Switch Between Applications on Mac OS X

Jan1310Jan 13, 10

If you are like me, you are constantly hiding and showing apps when you are working in Mac OS X. When I have multiple monitors available, I tend to have a few applications showing at the same time, usually one on each screen. When I am working on a single-monitor setup like a laptop, I quite often feel the need to remove the clutter of applications that trails my focus as I work.

Typically, this involves using command+H to hide windows before switching to the next application I intend to use - something that is habitual, yet probably not the most efficient approach. Instead, I could use the "Hide Others" menu item once the focus is within the desired application, which would remove all of the other applications' windows from the screen. The key command for that is command+option+H.

Taking note of this, I began training myself to use Hide Others instead of manually hiding each unused application. While switching through applications quickly, I happened to switch to Firefox by clicking it while I was still holding down the command and option keys, and to my surprise all of the other open applications were hidden, leaving only Firefox visible on the screen.

So, if you like to avoid the clutter of blurred application windows in OS X, try holding down command and option when changing applications. It works when clicking dock icons, out-of-focus application windows, and even the desktop (because it is part of the Finder application).

About Jason Miller:

I am a JavaScript developer from Waterloo, Ontario, Canada. When I am not typing green code onto a black screen, you might find me at the nearest coffee pub checking out the brew. I run a internet firm called developIT and maintain blogs and web apps when I can.
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