I found this through PC Mag about a year ago, and have been using it ever since. Autohotkey is free, and does several great things, which I illustrate here:
- You can key in an abbreviation, like btw, and it will automatically expand to “by the way.” You define the expansion with a text file.
- For more common names, and for using in email addresses, you can prefix a name, with say, two periods + terry, and terry’s email address will appear. Great for forwarding internet news articles–they usually require you to key in a person’s whole email address.
- You can set up hotkey combinations to start up web pages, so the Window logo key + g, would go to gmail.com, for instance.
- Since most mainframers use a PC nowadays, you can set up hotkey combinations so an abbreviation like pds becomes user072.pds.cntl.
- And especially for mainframers, you can set up scripts so multiple lines of a form can be filled in with preset values. So, if you’re testing a CICS form that requires several fields to be keyed in, you can do it automatically, with the press of one or two keys. I used this a LOT on my last assignment.
- It workds with USB drives, so you don’t have to load it onto your work PC.
You only have to execute it once at the start of your work day, and you’re good to go on ALL programs on your PC. I’ve only found one program that it didn’t work well with, and that was one I don’t use that often anyway.
This program definitely makes my keyboarding easier, and I think you’ll find the same true for you. Get it.