4 best tech shortcuts
Work faster and smarter with these tricks
At a Glance: Improve your productivity with shortcuts for Excel and Word, and consider using speech recognition software if you’re not so confident on a computer keyboard.
Estimated Reading Time: 1 minute, 48 seconds
Check out these productivity hacks and technological time-savers that can save working students like you a ton of time:
Google: For far more than googling
Yes, Google will let you search for useful bits of info such as the names of “Hot Tub Time Machine 2” cast members. But this search engine can also save you loads of time on everything from doing simple calculations to tracking airline flights. For example:
Google as a calculator
Type 1287+9856 into the search bar to get an instant answer. (Hint: 11,143)
Google as measurement converter
Type in "12 lb in kg" to score quick conversions.
Google as flight tracker
Try "American Airlines 1672" to find out if your flight from Phoenix to Boston is leaving on time.
Talk it out: Speech recognition software
Talk faster than you type? Save loads of time by dictating your emails, assignments and other written projects. A speech recognition program like Dragon NaturallySpeaking will let you talk at a normal speed and watch your words appear on the page without the hunt-and-peck. Get down your ideas for papers while you take a walk, commute to work or sit at the playground with your kids.
Speedy spreadsheets: Excel shortcuts
Many of us use Excel spreadsheets daily at work and for school assignments, but unless you’re an “Excel jockey,” spreadsheets can be finicky and difficult to use. Not to mention, navigating cells and creating formulas takes a lot of time.
Luckily, Excel has many, many keyboard shortcuts. Even memorizing only the shortcuts that let you move and select more quickly can boost your productivity and save precious minutes. For instance:
CTRL+ Spacebar: Select entire column
Shift + Spacebar: Select entire row
Right arrow: Move right
Left arrow: Move left
Up arrow: Move up
Down arrow: Move down
Write like the wind: Advanced Microsoft Word shortcuts
We all know the MS Word shortcuts for copying and pasting. But if you learn the more obscure shortcuts, you'll save even more time writing your work reports and assignments. Check out these for Mac:
Command + Backspace: Delete one word to the left
Command + Z: Undo the last action
Command + Y: Redo the last action
Command + 1: Set single line spacing
Command + 2: Set double line spacing