The builders of Visual Studio.NET put a lot of time and thought into
making a world-class IDE for developers. And one of the coolest things
they did was to put in a robust Extensibility Framework that allows developers
to create add-ins and macros to automate useful tasks and get productivity
Do you ever find yourself working in Visual Studio and firing up your
browser to do a Google Search to find a sample of some code syntax you
are working on? Well, with this handy macro and the power of the IDE,
all you will ever need to do is highlight the phrase you want to search
on, hit a shortcut key combination of your choosing, and all the Google
search results will appear right in your Edit Window area; you'll never
have to leave the IDE to do it.
Trust me, I'm not the first guy to think of putting in a Google search
macro - you can search Google yourself and I am sure you'll find a number
of examples; probably some are more sophisticated than this one. But
as a big proponent of the "Less is More" philosophy, I think
this code is "just
enough" to get the job done right!
First, fire up Visual Studio.NET, and choose Tools->Macros->MacroExplorer
(alt -T -M -M for you shortcute dewds). You should see the Macro Explorer
window, and it most likely will show "My Macros" and "Samples" nodes.
Next, right click on the topmost Macros node and choose "New Macro
and give it a nice name like "GoogleSearch". Double-click on your
new node and it should open up the edit window on the module. Paste in
the following code:
Public Module Search
Dim strUrl As String
Dim selection As TextSelection = DTE.ActiveDocument.Selection()
If selection.Text <> "" Then
strUrl = "www.google.com/search?q=" + selection.Text
MsgBox("Select Text first to Search")
Now, you can Build and Save (Ctrl-S) and close
Now, go into Tools->Options->Environment->Keyboard from
the top menu. In the "Show commands Containing" wndow you should be able
to type "Google" and your project will show up.
Now set focus in the "Press Shortcut Key" window
and choose a shortcut key combination, like alt SPACE or whatever you
want. Then hit the "Assign" button. Almost all of these will
prompt you that the selected scheme is "One of the default keyboard
mappings", which is kind
of non-intuitive, but go ahead and Choose "Yes" to make a copy.
This is what actually assigns your keyboard shortcut to your Macro.
At this point, you are 100% DONE! Load up a project, highlight
some text in the editor window, and hit alt-SPACE or whatever your shortcut
was, and presto (the real thing will look a lot better):