Feature Request: Open New KM Window

Loving all the new improvements of version 7.

A need that I have almost every day is to construct a new macro using pieces of an existing macro. The little clock icon that you added to the new version helps a lot (I have to get in the habit of using it more).

An alternative that would be great would be to able to have 2 macros open at the same time for dragging and dropping back and forth. Is that a feature that would be difficult to implement / that you would consider adding?

Thanks for all that you do! :beers:


Yes, I have considered this. It is very difficult to implement because Keyboard Maestro was never designed to support that sort of thing. It may happen at some point, but its difficulty makes it something that is unlikely to happen except at a major release.

Yeah, sounds like it’s not worth if it requires that much work. Thanks for considering it anyway. I’ll stop being spoiled and enjoy the new “recent” icon. Couldn’t resist, I already created a KM macro to trigger it with ⌃R :smiley:

@peternlewis, when I mouseover this icon it says “Recently Edited Macros”.
When I click on it, it just toggles between two macros, one of which I have not edited in 15 days. I have many other macos edited in the last day or so.

Am I not using this icon properly?

Where is it documented?
I searched wiki, KM7 docs, and could not find when searching for the text of the tooltip (above).

What I would find more helpful, is to have a list of “Recent Macros” under the file menu, like most apps have for “Recent files”.

Or is there some other way of getting this list?

Enhancement Request

BTW, I would love to have a list of macros shown in table format with the following columns:

  • Macro name
  • Group name
  • Created date
  • Modified date
  • Last exported date
  • Title (and optionally contents) of the top Comments action, if it exists
    (OK, I know, that’s asking for a lot, but I would be very helpful to me)

Make this work like a Finder listing,

  • click on column to sort
  • double-click to open for editing
  • right-click to: Export, Rename, Delete, copy, copy as image, copy as text

Thanks for considering our requests.
I feel a bit embarrassed asking for new stuff when I’ve barely scratched the surface of all the new stuff you gave us in KM7. :blush:

Hey JM,

Be sure you try clicking-and-holding on buttons.   :smile:


Thanks, Chris.
How would you know?
That’s not a standard Mac behavior, AFAIK.
Seems like it should be a dropdown list, or click on the button displays the list.
I still would prefer it to be in the File menu: Recent Macros

Hey JM,

Well, I think there’s a point to having buttons on the toolbar.


I agree with you that it’s not obvious those buttons have pop-up menus hidden in them.

On the other hand none of the Safari or Chrome navigation buttons do either.

I also agree that it would be convenient to have these items in a menu — particularly since I can create a macro to OPEN the menu and then type-select what I want.



I already have a global macro that does this for all apps that have a File > Open Recent menu item. :smile:

For this purpose, “edited” means any macro that you display in the editor.

Clicking will go back to the most recently visited macro (toggling back and forth). Clicking and holding will display a menu. The behaviour is the same as the behaviour of the forward/backward buttons in Safari and elsewhere. All the buttons in the toolbar behave the same (the others are, from left to right, Share, Recently triggered macros, editing history (forward and backwards through a sequence, recently edited). The forward backward match Safari’s behaviour, but are probably the weakest of the lot, the Triggered and Recently Edited ones are much more useful.

It would be nice if there was an indication of a menu in them, but they are standard buttons, with no such facility (you know Apple, they love to have hidden functionality these days - it’s surprising you don’t have to three finger swipe while holding the control key down for the menu to appear).

I would say there is essentially zero chance of something like that happening. Sorry.

It would likely be possible to parse the xml to provide a web page that had links for the macros that opened them for editing.


Some thoughts for your consideration on the "button" UI.

Sorry, but I don't think the browser apps are appropriate models for any other type of app. I have just checked numerous Apple Mac apps, and I can't find any, other than Safari, where you "click and hold" on a button to display a list. IMO, this is very counter-intuitive. For decades buttons have represented an action to execute when you click on it.

OTOH, there are numerous cases where clicking on a differently styled "button" displays a list, like the share button, or like the Finder.

Perhaps the Finder dropdown buttons are a better example:

I guess the most important thing is that if you choose to use non-standard, or uncommon, UI, then please document it, and advertise it well in the "new features list". You could also put this in the tooltip:
"Click & Hold for a list of recent macros".

Also, it would be most helpful if all of the "buttons" were also in the menu, especially the "Recently Viewed/Opened", which should be called "Open Recent" in the menu to be consistent with other apps.

If you don't really mean "edited", then don't use that word in the tooltip.

OK, this is confusing. It is unclear what the real difference is between these two:

Checking again, I did find that the Finder uses the click-and-hold on the forward/back buttons like Safari does:

But it never occurred to me to do that in the Finder until just now. Perhaps click-and-hold on the forward/back buttons is a new Apple Mac standard. I don't know.

But just because Apple does it doesn't always make it the best thing to do. :smile:

Thanks for listening.

edited = displayed in the editor (as distinct from modified)
used = triggered in some way

It’s not appropriate to add the ⋁ symbol because the buttons work when clicked, and only bring up the menu if clicked and held. And indeed it would be appropriate to use that in the Share button, but it is not used in the Share button anywhere in OS X. You will also notice that the Share button in the Finder which behaves exactly like the button next to it that you highlight, does not have the ⋁ symbol, making the whole situation ridiculously inconsistent.

The fact is that on modern OS X, click and click and hold do two different things on many UI elements whether it is good UI or not, that is where the OS is.

I may add them to the menu proper, although they probably don’t belong in the Open Recent which is for document/files, not parts within a document.

A great improvement to the new “Select recently edited macros” button wold be the possibility to preserve the scrolling position of each inspected macro.
That would almost completely eliminate the need for a second macro window and seems much easier to implement.

1 Like

Hey JM,

Right next to your ‘Change Arrangement’ button is the ubiquitous ‘Share’ button that has NO indication is is a pop-up menu. You just have to know what it is.

Keep in mind too that Peter uses OSX’s APIs can’t always just do what he wants to.


I like the behaviour - A quick click toggles between two macros like the recall button on a TV remote. Then clicking to hold to go back further. For some reason I found it intuitive and tried a long press right away to get more options. Look at the back/fwd buttons in safari, same thing! :slight_smile:

Also would love the ability to maintain the scrolling position and agree this would eliminate my desire for multiple windows. Nice point, johseb.

Yep, I agree, “ridiculously inconsistent”. :smile:

As far as I can tell, the only buttons in Apple apps that have a click-and-hold feature are the navigation buttons (fwd/back), and I’ve only seen those in Safari and Finder.

It seems to me that even though Apple allows (or even promotes) a certain UI behavior, it doesn’t mean that a developer has to use it if that UI is confusing and inconsistent. To the degree possible, the more the UI of an app is intuitive and easily discoverable, the better it is. Just my opinion. UI design is often a personal and highly debatable subject, and users can vary widely on what they like/prefer.

So, Peter, I fully appreciate the challenge you have with the UI.
One more challenge, is how to you clearly communicate this to new users?

Thanks for always being so willing to discuss these internal design issues with us. :+1:
Most developers would decline to even comment.

Hey, Peter, here's a design that provides both a single click action, and a drop down list, without using the "click-and-hold" approach. It's used in MS Outlook 2011:

Food for thought. :smile: