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Create keyboard shortcuts for 'dotted' menu items System
I was trying to add shortcut (Shift-Command-S) to the Address Book menu titled "Send This Card...". The command never worked until I opened the "Character Palette" (using a tip from a previous hint) and inserted a "Horizontal Ellipsis" from the "Punctuation" tab. Previously I had used three periods instead of a "Horizontal Ellipsis" when I filled out the "Menu Title" for the shortcut in the Keyboard Shortcuts system preference. They looked the same, but are obviously different.

An easy solution for adding shortcuts to menu items ending with "...".

[robg adds: I thought we had run something on this issue before, but I can't find it. If you do happen to find a similar hint, please let me know and I'll resolve the duplicate issue.]
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Create keyboard shortcuts for 'dotted' menu items | 13 comments | Create New Account
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Create keyboard shortcuts for 'dotted' menu items
Authored by: cfoster on Oct 12, '04 11:55:12AM

Most Apple programs use the special elipsis character (as all programs are supposed to) in place of three dots.

The quick way to access this character is with option-semicolon.

-Colin.



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option-;
Authored by: dom on Oct 12, '04 11:59:34AM

option-; (semicolon) will give you the horizontal ellipsis too.



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Create keyboard shortcuts for 'dotted' menu items
Authored by: d00d on Oct 12, '04 12:12:56PM

I actually find it fairly surprising that to this day that this tip is still necessary. The ellipse has been a standard part of the Mac character set for as long as I can remember. In fact, if you type three periods in a row in Word (any version with auto-correct), it will substitute the ellipse.



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Create keyboard shortcuts for 'dotted' menu items
Authored by: raider on Oct 12, '04 02:45:26PM

Of course, there are people who never would have even guessed that. I am a switcher since OSX 10.0.4. I never knew this existed until now, and why would I - until I ran into something like this? How would I know that ... was not the same as ... ?



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Create keyboard shortcuts for 'dotted' menu items
Authored by: d00d on Oct 18, '04 12:18:14PM

Well, to be honest, anybody that writes anything of any consequence (even in high school) should be aware of the ellipsis (my bad on misspelling it).



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Create keyboard shortcuts for 'dotted' menu items
Authored by: Frederico on Oct 16, '04 12:44:48AM

Actually, depending on the version of Office, even the auto-corrected ellipsis will not actually behave as expected. Try this: start a new line in Word or Entourage with three periods in a row, followed by a space, then type any word using lowercase characters

Notice how the first letter of the word following the ellipsis is auto-capitalized (assuming you have this auto-correct feature enabled too)?

Now repeat the process, instead using a proper ellipsis using Option-semicolon; notice how it does *not* auto-capitalize the first character of the word following the space, which is typographically correct.

In short, a period is a period, wether it comes in ones or threes or otherwise; an ellipsis is an ellipsis, and most good word processors know it, including the Mac OS and Keyboard Shortcuts.



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Create keyboard shortcuts for 'dotted' menu items
Authored by: digiglyphics on Oct 12, '04 01:16:52PM

I knew that the ellipse existed in the character set, but it never dawned on me that I would have to use it. Let's face it until that day, I never used it. I figured someone else may have run into the same problem.

The option semicolon command is good to know. I couldn't find a shortcut for it right away and that's what prompted me to open the character palette. Thanks for that.

I submitted my hint more as an FYI. Thanks again for the shortcut!

---
"real skill comes without effort..." Li Mu Bai - Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon



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Create keyboard shortcuts for 'dotted' menu items
Authored by: dr_turgeon on Oct 12, '04 02:31:31PM

Weirdness prevails as the ellipsis character is only really common to typesetters. QuirkXpress, the typesetters' workhorse from the old days, does not use the ellipsis for the shortcuts. This means that my global shortcuts won't apply to Quirk. I wish I could put that workhorse out to pasture...

Now, if I create two globals (a second one for the program(s) without ellipsis intelligence) and want to use the same key shortcut, Keyboard Prefpane shows this as a conflict. I don't see why Apple couldn't make a key shortcut point to multiple spellings (or items?)



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Create keyboard shortcuts for 'dotted' menu items
Authored by: Uncle Asad on Oct 12, '04 02:44:56PM

Try creating them (both/all) on an application-specific basis rather than as globals.



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Create keyboard shortcuts for 'dotted' menu items
Authored by: MJCube on Oct 12, '04 05:52:25PM
Good memory, Rob. Some discussion of the ellipsis is buried way down in the comments to this hint from last December about changing the keyboard shortcut for ‘New Folder' in the Finder.

It seems that today's Mac newbies need a more in-your-face reference to all those useful hi-bit characters available with the Option key. Although I am grateful for Unicode every day, it can be daunting at first; Macs have always offered the most essential characters right on the standard keyboard. In Panther Key Caps was moved to the new Keyboard Viewer, available only from the keyboard menu, which must be enabled manually in System Prefs. I think having it there is sensible, but the documentation of it is really lacking.

I am of the opinion that ellipses* and curly quotes, etc., should be used by everybody nowadays, not just professional typesetters, because we are all working with high-quality digital fonts.

* Note to d00d and digiglyphics: ‘ellipse' is a geometric shape. The word for the 3 dots is ‘ellipsis'. The plurals of these two words are spelled the same, but pronounced differently. Searching here for ‘ellipsis' will not find your comments.

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Create keyboard shortcuts for 'dotted' menu items
Authored by: MJCube on Oct 12, '04 06:03:04PM
Aha. On further inspection, I bet it was some of the comments to this hint that you were remembering. I should've checked more thoroughly.

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Create keyboard shortcuts for 'dotted' menu items
Authored by: peterneillewis on Oct 12, '04 10:21:14PM

We actually added support for just this case into Keyboard Maestro with the recent 2.0.2 release. You can make a menu shortcut and whether you use dotdotdot or elipsis, and whether the application uses elipsis or dotdotdot, either way we find the menu and do the action.



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Create keyboard shortcuts for 'dotted' menu items
Authored by: TvE on Oct 13, '04 05:52:22AM

Well - here in Denmark I have to type OPT-X to get the ellipsis, OPT-; (actually OPT-SHIFT-,) gives me two commas "„" what ever name that character has (button-quote I think) ;-)



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