10 Quick Computer Tips and Tricks

Some people seem to know all the tricks — how to do things faster, or make them easier. Here are ten computer tricks to try!

  1. You can double-click a word to highlight it in almost any document, e-mail or Web page. Triple clicking will select a block of text.
  2. In Windows, you can switch from one open program to another by using the shortcut Alt+Tab. (Hold down the ALT key and press the TAB key at the same time.) For Macs, the shortcut is Command+Tab.
  3. You can minimize all windows and show the computer desktop by holding down the Windows key and pressing the D key at the same time. Press the Windows+D key combination again to return to what you were doing. On Macs, press F11 (and on recent Mac laptops, Command+F3; Command is the key with the cloverleaf logo).
  4. You can tap the Space bar to scroll down on a Web page one screen at a time. Use SHIFT+SPACEBAR to scroll back up.
  5. Pressing the HOME key will move you to the top of a webpage. Press END to move to the bottom of the page.
  6. Press BACKSPACE to go back a webpage (just like clicking the back arrow). SHIFT+BACKSPACE will go forward a webpage.
  7. Here’s one for entering web addresses: Type google in the address bar and then press CTRL+ENTER. This shortcut adds the http://www. in front of it and the .com behind it, and proceeds to go to that address.
  8. CTRL + a number key will jump to another tab when you have multiple tabs open in your browser. CTRL+2 takes you to the second tab, for example.
  9. CTRL+E will move your cursor to the search bar in Internet Explorer. (For Firefox, use CTRL+K).
  10. CTRL+L will move your cursor to the address bar in Firefox. In Internet Explorer, it opens a box where you can type the web address.

Thanks to David Pogue at the New York Times, who first blogged about tech tips. You can read more computer tips and tricks here.

What are your favorite computer tips and tricks?

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Written by Rachel


Rachel is a librarian at KDL’s Kentwood (Richard L. Root) branch. She enjoys reading nonfiction and mysteries.

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3 Responses to “10 Quick Computer Tips and Tricks”

  1. Dave Says:

    I love the KDL website. It has been beautifully designed, consistent, intuitive and more. Is it a CMS like drupal. Who designed it?

  2. Sheri Says:

    Hi Dave,

    Thanks for the compliment! The redesign of the KDL website (just over a year ago now!) was done by a local Grand Rapids company called Fusionary Media. They also built a customized CMS for us based on Ruby on Rails, as well as this integrated WordPress blog.

    – Sheri
    KDL Webmaster

  3. Kelaine Says:

    FYI: Tips #9 and 10 will work on Macs if you use the “open apple”/COMMAND (or cloverleaf as Rachel describes it above) key instead of ctrl.