I don’t have as much experience with Keyboard Maestro as I do with Shortcuts, but I just took a 3-5 minute (manual) process and created a macro w/in KM that does the same thing in ~.5 seconds. Not only is this automatic now, but there is no more room for error.

What the macro does is this:

  • get selected item(s) from Finder
  • append path of each item in selection to a text file, “queue.txt”, each path is on a separate line
  • get the enclosing folder from selected item(s) from Finder, set to a variable
  • open Terminal
  • change directory in Terminal to path of folder from above
  • execute a bash script in Terminal

How I use this day-to-day… find something in my media library that needs to be transcoded for “Direct Play” within Plex, highlight it/them, open “Transcode Selection” w/in KM… then wait for it to complete.

I was previously going through many steps:

  • select items
  • open queue.txt
  • drag items from Finder to queue.txt to get the full paths into the file
  • open Terminal
  • change directory in Terminal to the appropriate location
  • drag the bash file into Terminal to execute

It’s the same raw number of steps, but in the macro it’s all previously defined and happens without my interaction within ~.5 seconds – compared to 3-5 minutes of the manual steps which had quite a few instances where I was typing in the wrong items or dragging things incorrectly.

The macro took an hour or so over the course of 3 nights to design. Why stick with it and get it done? This is now automatic and I don’t need to think about the process.

It just works.