November 12, 2010
By Chad Gall
I write a lot of code. When I’m jamming on the keyboard, having to reach for the mouse is like stepping away from the piano to play a note on the tuba. That’s why I love Quicksilver, a free Mac application from Blacktree that supersizes my keyboard shortcut options. (No worries, PCs. There’s a similar Windows app called Launchy.)
Quicksilver provides an intuitive, customizable interface where I assign just about any routine action (launch an app, find a file, open a URL, start an email, do some math or skip to the next song on my playlist) to whatever key (or key combination) I want. Once it’s set up, I can execute those actions with the flick of a finger without leaving my current app—or the keyboard. As if that weren’t cool enough, Quicksilver has also a huge library of plug-ins that extends its functionality. A personal favorite is the Clipboard History plug-in. It allows users to copy multiple items to the clipboard and keep them stashed away for later use, which is a huge help when recycling code I’ve written earlier. I could go on and on about the greatness that is Quicksilver, but seeing is believing. Install and enjoy.