Be a Faster Developer with Switcheroo

There are many things that Windows does right from a productivity standpoint:

  • Great keyboard shortcuts for basic window management
  • Quick application launching by just hitting the windows key and typing the app name (when it wants to work…)

When it comes to development, I try to go through the process of trying to at least consider every chance to improve my workflow even if it’s only by 1%. The theory here is that if I keep on compounding 1% improvements I still end up with an exponential graph of my productivity over time.

One such tool that falls under the category of 1% better is Switcheroo.  Switcheroo is a really simple app that allows you to focus the application by simply typing the name. I fully accept that OS X and Linux have had this feature for a long time so feel free to ignore this post.

How to use this

  • Alt+Spacebar – Bring up the window
  • Enter – Focus the application selected on the list
  • Esc – Close the switcheroo window
  • Ctrl+W – Close the application

That is all there is to it. Nothing too fancy.

I am of the philosophy that I can speed up the way that I work if I avoid taking my hands off the keyboard. With Switcheroo, I don’t need to move my hand over to the mouse and hunt around for the application I want to focus. After using this application for years, using the Windows taskbar just feels slow and clunky.

It’s not perfect. There are some things you should know before using the app. As far as I know, there is no active development for this. This may or may not be a problem for you. The app functions well enough. The only bug that I’ve encountered is that it crashes when trying to bring up an icon from an app that is running from a UNC path.

I would still like to see some active development on this project because it would also be nice to see it get migrated over to .NET 5. Unfortunately, I don’t think I have the spare cycles at the moment to take it over.

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