Some applications come with a boatload of keyboard shortcuts; these can make you very fast, but can be difficult to remember, especially if you customized some of them. What if you could have your own little cheat sheet that would pop up next to the application every time your ran it? Read on to see how you can make one.
We’re going to be using an excellent (and free) application called Stickies. If you don’t have it yet, go to the Stickies homepage, download it, and install it.
Creating Your First Cheat Sheet
The first thing we’re going to do is create the sticky note containing whatever info you want to have on hand. With Stickies running, hit Win+S. You should see a blank sticky note, much like the one below.
Yours may not have the current date and time in the caption – that’s a setting you can toggle, but we don’t need it for now.
Next, set the title for your sticky by clicking it and pressing Ctrl+Shift+T. You can also right-click the caption and select Set Title from the context menu.
Now that you’ve set the title (say, Total Commander Tips), fill in the text with whatever you’d like to remember. Use Ctrl + and Ctrl – to increase or decrease the font size, Ctrl+B for bold, Ctrl+I for italics. You can also select just a portion of the text to make it larger (think subheadings).
With your sticky note all ready, it’s now time to attach it to the window. Make sure the “target application” is running, so we’d have a window to attach the note to. Then, right-click the note’s caption and select Attach.
In the Attach Sticky window, locate your application in the list and click it. You can also toggle the box that says “Only if visible” to have the note visible only when the application window isn’t minimized.
The sticky note you created will now appear whenever you run your application, and disappear when you close the app. If you’d like to make the note always on top, click it and hit Ctrl+T. This way no other windows would cover it. That’s it – you now have a handy application-specific cheat-sheet.
A technical writer for Tibbo Technology by day, Erez is obsessed with customizing anything and everything. After years of using Litestep and Blackbox, switching to a custom keyboard layout (Colemak), extending Word and Excel with elaborate VBA, losing weight with an AutoHotkey script he developed and spending countless hours tweaking Foobar2000 to get it to look "just right", Erez decided the time has come to share some of this obsession with the world at large.
- Published 03/7/11