Custom WATCHOUT hotkeys v2

Here’s a new version of my custom WATCHOUT hotkey bindings, bringing several much-needed keyboard improvements to the WATCHOUT Production software. Version 2 adds a little bit of After Effects influence, using – and = for timeline zoom and PgUp and PgDn for moving the playhead.

As before, these require AutoHotkey [link].




Ctrl+I,Add media file (replaces current shortcut for Insert layer)

Ctrl+Shift+I,Insert layer

Ctrl+Shift+N,New folder

Ctrl+Shift+T,Add new text

Ctrl+Shift+C,Add new composition

Ctrl+Shift+V,Add new video proxy

Ctrl+Shift+D,Duplicate selected composition

Alt+Y,Y Rotation tween

-,Zoom timeline out

=,Zoom timeline in

PgUp/PgDn,Move forwards/backwards 0.1 seconds

Shift+PgUp/PgDn,Move forwards/backwards 1 second

Ctrl+Shift+PgUp/PgDn,Move forwards/backwards 10 seconds


To use these new hotkeys, download and install AutoHotkey, then download and run my attached AutoHotkey script file.

The script works by assigning a series of keystrokes to the hotkeys I list above. Those keystrokes drive the menu system. For example, when you run this script and then perss Ctrl+Shift+N in WATCHOUT to add a new folder, AutoHotkey intercepts the hotkey and sends WATCHOUT Alt+M (for the Media menu), then 11 down-arrow keystrokes (to navigate to Add new folder), then Enter to run it.

This script was written for WATCHOUT 5.5. In future versions, if the menus change, the script will need to be updated to reflect the new menu layout.

Please note that I prefer to remap the current “Insert layer” shortcut (<Ctrl>+I) to “Add media file” to match many other applications. Also note that “Duplicate selected composition” is pretty naive; it will move all the media cues from an existing comp into a new comp, but it does not copy layer names or composition parameters. If you’d like to keep the existing shortcuts, you may wish to modify the script file.

A quick run-through of the code: the #IfWinActive directive limits the scope of the new shortcuts, only running them when WATCHOUT is the active window. Two colons (::) are used to separate the hotkey on the left from the command on the right. Ctrl is expressed as ^, Shift as +; Alt as ! and Win as #. All this is documented in depth at the AutoHotkey website.

Comments and suggestions for improvements are always welcome!



Posted by Walter Soyka

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