docs » hs.eventtap

Tap into input events (mouse, keyboard, trackpad) for observation and possibly overriding them It also provides convenience wrappers for sending mouse and keyboard events. If you need to construct finely controlled mouse/keyboard events, see hs.eventtap.event

This module is based primarily on code from the previous incarnation of Mjolnir by Steven Degutis.

Submodules

API Overview

API Documentation

Functions

checkKeyboardModifiers
Signature hs.eventtap.checkKeyboardModifiers([raw]) -> table
Type Function
Description

Returns a table containing the current key modifiers being pressed or in effect at this instant for the keyboard most recently used.

Parameters:

  • raw - an optional boolean value which, if true, includes the _raw key containing the numeric representation of all of the keyboard/modifier flags.

Returns:

  • Returns a table containing boolean values indicating which keyboard modifiers were held down when the function was invoked; The possible keys are:
    • cmd (or ⌘)
    • alt (or ⌥)
    • shift (or ⇧)
    • ctrl (or ⌃)
    • capslock
    • fn and optionally
    • _raw - a numeric representation of the numeric representation of all of the keyboard/modifier flags.

Notes:

  • This is an instantaneous poll of the current keyboard modifiers for the most recently used keyboard, not a callback. This is useful primarily in conjuction with other modules, such as hs.menubar, when a callback is already in progress or waiting for an event callback is not practical or possible.
  • the numeric value returned is useful if you need to detect device dependent flags or flags which we normally ignore because they are not present (or are accessible another way) on most keyboards.
checkMouseButtons
Signature hs.eventtap.checkMouseButtons() -> table
Type Function
Description

Returns a table containing the current mouse buttons being pressed at this instant.

Parameters: None

Returns:

  • Returns an array containing indicies starting from 1 up to the highest numbered button currently being pressed where the index is true if the button is currently pressed or false if it is not.
  • Special hash tag synonyms for left (button 1), right (button 2), and middle (button 3) are also set to true if these buttons are currently being pressed.

Notes:

  • This is an instantaneous poll of the current mouse buttons, not a callback. This is useful primarily in conjuction with other modules, such as hs.menubar, when a callback is already in progress or waiting for an event callback is not practical or possible.
doubleClickInterval
Signature hs.eventtap.doubleClickInterval() -> number
Type Function
Description

Returns the system-wide setting for the delay between two clicks, to register a double click event

Parameters:

  • None

Returns:

  • A number containing the maximum number of seconds between two mouse click events, for a double click event to be registered
keyRepeatDelay
Signature hs.eventtap.keyRepeatDelay() -> number
Type Function
Description

Returns the system-wide setting for the delay before keyboard repeat events begin

Parameters:

  • None

Returns:

  • A number containing the number of seconds before repeat events begin, after a key is held down
keyRepeatInterval
Signature hs.eventtap.keyRepeatInterval() -> number
Type Function
Description

Returns the system-wide setting for the interval between repeated keyboard events

Parameters:

  • None

Returns:

  • A number containing the number of seconds between keyboard events, if a key is held down
keyStroke
Signature hs.eventtap.keyStroke(modifiers, character[, delay])
Type Function
Description

Generates and emits a single keystroke event pair for the supplied keyboard modifiers and character

Parameters:

  • modifiers - A table containing the keyboard modifiers to apply ("fn", "ctrl", "alt", "cmd", "shift", or their Unicode equivalents)
  • character - A string containing a character to be emitted
  • delay - An optional delay (in microseconds) between mouse down and up event. Defaults to 200000 (i.e. 200ms)

Returns:

  • None

Notes:

  • This function is ideal for sending single keystrokes with a modifier applied (e.g. sending ⌘-v to paste, with hs.eventtap.keyStroke({"cmd"}, "v")). If you want to emit multiple keystrokes for typing strings of text, see hs.eventtap.keyStrokes()

  • Note that invoking this function with a table (empty or otherwise) for the modifiers argument will force the release of any modifier keys which have been explicitly created by hs.eventtap.event.newKeyEvent and posted that are still in the "down" state. An explicit nil for this argument will not (i.e. the keystroke will inherit any currently "down" modifiers)

keyStrokes
Signature hs.eventtap.keyStrokes(text)
Type Function
Description

Generates and emits keystroke events for the supplied text

Parameters:

  • text - A string containing the text to be typed

Returns:

  • None

Notes:

  • If you want to send a single keystroke with keyboard modifiers (e.g. sending ⌘-v to paste), see hs.eventtap.keyStroke()
leftClick
Signature hs.eventtap.leftClick(point[, delay])
Type Function
Description

Generates a left mouse click event at the specified point

Parameters:

  • point - A table with keys {x, y} indicating the location where the mouse event should occur
  • delay - An optional delay (in microseconds) between mouse down and up event. Defaults to 200000 (i.e. 200ms)

Returns:

  • None

Notes:

  • This is a wrapper around hs.eventtap.event.newMouseEvent that sends leftmousedown and leftmouseup events)
middleClick
Signature hs.eventtap.middleClick(point[, delay])
Type Function
Description

Generates a middle mouse click event at the specified point

Parameters:

  • point - A table with keys {x, y} indicating the location where the mouse event should occur
  • delay - An optional delay (in microseconds) between mouse down and up event. Defaults to 200000 (i.e. 200ms)

Returns:

  • None

Notes:

  • This function is just a wrapper which calls hs.eventtap.otherClick(point, delay, 2) and is included solely for backwards compatibility.
otherClick
Signature hs.eventtap.otherClick(point[, delay][, button])
Type Function
Description

Generates an "other" mouse click event at the specified point

Parameters:

  • point - A table with keys {x, y} indicating the location where the mouse event should occur
  • delay - An optional delay (in microseconds) between mouse down and up event. Defaults to 200000 (i.e. 200ms)
  • button - An optional integer, default 2, between 2 and 31 specifying the button number to be pressed. If this parameter is specified then delay must also be specified, though you may specify it as nil to use the default.

Returns:

  • None

Notes:

  • This is a wrapper around hs.eventtap.event.newMouseEvent that sends otherMouseDown and otherMouseUp events)

  • macOS recognizes up to 32 distinct mouse buttons, though few mouse devices have more than 3. The left mouse button corresponds to button number 0 and the right mouse button corresponds to 1; distinct events are used for these mouse buttons, so you should use hs.eventtap.leftClick and hs.eventtap.rightClick respectively. All other mouse buttons are coalesced into the otherMouse events and are distinguished by specifying the specific button with the mouseEventButtonNumber property, which this function does for you.

  • The specific purpose of mouse buttons greater than 2 varies by hardware and application (typically they are not present on a mouse and have no effect in an application)
rightClick
Signature hs.eventtap.rightClick(point[, delay])
Type Function
Description

Generates a right mouse click event at the specified point

Parameters:

  • point - A table with keys {x, y} indicating the location where the mouse event should occur
  • delay - An optional delay (in microseconds) between mouse down and up event. Defaults to 200000 (i.e. 200ms)

Returns:

  • None

Notes:

  • This is a wrapper around hs.eventtap.event.newMouseEvent that sends rightmousedown and rightmouseup events)
scrollWheel
Signature hs.eventtap.scrollWheel(offsets, modifiers, unit) -> event
Type Function
Description

Generates and emits a scroll wheel event

Parameters:

  • offsets - A table containing the {horizontal, vertical} amount to scroll. Positive values scroll up or left, negative values scroll down or right.
  • mods - A table containing zero or more of the following:
    • cmd
    • alt
    • shift
    • ctrl
    • fn
  • unit - An optional string containing the name of the unit for scrolling. Either "line" (the default) or "pixel"

Returns:

  • None

Constructors

new
Signature hs.eventtap.new(types, fn) -> eventtap
Type Constructor
Description

Create a new event tap object

Parameters:

  • types - A table that should contain values from hs.eventtap.event.types
  • fn - A function that will be called when the specified event types occur. The function should take a single parameter, which will be an event object. It can optionally return two values. Firstly, a boolean, true if the event should be deleted, false if it should propagate to any other applications watching for that event. Secondly, a table of events to post.

Returns:

  • An event tap object

Notes:

  • If you specify the argument types as the special table {"all"[, events to ignore]}, then all events (except those you optionally list after the "all" string) will trigger a callback, even events which are not defined in the Quartz Event Reference.

Methods

isEnabled
Signature hs.eventtap:isEnabled() -> bool
Type Method
Description

Determine whether or not an event tap object is enabled.

Parameters:

  • None

Returns:

  • True if the event tap is enabled or false if it is not.
start
Signature hs.eventtap:start()
Type Method
Description

Starts an event tap

Parameters:

  • None

Returns:

  • The event tap object
stop
Signature hs.eventtap:stop()
Type Method
Description

Stops an event tap

Parameters:

  • None

Returns:

  • The event tap object