223212 Bezel

Quicksilver, an open source launch utility for Mac OS that saw few substantial updates over the last several years, has seen a revival recently with a new version released late last week.

Quicksilver is a computer utility software program for Mac OS X, made by Blacktree Software and distributed freely. It is essentially a graphical shell for the Mac OS X operating system, allowing users to use the keyboard to rapidly perform tasks such as launching applications, manipulating files, or sending e-mail.

Version 1.0β59 for Mac OS 10.6 is now available and there are also older versions available for Mac 0S 10.3 through 10.5. Unlike Spotlight, the universal search feature built into Mac OS X since 10.4, Quicksilver focuses on a defined "catalog" of items like music, contacts, URLs, and emails and can search and launch these items more quickly.

Quicksilver became open source in 2007 when its creator at Blacktree, Nicholas Jitkoff, transitioned to focus on other projects. Its source code is currently available on Github.

Top Rated Comments

SaSaSushi Avatar
129 months ago
Nobody's really addressed why I think these are categorically different products. You say Alfred does everything QS does, but I just don't see that at all. To me, Alfred is just a really fast launcher. QS handles abbreviations.
I wrote that Alfred does everything that QS used to do for me. I do primarily use it as a file launcher but also as a clipboard manager (as I did with QS before it) for file system navigation and performing actions on files and many other functions.

Does Alfred learn? Can Alfred do more than open things? I feel like this may be apples to apples for you but apples and oranges to me.... Or more like, you care about a subset of what QS does, for which I agree that Alfred is faster, but only at the expense of having to type everything in without intelligent abbreviations.
Alfred supports fuzzy matching like Quicksilver, so that you can search for non-contiguous characters in an app's name (e.g. FF for Firefox). Results are weighted towards most used applications. Fuzzy matching can be disabled entirely or anchored to match from the beginning character of the string to improve performance.

Alfred may not be everything QS is, but it is much more than a simple file launcher, especially with the Powerpack. I suggest you visit the Alfred website (http://help.alfredapp.com/) for more information if you're interested. I'm sure the developers would be glad to answer any questions you might have.
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)
SaSaSushi Avatar
129 months ago
To be fair, you haven't stated any reasons that make alfred the "best app out there" either.
As I already mentioned it wasn't your opinion I was objecting to. :p

Alfred does everything Quicksilver used to do for me only more intuitively and with far easier configuration.

As I also already mentioned I've got no axe to grind with Quicksilver and certainly am not trying to say something ridiculous like it "sucks". I used it for a long time and, again, I'm happy it's in development again. Cheers.

Alfred's developers are another reason I love it. They are extremely dedicated to the product and their customers.
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Watabou Avatar
129 months ago
To be fair, you haven't stated any reasons that make alfred the "best app out there" either.
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Weaselboy Avatar
129 months ago
Don't see much of a point to it really (or for Alfred or Launchbar), all the apps I use regularly are sitting on my dock just a click away and the ones I don't use as much I can open quickly by clicking the aps folder on the dock (which opens as a grid) or by doing a quick spotlight search.
You really should try one of these apps before writing them off. They are all three much much more than just app launchers. I have used QS, Launchbar, and now settled on Alfred. All three allow you to launch apps, launch bookmarks, select email addresses and start new mails from them, run scripts, copy and delete files.... and more all without taking your hands off the KB and clicking around. Once you get used to what KB combo does what it becomes second nature and a much faster way to work.
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Floris Avatar
129 months ago
This is a dead project, an update doesn't revive it or gain trust with the users anymore. I don't understand why it's mentioned even.

What's next, a news article about TextMate making more false promises?

<grumpy mac user is grumpy (i had flu for a week)>
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)
mrxak Avatar
129 months ago
I love Quicksilver. I've been using it since nearly the beginning, and I cannot live without it. It's the very first thing I install on a new Mac, every time. The second thing is iSeek (http://www.ambrosiasw.com/utilities/iseek/). Between the two, I never have to touch my mouse to open anything or do any kind of web search. I just type, and things happen, pretty much at the speed of thought.

Quicksilver is a lot, lot more stable than it used to be. Those who have abandoned it in the past for bugs should really give it another try. I cannot remember the last time it crashed on me, and I use it constantly, probably 30-50 times a day. For those who don't even know what it is, some people above have sort of described it, but you have to understand just how quick it is.

You hit control-space (or whatever), and this little box magically appears. Quicksilver has this famous checkbox in the preferences for "Superfluous visual effects", so it really does seem like magic. It's really instantaneous, and it's very pretty. Without even needing to wait for it to complete its summons, which takes only slightly longer than it takes you to blink, you start typing. Whatever the last thing was you used it for, you can just hit return and it'll do it again, but if you start typing characters, the real magic happens. First of all, it remembers what you use Quicksilver for. I type the letter "a" and it already pops up as "AirPort Utility" before I can even finish typing "air". I've sort of gotten used to typing three letters for everything, in some cases four letters, but generally one or two does it, because Quicksilver learns fast. It knows to give me AirPort Utility for the letter A, and then only switch to Activity Monitor if I type "ac", because I open AirPort Utility a lot more often. It does require a little bit of training at first, but not much. The best thing is, you're not screwed if you type in something wrong, or even if you forget the name of something. Pause for a second or two, or hit delete, and you can retype it. It picks up on acronyms, on partial words, on typos, and it's as fast as you can type. Those few times I have to dig around in the Applications Folder or something (usually Quicksilver), I'm struck by how lost and confused I feel. Those few moments before Quicksilver launches on log-in, if I get ahead of myself and try to launch something and nothing happens, I feel all panicky and bewildered. I guess you could say I'm addicted to the ease of use I've grown accustomed to using Quicksilver all these years. My Dock has been relegated to telling me what I already have open, rather than something to launch applications with. That's right, it's easier for me to open something with Quicksilver than to click a convenient icon right there on my screen.

It's not Spotlight. Spotlight tries to know everything and present you with everything. It's the brute force approach, and of course it's limited to files, and it's incredibly slow by comparison. Spotlight is the conventional army. Quicksilver is like a rapidly deployed commando team. It's smarter, more capable, and it's more direct because it provides you with just the specific result you want, as if it can read your mind. In fact, it does read your mind, because it learns from you, and picks up on things you don't even realize. Rather than carpet bombing you with choice, it chooses for you, but then you always have the option of typing a little bit more, or going down the normally hidden list of results for what you're really looking for. As I said, within two or three characters, it can nearly always get you exactly what you want. Considering my typing speed, I can be launching an application less than a second after I decide to open it, pretty much before I even realize what I'm doing. Occasionally I'll try to do something I haven't done before, and I might have to type a little more than I'm used to, but the next time I try to do that same thing, it'll know what I'm doing a lot sooner.

I've definitely not used all of Quicksilver's features. There's stuff in there I'm sure I don't even know about. In fact, in writing up this post, I discovered something new. I know some hardcore Quicksilver users who do some really crazy stuff.

Quicksilver is not for everybody. Some people just don't work with that many applications, or maybe they're not that confident with the computer, or with their typing. The official Apple ways of opening things and working with applications is intended for a slower user. If you're ready to graduate to instant speed and maximized productivity, give Quicksilver, or something like it, a try. If you work with a lot of web searches, like Google/Wikipedia/Dictionaries/Literally-Any-Website-You-Can-Think-Of, check out iSeek too.
Score: 0 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Top Stories

microsoft edge ios android

Bill Gates Says His Preference for Android Over iPhone is Due to Pre-Installed Software

Friday February 26, 2021 3:35 am PST by
Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates this week participated in his first meeting on Clubhouse, the increasingly popular invite-only conversation app, where he fielded a range of questions as part of an ongoing book tour. Gates was interviewed by journalist Andrew Ross Sorkin, and given that the Clubhouse app is currently only available on iOS, naturally one of the questions that came up was...
Top Stories 47 Feature copy

Top Stories: MacBook Pro, iMac, and AirPods Rumors, macOS 11.2.2, MagSafe Wallet Revisited

Saturday February 27, 2021 6:00 am PST by
March is right around the corner, and that means our first good opportunity for Apple product launches in 2021 as the company frequently has significant launches in March or April each year. We're hearing rumors about MacBook Pro, iMac, AirPods, and more, although many of these will be coming out at different times over the course of the year. This week also saw a macOS update to address a ...
iphone 6 in hand

Apple Faces Another iPhone Lawsuit Over 'Programmed Obsolescence'

Monday March 1, 2021 6:44 am PST by
Apple faces a new class-action lawsuit that accuses it of deliberately releasing iOS updates that slowly reduce the performance of an iPhone, forcing customers to upgrade their devices. The lawsuit comes from the Portuguese Consumer Protection Agency, Deco Proteste (via Marketeer), which in a statement says that it will proceed with a case against the Cupertino tech giant because it...
maxresdefault

HomeKit Essentials Worth Checking Out

Saturday February 27, 2021 7:05 am PST by
HomeKit was slow to take off after its 2014 launch, but now that it's been around for seven years, there are hundreds of HomeKit products available, ranging from doorbells and speakers to TVs, lights, and cameras. In our latest YouTube video, we rounded up some of our favorite HomeKit products that we find most useful. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos. HomePod...
First Look Big Sur Feature2

Apple Releases macOS Big Sur 11.2.2 to Prevent MacBooks From Being Damaged by Third-Party Non-Compliant Docks

Thursday February 25, 2021 10:07 am PST by
Apple today released macOS Big Sur 11.2.2, the fourth update to the macOS Big Sur operating system that launched in November. macOS Big Sur 11.2.2 comes two weeks after the release of macOS Big Sur 11.2.1, a bug fix update. The new ‌‌‌‌macOS Big Sur‌‌‌ 11.2.2‌ update can be downloaded for free on all eligible Macs using the Software Update section of System Preferences....
iphone 12 pro display video

iPhone 13 to Include 1TB Storage Option and LiDAR Across the Board, Says Wedbush Analyst

Monday March 1, 2021 4:00 am PST by
Apple's forthcoming iPhone 13 could include a 1TB storage option for some models and LiDAR Scanners across the entire lineup, according to a report from Wedbush analysts. In a new note to investors, seen by MacRumors, Wedbush analyst Daniel Ives said that initial Asian supply chain checks gave the firm "increased confidence" that Apple's 5G-driven product cycle would extend well into 2022,...
flat mbp 14 inch feature yellow

Redesigned 14-Inch MacBook Pro Expected to Feature Brighter Mini-LED Display With Slimmer Bezels and More

Thursday February 25, 2021 7:48 am PST by
Apple plans to unveil new 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pro models with Mini-LED-backlit displays in the second half of this year, according to industry sources cited by Taiwanese supply chain publication DigiTimes. The report claims that Radiant Opto-Electronics will be the exclusive supplier of the Mini-LED backlight units, while Quanta Computer is said to be tasked with final assembly of the...
mac mini developer transition kit photo feature

Apple Requiring Developers to Return DTK Mac Minis by March 31

Friday February 26, 2021 3:57 pm PST by
Apple today sent out emails to developers who are in possession of a Developer Transition Kit, asking them to return the machines by March 31. The Developer Transition Kits are Mac minis with A12Z chips that Apple provided for development purposes ahead of the release of the M1 Macs. Apple in the emails provided developers with shipping instructions, and plans to begin collecting the DTKs...
iphone 12 120hz thumbnail feature

Kuo: iPhone 13 Lineup to Feature Smaller Notch and Larger Batteries, 120Hz Display for Pro Models, and More

Monday March 1, 2021 7:50 am PST by
iPhone 13 models will all feature a smaller notch, while the two Pro models will be equipped with low-power LTPO display technology for a 120Hz refresh rate, analyst Ming-Chi Kuo said today in a research note obtained by MacRumors. Several other sources have previously claimed that some iPhone 13 models will support a 120Hz refresh rate, including display industry analyst Ross Young, leakers ...
unc0ver version 6 release

Jailbreak Tool 'unc0ver' 6.0.0 Released With iOS 14.3 Compatibility

Sunday February 28, 2021 9:26 am PST by
The team behind the "unc0ver" jailbreaking tool for iOS has released version 6.0.0 of its software, which can allegedly be used to jailbreak any device running iOS 11.0 through iOS 14.3 using a kernel vulnerability. The unc0ver website describes how the tool has been extensively tested across a range of iOS devices running various software versions, including an iPhone 12 Pro Max running iOS ...