For all you avid Mac users out there, this list of tips will likely blow your mind. Some of them I found while researching and have immediately implemented into my workflow. Check them out and leave a comment with any other killer tips you know of!
Force Quit a Frozen Program
If a program freezes and just won't close, press command + option + esc to open the Force Quit dialogue box. From there, you can quit any application. This will lose any unsaved changes, so make sure you only use this if you have to. And save often!
Remove Autocomplete Items from Chrome
Your coworker or cousin logged in to their Facebook profile three months ago and you're still seeing their email address pop up when you go to enter yours. To delete a single entry, select it in the drop down (without clicking on it!) and press shift + fn + delete. Aah, much better.
Choose the Default Program Files Open With
Sometimes a unique file type will insist on opening in a program that has nothing to do with the file. No I don't want that .m4a to open in Adobe Audition! To remedy this, right-click on a file then hold down option to see "Open With" change to "Always Open With."
Get Info for Multiple Files
If you're a Mac user, you have undoubtedly selected hundreds of files to then right-click and Get Info to see how large all of those files are. Unfortunately, this opens a File Inspector for every single file. Not what we want. But there's a way! Right-click the files, press control, then click Get Summary Info.
Quickly Switch Programs
There are several ways to switch between open programs. My favorite way is to press F3 (or four finger swipe up on a trackpad) to enable Mission Control, which fits all your windows to the screen so you can easily see and click on what you want. Another way is to press command + tab to see a row of application icons pop up. As you hold command, keep hitting tab to tab through the icons.
While browsing through the Finder options in the menu bar, press option to see some hidden alternate options. Most notably, this makes the Library visible in the Go menu. So handy!
Paste Text without Formatting
It's pretty infrequent that I want to actually retain the formatting from the source I am copying text from. To paste the stripped-down version of your text, just press shift + option + command + V.
Resize All Finder Columns
You probably know that clicking and dragging on the divider line of a Finder column resizes that column, but if you hold option while resizing, it adjusts the scale of all the columns and sets that as the default until you adjust it again.
Force Touch Trackpad Features!
I was one of the suckers who really wanted a new laptop this season. No, I didn't go for the single-port MacBook, but instead I got the new 13" Retina MacBook Pro. With it comes the new Force Touch trackpad. The 'taptic' engine vibrates the trackpad when you click it, removing the need for a mechanical click button. It sounds bizarre, but it feels great. Going back to click on my MacBook Air felt rigid in comparison. What's great about this, though, is that there are now two levels of clicks. Your standard click and now the force click. You execute this by pressing harder on the trackpad. This makes it feel like you've clicked one level deeper. Using this force click opens up a lot of potential for features. Here's what Apple has already put into Yosemite:
- Instantly define a word
- Preview a file (same as spacebar)
- Sending haptic feedback when something you're dragging snaps into place (like if you're dragging the column width line on the sidebar of Finder, you will feel a bump when the edge snaps to fit. It's pretty insane, actually)
- Create a calendar event by force clicking a date in an email
- Fast forward and rewind Quicktime videos gradually
- Zoom into maps gradually
- Sign your name with different thicknesses, depending on how hard you press
Yes, that all probably sounded a little Apple fanboy-y, but those are the real features and they're pretty neat. I can't wait to see what developers do with this technology. Maybe if an error message pops up, the trackpad vibrates. Or if your mouse pointer reaches the edge of the screen, it very lightly gives you a little bump. The possibilities are endless!
Bonus: Use Terminal to Hide Files
If you're a bit of an obsessive minimalist like myself, you want your folder structures to be flawless. A feat of mankind. But sometimes other application developers don't share the same sentiments and decide to store application files and logs wherever they may please. Generally this is okay, but if you're going to put a folder in MY root directory that only contains one small config file, you've crossed the line. I'm looking at you Autodesk. Luckily, there's an easy way to hide these files from our eyes.
Open up Terminal (by pressing command + space to open Spotlight and typing 'Term' and hitting return) and type "chflags hidden ". Chflags is a command to change the file's flag, which in this case is the hidden flag. From there, drag the file or folder from Finder into Terminal to autofill the filepath. Then just hit return! So your input should look like:
chflags hidden /Users/Eddy/Adlm
Double Bonus: Select Text in Quick Look
Normally when you hit the spacebar on a text file, Quick Look pops up and shows the contents of it. But if you try to select the text, the window just moves around. To remedy this, we just need to type a little command into Terminal and press return enable this killer feature:
defaults write com.apple.finder QLEnableTextSelection -bool TRUE; killall Finder
Now when you Quick Look a text file, you can select and copy any of the text!
Triple (Final) Bonus: Show Library Folder
Last one, I promise. I added the first and second bonus while I did more and more research, but then I found this one and had to share! First, navigate to your Home folder then press command + J. From here, you can check 'Show Library Folder' to always show your Library folder in the Home folder! This won't be handy for most users, but if you do a lot of tweaking and installing in OSX, you'll love this.
Now go! Be creative. Create! Develop!