Efficiency Tips for New MacBook Users

Last Updated on November 5, 2020 by Larious

Switching from Windows to macOS can be difficult for some people, especially if they do not have that much experience with computers in the first place. 

It might be a switch at your workplace or a recommendation from a friend or family member after discussing how you are no longer happy with your current computer, leading you to use a Mac.

Even if it takes a while, you should do things at your pace. Or, if you prefer, take a proactive approach and seek how to become more efficient with macOS. And here are some of the most important tips that you should follow if you want to master a Macbook faster.

Tip #1 – Take Screenshots

Whether you are working or communicating with someone, taking screenshots instantly helps get your message across faster. Macbooks are slightly different from what you might be used to, especially if your most recent operating system was Windows 7 or something even older.

There is no need to use editing software to capture a specific part of a screen. You can use the combination of Command + Shift + 4 and drag a box with a cursor.

As for taking a screenshot of the entire screen, use Command + Shift + 3. Screenshots are saved on the desktop by default, but you can change the location in the system settings. 

Tip #2 – Create Digital Signatures

Digital signatures can save you a lot of time, especially if you have to sign documents at work. It would be great if you did not have to print a document, sign it, and then scan it again.

Open any PDF document via the Preview tool and click on the pen icon. Select Create Signature from Built-in iSight, which is essentially your Macbook’s camera. 

Grab a sheet of white paper and sign on it. Hold the signature in front of a Macbook’s camera and capture it. The next time you open a PDF document, you can add the signature automatically. Click on Create Signature again, and there will be a preview of the signature picture you have taken.

Tip #3 – Look up Word Definitions

There are instances when you are reading an important piece of information and encounter an unfamiliar word. But taking out a dictionary or even looking for a definition online can take too much time when there are multiple instances of unfamiliar words.

Thankfully, Macbook has a built-in feature that you can use to find the meaning of words without switching to another tab or skimming through a physical dictionary copy. Highlight the word you want more information on and click Command + Control + D. 

Tip #4 – Use Spotlight

The Spotlight application offers a lot of neat features. You can convert units and do other basic calculations, look up the weather forecast, find out information about the most recent events in the world, and use it as a tool to find files on the Macbook as well as the internet.

The spotlight continues to receive more and more attention, and we can expect Apple to introduce even more features in the future, making Spotlight even more capable than it already is.

Tip #5 – Take Advantage of Touch Bar

A Touch Bar seems like a simple element of a Macbook that users are used to by this point. However, Apple adds new Touch Bar features with every new Macbook they release. 

If you have the most recent Macbook Pro model, you can do the following with the Touch Bar:

  • play video games
  • annotate and edit PDF documents
  • speed up video and photo editing
  • switch between open applications
  • format text

It will take some time to rewire your brain if you use the keyboard and mouse to carry out these tasks. However, once you become familiar with the Touch Bar, you will notice how efficient it is to use it.

Tip #6 – Manage Files

When you work with a lot of files, it can be problematic to manage all the data. There are certain things you can do to ease the process on a Macbook.

For example, holding down the Command key and clicking the down arrow key will quickly open folders in Finder or desktop. Deleting files instantly is also an option if you do not want to empty the Trash Bin every time. Click on a file and press Option + Command + Delete simultaneously. 

If you want to create duplicates for templates, right-click on a file and pick “Get Info.” Check the box next to Stationary Pad. Whenever you open a file, it will open a duplicate.

You have an option to rename multiple files at the same time as well. Select the batch of files you want to rename, right-click, and click on “Rename.” 

Finally, get in the habit of backing up data. Even if you take all the necessary precautions and have a solid security strategy, the chances are that something might still happen. Use Time Machine to create backups.

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