Quicksilver, one of the oldest “launchers” for Mac OS X, has reached one of its biggest milestones — the 1.0 release — a few months ago. We’ve already reviewed v1.1, and now we’re rolling out a series of how-to articles to get the most of this powerful app.
Quicksilver’s flexibility may be daunting at first. You’ve got to get your hands dirty to really see what it’s capable of. But fear not, we’ve got you covered! Last week we taught you some basic concepts. For a few weeks, we’ll have a weekly in-depth coverage of some of the most commonly-used plugins. Read on to get the most of managing your contacts and sending emails.
This software is really powerful and is relatively easy to use, yet you might miss its full potential if you don’t spend enough time with it. Let me make a few things easier for you and guide you through the steps from a complete beginner to becoming a Quicksilver master in just a few articles. This week, we’ll cover the basics that help you understand how the app works and how you can perform basic tasks on files and folders.
OS X is already powerful by itself, and it’s packed with a lot of built-in apps that can help you accomplish everyday life tasks. However, it’s only when you’re using something like Alfred, LaunchBar or Quicksilver that you actually unleash the full potential of your machine. Things that are already simple on your Mac turn into lightening-fast tasks with these apps.
Though Quicksilver has been available for 10 years, it’s been kept a bit too much under the radar compared to its alternatives like Alfred. By popular demand, here’s our in-depth dive into the original app that puts “Mac OS X at your fingertips”. Let’s give this gem of an app the love it deserves.
Some keys get used more just because they’re more common, but for keyboard fiends, there’s a whole different set of keys that get worn out. If you’ve ever worn out the ⌘, Ctrl, or alt keys on your keyboard, chances are you couldn’t get by with just a mouse.
If anything, keyboard shortcuts are one of the best things in OS X. There’s the usual suspects, like ⌘+C and ⌘+V for copy and paste, or ⌘+tab for switching between apps, but you get those everywhere. Then there’s the ones that make OS X especially nice for writing: Alt+left/right to jump between words and ⌘+left/right to jump to the beginning/end of a line, with the addition of holding shift down to select text. There’s even more obscure text editing shortcuts, like Ctrl+T to swap the two letters your curser’s currently between.
Then, there’s the even more powerful keyboard shortcuts: those like ⌘+space to open Spotlight search or the default Alt+space to start Alfred. Those — combined with app specific shortcuts, and those you can setup yourself from your Keyboard’s system preferences — are the most powerful tools to keep you from having to revert to your mouse or touchpad all day. They’ll get so ingrained in your muscle memory, a computer without them feels broken.
For me, Alt+space is that killer shortcut that I invoke over a hundred times a day to use Alfred. What’s your favorite keyboard shortcut?
Apple undoubtedly make some of the best keyboards, mice and trackpads that money can buy. Their Magic Trackpad is perhaps more a work of art than it is an input device. For those of us who, for one reason or another, prefer to use devices from companies other than Apple then you may find your options limited due to poor driver support or lack of customisation.
USB Overdrive has been around since the days of Mac OS X Jaguar, over ten years ago, and provides a whole suite of controls for customising your input devices. I spend some time with the app to see just how much we can tame our USB input devices.
When you get a laptop, you lose a typical convenience from using a desktop, where you could lay one hand on the keyboard and the other on the mouse. From the moment that you open the lid for the first time, you gotta make the choice: trackpad or keyboard. I picked the keyboard as my favorite place to keep my hands, perhaps because I write quite a bit, you know?
Maybe you’re a writer, a developer or just can’t get used to the trackpad. Either way, this is a roundup of the best keyboard-centric apps for you, a keyboard lover.
Here at AppStorm, we consider our keyboards to be one of the most vital tools a writer can and should have at his or her disposal. While, yes, we often take our keyboards for granted, sometimes we remember why the keyboard is such a paramount instrument to our day-to-day operations – heck, this article was written thanks to one great keyboard.
What keyboard is that, you ask? Well, It is Logitech’s k760 Wireless Solar Keyboard. This baby is Logitech’s answer for having one keyboard for all your devices, be it your Mac, iPhone, or iPad. But. Should this keyboard be your next? After receiving a review unit from Logitech, we had to find out for ourselves.
One of the key factors to becoming more productive while working with your Mac is to master keyboard shortcuts. Mac OS X includes a set of standard keyboard shortcuts that allow you to switch applications, close windows, quit programs, open new documents or browser windows/tabs and copy and paste between files.
Many Mac programs ship with application specific keyboard shortcuts as well, all in the name of streamlining your workflow and allowing your hands to remain on the keyboard. You can shave precious seconds off mundane, repetitive tasks, allowing you to focus more of your time and energy on the task at hand – rather than locating that rogue window, buried beneath 10 other applications.
Keyboard Maestro is an application that takes the idea of keyboard shortcuts and injects it with steroids. The result of which is a super-charged automation program, allowing you to execute several different actions with a single command. Read on to find out more, and see an example of just how powerful this app can be!
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