Forget about the mouse

A good practice when interfacing with computers: don’t use the frigging mouse!!!

How so? Well, just time yourself doing various tasks (specially, repetitive ones). You’ll find the keyboard is much better. Some hints on getting rid of that thingy by the keyboard:

  • In general, the mouse should only be used for stuff you do less frequently, or things that are clearly graphical in nature.
  • Use keys for menus. Notice the underscored letters, those are the ones you have to type (plus alt+ the first time, usually). E.g. type alt+F now. Chances are, you’ll open the File menu. Now, you can open a new window with “n” or something like that.
  • Notice the little comments by the menu entries. Usually, those are the shortcuts that by-pass all the menus. So, learn them, at least the ones you use all the time. Everyone knows ctrl+c, ctrl-v and ctrl-x, but there’s also ctrl+a, ctrl+w, ctrl+n, ctrl+o, etc. (Btw, thanks to the clever Spanish “translators” that randomly changed some of these).
  • Some programs allow custom shortcuts. The gimp is one of the nicest, just go to the menu entry you want, then type the shortcut to it.
  • I think it was Apple who gave us the mouse – it certainly gave us the double-click feature, since Apple mice have one button. I hate double-clicking, I just press “Enter” when I have my selection.
  • Since Microsoft has reduced our beloved space bar to about half its original size, at least one should make good use of the windows button (left) and menu button (right). Or, use right mouse button for the later.
  • Use “tab” to go from field to field in forms (web pages, pdf forms, whatever).
  • Use “space” to select a button arrived at by, e.g., “tab”.
  • Don’t lick on the button “accept”, “go”, “ok”, etc, after filling some info. Just press enter. (Or, “tab”+”space”.)
  • Use the windows manager shortcuts: alt+tab, ctrl+tab, alt+F1, alt+F2, etc.
  • You can now use the computer no-one wants because of the faulty mouse!

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