Keyboard focus navigation of KBM editor: trouble navigating to/through certain objects/fields

I often use tab, shift+tab, and the arrow keys to navigate the currently focused action/field in the Keyboard Maestro editor. However, this fails when the keyboard focus reaches certain text fields that accept tokens (variable or calculation fields don't seem to have this problem), like the "to" field in the set variable action, since the tab key will enter a literal tab in the text field.

I also have trouble navigating through grouped actions, or those enclosed within a flow control action (If Else, While, etc.). I've observed there is a difference in the selection highlight in these cases. Normally, when tabbing through keyboard focus objects of actions, the highlight around the actions will be a thicker gray border. But as soon as an action group is selected, tab will select the first action in it, and the border highlight will turn to green (in my case, but maybe system prefs dependent). Hitting tab again will select the first focused object of the first action, and the highlight turns to a gray border again. But I can't seem to get this behavior when any other action in the group has the green highlight border, as hitting tab will then always return the keyboard focus to the first object/field of the first action within the current group level.

If I click a field of an action within a group to edit it, then the border highlight will focus on that action, and will be gray instead of green, and using tab/shift+tab will then allow me to navigate through the action fields at that level from the currently selected field.

What I can't seem to figure out is how to change the current action focused from a green highlight to a gray one so that tab will then focus on that action's first editable object instead of jumping to the first editable object of the first action in the group/at the same level as the currently-focused (green border highlight) action, or basically, how use keyboard focus navigation to step into editing the currently-focused action.

Also, I'd like to figure out how to use keyboard focus navigation to escape/exit out of entering text in a text field that accepts tab and return as literal characters, if possible, including also the hotkey entry field (the one that will change the hotkey assignment for a macro).

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Use and to jump in and out of hierarchies.

Watch out – in certain circumstances will move the selected action to the top of the editor

That's not going to happen, because the hotkey entry field is designed to capture and swallow any given key combination.

@peternlewis – anything to add?


Awesome! Thanks for the help!

And yes, I figured the hotkey entry field might behave that way. But knowing what I do now, I'm sure I'll figure out some way around it. :slight_smile:

Well that's odd. sometimes the shortcuts work, but intermittently I just hear the default chirp alert sound from my Mac. But then, when I try the same one again, it works.

Yes, there are instances where the shortcuts don't work as expected.

Unfortunately I can't detail exactly why.