Customizing Keyboard Shortcuts

Aperture provides a wide variety of menu commands and keyboard shortcuts that let you control almost every aspect of your workflow. The Command Editor lets you search or browse the various commands and keyboard shortcuts in Aperture. In addition, the Command Editor lets you customize keyboard shortcuts so you can streamline the way you work.

This section describes how to modify keyboard shortcuts using the Command Editor.

Use the Command Editor’s search tools to find commands, view their descriptions and keyboard shortcuts, and preview highlighted key combinations in a visual representation of the keyboard. You can modify existing shortcuts, create new shortcuts, and save multiple sets of keyboard shortcuts, called command sets, that can be imported and exported for use by others. If you’re more familiar with keyboard shortcuts from other applications, you can use the Command Editor to substitute keyboard shortcuts for the default set of Aperture keyboard shortcuts.

To display the Command Editor in Aperture
  • Choose Aperture > Commands > Customize.

    The Command Editor appears.

Figure. Controls in the Command Editor.

The upper half of the Command Editor displays a virtual keyboard. The lower half contains a command list that sorts menu commands by group and offers a brief description of each command, along with its associated keyboard shortcut, if one exists.

The virtual keyboard is color-coded to help you identify the type of command each key performs. The Command Groups column on the left side of the Command List area includes a clickable color key for reference.

Keys that are assigned to shortcuts are marked with a dark gray dot, whereas unassigned keys have no additional markings. Several keys are shaded with diagonal lines, indicating that they are reserved for Mac OS X operating system use.

Figure. Command Editor keyboard showing keys assigned to shortcuts, keys not assigned to shortcuts, and keys reserved for Mac OS X system commands.

Choosing a Command Set

By default, Aperture uses a standard set of commands, with the language choice that you specified when you set up your computer.

To choose a command set
Do one of the following:
  • Choose Aperture > Commands, then choose a command set from the submenu.

  • If the Command Editor is already open, choose a command set from the pop-up menu in the upper-left corner.

    Figure. Pop-up menu with command set options in the Command Editor.

Once you choose a command set, the keyboard shortcuts in the set become active in Aperture.

Viewing Keyboard Shortcuts by Group

The Command List area of the Command Editor displays several groupings of commands, organized by Aperture menus as well as by type of command. Click a group to have the Command list display only the commands and keyboard shortcuts in that group.

Figure. Command List area of the Command Editor showing keyboard shortcut command groups.

Searching for Commands

Use the search field in the upper-right corner of the Command Editor to quickly locate a command or its keyboard shortcut. You can search by command name, description, or keyboard shortcut.

To search for a keyboard shortcut
  • In the Command Editor, click in the search field and type a word that describes the keyboard shortcut you need, or type the key combination.

The Command list immediately displays the search results, listing all commands and keyboard shortcuts related to the search term.

You can further narrow your search by choosing a category from the search field pop-up menu. The menu options include All, Command, Description, and Key Equivalent.

Note: Do not use the Shift key to capitalize letters when typing in the search field. The search field recognizes the Shift key as a modifier key in a keyboard shortcut.

You can use the search field in conjunction with the virtual keyboard to highlight keyboard shortcuts.

To search for and highlight a keyboard shortcut on the virtual keyboard
  1. Click the Keyboard Highlight button to the left of the search field.

    The keyboard is dimmed.

  2. Click in the search field and begin typing.

The Command list changes as you type, highlighting the keys related to your search term.

Note: When you click the Keyboard Highlight button to turn on keyboard highlighting, modifier keys that may be part of the keyboard shortcut (Command, Shift, Option, and Control) are not highlighted.

Filtering the View by Modifier Keys

You can use the modifier key buttons (Command, Shift, Option, and Control) at the top of the Command Editor to quickly see which keys work in conjunction with the various modifier keys.

To filter by modifier keys
  1. Click one of the four modifier key buttons at the top of the Command Editor (or click one of the modifier keys on the virtual keyboard).

    Keys assigned to work in conjunction with the selected modifier key appear marked with a dark gray dot.

  2. If necessary, click another modifier key button (or a modifier key on the virtual keyboard) to create a combination.

The virtual keyboard updates to show which keys are assigned to shortcuts that use the combined modifier keys.

Viewing Key and Command Details

The Detail area to the right of the Command List area provides additional information about a selected key in the virtual keyboard or a selected command in the Command list. When you select a key on the virtual keyboard, this area displays a list of all keyboard shortcuts associated with that key.

Figure. A selected key on the virtual keyboard and the Detail area displaying shortcuts that include the key.

When you select a command in the Command list, the Detail area displays a brief description of the command.

Figure. Selected command in the Command list and the Detail area displaying a description of the command.

Assigning Keyboard Shortcuts

Customizing keyboard shortcuts in the Command Editor is fast and easy. Because the default command set includes commands for which no shortcut is defined, you may want to apply a new shortcut to a command. Because you cannot modify the default command set, you must first duplicate that command set and then customize the new duplicate command set.

To duplicate the currently active command set
  1. Choose Duplicate from the pop-up menu at the top of the Command Editor.

    A dialog appears and prompts you to name the new command set.

  2. Type a name in the dialog, then click OK.

The new duplicate command set is saved and appears as an item in both the pop-up menu in the Command Editor and the Commands submenu of the Aperture menu.

Now that you have a duplicate set of assigned keyboard shortcuts, you can modify the individual key assignments to create new or modified keyboard shortcuts.

To add or modify a keyboard shortcut
  1. Using the search field (or browsing the Command list) of the Command Editor, select the command to which you want to assign a new keyboard shortcut.

  2. Using your physical keyboard, press the combination of keys you want to use as a shortcut for the command (for example, Shift-Option-T).

Note: When you assign a key combination to a command, the Delete key becomes an assignable key when one of the modifier keys (Command, Shift, Option, or Control) is held down. See how to delete a command set below.

If the key combination is not already assigned to a command, the virtual keyboard updates to show the new key assignment. A gray dot appears on the newly assigned key or keys, and a color is applied if the command belongs to a color-coded command group.

If the key combination is already assigned to a command, Aperture displays the current assignment and prompts you to confirm the change.

After you make changes to the command set, you can save the changes.

To save a command set
  • Click the Save button in the lower-right corner of the Command Editor.

If you close the Command Editor with unsaved changes, Aperture prompts you to save the command set.

To delete a command set
  1. Make sure the command set you want to delete is the active command set, then choose Delete from the pop-up menu at the top of the Command Editor.

    A dialog appears.

  2. Click Delete.

The command set is removed, and the default command set becomes the active set of commands.

Importing and Exporting Command Sets

After you save a command set, you may want to export it to create a backup or to share the new command set with others. Exported command sets are saved in a file that can be imported back into Aperture at a later time.

To export a command set
  1. If necessary, make the command set you want to export the active set by choosing it from the pop-up menu in the top-left corner of the Command Editor.

  2. Do one of the following:

    • Choose Aperture > Commands > Export.

    • In the Command Editor, choose Export from the pop-up menu.

  3. In the dialog that appears, navigate to the location where you want to save the exported command set, then type a name in the Save As field.

  4. Click Save.

The file is saved in the location you chose, with a .commandset file extension.

To import a command set
  1. Do one of the following:

    • Choose Aperture > Commands > Import.

    • In the Command Editor, choose Import from the pop-up menu.

  2. In the dialog that appears, navigate to the location where you have stored a command set file, select it, then click Open.

The new command set is added to the Commands submenu of the Aperture menu and to the pop-up menu in the Command Editor.

If you are already using a command set with the same name, a dialog appears and prompts you to rename the command set.