Interation with selected text

  • Shawn

    Shawn - 2008-09-11

    It would be very nice to have launchy to interact with selected text. That way you can use launchy everywhere to state search querys, or send text or something to users, paste to mails whatever...


    1) i have an address highlighted in my browser. I open launchy to launch google maps. Launchy detects that i don't have entered an address but selected one so it takes this one for the query.

    2) i have an interesting article. I hightlight an interesting part and type "mail [tab] John Doe" and the selected part is mailed to the receipient.

    3) Translate text (Translation query to a website)

    and so on...

    • Ben

      Ben - 2008-09-11

      This is a lot like the new Firefox plugin Ubiquity. If you want these features just in your web browser I suggest giving Ubiquity a try. It's still a bit buggy but it has a lot of promise.

      • Shawn

        Shawn - 2008-09-11

        I know this plugin, but right now it's still very limited to special services (mostly english speaking services) and is not very customizable. Probably it will have some international features when release time is near. But I don't understand the fact that a tool like that is developed as a browser plugin only. How about word documents, how about emails you receive, messenger?

        That's why I would like to have a feature like this in Launchy: accessible everywhere. And it shouldn't be too complicated since the selected text just needs to be passed as an argument to the launchy plugins. The only difference to the current behaviour: the source is the selected text, not the text behind the [tab] in the launchy window.

        That way this simple (?) addition feature would make it an even more powerful tool that could be used by every plugin there is: send mails, send instant messages (imy), open search queries with the text in whereever (google, wikipedia, translation services, google maps queries, whatever webby is configured to), even set the next timer with the timer-plugin...

    • Simon

      Simon - 2008-09-11

      Nice idea. I'd have had a bash at patching this in myself if it wasn't so damn complicated. It's easy enough to get the text out of a standard Windows textbox, but getting the selected text is a little more tricky. Then throw in the fact that Firefox, Safari and IE all have different mechanisms for getting selected text (or possibly none at all) and it gets more tricky. Then you've got Word, Excel, Notepad2/Notepad++, Thunderbird, Outlook, Outlook Express. All different.

      If anyone's got any clever ideas, fire away!

    • Near Privman

      Near Privman - 2008-09-19

      I would suggest using AutoHotKey ( in conjunction with Launchy.
      AutoHotKeys is a very powerful scripting tool for Windows. You could add the following script into the script file, and use the shortcut ctrl+win+space to the a copy action and open Launchy:

      ^#space::                 ;when ctrl+win+space is pressed:
      Clipboard:=               ;empty the cilpboard
      send ^c
      ClipWait, 1.5             ;wait for the clipboard to fill for up to 1.5 seconds
      send #{space}        ;open Launchy

      then you'll just have to press ctrl+v before pressing enter.

      I'm not much of a programmer myself, but I'm sure that with a little more scripting it's possible to replace the 'enter' key with 'ctrl+v, enter' if it comes within the following 10 seconds, etc.
      It's also possible to use AutoHotKeys variables to hold the original content of the clipboard and restore it after the Launchy command has been completed (so you don't lose what you had previously copied).

      Hope this helps, let me know if you need more help with AutoHotKey.

    • magician008

      magician008 - 2008-11-07

      Yes this would be a very helpful feature...i was using Dash before switching over to Launchy, and expected that to be a regular built-in feature, but surprisingly, it isn't...

    • Steven Roebert

      Steven Roebert - 2008-11-08

      I have been busy programming an application a bit like launchy, although it is more like Quicksilver or Gnome Do. I also wanted this feature to be in my program and I have found that the most easy way to do as follows:

      - Store the current clipboard values to a temporary place.
      - Send the Ctrl+C key combination to the current application.
      - Use the contents on the clipboard (which can now contain selected text)
      - When launchy is hiding again, put back the original clipboard contents.

      This has to be done by launchy though, or at least before the launchy window comes up, otherwise you can not send Ctrl-C to the active window.

  • justfortherec

    justfortherec - 2010-04-02

    I'd really like such a feature in launchy, too.
    Blaze is similar to launchy and has this feature built in. I've bookmarked it to compare it to launchy whenever i find time to do it. Though I haven't found the time yet.

    But anyway it is open source and hosted on sourceforge. So it should be possible to have a look at how this is implemented in blaze (or maybe just have a chat with the developer :-)


Log in to post a comment.

Get latest updates about Open Source Projects, Conferences and News.

Sign up for the SourceForge newsletter:

No, thanks