LB 5 clipboard suggestion: option to paste as plain text

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joshuakaufman
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LB 5 clipboard suggestion: option to paste as plain text

Post by joshuakaufman » Sun Dec 07, 2008 9:38 pm

I'm loving the new Clipboard history in LaunchBar 5! Would it be at all possible to have an option to paste as plain text? I can hardly think of a case when I need to paste as rich text, and I suspect this is this case for most people.

jpcirrus
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Post by jpcirrus » Sun Dec 07, 2008 10:41 pm

...the same for me.

Jono
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Post by Jono » Mon Dec 08, 2008 1:34 am

I've not experimented much with LaunchBar's Clipboard History function, but this is definitely something I would need.

In Butler you can paste as plain text by pressing ⌥-Return (instead of just Return) after selecting an item to paste as plain text. You can also select an option in their settings to always paste as plain text which is something I think should definitely be added to LaunchBar's Clipboard History Preferences. I guess if you selected this option then you could press ⌥-Return to paste as the originally formatted text?

jpcirrus
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Post by jpcirrus » Mon Dec 08, 2008 10:06 am

Jono's proposed functionality sounds perfect to me, with the option modifier key being used to override the proposed default option set in preferences for "Always paste plain text".

This would work fine using "option-return" when selecting from the "Clipboard History". When using "Select from history" then the option key could be held down before releasing the modifier key (which obviously could not be the option key) to provide the same functionality. With "Paste and remove from history" this would not work unless the option modifier key was reserved in all instances for overriding the default preference setting - probably a good idea to ensure consistency.

kastorff
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Post by kastorff » Mon Dec 08, 2008 5:41 pm

I'd like a plain text option as well.

bigcloits
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Post by bigcloits » Mon Dec 08, 2008 6:46 pm

Me too, please!

ludwigschubert
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Post by ludwigschubert » Mon Dec 08, 2008 9:09 pm

Currently there is no possibility to instant-send clipboard history items, but there will be. (You can try it by right-arrowing into a multiple line clipboard item and pressing tab)

But then there will be, you'll be able to simply press tab and select the "Copy and paste as plain text" action.
While not as nice as a custom shortcut, this would work for me.

Dennis
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Post by Dennis » Tue Dec 09, 2008 12:16 am

I like Ludwig's suggestion of just handling it with instant-send to the "Copy and paste as plain text" action, or perhaps a new "Paste as plain text" action. But if ObDev can work out something with a key modifier (e.g. Option-Return), I'd be happy with that as well.

But until an official solution, it's easy to work around this by creating your own action with a bit of AppleScript:

Code: Select all

try
    set the clipboard to (the clipboard as Unicode text)
on error err
    display dialog err buttons {"OK"} default button 1 with icon 2
end try



Save this script to your ~/Library/Application Support/LaunchBar/Actions folder. I call mine "Remove Clipboard Style."

Then select an item from LaunchBar's clipboard history, hit Command-C to make it the current item on OS X's clipboard, then run the "Remove Clipboard Style" action. Then paste wherever you like.

Hope this helps.

-Dennis

norbert
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Post by norbert » Tue Dec 09, 2008 12:31 am

The Remove Clipboard Style script isn't necessary. LaunchBar's built-in Copy as Plain Text action does exactly the same. If you invoke it without an argument (i.e. without using it as the target of a send-to operation), it uses the current clipboard contents and replaces it with the corresponding plain text representation.

Dennis
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Post by Dennis » Tue Dec 09, 2008 1:03 am

Very nice! Thanks, Norbert, I hadn't seen that new action.

-Dennis

Jono
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Post by Jono » Tue Dec 09, 2008 1:09 am

norbert wrote:The Remove Clipboard Style script isn't necessary. LaunchBar's built-in Copy as Plain Text action does exactly the same. If you invoke it without an argument (i.e. without using it as the target of a send-to operation), it uses the current clipboard contents and replaces it with the corresponding plain text representation.


What about an option to always paste as plain text, or a dedicated keyboard shortcut? Seems like there quite a lot of demand for it :)

norbert
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Post by norbert » Tue Dec 09, 2008 1:39 am

Jono wrote:What about an option to always paste as plain text, or a dedicated keyboard shortcut? Seems like there quite a lot of demand for it :)

We are considering improvements in this regard.

But we yet have to figure out what's the best way to deal with files on the clipboard in this case. Should we also paste them as plain text, i.e. paste their file paths? Or should we still paste them as files, allowing you to e.g. paste them into a Mail window as an attachment?

For consistency reasons it's probably better to convert them into file paths. In order to attach the actual file to an email you would then have to copy it from the Clipboard History with Command-C, which always restores the original (rich) clipboard content.

bigcloits
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Post by bigcloits » Tue Dec 09, 2008 5:58 am

norbert wrote:But we yet have to figure out what's the best way to deal with files on the clipboard in this case. Should we also paste them as plain text, i.e. paste their file paths? Or should we still paste them as files, allowing you to e.g. paste them into a Mail window as an attachment?


Such things usually just come down to a popularity contest, and it’s always brutal if there isn’t a clear winner. Which usage case has the greatest demand? There’s your default, and the others are options. I’m guessing that when most users select a file and copy, they want the file, not the path, but maybe that’s just my bias because it’s what I want myself ... ;-)

Survey says?

Jono
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Post by Jono » Tue Dec 09, 2008 10:36 am

Yea, pretty much all the time when I copy files & folders I want to paste them somewhere else as they are, not paste the (text) path to the files.

I consider copying files & folders different to text. I (pretty much) always want to paste text without formatting, but if it's files or folders I'll want to paste them as they are. Maybe the Option key idea could be used here as well?

i.e. in clipboard Preferences a box you can check or uncheck to always paste plain text (When pasting text holding down the Option key it reverses the option you set in Preferences.)

In clipboard Preferences a box you can check or uncheck to always paste files & folders as they are. If this option is unchecked it pastes the path to the files instead. (When pasting files or folders holding down the Option key it reverses the option you set in Preferences.)

joshuakaufman
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Post by joshuakaufman » Tue Dec 09, 2008 6:52 pm

Jono wrote:Yea, pretty much all the time when I copy files & folders I want to paste them somewhere else as they are, not paste the (text) path to the files.

I consider copying files & folders different to text. I (pretty much) always want to paste text without formatting, but if it's files or folders I'll want to paste them as they are. Maybe the Option key idea could be used here as well?


Agreed on all points. Having a way to ~always paste as plain text using LB's new built in clip board history would be the ~bomb.

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