3.0 Take control of the keyboard and mouse via Automator. I take it they were little help.

Which version of Automator are you using? There is an action in the current version called "Watch Me Do" that might be able to simulate mouse clicks well enough to meet your needs. It will record your actions as you perform them. I don't remember for sure but I think the window/dialog in question would always have to be in the same place for it to work properly.

The other thing to keep in mind about the "Watch Me Do" action is that the right program needs to be active when it is run. Let's suppose, for example, that you use "Watch Me Do" to record some mouse movements/clicks in iChat. Let's also suppose that you are working in Safari and try to execute the actions that you have just saved. Automator will try to execute the iChat-related actions you recorded in the Safari window. The secret is to put a step in the workflow that activates the appropriate application before the steps that were recorded are executed.

You've probably released that last bit already. It happened to me a few times before I figured out what happened.

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abcncrr

 
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Originally Posted by Slydude View Post
Thanks I love Automator stuff but didn't know about that program. Have you seen the suggestions on this FAQ page? Automator Virtual Input V3.0 Take control of the keyboard and mouse via Automator. I take it they were little help.

Which version of Automator are you using? There is an action in the current version called "Watch Me Do" that might be able to simulate mouse clicks well enough to meet your needs. It will record your actions as you perform them. I don't remember for sure but I think the window/dialog in question would always have to be in the same place for it to work properly.

The other thing to keep in mind about the "Watch Me Do" action is that the right program needs to be active when it is run. Let's suppose, for example, that you use "Watch Me Do" to record some mouse movements/clicks in iChat. Let's also suppose that you are working in Safari and try to execute the actions that you have just saved. Automator will try to execute the iChat-related actions you recorded in the Safari window. The secret is to put a step in the workflow that activates the appropriate application before the steps that were recorded are executed.

You've probably released that last bit already. It happened to me a few times before I figured out what happened.
Thanks Slydude for the comprehensive response. Unfortunately, I'm finding that you can't trust the AVI support. It appears that this functionality doesnt come packaged with the newest Automator. I have also tried the "Watch Me Do" recorder in Automator. You said correctly that the target window must be in the same location when you run the script as when you recorded it. This quickly becomes a very unstable workflow as you might imagine.

I am now experimenting with exporting the whole batch as one file, then splitting it later. Have no experience, so this will be fun. Please continue to post any ideas about automation.

Thanks,
Jeff
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Can you give me a better idea of what you are trying to do? What steps and programs are involved? Perhaps i can come up with a better solution than the "Watch Me Do" action.

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abcncrr

 
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Originally Posted by Slydude View Post
Can you give me a better idea of what you are trying to do? What steps and programs are involved? Perhaps i can come up with a better solution than the "Watch Me Do" action.
Hey, made some more attempts over the weekend and still no go. My plan to split the video post-iMovie was a bust.

My objective is to batch import, split, then batch export some videos as part of my workflow in the lab. We have about 10 miniDV tapes with ~10 runs per tape. And more to come. So far I've been having to export each video by hand. There's about 1/2 hr of exporting for each so nursing the computer eats up my day. I figured there must be an automated solution.

Thanks for the great replies.

Jeff
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