Keyboard shortcut to add date in Canvas or "text" type column?


Sorry if I am just not seeing this, or it should be a feature request if it’s missing in current keyboard shortcuts - is there one that adds the current date? Or date and time for that matter? This was one of my most used in excel, “ctrl” + “;”. Also I use this extensively with Evernote, which I would like to evolve to Coda once the Doc features, like more hierarchy for sections for example, are developed. In Evernote it’s “ctrl” + “shift” + “D.”


This is what I’ve learned about keyboard shortcuts over 30 years of writing and computing -


The better approach is a fully independent system that synchronizes across all apps and all devices - TextExpander is one choice.

If you do this, you will master the control of every shortcut you need and they will be consistent across all apps, OSes, and devices. You will advance the science of muscle-memory and become a keyboard productivity God.


hey @Bill_French Thanks for the tip! I am not nearly that much of a ninja, but I’ll look into that app. Agreed it is frustrating that applications haven’t adopted any standard here, although they often use similar solutions like “ctrl” and “v” for pasting.

Hopefully that the Coda team can add this simple shortcut in the next round of updates to keyboard shortcuts regardless!

Sure, that’s one way to go, but I fear that they spend time on keyboard shortcuts when they could be working on stuff that makes it possible to build your own keyboard shortcuts.

In my view, featuring a product to death will be the death of the product. Better is an approach that provides the features that make it possible to add features - like keyboard shortcuts.

It’s really easy to find a hundred simple shortcuts to add, and before you know it, there’s a developer at Coda spending the next 3 months understanding all the nuanced issues of every manner of individual demands for shortcuts.

My view - either add a framework for building productivity-enhancers involving keyboard shortcuts, or tell us all to find a keyboard shortcut tool. The framework (if that’s their chosen approach) should come pre-configured with the usual and customary expectations and then let the customization-key-fest begin. :wink:

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Hey @Bill_French, very nice commentary! I’m familiar with your posts across the community so I’m aware you know your stuff when it comes to developing software. Agreed that there are many more relevant features we need that the Coda dev team could be working on than keyboard shortcuts. That said, I’m not sure if there is a definitive list from power Excel users, many of which I think will be coming over to Coda, but in my limited use of Excel the “ctrl” + “;” to add a date quickly was a lifesaver, and I’d have thought that would be in some basic suite of shortcuts that would almost be an afterthought.

I will look into some of the keyboard shortcut frameworks you suggest, and thanks for your contributions to the community, always astute in my estimation!

Aaron, thanks for the kind comments! Appreciate it.

Yes, I agree that Coda has a duty to include a core collection of keyboard shortcuts (I kind’a left that door open in my comment). It seems to fall into a class of reasonable features that a vast user base will expect.

But when I see claims like - “cannot live without it”, and “a true lifesaver”, this suggests there’s a critical dependency on a very cool feature that vendor (a) has invented and which vendor (b) may be sued for copying. I don’t know if this particular “ctrl” + “;” feature is protected, but Microsoft is not a company you want to test when it comes to blindly copying features - especially lots of them in a platform designed to eat a little bit of their lunch. Just sayin …

As such, we have to be cautious about expecting Coda to copy elements and features verbatim of any product just because we like them or because we cannot live without them. Nothing wrong with asking, but there may be reasons such as known software patents like this.

I’m really troubled by software patents in general, but I’m nearly equally troubled by people who say Coda is crap because it doesn’t work exactly like (or better than) the product they are considering leaving. We all need to understand that software innovation is sometimes gated by law.

And if this keyboard shortcut for dates is such a life-saver, wouldn’t it be wise to make it work in EVERY application you use? :wink:

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Hey @Bill_French, another solid post, thanks for responding to me! For me, the bottom line is being able to add in the date via keyboard, no matter what the actual shortcut is. In fact in the last few years I started using Evernote, which has yet another combo for adding the date. But in the case of Excel and Evernote, I do use the ability to paste a date in a heartbeat with that shortcut extensively.

I am intrigued by your discussion of the universal keyboard shortcut tool and I intend to check out TextExpander. Not to counter you any further, but one reason I posted is the thought that I may not be the only one of users discovering Coda who have it engrained in their minds that they can insert today’s date with some shortcut or another, and these may be folks, like myself, less technical saavy who won’t be up for installing an under appreciated utility such as a universal keyboard shortcut tool.

And as a complete side to this subject, but while I’m responding to you, I have to say that your praise across the community for the underlying architecture, solid design, and foresight of the Coda app itself gives me a lot of faith in my own pushing forward with Coda. I have been trying to set it up as a team management hub for about 6 months, but stopped many times due to challenges I couldn’t overcome with trying to create formulas, find the right schema, etc. But I keep coming back because I see in Coda potential that no other app out there can match, which is to let me ultimately build a too with everything I am looking for. It’s good to have power users such as yourself echo that, really makes me think it will pay off for me to go “all in.”