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Using the services menu System
Although it hasn't received much coverage, the services menu appears to be one of the niftier features of OS X. To get a brief example of how it works, open the Mail application, pick any message, reply to it, and select all the text. Make sure Terminal is also running, although you don't need to have a session open.

Under the Mail menu, select Services, then Terminal, and finally Word Count. All your text will be replaced by a series of three numbers - 7 57 362, in the test I ran. This translates to 7 lines, 57 words, and 362 characters.

For a second demo, start a new email message, and pick Time under the Terminal services menu. The current date and time will be pasted in your email.

Although these are neat demos, the real power appears to lie in the fact that we will (hopefully!) be able to add our own services in the final release. To see what this could look like, look at the Terminal Services menu under Terminal in the (you guessed it!) Terminal application.

Since the terminal application has incredible power, the ability to add a service which will then be available to any application seems like a very useful thing!

I added a test service, but I haven't been able to make it show up in the services menu in other apps yet, but I'll post something if I do.
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Using the services menu | 7 comments | Create New Account
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service?
Authored by: rnelsonbyrne on Nov 25, '00 04:30:00PM

sumpin must be missing here.
when i try the time thing with mail i get a beep and the console says:
Mail[1051] Service "Time" could not be provided: Inappropriate selection type for this service.


???



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service?
Authored by: robg on Nov 25, '00 04:41:18PM

I can't repeat this error on my machine, but I did just clarify the hint. Make sure the Terminal
app is at least running before you try the services menu in Mail.

Any luck?



[ Reply to This | # ]
service?
Authored by: rnelsonbyrne on Nov 26, '00 01:49:53PM

alas, no. terminal is running, and the mail services shows terminal services all right. albut time are grayed out if there's no selection in the mail window. selection or no, time just beeps and console says, as always:
Service "Time" could not be provided: Inappropriate selection type for this service.

???



[ Reply to This | # ]
Sticky service
Authored by: Anonymous on Nov 28, '00 06:34:07PM

Stickies is supposed to have a "Make Sticky from text" service, according to the default note
that appears when you first open stickies, but I haven't been able to see it. Anyone have
success?



[ Reply to This | # ]
Sticky service
Authored by: robg on Nov 29, '00 12:21:12AM

Not on my machine either; maybe it's not yet enabled in the PB...

-rob.



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Terminal services gone?
Authored by: robg on Feb 05, '01 11:47:23AM

Anyone else have their Terminal services menu vanish from mail.app (or any other services-aware app)?

It obviously worked when I wrote this tip, but now, I don't have a "terminal" option in the Services menu of mail.app. I dug around in the terminal a bit, and found the services entries in the terminal.app bundle, and they looked fine (no corrupted text or anything). And I can see the services listed inside terminal.app (under Terminal->Terminal Services), but again, they aren't in the Services menu.

I have no idea how to go about fixing this -- anyone have any ideas?



[ Reply to This | # ]
Updated status...
Authored by: robg on Feb 05, '01 01:34:05PM

I restarted the box, and I now have the Terminal services menu back, but ... they don't do anything ... help?



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