| By Ian “Gizmo” Richards |
In my Dec. 3 Best Software column, I showed you how to work more effectively by using keyboard shortcuts.
Now I’ll tell you about some operations you can perform with your mouse that can help you work faster with less effort.
Let your mouse get in on the shortcut act
Keyboard shortcuts are great time savers when you’re typing or otherwise have your hands on the keyboard. But if your hand is primarily on the mouse — such as when you’re browsing the Web — keyboard shortcut keys don’t do very much for you.
That’s when mouse shortcuts can help. This might sound like a strange idea, but there are actually many useful mouse tricks you can use in Firefox, Internet Explorer, Opera, Chrome, and Safari.
Mouse shortcuts are like keyboard shortcuts except they use one or more mouse buttons. There are no truly universal, standardized mouse shortcuts guaranteed to work with all browsers, but there are three shortcuts that work with most of them.
Perhaps the most useful of these is to press the Ctrl key while rolling the mouse scroll wheel up or down to zoom the page in or out. You also can close any tab — even an inactive, backgrounded tab — simply by clicking the scroll button while hovering over the tab.