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Mapkeys in Windchill/PDMLink

Mapkeys in Windchill/PDMLink

Please vote to allow user to record and call up mapkeys ('macros' for those not familiar with ProE) in WC/PDMLink like we now can in Creo/ProE.

Some usefull features that this could include:

  • Record by following user clicks and keyboard inputs
  • Editing some type of config file to Create/modify mapkey (either offline or from within WC)
  • User can start mapkey using key sequence when the WC window is active (currently Creo mapkeys don't work if the embedded browser is active)
  • User can start mapkey by clicking on an icon within WC interface (e.g. in WS, or have a collapsable bar common across all areas of WC)
  • Be able to combine Creo and WC mapkeys through some kind of transition so that a Creo command could include WC commands and vice versa.
7 Comments
TomU
Emerald II

I can't even fathom how this would work.  The information is completely dynamic.  The layout is completely configurable by the users.  The state of objects will almost never be the same.

To determine the actual feasibility of something like this you might want to try using AutoIT.  You can script almost anything that has a normal Windows GUI.  Plus, you can call the AutoIT scripts from Pro/e (Creo) mapkeys.

lscheeler
Pearl

I do not know enough to know what is and is not feasible in PDMLink. I just know that it would be very, very, VERY useful. I do know, however, that with technology what may be impossible "yesterday", may be possible today or "tomorrow". I possible I want PTC to make the change, but if currently impossible, keep it on their radar for future changes.

I have never used AutoIt but will look into it. Thanks for the suggestion.

sm
Newbie
Newbie

Its been a long time since I have used this application, but AutoHotkey may have what you are looking for.

Would it be helpful if there were keyboard accelerators for common actions? Ctrl-A to select all, Ctrl-C, Ctrl-X, Ctrl-V, Delete, etc? Windchill is very cursor intensive.

lscheeler
Pearl

Tom, I discussed this with someone in IT who uses AutoIt and Powershell.  Although it sounds like parts could be done, it really would require more effort than could be justified.  So it was determined from a combo of autoIt and Powershell that it is probably possible.

     I think that the real power of mapkeys consists not JUST in a Cad Admin giving it to all the users, but giving the power to automate tasks to the slightly higher than average individual user who is most familiar (and frustrated), with the tasks they do week-in-and-week-out.  This ability is what I, and others, would like from PTC.  In fact, just today someone asked me for this functionality to allow a single mapkey to do tasks both in Creo and in the PDMLink WS. 

Scott, thanks for the reference to AutoHotkey.  I will try to look into that one as well. 

     I am not sure I understand your question about keyboard accelerators as I use the shortcut keys you mentioned every day I work on PDMLink.  Can you explain further?

     Yes WC is very mouse dependent.  So much so that basic windows (and Internet browser) keyboard functions don't work.  Some more frustrating examples would be using tab to jump between fields; using the up/down arrows on the keyboard to go to the above and below text line.  But like you said there is so much more that can be done if PTC focused on the USER Interface.  In addition to this, providing the user with the ability to customize and combine tasks according to his duties would be powerful.

SvenR
Amethyst

well, before thinking of macros, how about 'simple' keyboard shortcuts?

something like alt+a for the actions menu, etc...? That would speed up the work for the users that use such things.

I think macros would more be designed for expert users or admins.

Even the number of users that know to use keyboard shortcuts is quite small.

lscheeler
Pearl

That is a great idea to have keyboard shortcuts.

A note about the Macros and Mapkeys.  In my experience you are right that most users won't create them and that creating them will be for admins and expert users.  However that doesn't mean that the common users won't benefit from Mapkeys/Macros.  One of the most powerful aspects of Mapkeys/Macros is for one person to create them, and then many users to use them.  This gives power to the company to streamline a string of tasks that are frequently done together (or take many steps) but may not be industry common enough for PTC to make a shorter way to do it (or if it is common, the company can put it into effect much faster without it having to go down through PTC's hierarchy and eventually filter to the user level at some future version years down the road, if ever).

Great suggestion SvenR!  It is definitely along the same lines as mapkeys and maybe a good intermediary step

PTCModerator
Topaz I
Status changed to: No Plans to Implement