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Apple Keynote: export presenter notes
-- after saving it, open with Script Editor (default) and run it
-- make sure your Keynote presentation is open in the background
-- if you can't open the file due to encoding errors, open with Sublime (or another a text editor) and then "File / Save with encoding / UTF8"
tell application "Keynote"
-- open (choose file)
tell front document
-- Get the name of the presentation.
set thePresentationName to name
-- Retrieve the titles of all slides.
set theTitles to object text of default title item of every slide
-- Retrieve the presenter notes for all slides.
set theNotes to presenter notes of every slide
end tell
end tell
set presenterNotes to ""
repeat with a from 1 to length of theTitles
-- skip slides with empty notes
if not (item a of theNotes) = "" then
set presenterNotes to presenterNotes & "#### Slide " & a & ": " & item a of theTitles & return & return
set presenterNotes to presenterNotes & "##### Presenter Notes: " & return & item a of theNotes & return & return
end if
end repeat
set the clipboard to presenterNotes
do shell script "pbpaste > ~/Desktop/keynote-notes-" & quoted form of thePresentationName & ".md"
-- based on
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paustian commented Jun 4, 2018

Great code. I tested it on Keynote 8 on macOS High Sierra, v 10.13.4

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This is epic, thank you! The old script isn't working anymore. Do you have any idea how we could get the notes to be exported in utf-8, however? Special characters aren't being exported right...!

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ludzeller commented Oct 10, 2018

Works for me, thank you!

Keynote 8.1
MacOS 10.13.3

But I also have issues with some characters such as single quotation marks (').

Is there a way to exclude skipped slides?

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@ludzeller, you end up with a clipboard element, so after export you can paste in a document and correct characters will come.

another option is to replace

do shell script "pbpaste > ~/Desktop/keynote-notes-" & thePresentationName & ".md"


do shell script "pbpaste > ~/Desktop/keynote-notes.txt"

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gt86 commented Dec 4, 2018

Really helpful script, thanks.
Worked first time for me with Keynote 8.3 on macOS 10.14.1.
I changed the output file type from .md to .rtf just to make it easier for input to another application.

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vfongmala commented Aug 9, 2019

How can I update the script to support other language from English?

Updated: I found out that text which copied to clipboard is already support UTF-8. I'll just need to config pbcopy to support UTF-8

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FMassin commented Jul 2, 2020

After executing this (without success), I cannot print anything in any app, even after restarting the computer.

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johnwry commented Dec 14, 2020

could anyone direct me to how to export the notes to html with the slides?

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nspassov commented May 22, 2021

Fantastic, works with Keynote 11 on Catalina. Thanks!

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Used it today with Keynote 10 and Mojave. Thank you.

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johnwry commented Jun 4, 2021

This works great! Is there anyway to include images in MD file? For instance, image1

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Works on Monterey, but saved file name had no file extension. I manually added .txt and it was fine.

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To support UTF-8 encoding (which prevents “broken” special characters), change the last line to

do shell script "LANG=en_US.UTF-8 pbpaste > ~/Desktop/keynote-notes-" & thePresentationName & ".md"

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Great script. The last line which exports to a Markdown file should be changed, though... as written, if the presentation name has spaces, the script will terminate the name after the first word and not include the extension. @michaelzed notes this issue above. Changing the line to read as below will fix the problem:

do shell script "pbpaste > ~/Desktop/keynote-notes-" & quoted form of thePresentationName & ".md"

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Thanks @frankrausch @RunsOnCoffee, last line updated

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efc commented Jun 5, 2022

Thanks for this script. It worked perfectly for me.

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Worked so great; thanks very much!

(I couldn't figure out how to do that "save with encoding" process provided in the comments, so just created a blank new script in the Script Editor, and copied/pasted the code into that.)

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TravelingTartar commented Jul 29, 2022

Does anyone get an error: "Keynote got an error: Can't get document 1."?
The Result I get is: error "Keynote got an error: Can’t get document 1." number -1728 from document 1"
Never mind, figured it out. BITDEFENDER was blocking the document. Now works like a charm.

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Epic script to replace the older version, was having to back save keynotes to the 09 version until now. Pasted straight into script editor and it worked perfectly.

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For anyone who doe not want "skipped" slides to appear in the export, here is a version that accounts for that:

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Is there a way to exclude skipped slides?

Just add whose skipped is false at the end of the two lines that retrieve the titles and the presenter notes

set theTitles to object text of default title item of every slide whose skipped is false
set theNotes to presenter notes of every slide whose skipped is false

Or as seen in Script Editor

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Thank you, so useful

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