Review: Dash – PC version of the Mac essential – Quicksilver

I installed Dash today. Tried it for all of 10 minutes, then decided to purchase. Dash is a decent first implementation of Quicksilver, an essential Mac application that I absolutely rely on.

Basically, you get to define a hot-key, and when you press it, a window opens, and you can type in a keyword – to do things like run an app, send mail, do a Google search,  look up a word, open a Wikipedia article, etc. Once you are used to this, it is SO FAST to open apps – it saves all the clicking about with the mouse.

What’s Good?

  • The app is small and fast.
  • It makes it really easy to add keyboard shortcuts for MANY things I do every few minutes.
  • The app stays out of the way when I don’t want it.
  • It comes with a decent starter set of keywords.
  • They claim to be making lots of plugins which will extend the capabilities of the app.
  • They have a really nice video on their web site showing the app in use. Very slick – even a British voiceover, which is very classy.
  • I bought it right away – so that’s a pretty good endorsement.

What Sucks? 

  • The app has a trial version – but rather than a simple “enter a key” to unlock the REAL version, you have to download and re-install the app.
  • The Email implementation is terrible. Yes, you can  send mails, but they all go out with the title “Note” which is silly. And, it doesn’t appear to be looking up names in my Outlook contacts. I use a plain vanilla installation of Outlook and Exchange – if they can’t support THAT out of the box, then they have totally missed the mark.
  • Needs better support for Quicksilver style plugins to extend the capabilities of the app.

Summary:

It is a great 1.0 application, that you’ll get a ton of use out of right out of the box.

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