Ahem. Sorry. Let me try that again.

Don’t you hate it when you accidentally hit Caps Lock? If you’re not completely paying attention, you might write an entire paragraph before you realize your mistake. You can easily change the case of text in Microsoft Word, but if you were writing in your browser or some other editor, you might think it’s time to re-write everything.

Not if you have Smart Caps Lock for Windows or for macOS, though. This simple program gives your caps lock key all sorts of new powers, allowing you to highlight text then tap Caps Lock to change text from “UPPER CASE” to “lower case” quickly.

That’s the basic use case, and for most users this is enough. But this isn’t the only trick Smart Caps Lock offers, and to learn more, we need to dig into the settings a little.

The program lives in your system tray or menu bar. On a Mac, this icon reveals whether caps lock is on or not: solid black means on, black outline means off. On Windows, sadly, the icon always looks the same.

Tap the icon and you’ll reveal a customizable list of keyboard shortcuts, all triggered by holding modifier keys before tapping Caps Lock.

On a Mac the available modifier keys are Command, Option, Control, Shift, and Fn. Windows users can use the Windows key, Control, and Shift modifiers.

Users can set these modifiers along with Caps Lock to trigger five different case states.

What do these mean? Here’s a quick rundown, followed by “This is an example sentence” in the given case state.

  • Reverse Case does a one to one replacement of one case to another. “tHIS IS AN EXAMPLE SENTENCE.” This is perfect for blocks of text you accidentally wrote with Caps Lock turned on.
  • Upper Case makes all letters upper case regardless of whether or not they were before. “THIS IS AN EXAMPLE SENTENCE.” This is perfect when you didn’t realize how angry you are until you finished writing.
  • Lower Case makes all letters lower case regardless of whether or not they were before. “this is an example sentence.”
  • Capitalized Case makes the first letter of every word a capital letter, and the rest lower case. “This Is An Example Sentence.”
  • Sentence Case makes the first letter of the first word a capital, and all other letters lower case. “This is an example sentence.”

There’s a good chance you won’t need all of these, but most users will want access to at least one, so configure things however you want. It’s a simple program, but every once in a while it will make life a lot easier.

RELATED: How to Disable or Reassign The Caps Lock Key on Any Operating System

If you’d rather avoid Caps Lock entirely, you could disable or re-assign the caps lock key, or even turn it into a Chromebook-style search key. But if you’d like to keep Caps Lock around, this tool make it a lot easier to clean up any messes it might cause.

Photo Credit: Al R

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Justin Pot has been writing about technology for over a decade, with work appearing in Digital Trends, The Next Web, Lifehacker, MakeUseOf, and the Zapier Blog. He also runs the Hillsboro Signal, a volunteer-driven local news outlet he founded.
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