5 Free Mac Tips, No Standing In Line

| Computing with Bifocals

Spend all your money over the Thanksgiving weekend (not to mention Cyber Monday!)? Well, here are some free tips to help you feel better. Maybe a little bit better? Maybe just a tiny bit? Well, try and enjoy them anyhow. 

Tab Backwards

When entering information into a series of fields or text boxes most everyone knows that you can use the Tab key to move forward from field to field (or box to box) to enter information. But you can also move backward when necessary by holding down the Shift key along with the Tab key. 

Think about how many times you have been sending an email and decided to add (or remove) a person in the recipient list. With this trick you don’t have to stop and use the mouse to get back to the field you want.

This works in Safari, Firefox, and other browsers, in Mail, and my personal favorite, FileMaker Pro. Try it on any application on your Mac that involves fields or text boxes.

Fast Way To Get To Fonts Window 

If you are working in an application such as Pages, the standard way to get to the font window is to select Format Menu > Fonts > Show Fonts.The process varies slightly depending on the application you are using, but it is all about the same.

Skip all that and just select Command Key + T. Is that not cool? 

Try it in any Apple application that allows you to change fonts. It worked in all the ones I use and, since I am really into the aesthetic appearance of the documents I produce, and therefore spend a lot of time working with fonts, I think it is a great find.

Calendar Tip

If you are wandering around iCal for any reason and need to return to the current date, just choose Command + T. It will take you right back to the current date.

Fast Duplication Tricks 

You don’t have to go to the File Menu to duplicate files and folders in the Finder in Mac OS X.

Click on a file or a folder once to highlight it and then hold down the Command key + the D key and your folder or file will be duplicated. This works on any kind of file, including graphics. 

Another quick way to do this is to hold down the Option Key, click on the file and drag yourself a copy.

Web Page Search Function in Safari 

Safari has a great built-in search feature that allows you to search for words on web pages.  Actually, other search engines may have the same capabilities if you know to look for it.

In Safari, select Command + F and a little search field appears in the top right corner of Safari’s main window. Type in a word and as soon as you start typing, it starts searching. You don’t have to hit return to make it work. 

If it finds your search term on the page, it highlights the first place it finds it in bright yellow (and lists how many times that term appears on the page, as you can see in the figure below where it says “25 matches”). If the word appears on the page more than once, you can press the right arrow button the left of the search field and it will jump to the next instance where the word appears. When you are finished searching, either click the Done button to the right of the search field or hit the ESC key on your keyboard.

Example of Internet Search Using Find

I hope these tips help lighten your work load.  

If you know someone who is getting a Mac for the first time this holiday season you might consider getting a copy of my beginners manual for them.  Information follows.

The entire Table of Contents and a sample page are available for free review for anyone who wishes to see them.

I am making this book available in three formats:.
__________

The first is the more traditional printed book format, spiral bound. Cost is U.S. $17.15 each, plus shipping. All the illustrations have been printed in black and white to reduce the purchase price.

 

The second option is a PDF download version. This is the full version of the book available in the same format as that available in the free review The contents are hyperlinked from the Table of Contents for ease of location. This version is U.S. $9.85 After payment has been verified the purchaser will be sent a URL where they can download of the document.
The third option is a CD format. It is the PDF version saved to a CD and the contents are also hyperlinked from the Table of Contents for ease of location. This version is $10.85 plus shipping.

Payment for any version must be made using PayPal. Clicking on the Buy Now button next to the version you want to purchase will take you directly to PayPal where you can place your order and make your payment. Payment can be made through PayPal even if you are not a PayPal member.

Anyone wishing to pay with a money order or cashier check may contact me through TMO at

 

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3 Comments

Lee Dronick

Thanks Nancy, I think that the Find feature in Safari will be quite useful.

Gary

Hi Nancy

Since you’re sharing keyboard-shortcuts, you might like to know about “Find?Next” and “Find?Previous” as useful extensions to your final “Web?Page?Search?Function?in?Safari” section.

[Command-G] and [Command-Shift-G] respectively save you from having to reach for the mouse in this situation.

There are several other related shortcuts listed under Edit > Find, but these two are the ones I use all the time.

Beth Gibson

Hi Nancy,

The ? F [find] works in every browser I’ve tried it in.  Also, the Google Chrome browser works very well for us who are always searching for stuff. It has one field into which you can type the url you are wanting to go to, just like Safari et al. The neat innovation, though, is that you can type search terms instead into that same field. It saves tabbing into another field, and that, over the course of a long hard day surfing and avoiding real life work, saves a lot of time and finger tip wear and tear.

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