Command Macros

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Using Command Macros


The professional versions of Dragon NaturallySpeaking offer the ability to create command macros.  While a text macro will simply insert text, a command macro can enter text, execute keystrokes, record mouse movement, and string to together steps.  With a command macro you can complete multi-step tasks with a single command.

Some examples:

“Check my email” – goes to you email website, enters the user name, moves to the password box and enters the password, presses the enter key, brings you to your email inbox.  

“Print two copies” – brings up the print menu, types “2” in the number of copies box, hits the enter key to send the document to the printer.

“Turn the page” – presses the right arrow key, which will turn the page when using Kindle software.

How to make a Step-by-Step Command

On the Dragon Bar click

  • Tools → Add New Command
    • This will bring up the MyCommands Editor
  • Type the name of your command in the MyCommand box.  
    • Do not start the command with “go”, “open” or other Dragon built in command words.
  • Click the down arrow on the Command Type box to reveal a drop down menu.  Choose Step-byStep.
    • The Steps box is where you will build the command.  Below the Steps box is a New Step drop down, where you will indicate each new step.  Click on the down arrow in the new steps box to reveal a drop down menu.
  • Pick the step, then click the insert button add the step to the macro.
  • Build the macro, step by step, until the series of steps completes the task you are programming.  The length of the step-by-step command will depend on the needs of the task.  
  • Click the Save button.
  • The last step – is always to test the macro.  

Simple Example

It is often useful to give a command to execute keyboard shortcuts.  With this strategy, the user does not need to remember the keys that need to be pressed, but only the desired action.  For example, “turn page” to press the right arrow key, “I’m done” to close a window, or “notifications” to press Shift + Alt +5 to open the Facebook notifications page.

To build the notifications command:
  • On the Dragon Bar click Tools → Add New Command
    • This will bring up the MyCommands Editor
  • Type “notifications” in the MyCommand box
  • Click the down arrow in the Command Type box, pick step-by-step
  • On the new step drop down menu, pick keystrokes
  • Click the Insert button
    • This will bring up the Send Keystrokes box.
  • Type Shift + Alt + 5  (press all three keys at the same time)
  • Click the OK button (use the mouse)
  • Press Shift + Alt + 5 appears as the first step in the Steps box
  • Click the Save button
  • The last step – is always to test the macro.   Open Facebook and sign into your account.  Give the command “notifications”.

A Multiple Step Example

You can string multiple steps together.  Identify a consistent sequence of steps that must be completed repeatedly.  For this example we will use getting to the sign in page for eBay.  We will assume that the Firefox is open and is the active program, but that we are not on the eBay page.

  • On the Dragon Bar click Tools → Add New Command
  • This will bring up the MyCommands Editor
  • Type “eBay sign in page” in the MyCommand box
  • Click the down arrow in the Command Type box, pick step-by-step
  • The first step will be to put the focus on the address bar so that we can get to the eBay page.
  • On the New Step drop down menu, pick keystrokes
  • Click the Insert button
    • This will bring up the Send Keystrokes box.
  • Type “Alt + d” (press at the same time – this is the keyboard shortcut that moves the focus to the address bar in Firefox)
  • Click the OK button (use the mouse)
  • Press Alt+D is now the first step of the macro.
  • Click on the down arrow of the New Step box and choose Type Text
  • Click the Insert button
    • This brings up the Type Text Step box.  We need to insert the URL for the sign in page.  It is easiest to actually go to the page and then copy the URL from the address bar.  You can then paste into the “Type Text Step” box.
  • Click the OK button
  • Typing the URL is now the second step of the macro.
  • To submit the URL and go to the website, the keyboard shortcut is the Enter key.   
  • Click on the down arrow of the New Step box and choose keystrokes
  • Click the Insert button
  • This will bring up the Send Keystrokes box.
  • Press the Enter key
  • Click the OK button (use the mouse)
  • Pressing the Enter key is now the next step of the macro.
  • Now click the Save button.
  • The last step is always to test the macro.  Open Firefox, go to a random page.  Give the command “ebay sign in page”.  You should see the address bar turn blue, the URL get typed and then the sign in page should appear.

Another Multiple Step Example

This macro will assume that you are at the sign in page of a website and wish to enter a username and password.  Let’s use eBay as our example.

Verify that when you go to the eBay sign in page, the blinking cursor is in the username box.  In this case, once you have arrived at the sign in page, the first step will be to type the username.

  • Tools → Add New Command
    • This will bring up the MyCommands Editor
  • Type “sign into eBay” in the MyCommand box
  • Click on the down arrow of the New Step box and choose type text
  • Click the Insert button
    • This brings up the Type Text Step box.  
  • Type in the username.
  • Click the OK button (use the mouse)
  • Typing the username is now the first step of the macro.
  • The next step we need to program is to move the blinking cursor from the user name box to the password box.  We can use the tab key to do this.
  • Click on the down arrow of the “New Step” box and choose “keystroke”
  • Press the “Insert” button
  • This will bring up the “Send Keystrokes” box.
  • Press the “Tab” key
  • Click the “OK” button (use the mouse)
  • Press Tab is now the next step of the macro.
  • The blinking cursor will now be in the Password box.
  • Click on the down arrow of the “New Step” box and choose “type text”
  • Click the “Insert” button
  • This brings up the “Type Text Step” box.  
  • Type in the password.
  • Click the “OK” button (use the mouse)
  • Typing the password is now the next step of the macro.
  • We can use the Enter key to send this info and enter the ebay account
  • Click on the down arrow of the “New Step” box and choose “keystroke”
  • Press the insert button
  • This will bring up the “Send Keystrokes” box.
  • Press the “Enter” key
  • Click the “OK” button (use the mouse)
  • Press Enter is now the next step of the macro.
  • Now click the “Save” button.
  • The last step is always to test the macro.  Go to the eBay sign in page.  Confirm that the blinking cursor is in the “username” box.  Give the command “Sign into eBay”.  You should see your username typed then the focus jump to the password box.  You should then see the password being typed and then you should be in your ebay account.




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