In Mac360’s never ending quest to find Mac apps worthy of your time and effort, it’s nice to find one that works well, is easy to use, and costs less.
Sure, we live in a point and click world, we Mac users, but there’s nothing wrong with dipping our digital toes into Mac power water from time to time. For example, how do you launch apps? Documents? Scripts? Point and click? Or just click?
Enter The World Of Shortcuts
If you’ve used your Mac for any time longer than about 20-minutes then you already know about shortcuts. Click on an icon in the Dock and it opens an app or document. That’s a visible shortcut.
Invisible shortcuts can be somewhat visible for Mac users.
Use your Mac’s mouse to click Safari (or Firefox or Chrome or whatever browser you’re using right now) in the Menubar, then select Quit Safari. That’s the long way to quit an app.
The short and somewhat invisible way is to use your Mac’s keyboard. Press the Command key, then press the Q key. That quits the app. It’s that way in most Mac apps. Is there a similar keystroke combination which launches apps?
And, why would you want to do that in the first place? Well, remember, we’re dipping our collective digital toes into Mac power water pool, which will baptize you as an official card carrying Mac360 Power User™. Well, maybe not. I was just looking for some way to collect dues to fund my kid’s college education. Or, maybe a speed boat.
Power To The Keys, People
Let me introduce you to the growing world of Mac power users who have dared to venture beyond mere point and click and have learned to speak a different language. Plain old clickety click on the keyboard and without using the mouse.
Apptivate is a Mac utility, an app which lets you assign keyboard shortcuts to launch apps, launch documents, even launch scripts, without ever moving a hand to your Mac, without leaving the keyboard, without even moving your eyes from the screen.
Add all those together and you’re an official Mac360 Power User™ in training. Apptivate records your keystroke combination, then, when you press those same keys (no cheating—you can’t use the mouse or even look at the keyboard), the app launches, or the document launches, or the script launches and runs.
Here’s how it works. Download and launch Apptivate. A Command key icon shows up in your Mac’s Menubar. Click it. Click the Plus sign in the lower right corner to find an app or document or script. Then click the Click to Record shortcut and enter the keystroke which makes it happen.
That’s it. What? You were expecting more? Apptivate is free. It’s only going to do so much.
In this case, Apptivate does what it does very well and doesn’t devote time or effort into a confusing array of features that detract from the basic step into power user status.
If you’ve dismissed the mouse clicking as juvenile and figured out how to use Command-Q to Quit and Command-P to Print and Command-C to Copy and Command-V to paste, then you’ve tasted power user power.
Apptivate simply whets your appetite for even more of what Mac users crave—more power.
You can assign a keystroke combination to open Mac apps, to launch documents (thereby opening their assigned app), and even running scripts on your Mac.
Scripts? What’s that? OK, you’re on Power User Level One. Scripts come about in Power User Level Two so we’ll get to that in the future. For now, taste the goodness of what power users already know—keystroke combinations are addictive. Did I mention that Apptivate’s power is free?