I’m a keyboard shortcut whore. It’s one of the reasons why I stopped using a mouse altogether. Speed is the main benefit of learning the shortcut keys of your favorite software. For things that you use every day like your browser and operating system, mastering a couple of simple key combos will save you countless hours while working on your computer.
Below, you’ll find some of my favorite keyboard shortcuts. Some of them are admittedly Mac-biased but feel free to suggest some of your own in the comments.
- Paste clipboard content without formatting – CMD+Shift+Option+V – Don’t you hate it when the text you copy off a website carries over its formatting when you hit ‘paste’? Well, with this nifty key combo, you can strip out the formatting! Note: requires a bit of hand acrobatics to hit all keys simultaneously.
- Reopen recently closed tab in Chrome, Firefox – CMD+Shift+T – I hate it whenever I accidentally close a tab on my browser. Previously, I would have to search my history for the page or ask Google for help. This shortcut is pretty easy to remember considering that (CMD+T/CTRL+T) is the ‘open new tab’ shortcut. Just remember to throw in the shift key! For Safari users, the shortcut is CMD+Z.
- Take quick screenshots – CMD+Shift+3/4 + [spacebar for 4 for select window] – This is a HUGE time-saver if you frequently share screenshots with friends, co-workers. There are two options: 3 takes a full-screen shot of your display while 4 will let you selectively drag-and-drop to select a box region to capture your screenshot. For the latter, hitting spacebar after keying in the combo allows you to capture open windows.
- Quickly preview a document in Finder – Spacebar – When viewing a file in Finder, hitting spacebar will display a quick preview of the contents. This can work for most content like images, text, and html.
- Navigate tabs in Chrome, Firefox – CMD + # – Flicking your cursor to open an adjacent tab is totally lame. Just match the numerical order of the tab you want to navigate to with the command key and you’re golden. For people who like to have over 20 tabs open, command+9 sends you to the last open tab. If randomly guessing the location of that buried tab doesn’t suit you, command+option+left/right lets you jump to an adjacent tab.
- Highlight address bar – CMD + L – Similar to navigating tabs in your browser, dragging your cursor to change the contents of your address bar is a tedious and unnecessary process. Works in Chrome, Firefox, and Safari.