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A very simple word count workflow

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This workflow is very simple but uses a small piece of AppleScript to display the result in a dialogue box than can be simply dismissed by pressing <Enter>. (I don't always want results copied to the clipboard or displayed in large type so, for me, a small informative dialogue box was the answer.)


The workflow looks like this:




The Universal Action is set to operate on text only (of course). The Automation Task is set to count words and the AppleScript looks like this:




All you have to do, when the workflow is set up, is to select some text, press the Universal Action shortcut keys and run Word count.


I do look forward to hearing from others what you are doing with Universal Actions.



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1 hour ago, vitor said:

Have you considered the Dialog Conditional?

Do you know, I never even noticed that in Alfred 5! Thanks so much for pointing it out. As you imply, it's much more versatile than the script I used. I can use that now in several of my workflows: it's really useful.


I thought I'd read carefully all the information on the Alfred help pages about Alfred 5 but I clearly did not do so carefully enough!



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Vitor's idea of using the Dialog Conditional action is very much better than my AppleScript so here's what to do if you want to adopt it.


Substitute this (as an example) for my Run Script action:




Here's what my Dialog Conditional action looks like:




Note that for the <Enter> key in the Description box you must press Option + <Enter>. By having Quit the workflow as the first button it's possible to quit the workflow simply by pressing <Enter>.  In the final Clipboard action make sure you include {query} as the text to be copied to the clipboard.



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  • 3 months later...
21 minutes ago, Lasttoswim said:

the "automation task" just reads "No task"?


Double-click the Automation Task itself, and take a look at the bottom left. You'll see either "Install tasks" or "update tasks"; Once you click on this, the Automation Tasks will be populated, and the workflow will start working for you :)


More details on Automation Tasks here:


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  • 1 month later...

This is exactly what I was looking for as I need to count word in various web interfaces but I cannot for the life of me get it to work?


macOS Ventura

Alfred 5

I have CMD+Space to trigger Alfred

downloaded this workflow

I then installed the automated tasks

I also changed universal actions to cmd+/  (this doesnt do anything ?)


I have powerpack of course. I always feel I so under use alfred and this is classic example I find something that looks great but I cant figure out why it doesnt work.

I find the Alfred guides are also very wordy and I find them confusing...


Any tips on how this is suppose to work or what setting I have set up incorrectly would be much appreciated.


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12 minutes ago, adamprocter said:

I got really confused about the guide also mentioning press right cursor


That’s something you can do when acting on a result from Alfred itself. I.e. when you’re searching for files or looking at an entry from the Clipboard History. The Universal Actions shortcut will also work in those situations, though.

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  • 3 months later...

@vurte here you are: here is the GitHub link for the new workflow. As the old one is on the Alfred Gallery I've not modified that but instead have created a new workflow which can count either words or characters…whichever you choose.




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On reconsidering your post I think what you needed was for both counts to be output so I'm changing the workflow to do that and will post an updated workflow in a moment. Sorry for initially not understanding that you wanted to see both.



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  • 5 months later...

By following your link to Universal Actions, I was able to find it as a Feature and discover what was set as the key strokes on my Mac. Been using Alfred for over 10 years, so I must have changed it from the default at some point. This really makes me realize how much I underutilize the capabilities.


Anyway, thank you for pointing me in the right direction.

Screenshot 2023-10-21 at 1.46.22 PM.png

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