AutoHotkey (AHK) is a scripting language for the automation of tasks with the use of hotkeys. AHK can automate graphical applications by simulating clicks and keystrokes, and uses a simple, flexible, and easy to learn syntax. This makes it a great tool to automate all kinds of tasks in any Windows application. It is available only on the Windows operating system. From their home page, follow the download link (Download Current Version), and then install the downloaded .exe file. The full AHK documentation is also available on their website.

Please know, you do not need this program for ecoacoustic analysis or workflows. However, if you are performing a repetitive task, such as annotating a large number of sound files, AHK scripts might be able to make your life a little bit easier. This help page is focused on a specific example of using AHK with the Raven Pro software. Previous versions of Raven had few inbuilt shortcut keys, and required a lot of clicking. This functionality has improved with recent versions, so you may have no need for AHK. However, if you want to automate button presses for which no shortcut key exists, or use your own custom shortcut keys, then AHK is still a good choice. Familiarity with AHK could also help you create shortcuts and hotkeys for other parts of your workflow.

Setup and example script #

If you haven’t already installed the AHK program, do so now. Then, you may download the example AHK script available here , by downloading the file as a zip with the Download Zip button, or copying the script contents into a blank Visual Studio Code file. The script is also embedded at the bottom of this help page. After downloading or copying the script contents, make sure your file is saved with the .ahk extension.

First use #

Right click on the downloaded AHK file, and Open with an editor such as Visual Studio Code. Have a read through the information in the file, and make any changes if you want to. Next, you can double click on the file in File Explorer to run the script, and check your taskbar icons to make sure the script is successfully running.

Usage #

hotkey action
ctrl + mouse up zoom in
ctrl + mouse down zoom out
F1 zoom to all
F2 zoom to selection
F3 move to next selection

With these hotkeys, working through a large number of annotations is easier. Navigate to the next selection with F3, press F2 to zoom into that selection, make adjustments if necessary, and then move to the next selection with F3 again. Press F1 at any time to zoom out for a big picture view of the file, and then F3 to zoom back in to the current selection.

This script works by moving your mouse to predefined positions, clicking a button, and then returning your mouse. This has been tested this with raven 1.6.1, with the default window arrangement. If the hotkeys do not work as expected, or click different things, or nothing at all, then perhaps your window arrangement or arrangement of icons is different. In this case, you will need to modify the X and Y settings in the .ahk file. You can find the values that match your window setup, by using the Window Spy tool that comes with AHK. Otherwise, check back here in the future for a ready made 1.6.4 version!

Customisation #

Feel free to customise the hotkeys in this file, and experiment with making your own hotkeys!

It is simple to change a hotkey. For example, the default hotkey for move to next selection is currently F3::. You can edit the content to the left of the :: to reflect your desired hotkey. If you change this line to Right::, then the hotkey to move to next selection would be the right arrow key instead of F3. For the full keylist, see this document .

If you make changes to your AHK script (using a text editor), then you will have to save the script, and re-run it, before the changes take effect.

AHK script #