Hi all, I thought I'd post this in case it's useful to anyone and not already widely known (in which case, apologies!)

I have many regular meetings each week that I represent in my Brain as a single thought for each series. I also have a linked Event for each one that shows a handy pin in my timeline at the appropriate time (events make really useful time-sensitive pins!)

When the meeting starts I just click on the event in my timeline and it quickly takes me to the right place in my Brain. Then, I create a child thought to represent this particular meeting instance and then use that to take notes, link to actions, link to attendees etc. etc.

I wanted to create a key on my Mac's touch bar to automate the process of creating the instance thought so I'm not messing around when the meeting starts, which is especially important if running late.

The automation will...
  1. Create the child thought
  2. Use comma notation to inherit the series name of its parent
  3. Add on today's date in the form YYYY/MM/DD (so it orders correctly in the Plex)
  4. Set the type of the new thought to ":Meeting" (all my types begin with a colon)
This last step is the (slightly) interesting part because it's not obvious how to automate setting a thought's type. There is no keyboard shortcut and macroing mouse movement is notoriously difficult, especially if you run in different configurations or your list of types changes. Note that there is a keyboard shortcut for activating a type but not setting it on a particular thought that I'm aware of.

Here's a screenshot of the config in BTT:
Screenshot 2020-07-16 at 13.01.05.png 
The automation is actually really simple:
  1. Simulate the keypress to create a child thought.
  2. Paste in a comma followed by the date using BTT's dateformat feature to get today's date in the desired format.
  3. Simulate "enter" to create the child thought.
  4. There's an implied step here that TB activates the new thought automatically. If you have this disabled in your preferences then you will need to simulate further keystrokes/searches to activate the new thought manually.
  5. Setting the type is easy if you know the trick! - you just create a parent thought, enter the name of the meeting type, cursor down to it in the dropdown box that appears, and hit enter. 🙂 There's a slight wrinkle in that you need to wait a little between entering the meeting type name and cursoring down to give TB time to populate the dropdown box, but it's not a problem for TBB and can be entirely automated. You can see this in the bottom 5 steps of the configuration above.
And that's it. Hope it's useful for someone!

A related tip is to pin types so you can quickly drag parent links to them for instant type setting.
Here's another example. This BTT macro puts a green "Task" button on the Touch Bar that's visible in all applications. If you press this button it will bring up TB and do the following:
  1. Navigate to the ":Task" type via a keyboard shortcut tied to the pin. Obviously, the ":Task" type needs to already be pinned in order for this to work. A tip here is to make sure any pins used in macros are near the front of the list if you use private thoughts. The problem here is if you hide private thoughts and the pin moves as a result, it will receive a new shortcut key which will break the macro.
  2. Create a new child thought. Since it's a child of the ":Task" type it will automatically inherit the task type.
  3. Virtually press the shortcut keys for pasting and pressing enter to make the new thought.
  4. Create a new parent thought.  Use the same trick as before to enter the name of your Inbox thought in order to make your new task thought its child rather than actually making a new thought.
The result is that you have a new task in your inbox with the name of whatever text you had copied into your paste buffer in some other application. 🙂

If you don't have an inbox thought it's worth having one for all those times when you want to get content into TB quickly without worrying about where it should go. Just make sure you keep an eye on the Inbox and clear it out when you get a few spare minutes. 😉

Here's the BTT macro:
Screenshot 2020-07-21 at 12.13.57.png 

And here's a YouTube video of it in action: 

Thanks for your sharing - very interesting.....

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