I'm a keyboard guy. Give me shortcuts. Let's see how long I can go w/out touching the mouse. To this end, for years I've wanted an app that would let me type short commands to access files, folders, programs, web pages, write email, etc. I started writing my own app (called ZipLink) when I found this incredible little free tool SlickRun. I can pop stuff up at incredible speeds now. I love it!Reputable people like Scott Hanselman use it too.
Easy & Powerful
This has got to be my new favorite PC tool. It is just way too cool and totally fits with my Simple and Effective life phylosophy. It just sits in the corner of the screen. You hit Win-Q to give it focus, type a command, and bam! It calls the commands "MagicKeys". You can add MagicKeys by just drag & drop of a folder, file, shortcut, or web site, or typing a new one. Try dragging a shortcut from your Start Menu. Easy
Put $W$ where you want parameters for the web, or $I$ application arguments. For example, I have just a tick mark, ', as my Google search so just typing ' serial C# would seach for serial C# on Google. Yes, I use Google over Live Search. Deal
There are also smart commands like putting in any URL (as simple as "noahcoad.com") will navigate imediately to that URL. "=2+2^6/4" resolves to 18. Putting in a local file name runs/opens the file. It has autocomplete for recent commands and files on disk. So if I used "coadblog" last, just a "c" [ENTER] would run "coadblog". Powerful
Some of my ~160 MagicKeys are:
Here is my full list of commands you can import into SlickRun: Noah Coad's SlickRun MagicWords.qrs
Windows Visa Start Menu Search?
It is simular in concept to the new Vista Start Menu Search and what people have done to try customizing it, but just sooo much easier and faster. Oh yeah, SlickRun works with WinXP too.
So there you have it. SlickRun is at the top of my list of favorite PC tools. If you like quick access to files, folders, searchs, websites, etc, this is the tool. I can get places faster than ever and save all that time from moving and clicking the darn mouse.