Shorthand commands
 Meta actions
 BRINGUP details
 Unicode characters
 Actions configuration file
 Action classes for applications
Numbers and Spoken Forms
Unimacro and Vocola
Cooperation with voicecoder
Unit testing
Grammar classes
Global dictation

Meta actions

(Parts of) actions in can be defined as meta action. The actions module recognises such a string, and tries to resolve the meta action through the specifications in the ini file actions.ini (see below). Meta actions can be nested. As soon as actions are different across different programs/Windows, a meta action is appropriate: commands can be kept global, the actions can be different for different applications.

Most meta actions are now written without spacing, so <<filesaveas>> instead of <<file save as>>.

This mechanism is made because several commands (like "file save as") can have different keystrokes (or other actions) in different windows. It can be defined as a global command, either Unimacro or as Vocola command. The default action will do for most applications, and some applications require different actions, for example another keystroke sequence.

Actions with a count

Some actions, exclusively called from grammars, can have a optional count. If the last letter of the meta action is "n",

ini files

The meta action mechanism is controlled by the user by the file actions.ini, and can be called with commands show actions and edit actions (commands from the grammar _control.

"Show actions" gives information about the window from which it was called, which ini files sections are active, and which actions are taken from which section.

"Edit actions" gives you the complete ini file. On the left side of the = is the meta action, on the right side the actual action to be performed. See below for program and window specific actions.

Edit your own actions in the [default] section or in the appropriate section of your program. If you want to add a new action for a program that is not in the file yet, make a new section. If you do not know the name of the program, look at the top of the text that is shown with the command show actions, or give the command give window info (from the grammar _general).

program and window specific meta actions

Specific actions can even be defined for specific window titles inside the program, for example in [outlook html] (if your window title contains "html"). If your window title does not contain "html" only the section [outlook] is taken.


In the description the use of meta actions in Vocola, you'll find examples of file save as and of save|close window|document.

A short example goes about highlighting (searching) for dictated text. It is in the grammar _general.

The keystrokes to start the search and to finish the search can be different in different applications. They are controlled by the meta actions *<<startsearch>> and <<searchgo>>*.

Often you can then rely on default actions for startsearch and searchgo, which are (probably, check your own actions.ini file):

startsearch = {ctrl+f}
searchgo = {enter}

For several applications you have to change one or both of these meta actions in order to get things work:

startsearch = {ctrl+s}

searchgo = {enter}{esc}

searchgo = {enter}; {esc}

searchgo = {enter}{esc}

searchgo = {enter}{esc}

startsearch = {f4}
searchgo = {enter}{esc}

Section == application name

One detail: how do you know which application you are working in, the application name must be filled in between the []. Well, the command give window info (a command of the grammar _general again), gives you the required information.

A few examples are given in the Unimacro and Vocola section.