'Quicksilver' Launch Utility Comes Out of Beta 10 Years Later

Monday March 25, 2013 4:27 PM PDT by Jordan Golson
QuicksilverAfter more than 10 years in beta, the open source launch utility Quicksilver has finally reached version 1.0.

The utility is a Spotlight-on-steroids type utility, that allows power users to open and manipulate files quickly from the keyboard.
After almost 10 years of testing, Quicksilver lays the beta tag to rest. (If the lack of an eszett brings a tear to your eye, you can always reminisce by hitting ⌥S on your keyboard). What does this release mean? It means more than just a change in the version numbering system - it signifies a maturity of Quicksilver and a sign of what’s to come.

For more info on this historic release day, you can read an interview with the lead developers where they discuss their thoughts on Quicksilver, but now it’s time to dive right in and see what Quicksilver’s getting on its release birthday.
Quicksilver is a free download, but the developers welcome donations from users who find it useful.

Top Rated Comments

(View all)

22 months ago
Always my first download on a new Mac.
Rating: 9 Votes
22 months ago
...Still better than Launchpad.
Rating: 9 Votes
22 months ago
Since using Alfred, I've never even given Quicksilver a second thought!
Rating: 6 Votes
22 months ago

I'm a Spotlight user, I've never seen the use in installing an application to do what Spotlight already does. If anyone could educate me on this, I've been googling on this matter for about about 2 weeks since I "discovered" Alfred but never seen why I should download it or Quicksilver.

I've heard a lot about Quicksilver and Alfred though, guess Alfred is getting some competition!

If all you are looking for is something to launch apps and search for files, your intuition here is correct... you don't need any of these launcher apps like Alfred.

The big plus for me with these apps is the ability to add functionality through the use of addons. With Quicksilver it was plugins, and now Alfred calls them "Workflows". Just about anything you can think of that you might regularly do on your computer can be attached to a KB shortcut and automated.

For example, every damn time Skitch or Pixelmator come out with an update in the App Store the "Open with..." dialogue on my Mac ends up with duplicate entries for those apps. The fix is to run a long Terminal command that rebuilds OS X launch services. I have that Terminal command linked to an Alfred Workflow now so all I do is bring up Alfred and start typing r e b and hit enter. Done. The command runs and restarts the Finder and the problem is fixed.

Thumb resize.

I just uploaded this screen shot using another workflow that uploads a screen shot from my desktop to an image host and puts the link in clipboard to paste in here. I typed u p and hit enter.

Thumb resize.

You can also setup custom web searches. For example I have a custom Google search that only searches MacRumours forums. So I type m r space and type the search term, then enter.

Here (http://www.alfredworkflow.com) is a nice list of workflows an Alfred user has put together.

I am not affiliated with the Alfred folks, I just really like the app. :)
Rating: 5 Votes
22 months ago

Been using Alfred for almost 8 years now.

A full five years before alfredapp.com was registered?
Rating: 4 Votes
22 months ago
I can understand some people liking a different app better, but I don't really understand all the snippy little comments from some of those people.
Rating: 3 Votes
22 months ago
And the folks at Alfred were scared...

Said nobody... ever.
Rating: 3 Votes
22 months ago
I tried quicksilver several years back, but couldn't get much value out of it. I even watched a long YouTube video demo given by the guy that developed it (back then).

But either way, good for them for coming out of beta.
Rating: 3 Votes
22 months ago

Isn't the idea behind Quicksilver what Spotlight was based on? So, really, "Spotlight is a Quicksilver on Valium" moniker may be more fitting.

Quicksilver is not Spotlight (although it can mimic some of its functionality).

It's more like a replacement Finder and OS X rolled into one. Browse folders, move multiple files, use iTunes, do image processing, run scripts, append text to documents, search contacts and email them, get passwords, find the latest download, search websites, use Services, save snippets (including text, images and file locations) to a shelf, take screenshots, do a whole lot more, and… launch apps.

OS X lets you do all this. The point is, Quicksilver does it for you.

(And its fuzzy matching algorithm beats Spotlight hands down.)

Rating: 2 Votes
22 months ago

I'm an Alfred user now but used to install QS as one of the first apps when setting up a new Mac.

Unless my memory is faulty, I remember a period when the developer of QS stated in response to bug/quirk reports that no further development would take place on QS and to try out one of the alternatives. I think I went with Google's one and later on Alfred.

Does anyone else remember this?

He did:

But he recently said:

“I’m amazed at what the Quicksilver team has accomplished since they took over the project a few years ago. They’ve created something truly worthy of a 1.0, taking Quicksilver from a flight of fancy to a fast, reliable productivity app. It has been a pleasure to use thanks to their frequent updates, countless refinements, and tireless effort.”

It's part of this interview:
Rating: 2 Votes

[ Read All Comments ]