Automation Toolkit Free
  • This should be called something like "programmer's toolkit" because, based on the overview video you need to have a firm grasp on programming in After Effects if you want to make any use of this. I was going to jump on the Pro version (when someone has the integrity to offer a free and pro version I like to support the developer) thinking it was similar to KBAR but man am I ever glad I checked out the video first. I'm sure this is an awesome tool for anyone who knows how to do this stuff but it should be made clear that this is something meant for people who know what they're doing with code.
  • This should be called something like "programmer's toolkit" because, based on the overview video you need to have a firm grasp on programming in After Effects if you want to make any use of this. I was going to jump on the Pro version (when someone has the integrity to offer a free and pro version I like to support the developer) thinking it was similar to KBAR but man am I ever glad I checked out the video first. I'm sure this is an awesome tool for anyone who knows how to do this stuff but it should be made clear that this is something meant for people who know what they're doing with code.
    Hi Sean,
    you are right that Automation Toolkit requires some understanding of programming,
    but only on a basic level and not on After Effects advanced programming level.
    I believe that any After Effects user can create basic automations without much learning.
    I think that a great analogy for this is Video Copilot's Element 3D:
    You don't have to be a 3D artist or know any 3D software in order to use it. It's designed for After Effects users, just like Automation Toolkit is designed for After Effects users and not only for programmers.

    My main goal was to make scripting accessible to everyone by eliminating the need to write code.
    I want to make it clear that in Automation Toolkit free & pro you don't have to know what you are doing with code or anything, you can experiment as much as you want, learn by trial and error, watch tutorials or just use premade automations created by others.
    Simply adding lines and seeing what they do is a great way to learn.

    It is not meant to be an alternative to KBar, but it can be used as a toolbar if you want (automations that do things similar to KBar like adding effects or presets, adding expressions, running scripts, are very simple and rarely require more than 3 lines).

    The free version should be enough for most users.
    The pro version is only recommended if you're already familiar with the tool or want to support me as a developer.

    I encourage you to give the free version a go and just experiment with it. It's easier than it seems.
    Thanks for taking the time to write your comment and to watch the overview video,

    Alon
  • Thanks for the reply Alon. I'll give the free version a shot and see how confused I get ;)
  • It's amazing! I have a question that if this can excute "Convert to Editable Text" function?
    I can't find it so far, or maybe Pro version has it? Thanks in advance!
  • It's amazing! I have a question that if this can excute "Convert to Editable Text" function?
    I can't find it so far, or maybe Pro version has it? Thanks in advance!
    Hi Gyenongphil,
    thanks!
    This can be done easily in automation toolkit free using the project action called "menu command", this action simulates a click on many after effects UI menu options.

    this action works based on the current state of the after effects UI so it will work only on the active comp selected layers.
    if you want to convert layers in multiple comps/precomps you will have simulate the state that the After Effects UI should be (using automation toolkit), 
    1. open the composition using an item action called "open in viewer" (it opens the comp in the ui). 
    2. select all the layers in this comp.
    3. run the menu command "Convert to Editable Text". (it must be spelled correctly).
    (and do this again to many compositions)

    I created an example for you (only 3 lines), an automation that's selects all the layers in the active composition and then converts them to editable text (only the layers that can be converted).

    Can you please post this question/next question in the community forum instead, this comments section is for comments on the product and not for technical support so the community forum is much better for this type of questions, I will be able to help you in to design and build automations more easily.

    I attached the automation file so you can load and examine it (make sure you unzip the file and importing the JSON file into Automation Toolkit).

    Thanks,
    Alon
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    Convert to Editable Text.zip
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  • This is really a great tool.  Thank you for it.
    I am trying to figure out how to create an automation which will save a copy of my current project to the Render Queue "Output To" location for all queued render compositions then will set off the renders.  Any help will be greatly appreciated.

    Cheers,
    Eric
  • Eric Miro said:
    This is really a great tool.  Thank you for it.
    I am trying to figure out how to create an automation which will save a copy of my current project to the Render Queue "Output To" location for all queued render compositions then will set off the renders.  Any help will be greatly appreciated.

    Cheers,
    Eric
    Hi Eric, thanks!

    this automation should be quite simple, but I found a bug in the process of making it so I had to create it with a workaround (that added 5 more lines), the "parent folder" property of a file variable won't work if the file is not exists in your computer and render files do not exist yet, I already fixed this bug but you will get it to work only in the next update.

    The steps of creating the automation:
    1. find the project file.
    2. loop through the render queue items.
    3. check if the render queue item status is set to "queued".
    4. if it is, loop over its outputs modules
    5. get the file variable of the output.
    6. workaround : calculate the parent folder path of the file, usually there is a property called "parent folder" that should give you the path of the parent folder but because of this bug it won't work, so I calculated it using a text variable, I set the "text element" property to the "/"+name of the file + "." + the extension and then used the "find and replace last text element" action and replaced it with nothing, so I deleted the part of the name of the file with the extension.
    7. use the file action "copy to" to copy the project file to the render file parent folder.
    8. set the "render enabled" render queue item property to false.
    without the workaround and the bug the automation should be only 10 lines.

    if you want to use this automation you need to enable an option in the automation advanced settings called "Allow automation to create/modify external files", this option is designed to prevent an automation from creating files unintentionally without your confirmation. the operation of creating / modifying files cannot be undone due to after effects scripting limitations.

    Can you please post this question/next questions in the community forum instead, this comments section is for comments on the product and not for technical support so the community forum is much better for this type of questions, I will be able to help you in to design and build automations more easily.

    I attached the automation file so you can load and examine it (make sure you unzip the file and importing the JSON file into Automation Toolkit).

    Thanks,
    Alon
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    Save A Copy.zip
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  • Hi! I have been studying the topic of automation in Ae for several years. Finally got to your script. To be honest, I was looking for something like recording actions in Photoshop. Can your script perform such a record instead of placing logical blocks? To be honest, the fact is that I need to make 27 logos in different languages. But I found that the text layer does not have such a parameter as round join stroke. In this regard, I need to create a shape layer from text and then perform some actions to give the desired look to my logo and, accordingly, do it at least 27 times. I started this afternoon and it's already evening, but 27 logos are still not ready and I haven't found a way to create shapes from text layer with your script. Probably when you will see my question it will already be done without your script, but I think if we are doing such a great common cause, then it makes sense to provide the adding of new missing functions to your script.
  • Hi! I have been studying the topic of automation in Ae for several years. Finally got to your script. To be honest, I was looking for something like recording actions in Photoshop. Can your script perform such a record instead of placing logical blocks? To be honest, the fact is that I need to make 27 logos in different languages. But I found that the text layer does not have such a parameter as round join stroke. In this regard, I need to create a shape layer from text and then perform some actions to give the desired look to my logo and, accordingly, do it at least 27 times. I started this afternoon and it's already evening, but 27 logos are still not ready and I haven't found a way to create shapes from text layer with your script. Probably when you will see my question it will already be done without your script, but I think if we are doing such a great common cause, then it makes sense to provide the adding of new missing functions to your script.
    Hi Sergey, 

    I understand your frustration, recording a simple functions may be a better way to automate staff but currently I cant see a way to create that kind of a product without an adobe engineering, there is a product called "compCode" that tries to reconstruct your comp with a some fluidity in the content but think that it is very limited compared to automation toolkit. 

    most of the times creating the a "smart" automation (not a 3 line automation) will take much more time than repeat the functions yourself multiple times manually to finish a specific task, in some very rare cases creating automation will be faster, lets say you need to edit 7,000 videos in a specific way and render them, creating an automation will be much faster than work manually.

    I think that you should consider creating an automations for repetitive tasks that you want to do frequently, or functions that you have to do rarely that takes too much time and effort.(tasks that you had to repeat at least 1,000 times already).

    I highly recommend you to check out the forum, you can search there for answers more easily and get a better support.

    you can create shapes from text using a menu command, it is a way to run menu bar actions, you just need to type the name of the menu exactly as written in the menu "Create Shapes from Text" and it will work on the selected layers.
    please check out the automation example attached to this message.

    let me know if you have more questions, 
    Thanks,
    Alon
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    Create Shaped from Text.zip
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  • Hello!
    This is a great plugin:)
    However, I can't figure out if it is possible to create automation that will set output folder to "[ProjectFolder]/Output/" and file name to "[projectName]_[compName]_[renderSettingsName].[fileextension]" for queued elements in the render queue.
    Basically, I need to make sure that the files are being rendered to the correct folder with the correct file names as it was mentioned in the promo video:)

    Will appreciate any tips!

    Best,
    Alena
    (Edited to include the Automation file)Hi Alena, 
    happy to hear that you liked Automation Toolkit.
    There are not enough information on how to set up renders and files so the next tutorial will be on this topic, I recommend you to check out the Automation Toolkit Forum, I recently helped another user to create this type of automation.

    I marked the automation lines with 2 colors, 
    The part marked in blue -
    1. checks if the project is saved.
    2. if it is finds the parent folder of the .aep project file.
    3. creates a folder variable to the project folder + "/Output".
    4. creates this folder if it not exists, if encounter an error shows a message too

    The part marked in green- 
    1. checks if the "Output" inside the project folder exists.
    2. if it is, loop over the render queue items, in the render queue panel.
    3. if an render queue item status set to "queued".
    4. loop over it's outputs.
    5. saves the composition for the render queue item as an item variable.
    6. creates a text variable to set up the file path for the final output.
    7. sets this text variable to the "output folder"+"/"+ "project name"+"_"+"comp name" + "_" +"Render settings name".
    8. creates a file variable.
    9. sets the path for this file to the text variable.
    10. if the file is valid, sets the render queue item output-module file to this file variable.

    I attached the automation file so you can load and examine it, you also need to check an option in the advanced settings of this automation to "Allow automation to create/modify external files" (make sure you unzip the file and importing the JSON file into Automation Toolkit).
    (Edited to include the Automation file)
    Thanks,
    Alon
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    Auto Render Path.zip
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