Thursday, November 8, 2007

Cool Tool: SlickRun by Bayden

This is the first post in a series I'm calling "Cool Tool". As a developer, I spend the majority of my day in front of a computer and I'm all for anything that helps me be more efficient. Whenever I run across a tool or utility that does just that, I'll blog about it and spread the word.

SlickRun by Bayden Systems is one such tool. Rick Strahl pointed me to this tool recently and it quickly became one of my favorites. It's a free floating command line utility for Windows and I couldn't live without it now that I have it. It's kinda like batch files on steroids. In fact, now that I have this installed, I have removed most of the icons from my desktop and I use SlickRun to launch almost everything.

Here are some examples of what I use it for:
  • I defined "Mail" to launch Outlook and open up my email

  • I defined "Music" to launch Yahoo's radio so I can
    listen to my favorite R&B station.

  • I defined "MBS" to launch remote desktop and log into

  • I defined "Time" to launch Excel and open the spreadsheet I use to track time on projects.

  • I defined "UT" to launch Explorer and open up the
    Universal Thread.

  • I defined "Word" to launch Microsoft Word.

  • I defined "Newsgroup" to launch my newsgroup reader.

You basically define a word and then tell it what to launch. And what is even cooler is that you can define one word that launches several other words. For example, I have "morning" defined to open my email, launch the internet, open up remote desktop so I can log into work, launch my time card, and a bunch of other things that I do every morning.

It also takes advantage of remembering what I typed last time so when I type "m", it displays "mail" or "music" depending on what I did last time. Often times all I have to type is one letter and it already knows what I want to do. What a huge time saver!!

So what's the cost of this great tool? Well .. what's it worth to you? Technically it's free, but donations are certainly appreciated by Bayden. I can tell you that after using this tool for just one day I sent my donation off to Bayden giving them my praise and kudos.

I consider this tool a "Must Have" and I'm sure you will too!

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