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Author Topic: PutAside: declutter and cycle through windows  (Read 24925 times)
justice
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« on: May 21, 2007, 06:49:56 PM »

Make sure you update to the latest version of DcUpdater if you have it installed. It includes fixes nessecary for PutAside to update.

Sometimes you'll want to put aside what you are working on to complete an important task. But the taskbar is such a mess!

So I created PutAside. Run the program and press Shift-ScrollLock and all open windows are hidden, you can then work on your tempory task. Cycle through the hidden windows with ScrollLock. Press Shift-ScrollLock again and all hidden windows are restored. You can exclude windows.

PutAside is a combination between alt-tab, Show Desktop, a boss-key, and virtual desktops. I've always found virtual desktops to be too complex: I can never remember what is on the other desktops. I never used bosskeys, and with show desktop/alt-tab the taskbar is so cluttered. PutAside is then a middle way to temporarily hide windows without making them inaccessible.



Feedback welcome!

[copy or print]
CHANGELOG:
v1.12
        * Updated DcUpdater and compiled PutAside without executable compression. (no more false positives)

v1.11
* Fixed updater

v1.10
* Added readme
* Added DcUpdater code - check for and install updates using
this terrific tool (http://www.donationcoder.com/Software/Mouser/Updater/index.html)

v1.01
* Fixed preferences dialogue crash as reported by cemole and proposed fix by lanux128

Download Page
« Last Edit: May 18, 2012, 06:46:26 AM by justice » Logged

AndyM
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« Reply #1 on: May 21, 2007, 07:11:58 PM »

I'm assuming your .rar file includes a tiny .ahk file and a larger .exe file, as this is often the case when people post their utilities here.

All I care about is the 1-2k .ahk file, so if it was available separately, I'd download it without a second thought.  With a slow dial-up (some of us are still stuck in the 20th century), I think twice about a 200k file.

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lanux128
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« Reply #2 on: May 21, 2007, 09:50:12 PM »

nice work.. it can also double up as a boss key app.. smiley
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Grorgy
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« Reply #3 on: May 21, 2007, 09:55:06 PM »

 ohmy ohh me oh my, it hid everything, even my cursor lol had to restart oh well
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lanux128
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« Reply #4 on: May 21, 2007, 10:01:18 PM »

it works fine but these two things could be added.. smiley

• an exception list so that it doesn't hide programs like LaunchBar Commander.
• an enable/disable option to suspend hiding of windows until by demand.
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justice
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« Reply #5 on: May 22, 2007, 01:23:51 AM »

Thanks for the feedback!
AnyM,sorry I've sent you the source in a PM, you can also view it below.
Grorgy,thanks for that. it definately shouldn't hide the cursor  ohmy I guess you are not using windows XP like me? Could you tell me your configuration and if you have any mouse utilities running?
Lanux128, I was thinking the app should really start without doing anything, with a key toggle and menu option one could enable/disable it. I'll get this done today. The exception list is a great idea and will definately get in too.
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Grorgy
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« Reply #6 on: May 22, 2007, 05:34:50 AM »

hi Justice,
Ahhaaa, I usually have cursorxp running, (a cursor enhancement program if you dont know it). It works perfectly as soon as i disable it.  smiley, So thats good to know, i'll just make sure i disable it b4 running your handy little app when i need it , (I do run XP with SP2 and all the patches microsoft have sent out) 

Cheers
George
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justice
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« Reply #7 on: May 22, 2007, 06:18:10 AM »

Thanks that explains it. I am working on excluding applications for the next version straight from the tray menu.
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justice
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« Reply #8 on: May 22, 2007, 09:28:00 AM »

I don't want to release another half tested release, but additional testing would be welcome. Things like incompatible applications, missing windows in cycles etc. I am using PutAside all day now and if all is well I will release a compiled version at the end of the week:


New in BETA02:
* Shift-scrolllock to hide / restore window (or via tray menu)
* Tray menu!!
* Exclude processes via system tray  Thmbsup
* Save these settings permanently in Application Data
* Fixed several counting and implementation bugs in hiding, cycling and showing windows

Todo:
* Customizable hotkeys
« Last Edit: July 23, 2007, 12:44:56 PM by justice » Logged

cthorpe
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« Reply #9 on: May 22, 2007, 09:57:46 AM »

Love it!

I think it will be very useful for me as a teacher.  I have a LCD projector connected to my computer, and I am often showing demonstrations, multimedia, etc.  Sometimes the students get distracted by trying to guess what the programs in my taskbar do.  This will let me hide whatever else I am working on, and just show them a clean desktop like they see on their screens.

Beta 2 - So far no problems.
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justice
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« Reply #10 on: May 22, 2007, 10:01:30 AM »

Yes I guess it's a combination between alt-tab, Show Desktop, a boss-key, and virtual desktops smiley

I've always found virtual desktops to be too complex: I can never remember what is on the other desktops. I never used bosskeys, and with show desktop/alt-tab the taskbar is so cluttered.

PutAside is then a middle way to temporarily hide windows without making them inaccessible.
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« Reply #11 on: May 22, 2007, 02:16:11 PM »

At work I am currently using SweptAway ( found at lifehacker http://lifehacker.com/sof...t-away-windows-255055.php ), a program that automatically minimizes all windows that are not used for a specific time eg. 5mins.
I find your app quite interesting in that it uses the system tray and it's on demand. I will be using it at home since my distractions are far less and since it uses a unique shortcut ( I use a flood of shortcuts and this one is definitely not taken..). Good job on a great idea and a solid build ( no obvious hick ups, works as advertised).
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justice
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« Reply #12 on: May 22, 2007, 07:08:04 PM »

Right I am confident that it is ready for a big version!

NEW in PutAside May 2007:
* Squashed a few remaining bugs in the cycling routine
* Fixed the situation where the last restored window in some cases was not activated (not topmost)
* Customizable Hotkeys via a nice preferences window

Possibly in a future release:
* Some kind of autoupdate mechanism.. Possibly via Software Update
* Nice trayicon
* bugreports via program

Download the newest version at the top of this page.
« Last Edit: May 22, 2007, 07:39:47 PM by justice » Logged

lanux128
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« Reply #13 on: May 22, 2007, 08:36:13 PM »

thanks justice for making the changes.. thumbs up i don't mind PutAside hiding windows on start but only later that a toggle will be useful, saves me from closing and opening the program.. smiley btw, where is the v1.0 download link?

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justice
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« Reply #14 on: May 23, 2007, 02:40:49 AM »

I know I am not very consistant with naming scheme lol
0705 stands foor 2007 month 05 which is may 2007 which is 1.0

I'm not really keen about version numbers but I guess I've not found the ideal alternative.
I'll rename the zip to putaside-1.0.zip
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Grorgy
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« Reply #15 on: May 23, 2007, 03:00:25 AM »

 Thmbsup works a treat for me now  smiley ty
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cemole
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« Reply #16 on: August 15, 2007, 05:36:20 PM »

I get the following error message when I select the "Preferences" for the second time.

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justice
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« Reply #17 on: August 16, 2007, 03:40:06 AM »

Thanks for that cemole, sorry to hear about it. I'll investigate.
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lanux128
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« Reply #18 on: August 16, 2007, 07:36:29 AM »

I get the following error message when I select the "Preferences" for the second time.
looks like a problem with the GUI being invoked without the destroy command.. this command: Gui, Destoy will be able to solve the problem.. smiley
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cemole
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« Reply #19 on: August 16, 2007, 12:22:17 PM »

looks like a problem with the GUI being invoked without the destroy command.. this command: Gui, Destoy will be able to solve the problem.. smiley

Exactly, I added Gui, Destroy to line 236 and the error is gone. Thank you lanux128.
Here is that section of the code:

Quote
SETTINGS:
   Hotkey,%PutAsideHK%,Off
   Hotkey,%CycleHK%,Off
   Gui, Add, Text, x12 y12 w100 h23 , PutAside hotkey:
   Gui, Destroy
   Gui, Add, Hotkey, x132 y12 w170 h23 vPutAsideHK , %PutAsideHK% 
   Gui, Add, Button, x202 y87 w100 h23 GSETTINGSOK Default,&OK
   Gui, Add, Button, x92 y87 w100 h23 GSETTINGSCANCEL,&Cancel
   Gui, Add, Hotkey, x132 y45 w170 h23 vCycleHK , %CycleHK%   
   Gui, Add, Text, x12 y45 w100 h30 , Cycle hotkey:
   Gui, Show, x127 y87 h120 w320, PutAside Preferences
Return
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justice
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« Reply #20 on: August 17, 2007, 03:28:24 AM »

Thanks all, I've now updated the release at the top. smiley (and added your names to the about section).
I actually stopped using the program on vista, but now back on XP am running it again.
Hopefully I'll have some time soon to spend a few more hours on this program.
So if any of you are still using it and have suggestions then feel free smiley
« Last Edit: August 17, 2007, 04:25:12 AM by justice » Logged

lanux128
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« Reply #21 on: August 17, 2007, 04:14:19 AM »

glad to be of help, cemole and thanks for the gesture justice.. Cool
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justice
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« Reply #22 on: August 20, 2007, 04:31:11 AM »

release v1.11 - AUG 20 2007
Updated PutAside to add support for mouser's DcUpdater tool. DcUpdater is a program for Microsoft Windows (95% of the code is cross platform and may be ported to linux/mac), that can check for and install updates for software.

PutAside now asks DcUpdater on every start to check for new versions. I might change how often and add options to disable checking if desired.

From the DcUpdater help file:
Quote
Nothing happens behind your back, and you can see exactly what files are being retrieved from where, including access to a complete activity log.

· Full control over checking and installing - you can do all installation manually if you prefer, or let the program do it.

· One program to check for updates for lots of software.

· Easily visit program websites, and get more information about each program.


« Last Edit: August 20, 2007, 06:27:45 AM by justice » Logged

mouser
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« Reply #23 on: August 20, 2007, 04:34:05 AM »

Quote
Updated PutAside to add support for mouser's DcUpdater tool.

coooooool   Kiss Kiss Kiss Kiss Kiss
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Armando
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« Reply #24 on: August 20, 2007, 03:11:20 PM »

I'm a bit late here but... I really like it Justice.  thumbs up Great Idea, and a much much better implementation than the other "minimizing to the taskbar" (or event to the tray) solutions. I like the fact that I can use alt tab to cycle through a few important windows, and still EASILY access the others use Shift+Scroll Lk to access the other secondary ones. Cool!  Cool

PS. I'm wondering if transforming it into a full fledged alt tab (errr...it would be a "shift+Scroll"!) would make it even more usefull : one would be able see all the  icons/titles of the hidden windows at once, and cycling through them would be easier, maybe? instead of directly cycling through the opened windows one after the other....??? Dunno...
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