Mac shortcut is a frequently used short term for "Macintosh Keyboard Shortcut" or "Macintosh Menu Shortcut", a combination of keys on the Mac keyboard which execute a certain function when held down together. Mac shortcuts were designed to simplify and accelerate our daily work on the Mac.
Mac shortcuts consist of one or more so called modifier keys and additional "regular" keys. The most commonly used modifier key for Mac shortcuts is the Command key a.k.a., Apple key. Depending on whether you combine the Apple key with the option key, the shift key, and/or the control key, you may execute different commands. Now you can imagine that there are a many different Mac shortcuts – the average Mac OS X application has 40 to 80 of them.
Let's have a look at the shortcuts offered by Apple's Pages word processor. This application offers the usual simple Mac shortcuts, which you usually know by heart, such as Cmd-C for Copy, Cmd-V for Paste, Cmd-S for Save, and so on. But there are many more Mac shortcuts available in Pages that could help you to work more efficiently, if you just knew them. Did you for instance know that you can show and hide the Inspector window with Cmd-Alt-I? Or that you can show invisible characters by pressing Cmd-Shift-I? By pressing Cmd-Shift-Alt-V, you can paste the unformatted text of the current clipboard content.
So obviously, the more shortcuts you know, the more time you can save. However, you may now ask, how you could keep all these Mac shortcuts in mind?
Fortunately there is a solution for this problem; a piece of software named KeyCue, which helps you to use all of the Mac shortcuts more efficiently.
KeyCue helps you learn shortcut keys
As soon as you hold down the Command key, KeyCue shows a head-up display with a concise table of all currently available shortcuts. Over time, you will automatically remember frequently used Mac shortcuts and start working more efficiently.
KeyCue has received a lot of great feedback:
KeyCue is extremely useful. I've also found it to be a great 'cheat sheet' that actually helps me learn the keyboard shortcuts.
MacWorld Magazine, 08-2006
One of the biggest things that I found different about switching from PC to Mac is the usefulness of keyboard shortcuts. The only problem I have found with using keyboard shortcuts is finding the ones that I want to use. All of this got much quicker and easier when I found out about KeyCue.