[Tech] Mrunal’s Auto NoteMaker for The Hindu & PDF files: Grab Data by Mouse, Make Notes without typing!

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Imagine that you’re reading a newspaper or book. All you’ve to do is just keep highlighting important lines and phrases, and someone automatically copies them and prepares a separate note for you, in other words an Auto Notemaker!
Convenient, time saver, miraculous. And yes, it is possible-  as long as you’re reading anything on computer- webpages or PDF files (on Microsoft Windows XP, Win8).

  1. Introduction
  2. Situation A: want to make notes out of PDF files
  3. Situation B: Auto Notes making from Website
  4. Converting Notes into Mindmaps
  5. Troubleshooting the Scripts
  6. Eye Strain
    1. Notepad ++
    2.  Foxit PDF reader: Changing Background Color

Introduction

Consider this example, I’m copy pasting an article from The Hindu

http://www.thehindu.com/sci-tech/technology/anticollision-trial-of-trains-successful/article4002191.ece

………The Indian Railways successfully tested a path-breaking technology called Train Collision Avoidance System (TCAS), about 150 km from Hyderabad, on Tuesday.

The TCAS technology, based on a combination of GPS and Radio Frequency enabled technology, applies brakes without the intervention of the loco (train) pilots once it detects another locomotive on the move or stationary on the same track and avoids collision. The technology includes installation of some electronic gadgets on the trains, in the stations and along the tracks.

……….Sources stated that the TCAS would not only help avoid collisions due to human errors in signalling and invisibility of signals due to heavy rain or fog, but alerts about fire on trains and warns about damage to the tracks during natural calamities or sabotage.

End of Copy Paste.

Now, from exam point of view, the topic is important but this article is very verbose and lengthy = not good for revision. But we can easily summarize the crux of the whole article by highlighting certain phrases, which are as following:

  1. Train Collision Avoidance System (TCAS)
  2. combination of GPS and Radio Frequency.
  3. applies brakes without pilots
  4. avoid collisions due to human errors, rain or fog, natural calamities or sabotage.

So how would you create such neat and crispy revision notes from newspapers / PDF files?

You’ve three options:

  1. Read the article, Manually type those phrases in notepad or MS word file =extremely tiresome and time consuming.
  2. Highlight every phrase, press “ctrl+C” (copy) then goto MS word or notepad Window and Paste “ctrl+v” (paste). Repeat this activity like 500 times for one stupid article = again waste time.
  3. Save the whole webpages for later reading and making notes in pen-paper format. = still inconvenient.

To solve this problem, I’ve created an automated computer script. It’ll automatically copy the selected phrases/keywords from a webpage or PDF file and store it in the notepad document.

Basically  the principle is Option B cited above, but You don’t have to press ctrl+C/ctrl+V or switch between windows. That work is done in background via my computer script.

Instructions

Download and Install following softwares (free)

  1. Autohotkey (Lexicos Build) (Free) Link: Click ME (new webpage opens up, there is download button in it)
  2. Foxit PDF reader (Free): Click ME
  3. Save following Script Files anywhere on your desktop, harddisk or any folder.
    1. Mrunal’s Auto Notemaker for PDF: Click ME
    2. Mrunal’s Auto Notemaker for Web: Click Me

Situation A: want to make notes out of PDF files

  1. fox XP Double click on “Mrunal’s Auto Notemaker for PDF”. For Win7/8, right click on its icon “Run as Administrator”.
  2. Now You will see the green icon in the taskbar, near the clock.
  3. Open any pdf file in Foxit PDF reader. For the Demonstration,  I’ve opened India Yearbook 2011.
    1. If you’re using Foxit PDF reader’s “Classical toolbar” mode, then goto “Tools Menu”>>Text Selection Tool.
    2. If you’re using Tabbed Toolbar mode in Foxit PDF reader then >>Basic Tab >>Text Selection Tool. (otherwise text will not be selected)
  4. Mrunal's Auto Notemaker for PDF files & The Hindu
  5. Now read the Pdf file as per your convenience, and whenever you feel that some keyword or phrase is important, then just highlight it using your mouse cursor. (But make sure that you’ve selected “Text Selection Tool”)
  6. You’ll see that my script is copying those highlighted lines and you’ll receive ballon-tray notifications.
  7. Mrunal's Auto Note Maker for PDF files & The Hindu
  8. Continue the activity until you’ve finish the topic/chapter in the given pdf file.
  9. Once you’re done reading the topic/pdf file, then right click on the green icon in taskbar -> “Pause Program”
  10. Now again Right Click on green icon > “Open Storage” and you’ll see the notepad file containing all the phrases that you had highlighted during reading.
  11. Mrunal's Auto Note Maker

    Click to Enlarge

  12. Copy paste the content of this notepad file into another MS Word document / Notepad / Evernote / Onenote or any other software, as per your requirement.
  13. Close this notepad file.
  14. Right click on the green icon >> Empty Storage. (plz note, it’ll remove the content from that notepad file).
  15. If you want to continue making notes, then continue highlighting lines in Foxit. And repeat above steps for number 4 onwards.
  16. If you’re done, then exit the program by right click>>Exit program

Situation B: Auto Notes making from Website

  1. Launch google chrome.
  2. Double click on “Mrunal’s Auto Notemaker for Web”. Now You will see the green icon in the taskbar, near the clock.
  3. Just select the phrases/highlight phrases while reading any article or website and they’ll automatically get copied in background.
  4. Once finished, Right click on green icon > “Pause Program”
  5. Now again Right Click on green icon > “Open Storage” and your data will be there. Copy paste it in separate word file, evernote, freemind or any other software as per your requirements.
  6. Other instructions are more or less the same like Situation “A” for PDF files.
  7. You may also use this script for copying from MS Word, Notepad etc fileformats.

Converting Notes into Mindmaps

Suppose after copying from here and there, you’ve gathered following lines

  1. Train Collision Avoidance System (TCAS)
  2. combination of GPS and Radio Frequency enabled technology
  3. applies brakes without the intervention of the loco (train) pilots
  4. avoid collisions due to human errors,heavy rain or fog, natural calamities or sabotage.
  5. NATIONAL SCHOOL OF DRAMA
  6. set up by Sangeet Natak Akademi
  7. totally financed by Department of Culture.
  8. an autonomous organisation
  9. to train students in all aspects of theatre
  10. training course at NSD is of three years duration

The  first four lines are from The Hindu newspaper (web) and remaining lines are from India Yearbook 2011 (PDF). I’ve made this list using my scripts. (I did not manually type above list)

  • Now I want to properly arrange this data into a mindmap for quick revisions.
  • So, Copy that list. (please  copy such lists from a notepad text file or MS word file, because if you directly copy paste it from a webpage, then the list may not display properly in the mindmapping program.)
  • Anyways, after copying the list, Open either Freemind or Mindjet Mindmanager.
  • Create a new Mindmap.
  • Now select Central Note (the gray circle titled “New Mind Map”) and press Ctrl+V (Paste)
  • You’ll get this result.
Mindmap example UPSC

Click to Enlarge

Now hold down Shift key, and using arrow key, select the point number 2 to 4 and drag them into point number 1. And you’ll get this result:

Mindmap yearbook

Click to Enlarge

Lastly, I’ve added some fancy formatting to beautify the mindmap and here is the final result.

Mindmap Final

Click to Enlarge

 

Troubleshooting the Scripts

  1. I’ve tested this on XP SP3, working without problem.
  2. Tested on Win8 (64-bit). As long as you launch the program via right click “run as administrator”, should work fine.
  3. This does not work with just ‘any’ version of Autohotkey software. This works only with a customized version of Autohotkey software, known as “Lexicos’ build. (Autohotkey_L)” So if you’re having any issues, uninstall your autohotkey, then download and install following file: http://l.autohotkey.net/AutoHotkey_L_Install.exe
  4. If you got the error window that “—> 023: Run,%A_scriptdir%\Temporary_Storage_File.txt...huge piece of code” This happens when you launch the script for the very first time and directly click on green icon >> open storage. This error happens because system has not yet created that “Temporary_Storage_File”. So solution is simple: relaunch the script, Selected a few lines  in PDF/Webpage only for testing and then Green icon > right click > Open Storage.
  5. Sometimes it doesn’t detect the lines selected by cursor. So either restart the program or try again. If you drag your cursor too fast or too slow, then the script may not detect and copy the text. In the Web script be extremely cautious while moving your mouse in dragging and highlighting lines, else it might copy the whole web instead of a single phrase 🙂
  6. Will not work if the PDF file is “copy-protected” or if it is just a scanned image of a document without OCR. Same goes for Non-English PDF files
  7. Mrunal’s Auto Notemaker for Web, tested on firefox, internet explorer and Chrome. (Although Chrome would most reliable). If problem then disable other Plugin/addons.
  8. Better “Empty Storage” after work is done. i.e. right click on green icon >>Empty Storage.
  9. Better close/exit the script when not in use. Otherwise script might unnecessarily keep copying the text while you’re surfing websites for non-study purpose.
  10. May or may not function properly if you’re using Vista or Win7 or Windowsblinds themes (because of the “ Balloon Traytip” feature)
  11. Donot launch both scripts simultaneously. Use only one script at a time.
  12. Donot use this in combination with Clipmate or Clipcache or similar clipboard modifier programs.

How to Report Bugs/Errors

If you run into any trouble, don’t hesitate the post the comment below.
But For faster diagnosis of problem, please describe it in following format.

  1. Name of your Operating System: Win XP, Vista, Win7, Win8
  2. Are  you using Autohotkey “Lexicos Build”?: Yes/No. 
  3. Script : PDF or Web?
  4. Name of the web browser (if problem in Web script): Internet Explorer, Google Chrome, Firefox
  5. Description of the problem and what solutions have you tried:

Eye Strain

Notepad ++

  • My script copies the data in a .txt file (notepad file)
  • But the default notepad has white background and black text = very uncomfortable for eye, if you consciously work for more than 10 minutes.
  • Therefore I suggest you use Notepad++ (free download: CLICK ME)
  • Open notepad++, click on Settings >> Styler Configuration >>Change theme according to your liking.
  • To make Notepad++ as your default alternative to Notepad, you need to goto Notepad++ >> Settings Menu >>Preferences >>File Associations >>.txt
  • Compare the screens:


 Foxit PDF reader: Changing Background Color

  • When you’ve to read lengthy PDF files, with white background + black text = very uncomfortable.
  • To solve this problem, Goto Edit>Prerences (or press Ctrl+K on your keyboard)
  • Now select “Accessibility” and replace the document colors (for example black background and yellow text).

Mrunal recommends

  1. (free) NCERT, NIOS, TN-Books
  2. Environment by ShankarIAS
  3. Indian Polity M.Laxmikanth (Hindi | English)
  4. Art & Culture by Nitin Singhania (Hindi | English)
  5. Spectrum: Modern History (Hindi | English)
  6. Bipin Chandra: Post Independence
  7. Fast-track to Arithmetic Rajesh Verma
  8. MK Pandey’s Analytical Reasoning
  9. Disha’s Topicwise Paperset (Hindi | English)
  10. School Atlas
  11. Mains: Language papers
  1. (free) NCERT, NIOS, TN-Books 4 History,Geo,Sci
  2. Indian Polity M.Laxmikanth (Hindi | English)
  3. Spectrum: Modern History (Hindi | English)
  4. Maths: Quantam CAT Sarvesh Kumar
  5. Objective General English SP Bakshi
  6. Word Power made Easy -Norman Lowe
  7. Topic wise Solved Paperset by Disha


So far 479 Comments posted

  1. aparna

    every selection that i make is getting copied 4 times successively . can any one suggest wat to do???

    1. Jdsaharan

      I am also facing same problem if you get a solution please let me know!

  2. Kiran Rao.M

    hello sir,
    I am using windows 8.1 foxit reader is working pproperly. text is copying in dialog box displaying near task bar. but no notepad file is creating after pausing and oprening the storage…..a error box in coming..plz help

    1. VISHAL KALAL

      I am also using win 8.1, but it is not showing me the option of run as administrator. Help please

  3. Ankit

    I am facing this error when i am running the scrip of WEB. The below mentioned is the line 42 of the script and when i am starting the programme it says it is not a recognizable action.

    #If WinActive(“ahk_class Chrome_WidgetWin_1”) or WinActive(“ahk_class MozillaWindowClass”) or WinActive(“ahk_class Chrome_WidgetWin_0”) or WinActive(“ahk_class IEFrame”)
    DClickT := DllCall(“GetDoubleClickTime”)

    operatung system – win 8
    auto hotkey_L – Not sure

    Please help with the web script as i am unable to use it.

    PLEASE REPLY AS OTHERS ALSO ARE FACING THE SAME ISSUE AS I CAN SEE THEIR COMMENTS AT THE TOP AND NO SOLUTION HAS BEEN PROVIDED FOR THEM.

  4. vikas

    Hello Mrunal sir
    I’ve downloaded Autohotkey194805 and autonote makers. But it’s not working on my system with win7-32bit.
    After installing autohotkey i’ve followed the procedure as u explained.Unfortunately its not working After opening text file in foxit reader with text selection mode nothing is happening. I am not getting option “Run as Admn” on right clicking File PDF_automaker.ahk. the option I am getting arfter right clicking are
    Run script
    Edit script
    Compile script
    So please resolve this issue.

  5. chirag

    sir autonotemaker for pdf is working properly.but when it comes to storage,it doesnt show me what is stored.it shows an error msg.so m
    nt able to understand what is the problem. waiting for ur rply sir.

    1. Amrit

      sir autonotemaker for pdf is working properly.but when it comes to storage,it doesnt show me what is stored.it shows an error msg.so m
      nt able to understand what is the problem. waiting for ur rply sir.

  6. Meera

    Thanks Mrunal…. It worked

    1. nitin

      sir,
      i tried it …i have windows8…i used hotkey because lexicon link is not working…….for pdf …….i used it nd upto that ballon showing copied text is ok but it is not opening the storage…giving a long error….

  7. SRINIVAS

    I am using windows XP SP3
    i downloaded mrunal autonote maker WEB.ahk
    converted into . exe file
    on clicking , its showing
    “” Error at line 32
    Line text: If WinActive(”ahk_class Chrome Widgetwin_1″) or WinActive(“ahk_class Mozilla windows class “)……………
    Error: This line doesnot consist a recognised action

    then after checking all the comments
    i followed one of the suggestions given by Aj username of some guy)
    he recommended to delete “#If”
    i did it
    then green icon appeared
    now the data i entered got copied
    i opened someother site and tried to copy something
    it is idle …besides its copying the data which i am typing now repeatedly
    I WASTED MORE THAN 1 MONTH ON IT on an avg 1-2 hrs per day breaking my head .. (because i desperately want it )
    i tried every sloution like
    uninstalling and re installing it
    modifying the script
    i even tried WIN 8, WIN 7
    After seeing that mrunal ji said it worked for WIN XP SP3 ….now i changed my os to XP (after getting this OS harldy)
    CAN ANYONE HELP ME I WILL BE GRATEFUL TO YOU…Kindly resolve the issue
    eagerly waiting for any solution
    please guys
    someone who got it worked guide me …..

  8. rama06

    Hi friends
    I wasted 3 hrs,still I am not able to use this note maker ……………I am not able to run Mrunal_PDF_AutoNoteMaker OR 2. Mrunals_WEB_AutoNoteMaker) AS ASMINSTRATOR. I have followed all the steps.
    Pls help me out.

  9. shiv mohan

    sir, web auto maker is not workng it shows error at line 42. this line does not contain recognised action.. kindly help .

  10. shiv mohan

    sir problem .. plz help n web version . pdf is working fine

    it pastes this thing several time

    C:\Users\shivmohan\Desktop\Temporary_Storage_File.txt

    This file has been modified by another program.
    Do you want to reload it?
    —————————
    Yes No
    —————————

    —————————
    Reload
    —————————
    C:\Users\shivmohan\Desktop\Temporary_Storage_File.txt

    This file has been modified by another program.
    Do you want to reload it?
    —————————
    Yes No
    —————————

  11. arpit

    sir, ..Mrunal’s Auto Notemaker for Web: Click Me..this link is not working…kindly fix the problem..thanks

  12. saurabh singh

    sir,
    Mrunal’s Auto Notemaker for Web: Click Me
    is not working. my system w7 32 bit

  13. neel

    sir
    web script dnt working…..error msg……’error in line 42′

  14. CHANDRA

    sir, please take action about AUTONOTEMAKR,it is not working properly, same problem as mentioned above

  15. Ajay Gupta

    hellow sir,i want to prepare for UPSC in hindi medium.Please suggest me some websites and utube links that can help me in my preparation in hindi.
    thank you

    1. Ranjan Jatav

      Doston you can download autoclipx software which does the same work….Just type it on google and install it…I faced problem with autowebnotemaker…So found an alternative…

  16. Souvik Ghosh

    OS- Win 7 64bit

    Yes i have lexicos build autohotkey

    Browser- Google chrome Version 40.0.2214.111 m(latest)

    Problem- With the WEB version

    Problem in details- After Run as administrator it displays:

    “Error at line 32.

    Line text: #If WinActive(“ahk_class Chrome_WidgetWin_1”)or
    WinActive(“ahk_class MozillaWindowClass”) or WinAct…
    Error: This line does not contain a recognized action.

    The program will exit”.

    (The PDF version working fine but this WEB version is more important please find a solution fast. It will be highly helpful)

  17. Jay

    Hi …..Followed every instruction posted here to no avail. Feeling super frustrated ,dumb and sad at the same time . Only confirmed news of discovery of life on another planet could make me feel better at the moment 🙂
    Someone please help , nothings working really !!!!

    Name of your Operating System: Win7 ; SP1
    Are you using Autohotkey “Lexicos Build”?: Yes
    Script : Both
    Name of the web browser : Chrome, Firefox
    Could download everything as stated .

    This is what it says on opening the AHK :
    ” Script lines most recently executed (oldest first). Press [F5] to refresh. The seconds elapsed between a line and the one after it is in parentheses to the right (if not 0). The bottommost line’s elapsed time is the number of seconds since it executed.
    —- C:\Users\Jaya\Documents\AutoHotkey.ahk
    016: Return (22.92)
    Press [F5] to refresh.”

    Whatever gets copied does so multiple times !!!

    What gets copied ,does not get copied in note++ !!!!
    Don’t know what am I doing wrong !!!! this is a distress call , the one with a solution will get a “nariyal ” as a chadawa by courier.

    Mrunal Sir you are doing a great job here . But for you ,would’nt know such a thing was possible .Heartfelt gratitude ………

    Thanks in advance .

    Jay

  18. Pratibha

    Hi,

    After running “Mrunals_WEB_AutoNoteMaker” , I am getting following error.

    Error at line 42.
    Line Text: #If WinActive(“ahk_classChrome_WidgetWin_1”) or WinActive(“ahk_class MozillaWindowClass”) or WinAct…
    Error: This line does not contain a recognized action

    Please help to resolve this error Sir

    Thanks,
    Pratibha

  19. darshan

    Just follow the top instructions again and update the autohotkey.. install and allow it to run in autmatic mode. works just fine.

  20. Chandraprakash Pandurang Sutar

    Dear Mrunal Sir,
    Very first, I want to say thank you very much for such a comprehensive work. We, aspirants really appreciate what you are doing for us.
    So, thank you very much. This communication is for use of automaker. This is very good tool, but it is not working properly in my lapi. So, I need your help. I’ve followed all the steps you mentioned. But everytime I copy some lines, they are getting copied again and again. There is a huge difference in what I selecting and what is getting copied. This problem is in both pdf and web. So, please help me out.
    My OS is : Windows 7 Ultimate, 64 bit.

    Please give me feedback sir.
    Thank you.

  21. Zeesh

    Thanx mrunal sir, The autonote maker is really helpful in making notes. I was struggling from this problem of making notes from pdf & webpages and u provide the solution for all.
    Thanx again

  22. mukesh

    sir this auto hot key is not working in my win 7..intially it worked well bt now it out of service…plz tell me sir the solution…i tried twice ot thrice this software installation and uninsstalltion…still its nt working n my note making activity is hampering…

  23. Geetanjali Joshi

    Sir, can you please provide the software compatible with mac.

    1. Amar-Prem

      I agree. That will be great. It’s the second-most used OS.

  24. yadram

    sir, this software not working at all. after highlighting the text it’s not copy and green icon in taskbar.

  25. parag

    thanks a lottt Mrunal….
    This is going to save a lot of time…
    something like this was much needed..
    Hats off

  26. Netal

    Thank you So much.!! you saved me 🙂

  27. Anju

    thanku so much sir 🙂

  28. Richa

    Plz update information and study material and strategy for SSC-CGL 2016

  29. pk

    Which app do i need to installed to access the ppt zip file. I am using samsung j7 android.

  30. sagar

    Thank you so much…
    The pdf back ground colour change tips, is a big relief…

  31. suman

    I am doing self study for Ras2016 & I want to became Ra’s officer ,I am not able to join coaching institute, please suggest how I study

  32. Krish Garala

    Is there any alternative for android platform to take easy notes?

  33. Samarjyoti Thakuria

    Does it work for window 10 can anyone tell me..please

  34. Samarjyoti Thakuria

    Does it work for windows 10 …can anyone tell me..please

  35. A1

    sir,
    the text can not be selected both in pdf foxit reader & web pages after the step run as administrtor.
    os: acer laptop windows 8 ( 64 bit)
    autohotkey: 1.1.24..05 version unicode 64 bit
    foxit pdf reader 8.2.0.2051
    there are many versions of notepad++ pleasetell me compatable version for windows 8 (64 bit) desktop os.

  36. Harshal Kulte

    windows10
    lexicos build (recommended)
    script PDF

    sir,
    1) sometimes it works but with lag, if i select the text it copies the previous one & so on.

    2)sometime it just copy the same text (not copied one) but something else consistently when select the text

    3) now my laptop is not responding to the autohotkey (a new problem)

    sir pls help me, i wasted almost 2-3 days working on it. I bought new laptop for this purpose only.

  37. pandey

    using windows 10.
    everytime i select something, some other things in script format get pasted.

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