Keyboard navigation on OS X

Discussion in 'macOS' started by donjao, Dec 21, 2011.

  1. donjao macrumors member

    Joined:
    Apr 21, 2008
    #1
    Good day to you, dear reader!

    let me introduce myself — I'm an optimization freak Literally. If something is not efficient — I hate it. And recently I started to hate my OS X because of inability of using keyboard to navigate between and interact with UI elements.

    On windows, every item in the application menu bar (i.e. File, Edit, View..) is navigable. Mind the underline. These underlines become visible upon pressing an ALT key... So the followed pressing on on of those letters F, E, or V will open that menu for me. Guess what, all nested items has a letter that is underlined as well. So we can go really deep down the menu tree and make it DAMN fast.

    I think I don't need to mention that in Windows all buttons in the focused window are navigable by the TAB key. I have MS to be a killer of OS X in that aspect..I really do...

    Is there such tool/tweak/software for OS X? Please, don't make me HATE my OS X for that!!!!
     
  2. simsaladimbamba

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2010
    Location:
    located
    #2
    TAB key: System Preferences > Keyboard > Keyboard Shortcuts > Full Keyboard Access > All controls.

    For the Menu Bar part: Fn+Ctrl+F2
     
  3. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

    Joined:
    May 16, 2008
    #3
    I had completely forgotten about this (yes, I'm old and senile!), since I usually use a mouse! Thanks for the reminder!
     
  4. donjao thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Apr 21, 2008
    #4

    Thanks for the tips. I did check it, and It doesn't work that efficiently. When you have to press return key in order to open the sub-menu. You can't navigate with standard keys to the items that have hotkey assigned to them. Mac thinks that i should use a hotkey, rather than navigating. Well, it may be true, but it's questionable.

    And it there's multiple items starting with the same char, you have to keep pressing that key until you reach item of interest. Windows gets all menus under the current node and assign a unique key to each item it can. Soo..

    Does the Lion comes with the same functionality, or not?
     
  5. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

    Joined:
    May 16, 2008
    #5
    No, you can open and close and navigate sub-menus with the arrow keys, and press letters to jump to items on the list.
     
  6. donjao thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Apr 21, 2008
    #6
    Yep, I understand that. My point is that...Ok, here's an example. I want to hit "Flip Vertical" action in Photoshop that lays in Edit > Transform > Flip Vertical

    On windows its: ALT, E, T, V
    On OS X its: CTRL + F2, E, RETURN, T, RETURN, F, DOWN, RETURN

    2 first RETURN key presses can be substituted with arrow keys. But in the end, Windows kicks Mac's ass on the matter cos of 125% extra key presses, which I hate to admit..
     
  7. simsaladimbamba

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2010
    Location:
    located
    #7
    The ENTER key is not needed, you can use the ARROW keys instead.

    And for that action you can easily use CMD+T, right click, Flip Vertical, which is less than even using keyboard navigation in Windows, though it involves the mouse, which you don't seem to want.
     
  8. seanguk macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2011
    #8
    I totally agree with you donjao. Although OSX is superior to Windows is most regards, it takes me longer to navigate the OS with the keyboard alone.

    My pet peeve is that AFAIK some windows can not be focused using the keyboard alone. Take the following scenario:

    1) Hit cmd-alt-esc to open the force quit window
    2) cmd-tab to another window
    3) Try to cmd-tab/cmd-` back to the force quit window

    I know you can repeat the cmd-alt-esc to focus the window but imagine you have brought up the window using a menu command and do not know the shortcut - you're stuck!

    It strikes me as strange that while OSX has excellent AT built it (VoiceOver) that some tasks are so tricky to perform using the keyboard.

    Hoping someone can offer a solution to this!

    Thanks.
     
  9. donjao thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Apr 21, 2008
    #9
    Yes, I know, I wrote that. The problem is that you still have to get your right hand off the mouse and put it to the left part of keyboard to make those extra useless key clicks then take it back. Ridiculous. Inefficient.
     
  10. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

    Joined:
    May 16, 2008
    #10
    You can also create custom keyboard shortcuts, both globally and app-specific, by going to System Preferences > Keyboard > Keyboard Shortcuts.
     

Share This Page