An Unknown MacBook App: Alfred

Photo Credit: Mia Baker on Unsplash

When most people use their MacBooks, or windows laptops, they move their mouse around to find things and click on them. Let’s say I want to find a file on my MacBook. Normally, finding a file is a pain in the neck. You have to click on finder, find the folder you created then try to find the file you want. That whole process is a waste of time. 

If you are a MacBook user, you probably know the Spotlight feature that MacOS has by default. Spotlight is a selection-based search system that will open up when you hit the command+space bar. You can search google, open an app on your laptop or do calculations with the Spotlight feature. It’s a great function to have, but there is a better alternative: Alfred

Alfred is a free app that will make your workflow on the computer a lot smoother. To bring up the Alfred window, you use the hotkey you’ve set up before (I use command+space just like on Spotlight), then you type what you want to search wether on your MacBook or on the internet. 

Let’s say I’m writing an article and want to google something, I’ll just use Alfred with a press on my keyboard and I can search anything without interrupting my work by going to Google Chrome, opening a new tab and start typing. It doesn’t matter what app I am on or what I’m doing on my laptop. 

You can do the googling with Apple’s Spotlight as well. One thing that I find very useful and separates Alfred from Spotlight is the ‘search for and open a file’ function. Like I said in the beginning, finding a file on your laptop takes time and is definitely not fun. With Alfred though, all it takes is a couple of keyboard presses. If I want to search a file on my laptop, I press command+space bar to bring up Alfred, then I press space bar and type the name of the I’m looking for and voila. The file I want pops up on the screen.

Every time I use Alfred, I might be saving about 30 seconds to a minute. Sounds like it’s not a big deal, but wasting one minute every time you open a file adds up over a long period of time. Just like how typing slowly makes you spend more time on your computer, trying to find stuff on your laptop does the same. Also it’s just not a pleasant experience. Using Alfred makes your time on your laptop more efficient and less annoying. 

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