Easter Shortcuts: 30 Fascinating Mac Tips

Easter is approaching quickly and the spirit of spring is in the air. What better time to re-think the way you work with your Mac, and take on board a few time saving tips and shortcuts? We won’t be covering the basics, and assume you’re already familiar with using the keyboard to copy, paste and save!

There’s something for everyone, whether you’d like to show Expose in slow motion, quickly empty your Trash, automatically save text to a sticky note or zoom in and out of your screen.

The Basics

Before getting started, here is a quick explanation of the different symbols we’ll be using. Some are used more often than others, but they’re all required at some point to perform the below actions:

⌘ = Command
⇧ = Shift
⌥ = Option or Alt
^ = Control

Interface & Video

⌘ + H = Hide window
^ + Mouse Wheel = Zoom in and out of the screen
⌘ + ⌥ + D = Show or hide the Dock
^ + ⌥ + ⌘ + 8 = Invert the video colours used on your display
⌘ + Tab = Scroll through current applications
⇧ + Expose = Shows the Expose animation in slow motion (also works for Dashboard + Front Row)

Text

^ + ⌘ + D = Opens selected word in the dictionary
⌘ + ⇧ + Y = Saves selected text to a sticky note on your desktop (in Cocoa apps)
Select Text + Drag to Desktop = Saves a text clipping to your desktop
⌘ + T = Show the font panel in an application

Screenshots

⌘ + ⇧+ 3 = Take fullscreen picture
⌘ + ⇧ + 4 = Take selected area screenshot
⌘ + ⇧ + 4 + Space = Take screenshot of an individual window

Finder & Files

⌥ + ⌘ + Escape = Bring up Force Quit window to kill a certain application
⌘ + Space = Open Spotlight
⌘ + I = Get Info
⌘ + W = Close Finder window
⌘ + ⌥ + W = Close all Finder windows
⌘ + D = Duplicate a file in Finder
⌘ + [ = Go backwards in history in Finder
⌘ + ] = Go forwards in history in Finder
⌘ + ⇧ + H = Go to your home folder
⌘ + ⇧ + Delete = Empty trash
⌘ + ⌥ + ⇧ + Delete = Empty trash silently
⌘ + L = Make an alias
⌘ + Delete = Move file or folder to trash
⌘ + E = Eject the disk drive

Logout and Shutdown

⇧ + ⌘ + ⌥ + Q = Quick log out (occurs immediately)
^ + ⌘ + Eject = Close all open apps and restart
⌥ + ⌘ + Eject = Sleep

Do Share!

Whilst these are certainly a few great shortcut commands to remember, there are many more. Please feel free to share your favorites in the comments – I’m interested to see which ones you find useful!