You'll find plenty of keyboard-shortcut launchers floating around for Mac OS X, but Quicksilver's stylish interface, small footprint, and many customization options set it ahead of the pack. You activate this open-source program via a user-assignable hot key that spawns a small text field for entering abbreviations to locate applications, documents, or anything else.
Quicksilver offers multiple interface choices, from a menu bar to a transparent bezel that hovers over your desktop. Its other features include a task viewer, a "shelf" for storing frequently accessed files, and a clipboard history. The latest version of Quicksilver adds support for OS X's Quick Look features, letting you preview URLs and files using a key command straight from the Quicksilver interface. It also offers several fixes, updated plug-ins preferences sidebars and a new Extended Documentation window.
Quicksilver is a fantastic addition for anyone looking for alternative ways to launch applications from the Dock or to hunt through the Finder for files. This version requires Mac OS X 10.6 (Snow Leopard) or later.
Anyone using a computer spends a lot of time locating files and applications and carrying out actions on those items. The Finder is a reasonably good tool for getting a visual overview of the contents of your disk, but it isn't ideal for quickly locating and manipulating files, especially if you have a deep and complicated folder structure, or if you prefer keyboard navigation to using the mouse.
Quicksilver allows you to find what you need quickly and easily, while keeping your hands on the keyboard. For example, if you want to launch an application hidden in the depths of your file system, simply activate Quicksilver with a keystroke, type a few letters of the application's name, then hit Return or Enter to launch it. When you don't need Quicksilver, it keeps out of your way, preserving precious screen real estate, yet you can summon it instantly with a keystroke. Version 1.0b54 includes unspecified updates.