Interfacing GUI applications..?

Jeff Shannon jeff at
Wed Jun 20 13:12:18 EDT 2001

claird at (Cameron Laird) wrote in message news:<DBBCE6C2082E53B1.615203542B7E40FA.9FA5C28776C8881D at>...
> In article <3B18032E.21AF631E at>,
> Pierre Fortin  <pfortin at> wrote:

> >The minimum requirement is to make AcroRead think it's coming from the
> >keyboard.  Extra points for mouse events (or shortcuts, though not all menus
> >items have shortcuts).

> If you're operating under Windows (I speculate you
> are), and if AcroRead is a COM server (I anticipate
> that it is), then you're in luck; Python is a GREAT
> language for COM scripting.
> If not ... we'll try something else.

One suggestion for "something else"... there is a Visual Basic function
"sendkeys()" that does exactly what is requested--it simulates keyboard
input to another application.  At one point I downloaded a COM object
that wrapped this function (plus ActivateApp(), IIRC) from Clarence 
Washington's Windows scripting site (; 
I would presume that the download is still available there.  Using this
COM object (from Python) lets me send simulated keystrokes to any Windows 
app, and I believe that it also allows sending ctrl-keys as well.  Of course,
if the app you're interested in (AcroRead) *is* a COM server, then you'll
be much better off controlling it directly.  One word of warning--the 
scripting site uses DHTML tricks, or some such, that crash Netscape upon 
loading, so it may be necessary to use IE...

> Incidentally, ReportLab might interest you.  'Any-
> one out there have any user reports on ReportLab?
> I've cobbled together some of my own PDF manipula-
> tions, but I'll happily discard all of them for a
> well-done package.

I'd be interested in hearing reviews/testimonials on ReportLab as well.  
Somewhere down near the bottom of my list of projects, I'm looking to 
create PDF docs automatically.  At first glance, ReportLab looks ideal,
but reports of firsthand experiences are always good....

Jeff Shannon
Credit International

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