Macro for University Researchers

I'm proud of this macro I've been able to create with the help of this community, so I thought I'd share it! Maybe you can adapt it for your own workflows.

The Situation

I'm a research assistant, which means I do a whole lot of grunt work. Often my professor gives me a book with markups in the bibliography and my job is to go and get them from the library and if they're not there, request them through Interlibrary Loan (ILL). I like to make a detailed list of the books I need so that I can just print it out and take it with me when I make my library run and so I can send an inventory to my prof.

To find the books, I do a search on Melvyl, a worldwide university library catalog. When I find an item, I want to record its vital information in an Evernote note:

  • The item title
  • The call number
  • A link to the listing page for future reference

This obviously means a whole bunch of copy/pasting and window switching, i.e. menial work.

The Macro

Melvyl Listing to Evernote.kmmacros (13.8 KB)

The automation process centers on getting those three points of data onto their own clipboards and pasting them in the desired fashion. The real awesomeness is that it all get's accomplished with a single keystroke! This is possible thanks to @ComplexPoint's help in using the Execute a JavaScript in Google Chrome action.

The item title and call number each have a unique HTML class, so the script will return the content of the elements with those classes and store them in named clipboard. The macro then does some text cleaning (I'm a formatting freak) and we've got everything we need! I hit the hotkey and end up with:

How Would You Use It?

This is very specific to my own needs, but maybe the process looks familiar to you? This has already saved me a boat load of time and tedium. If you can adapt this to your own workflow, share it!

I realize that parts of this are a bit hacked together, but I don't really know JS (or any scripting language for that matter) so if anyone has any suggestions on streamlining this, let me know!

PS. Is it customary to post screenshots of the macro actions?


Tom, thank you so much for sharing this outstanding macro. I have no doubt that it can/will serve as the inspiration and basis for a lot of other use cases similar to yours.

I am a big Evernote user, so this is particularly useful to me.
May I suggest that you post this thread on the Evernote forums, in the Mac section?

1 Like

Thanks for the feedback! I went ahead and posted it.

Do you have any go-to Evernote macros? I'm still kinda new to KM, so I've got only a couple:

  • Save PDF.kmmacros (25.9 KB)
    • Tabs through the annoying dialogs to save a note as a PDF
  • Link Text.kmmacros (23.6 KB)
    • Command + K will now paste clipboard, confirm the dialogue, and right remove text highlight
1 Like

Thank you Tom for sharing–this macro looks very useful! Can anyone offer a solution to help adjust this to a different–more widely used database (e.g. Pubmed)? I’m not familiar with JavaScript, otherwise I would do this myself.