Doing an Internet Search for the Current Word in Visual Studio with AutoHotkey

I got bored in Visual Studio double clicking a class, copying to clipboard, then heading to browser then pasting into search box.

I wanted to be able to quickly search for something (e.g. in Google) for whatever word the cursor was currently in. Also in other applications.

I have a Microsoft keyboard that has a calculator key that normally opens the Calculator application. I’ve never ever used this and hadn’t even noticed it until now.

image of the calculator key on my keyboard

To map this key in AutoHotkey, “Launch_App2” can be used, so to trigger a script whenever it’s pressed: Launch_App2::

I also wanted the default behaviour to automatically go to the first result. Pressing CTRL-calckey just does a normal search and lists all the results for me to peruse.

Here’s the script – note that it’s a bit rough and ready, for example it uses the clipboard (CTRL-C) so this will overwrite anything you have in it. It also won’t work if the cursor is at start of line, etc.

Launch_App2:: ; Do an I'm Feeling Lucky Google search when calc key pressed
  Clipboard := 

  SendInput, ^{LEFT}^+{RIGHT}
  SendInput, ^c
  ClipWait, 1

  if !(ErrorLevel)  { 
      Run, % "https://www.google.com/search?hl=en&btnI=I%27m+Feeling+Lucky&&q=" Clipboard
  }
return



^Launch_App2:: ; Do a normal Google search when calc key pressed
  Clipboard := 

  SendInput, ^{LEFT}^+{RIGHT}
  SendInput, ^c
  ClipWait, 1

  if !(ErrorLevel)  { 
      Run, % "https://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=" Clipboard
  }
return

Now if i have my cursor in the word “ActionResult” in Visual Studio, hitting the calculator key takes me to MSDN http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/system.web.mvc.actionresult%28v=vs.118%29.aspx as this is the first Google search result for “ActionResult”.

 

If you’ve never used AutoHotkey before, to get started check out my Pluralsight course.

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