Want to quickly search the web or Wikipedia from the Home Screen of iOS? Just turn to Spotlight, the built-in search engine. Sure, the Spotlight search is often used as an application launcher or a way to quickly find old emails, notes, and contacts in iOS too, but you can also type more generic queries … Read More
Spotlight is the wildly useful search feature built into Mac OS X (and iOS) that is accessible by hitting Command+Spacebar. It can seemingly find and do everything, but did you know it also includes basic file system functionality? Using some little known tricks, you can copy and cut files directly from Spotlight, letting you easily … Read More
Spotlight is the core of Mac OS X’s Search functionality, and if you want Spotlight to ignore a file, folder, or drive, the traditionally recommended advice is to drag the items to exclude from indexation into the Spotlight system preference panel exclusion list. That’s the recommended approach because it’s simple to use and easy to … Read More
Using the search box that sits in the top right corner of a Finder window defaults to searching everything on a Mac. Sure, you can click the center Search option after the fact to narrow it down to the current folder, but often times you’re using that search feature thinking it will look in the … Read More
Whether you’re new to the Mac or just can’t figure out where a specific preference option is buried, you’ll love the convenience of the built-in search function in OS X System Preferences. This is an often overlooked feature that can prevent a lot of frustration when looking for some less-than-obvious settings panels, and it’s very … Read More
The iOS Spotlight Search feature defaults to showing Contacts from a devices address book as the top search results, which may be helpful, but that same feature already exists when searching through Contacts anyway. What if you want to show matching apps first instead? Or maybe you want to list emails or messages as the … Read More
Searching the file system for a specific document or file is easy and very fast. Though most users are best served using Spotlight from the menubar, there are times when either Spotlight isn’t working, you need more paramaters, you’re working in the Terminal, operating with a remote machine, or perhaps just would like to use … Read More
For those of us who have a bunch of apps contained within iOS folders, it’s fairly easy to misplace apps that aren’t used often. To quickly find out what folder contains an app, just swipe to the right of the iOS home screen to bring up Spotlight search, then type the name of the app … Read More
Though you can add anything to Spotlights Privacy list to prevent indexing of that folder or file, the obvious problem with that approach is the file or folder is shown within the Spotlight control panel in Mac OS X, making it easy for someone else to find the excluded items. Another way to hide a … Read More
While you can immediately access a dictionary definition by three-finger tapping on a single word in Mac OS X or double-tapping in iOS, the Mac also provides another instant dictionary option: Spotlight.
Modern versions of Mac OS X allow videos and movie files to be previewed and played directly in the Spotlight search results menu. This works with any supported movie or video file type that can be played in QuickTime. To try this out for yourself:
You can drag and drop files directly from Spotlight to elsewhere in the OS X Finder. This allows Spotlight search to function as a sort of basic file manager, not quite like the Finder, but at least for quickly locating and moving a document of any type on the Mac.