My top 10 Mac keyboard shortcuts of all time

I’m a laptop user and have been for almost a decade. I value the size and portability and understand that I’m paying a bit more for less performance. I also secretly love the Mac laptop keyboard – the last generation of the 12″ Powerbook had the best keyboard ever – so much that I refuse to buy external anything, save a monitor.

This insistence on trackpad and laptop keyboard only has limited me. Only recently has the trackpad become a truly time-saving device, as it was no more than a dumb button for years. So I learned keyboard shortcuts to make my navigation much, much faster. Here are my top 10 Mac keyboard shortcuts of all time:

(These are in no real order.)

1. Command-Space bar
Right now it opens Spotlight and before spotlight was fast enough for application launching, Quicksilver. These two keystrokes give me access to anything on my computer.

2. Command-Tab
Application switching! I don’t care if Microsoft or Apple had it first, this quick keystroke saves me hours.

3. Shift-Control-Eject
Finally, a way to sleep a monitor quickly without making the hard drive go too! For people like me who leave their computers on all the time but hate to wait for the monitor to power down, this shortcut is awesome. I have no idea where I learned it and everyone I’ve told has loved it.

4. Command-Z
If you’ve never used the undo button, you’re doing it wrong. So conveniently located, this life-saving combination has saved me numerous times.

5. Shift-Command-A (while in Finder)
I often forget what application I’m trying to open in Quicksilver or Spotlight, so this keystroke brings up the Application folder. Simple, it’s not a folder I usually have on my dock.

6. Shift-Command-N and Shift-N (while in Finder)
New folder and new window, respectively. I learned to love them after I kept pressing the wrong one. Just one less reason to use the mouse.

7. Control-Click
Before super-awesome, multi-touch, multi-function trackpads, I control-clicked instead of right clicked. Very elegant solution in my mind and easily remembered. Showing this trick to people blew their minds. Right clicking on a Mac was huge years ago.

8. Command-T
New tab in at least Safari and Firefox. Web browsing became really fun the day tabbed browsing came to be. Many pages, one window! This keystroke gave me a new tab.

9. Shift-Command-] and Shift-Command-{

At least in Safari, this lets me go back and forth among my opened tabs. Tabbed browsing by keystroke? Sweet!

10. Four finger up swipe (on a multi-touch trackpad)

Exposé clear all windows! I could find my desktop and any file easily with this simple gesture.

What shortcuts do you use that Mac your computing life easier?