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Sam Julien
Sam Julien

Posted on • Updated on • Originally published at

Automating Screencasting with Keyboard Maestro

When I was recording the videos for Upgrading AngularJS, I was using a Windows 10 laptop. Every time I wanted to shoot a video, I had to remember to hide the taskbar, hide my other windows, open up my editor and browser, and probably other things I'm forgetting.

It was really tedious.

When I switched to Mac when joining Auth0, I started researching how to automate different pieces of my writing, coding, and screencasting process.

Enter Keyboard Maestro. Keyboard Maestro is an insanely powerful Mac application that lets you automate virtually anything using combinations of triggers and actions.

Want to open an app when you connect to coffee shop wifi? Done.

Want to hit a single key to launch your entire development environment — including resizing all of your windows and running terminal commands? Done.

Want to trigger an end-of-day routine at 5 pm every day to force you to stop working? Done.

Keyboard Maestro has become completely essential to my workflow. The biggest help to me has been with recording screencasts. I now have a single keystroke that:

  • Hides all applications
  • Launches my editor (Camtasia until recently, but now Screenflow)
  • Opens iTerm and runs a teach command, which is an alias to launch Visual Studio Code with special settings (light theme for accessibility, bells and whistles disabled, etc.)
  • Resizes the front window to 1280x720 and center it.
  • Opens Chrome and send it to localhost:8000 (I can adjust this depending on the project, but that's a good standard)
  • Resizes Chrome to 1280x720 and centers it.

Here's a quick video on how to do it. (Oh, the video also refers to Karabiner Elements, be sure to grab that.)

If you want to master Keyboard Maestro, there's no better tool than David Sparks' Keyboard Maestro Field Guide.

Let me know if this helps!

Read more of my writing at Want to hang out while I experiment with code from the farm? Follow me on Twitch. Questions? Hit me up on Twitter.

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