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AppleScript for fullscreen QuickTime video playback - with hack to avoid pink glow mouse cursor

2016-06-20

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When installing in Førde last week, we experienced a new issue with playback of fullscreen movies from QuickTime. Initially this would work well, but after a while some of the projectors would start displaying the mouse again, with a pink glow. Apparently we are not the only ones to have experienced this.

As pretty as mouse cursors with pink glow might be, they really didn’t belong to this project. Getting rid of them turned into a convoluted AppleScript hack that I’d like to blog, as there’s no way that I’ll remember how we solved this two years from now.

I’ve used AppleScript to control fullscreen playback of movies in the past, but the script just got a whole more convoluted. The trick to solve the issue turned out to require a programatic move and clicking of the mouse every so often, followed by a fullscreen command.

AppleScript does not in itself have any commands to move the mouse, so I first had to install AppleScript Toolbox. This is a a toolbox that extends AppleScript in a number of ways. Once downloaded and unzipped, the file needed to be copied to the /Library/ScriptingAdditions folder.

Next I had to modify my earlier script and add an idle section. The return value makes this execute every 20 seconds.

Finally, when saving, I had to save as an application, and make sure that “Stay open after run handler” is checked, as illustrated below.

The compiled application can be downloaded here. When unzipped, right-click and open in Script Editor in order to modify the username and filename before saving again. You can set this file as a login item, and have the movie play automatically when the computer starts.

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