Sometimes things aren’t as easy as they could be when you’re using your Mac to plow through the day’s tasks. Cluttered screens and excess clicking become irritating and tiresome. In today’s video, we take a look at five useful Mac shortcuts that can make using your Apple computer even more efficient.
Back in the day, I used to care for a couple of labs full of Macs. Invariably, at the end of the day, I’d find myself in the lab, shutting them all down for the night. I’d run up and down the rows of eMacs or whatever they were at the time, and hit the power button, then click on the Shut Down button. Or, if I was feeling frisky, I’d just hold down the power button until they shut off.
This took some time, needless to say. I wish I’d known of these useful keyboard commands to shut down or sleep the Macs, saving myself several minutes each day.
Creating your own Keyboard Shortcuts is a great way to keep your productivity high. To make a shortcut for a menu item that doesn’t already have one, you simply drop into System Preferences > Keyboard, hit the Shortcuts button at the top, and then add your shortcuts (more below). You have to add the full menu path for the shortcut to work, though, and there’s the rub.
Some apps have menu items that are named the same thing. For example, in Pages, there are two submenus named Use Default: one in the Baseline submenu, and one in the Ligature submenu. How can you tell your Mac which menu you want to activate with your new shortcut?
I know it’s probably a tiny thing, but man, do I hate having to click on the web form fields to fill in stuff in a drop down menu, like those State choosers, or Date choosers.
There I am, tabbing along from form field to form field, blithely filling in the data being requested (Name, Address, Phone Number, etc.), when it’s time to hit the State form. The input skips it, every time! I have to take my hands from the keyboard, drop them to the trackpad, or (even worse) the mouse, and click on the dang thing.
Mavericks’ new in-Finder tagging is great, letting you treat your files like you treat your Gmails and effectively keeping the same file in multiple “folders” at once. But actually tagging the files is still kind of a pain. Happily, Brett Terpstra is here to help with a rather simple tip.
If you were used to inverting the colors on your Mac with a Control-Command-Option-8, you might have noticed that this has changed in OS X Mountain Lion. The older keyboard shortcut doesn’t work any more, and has been replaced with the less simple Command-Option-F5 shortcut to bring up an Accessibility Options dialog box. You have to then manually click the checkbox next to Invert Display Colors.
Here’s how to get the old shortcut back, for a quick invert.
The Option key is a powerful ally in your transition from new, beginner user of OS X to the power user that you want to be. There are a ton of features in the Menu Bar that are hidden behind this underrated and unassuming Option key.
We showed you a handful of fantastic, instant keyboard shortcuts to shut down, reboot, or sleep your Mac, but an even safer way is to bring up the Power button dialog box that happens when you hit the, well, Power button on your Mac. That’s the one in the upper right corner of the keyboard on most modern Macs, while some older Macs have it as a separate button integrated into the body of the Mac itself.
Either way, hit that Power button and then you can use the following keyboard shortcuts to activate the different options in the dialog.