My Quicksilver Epiphany

quicksilver.pngI just had an epiphany while using Quicksilver. Granted, I’ve been using it for ages to quickly open applications and search quicker than spotlight, but I never truly understood why everyone else thought it was so powerful. But today I was about to start coding my own task switcher after getting irritated with the inability of Spaces and the Mac’s task switcher to maintain some sort of order over 50 windows, when I tried a little experiment in Quicksilver.

I made sure ‘Running applications’ was selected in my catalog, then I opened Quicksilver with cmd-space and typed ‘f’ and used the cursor keys to find Firefox. Doing this a couple of times taught Quicksilver that if I type ‘f’, I want to focus Firefox, nothing else. So now it’s cmd-space, f, enter, to switch to firefox instead of alt-tab and hunting through 50 icons to find Firefox. Now that’s power. I could even create a trigger like cmd-m to open Mail, etc., but this way I don’t get any hotkey conflicts and still keep the speed of hotkeys.

Now if only Apple could take some tips from Quicksilver and redo their rubbish spotlight search interface to be responsive and useful.

I keep a list of Quicksilver tips & tricks here.

2008.02.14