ckunte.net

hotkeys

Not wanting to manage KVM hygiene daily, a side-effect of the hot-desking policy, I began using my G610 at work three months ago. It’s a fine, if hefty full-sized keyboard, and that became a problem. I mean at the end of every work day, I unplug to shove it inside a 1’-0” × 1’-0” locker, leaving very little usable room in it for anything else.

Not wanting to buy yet another, I pulled my seldom-used Apple bluetooth wireless keyboard out. This is in many ways worse than its large, corded sibling. For the portability, you inherit its handicap of missing keys — some of them critical to be productive; this aside from the prospect of blowing one’s mind with jumbled hotkeys across OSes — Mac at home; Windows at work.

To recover sanity, I looked at ways to remap keys so I could use Mac hotkeys on Windows, and found AutoHotkey promising. As a general scripting tool, however, there is no way around the manual, and it so took me a good few trial and error compiles to get to a set of usable hotkey mappings. I then compiled mackeyboard.ahk script together with a ⌘ key icon to generate mackeyboard.exe file.

Mackeyboard autohotkey in system tray

It runs just fine in the background capturing all my hotkeys, pressed in Mac style, and transforming them into Windows hotkeys on the fly. In addition, it’s also good as a simple text expander, which saves me some repetitive typing. For logging-in (or unlocking) though, I still have to resort to using laptop’s built-in keyboard, and while it’s still too early to say in this experiment, these last few hours have been promising.

See also scripting replies in Outlook using AutoHotkey.

Update (Mar 2018): Recent Windows 10 update now makes it easier on the Apple wireless external keyboard to require pressing only Ctrl Alt combination without the need to reach for the del key on the laptop’s built-in keyboard.