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FAQ: Special Keys

Alpha allows users to change the keyboard shortcuts associated with menu items and other functions. The user interface for doing so is less than ideal, and in general you need to know something about Tcl and AlphaTcl to take full advantage of this capability in order to make proper use of the Bind]] and [[ascii commands.

One exception -- an example of a better user interface -- are the functions found in the

Config > Special Keys

dialog. Each of the functions found here can be 'bound' to any keypress/modifier combination that you want. These functions include:

Most of these functions are related to 'electric' behavior in Alpha -- see the FAQ.ElectricsPrimer for a quick explanation. If the following descriptions seem a bit cryptic, see the

Help > Electrics Help

file for (hopefully) a bit more information. (Note: the default shortcuts assigned to these functions have long been a topic of debate in the AlphaTclMailingLists?.)

Clear All Stops

Remove all 'electric template' stops in the active window.


Invoke an electric completion for the hint preceding the cursor -- see the FAQ.ElectricsPrimer.


Invoke an electric expansion for the hint preceding the cursor -- see the FAQ.ElectricsPrimer.

Next Stop

Advance to the next 'electric template' stop in the active window.

Next Stop Or Indent

If there is a 'next' electric template stop, advance to it; otherwise indent the current line/selection.

nth Stop

Advance to the nth 'electric template' stop. Only functions if the Better Templates feature has been turned on.

Prev Stop

Move to the previous 'electric template' stop in the active window.

Real Tab

Insert a 'real' tab at the cursor position.

Typewriter Tab

Insert a string of just enough space characters to visually represent the 'tab' column in the current line.


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Page last modified on January 23, 2006, at 03:24 PM