Wish list or possible solution? searching for a way to manage groups of app specific macro groups (sub palettes) in KBM


In the following I discuss using KBM with Scrivener, but Scrivener is irrelevant. The same problem would apply to any app, especially one with many menu items.

I am been struggling for years with the optimal way to use KBM with apps like Scrivener which have a gazillion menu items.

The best solution I have found is to start with a series of conflicting (same keyboard shortcut triggered by BTT) macro group palettes, each of which branches off to a series of sub palettes containing hot key triggered macros.

It works very well when I am working in Scrivener.

The problem is managing all those macro groups when I am working in KBM. The problem is that the titles of the different macro groups (view, File, Document, Corkboard) are such that they are scattered in the macro group listing in KBM, which makes things tedious.

I know that I could add a keyword such as Scrivener in each of the macro group names and do a search each time I want to work on Scrivener macro groups, but I would prefer if possible to keep titles short and sweet (ie not add keywords).

Is there any way to 'group' all my Scrivener related macro groups in such a way that they could easily and quickly be viewed and accessed in the KBM macro group listing ?

thanks very much for your time and help


in the snapshot below, you can see that my Scrivener related macro groups are scattered. Please ignore the group called Scrivener test palette


If I understand you correctly it is about a better overview order @ronald?
I have created my macro group palettes and sub group palettes like a folder structure in the Finder.

As in my example, #Ulysses is my main folder with my priority macros I need to work with.
In this folder I also have macros that point to a sub-group palette.

The sub-group palettes then all start with the name of the app (here Ulysses) with a hint about the content. For a better search all subgroup palettes get App Icon.
A later access is much easier.

Unless I'm misunderstanding something here, the OP specifically does not want to have a keyword e.g. Ulysses at the beginning of each macro group name. This makes sense in that palettes would inherit the name and thus each palette has a much longer name than desired.

I wonder if it would be beneficial to nicely ask Peter for a feature to have custom names for palettes?

Because of the length of the name @vincent_ardern there is a possibility to hide it...


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brilliant! I'd forgotten about that

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There are many ways to use a macro group palette and its sub group palettes @vincent_ardern
If you work with the right individual icons, you don't need any labeling anymore.

In this case, I oriented myself on the PopClip app and organized my screencast and screenshots apps.
The advantage to PopClip is that I can also use Sub Groups palettes :wink:

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@appleianer @vincent_ardern
thank you both for your comments.
I have the highest respect for Appleianer and there must be something that I don't understand:

  • by using palettes and subpalettes as @appleianer suggests, you basically end up with the equivalent of what I suggested in my Post, that it a system of conflicting (same keyboard shortcut triggered by BTT) macro group palettes, each of which branches off to a series of sub palettes containing hot key triggered macros. In other words, it would appear that Appleianer's method is more complicated with no advantages, but there is probably something that I don't understand
  • there is another misunderstanding: I knew about not displaying the title of the palette. What I want to get rid of is the extra text. I want to displace View only instead of Scrivener View (Macro Group)
    I will create a new post and more explicitly request that the action show palette for one action and add the option display as.
    thank you both again for your comments

Hi @ronald I don't use any shortcuts for my macro group palettes. As you can see in the gif, I have set up the main folders (example #Ulysses) so that the macro group palettes only work when the apps are called.

I also use BetterTouchTool to call the Macro Groups palettes. Since the main folders marked with "#" only work in your apps, I only use one touch gesture for all of them.
If you set a shortcut here, you would only need one shortcut for all macro groups marked with "#".


Since my sub groups palettes with the "#" main folders about this KM action:


and are also called, I don't need any shortcuts for them either.


So that my "#" main folder (macro group palette) can be called via the BTT gesture, I use an Applescript and again the action "Show Makro Group" for it


As you can see in BTT, with this workflow, 90 percent of all apps on my Mac are using the 3 Finger Swype gesture to the right.


I also did a YouTube tutorial for this workflow. It's in German, but I think that you can follow the steps.


thank you very much for your detailed replies and videos.

I am very grateful.

Like you I use KBM with BTT.

I reviewed all your videos including the one on youtube. Herzlichen Dank. Ich habe alles verstanden, aber eine Frage bleibt.

As per images below,

  • the main palette is the Scrivener macro group
  • there are multiple Scrivener sub palettes which focus on different aspects of the menu (File, View, etc)
    This is the equivalent of your #Ulysses main palette and Ulysses Öffnen sub palettes.

I have a single very specific question is it possible for me to activate my View sub palette but only display View on the palette, not display 'Scrivener View Palette (Macro Group) which takes up a lot of space
In your case, what would you do if you only wanted to display Öffnen and not Ulysses Öffnen (Macro Group) on the palette.

Vielen herzlichen Dank

To show only the Öffnen, I would remove Ulysses and use only "Öffnen" as Sup Macro Groups (Palette) name.
It wouldn't be as easy to find, but with the App Icon you can quickly find the macro groups you are looking for.

In your Sub Macro Group palette you would have to replace the name "_Palyground" with "View", so that when you call the Sup Group palette you only see the view.

Why do you use a macro view in #Scrivener and then again in _Playground?

Please also specify only the use in Scrivener for your Sub Macro Group palette.

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that was the only question I wanted to post initially. Your answer is that it is not possible

I still think that using conflicting macro groups is the easiest way to create sub palettes.

_playground is just a macro testing area. It has nothing to do with this discussing. The arrow was used for pointing, not to show its origin.

thanks again for your comments

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Hello Appleianer,
I have an unrelated question.
I assume that you use a german keyboard. How do you type backslash ' \ ' ?
On german keyboards, the key combination Shift-Alt-7 should generated ' \ ' , but the same keyboard combination opens the help menu in all apps.
vielen Dank !

Hello @vincent_ardern and @appleianer
Peter, the grand master found a great solution to my problem.
The solution is at the bottom, last post by Peter
In case you are interested Wish list: add a 'display as' option to the Show Macro Group action
thank you both for your comments