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@tofias tofias/
Last active Oct 12, 2018

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# v. 2014-09-18
# based on by Dr. Drang
import subprocess
def asrun(ascript):
"Run the given AppleScript and return the standard output and error."
osa = subprocess.Popen(['osascript', '-'],
return osa.communicate(ascript)[0]
def asquote(astr):
"Return the AppleScript equivalent of the given string."
astr = astr.replace('"', '" & quote & "')
return '"{}"'.format(astr)
def asdialog(msg='', btns='OK', input=None, title=''):
"Generate a dialog box with optional input text, returns a response dictionary."
# User might have entered btns as a string, or more than 3, so help them out
# n.b. need to build the button commponent before the main AppleScript build
lenbtns = len(btns)
if isinstance(btns, basestring):
lenbtns = 1
if lenbtns < 3:
btnno = lenbtns
if lenbtns == 1:
_btns = asquote(str(btns))
elif lenbtns == 2:
_btns = asquote(btns[0]) + ',' + asquote(btns[1])
btnno = 3
_btns = asquote(btns[0]) + ',' + asquote(btns[1]) + ',' + asquote(btns[2])
# Don't ask, don't tell (for returned text if user didn't ask for returned text)
if input:
_input = '''default answer {0}'''.format(asquote(input))
_textret = '''"\": \"" & quoted form of the text returned of theReturn &'''
_input = ''
_textret = ''
# This is where the magic happens
asd = '''
set theReturn to (display dialog {0} {1} with title {2} buttons {{ {3} }} default button {4})
'''.format(asquote(msg), _input, asquote(title), _btns, btnno, _textret)
# Massage the output into a dict
asran = asrun(asd).split(', text returned:')
_btn = asran[0].replace(' returned','').replace('button:','')
# I will admit this is a kludgie way of dealing with a user cancel
if _btn == '':
_btn = 'Cancel '
# Need to trim off trailing newline character because AppleScript
if len(asran) == 2:
return {'button': _btn, 'text': str(asran[1])[:-1]}
return {'button': _btn[:-1], 'text': None}
# Just some quick little tests for
from applescript import asdialog
def prt(this_run):
print '\r\rThis run has... ' + this_run
print "output['button'] = " + str(output['button'])
if output.has_key('text'):
print "output['text'] = " + str(output['text'])
print "There is no text to print"
msg = 'This is a bespoke dialog message.'
title = 'Take this artisanal action?'
btns = 'Cancel', 'Publish', 'Save Draft', 'Greedy'
input = 'Here is some lovely sample input text.'
output = asdialog(msg)
output = asdialog(msg, btns=btns)
prt('msg, btns')
output = asdialog(msg, btns=btns, title=title)
prt('msg, btns, title')
output = asdialog(msg, btns=btns, title=title, input=input)
prt('msg, btns, title, input')
output = asdialog()
prt('no parameters given')

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commented Sep 18, 2014

Okay, the first version drooled, this one rules.

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