May 15, 2016
Four years ago I wrote my first AutoHotkey article as part of a Windows column for ComputorEdge Magazine. I was first introduced to AutoHotkey by a ComputorEdge reader. The more I dug into the scripting language, the more I realized how much it could help almost any Windows user with very little effort. My path became one of studying the online AutoHotkey documentation, searching AutoHotkey forums for ideas and techniques, testing various ways to write the code, then chronicling my insights in what eventually became a number of (mostly) beginning books.
I’m not a professional programmer, although I have written applications for running a Web site and converting those Web pages to e-books. Therefore, my books do not come from the point of view of an expert, but rather someone who’s learning how to write an AutoHotkey script from scratch. That means I ran into the same missteps and foibles in those columns that many beginners tend to encounter. As I learn what seem to be best practices, I pass them on—although it’s taken years to reach some of those inflection points.
At times, I look back and wonder what I would have written if I knew then what I know now. There is a tremendous temptation to go back and reexamine my previous efforts in an attempt to add my latest epiphanies. While I have added many tips, the problem with that idea is the introduction of some of my recent insights—rather than clarifying—would probably cause more confusion for the noobie. They tend to be more advanced techniques.
There are a number of mostly beginner AutoHotkey pages available through ComputorEdge.com. I will continue to add to those pages and update them. One of the most important is “Free AutoHotkey Scripts and Apps for Learning Script Writing and Generating Ideas” which doubles as the AutoHotkey scripts download page. This is a collection of free AutoHotkey scripts I’ve made available to any AutoHotkey user. The scripts can be downloaded at the ComputorEdge download site. I wrote most of these short script and have included descriptions and how-tos in my AutoHotkey e-books which are available at both ComputorEdge E-Books.