how do you use Safari on your Mac?

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macOS & Mac Apps
The Mac I use most is an iMac, I have a keyboard and a magic trackpad. The batteries in the trackpad have been flat for years. I've been using a computer for nigh-on thirty years and using a keyboard is about as natural to me as breathing. so I guess it's not a surprise that I don't use a trackpad. however, I also don't bother using the QuickNav arrow key commands. Don't get me wrong, I love using iOs and all the gestures it offers. In many ways, my favourite way to use Safari is on my iPhone. But I can't bring myself to bother with gestures on my Mac, I am perfectly happy to use keyboard commands to access the web rotor and page elements. I'm so happy with the keyboard commands and the web rotor, I have even developed the habit of pre-setting the web rotor before pressing VO+u. I'm curious how other people use Safari on a mac. If you have a laptop, with the touchpad right there, do you find yourself using it? does anyone use a magic trackpad on a daily basis? Am I just old and set in my ways and am I missing out on the chance to be far more productive? Comments would be welcome. JT

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5 Comments

Submitted by Chelsea on Sunday, August 4, 2013

Hi JT, I use a MacBook Air on a daily basis. I am almost always in safari. I started with an iPhone, and knowing the gestures helped me transition fairly easily. i use a combination of Safari techniques depending on what I am doing and what the Web site is like. If I am reading a well-organized and familiar page like appleVis or NLS, I often use quick nav exclusively. If I know exactly what I want on a page, I'll gravitate to the keyboard rotor commands so I can type and narrow down a search. If I am reading an article that takes up an entire page, I'll engage the reader and go from there. Because the trackpad is right there, I tend to use it a lot for interacting and rotoring , especially when lying down with the computer; the keyboard is too far away sometimes. I do not know if these habits would change if I had the magic trackpad and an iMac. I find the Mac's multiple ways of doing things shines in Safari. Interestingly enough, I hardly ever use the first-letter navigation feature that is so commonly eluded to in the Windows screen reader world. Hope this helps you out and gives you some use case ideas. Chelsea

Hi. I use all those navagation features but I also tend to use the single letter navigation. Maybe it's because I come from a windows background. I will turn quick nav on and press h to get to a heading or a number if I know something is heading level 1 or 2 etc.

Hi Jt. I have a Macbook pro, and the trackpad is exclusively used, keyboard less so. for some reason, I don't like the quick nav feature, and wish the first letter navigation was available without it. I have an iPhone and like a previous commenter, I had a phone before the Mac and it helped me. I wanted to use a mouse like a sighted person since i started using a computer, years ago. I guess using ti makes me feel as sighted as possible, people click with trackpads all the time. just my thoughts.

Submitted by Ekaj on Monday, January 6, 2014

I just got my Mac Book Air 2 days after Christmas, and have been trying things out. I have tried both keyboard methods for navigating in Safari, and they seem to work equally well although I'm still more or less getting used to the Mac way of doing things. As you can probably see by now I come from a Windows background too, but I am really liking my Mac Book Air.

Submitted by Esther on Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Hi JT,

I've always mainly used Mac laptops,  and I have to say that I never found that using a Magic TrackPad felt natural. I tried it when I still used a MacBook with the older TrackPad. The experience is very different when the TrackPad is built in and has a well-defined location relative to the other keys, so you may have a different opinion of TrackPad usage if you ever get a MacBook Air. I've often wondered how many Desktop Mac VoiceOver users feel comfortable using the Magic TrackPad.

I'm very comfortable with keyboard shortcut navigation, and usually give directions this way when answering questions on the mailing lists, because these generally work even for users of older operating systems - unless a question is specifically about TrackPad gestures.  That said, there are some TrackPad gestures that are ver efficient, like the ones for interacting, moving to the menu bar or the dock, and the gestures that are similar to iOS for toggling the screen curtain or muting.  I do use the QuickNav single letter navigation a lot (although maybe that's still keyboard based).  I suspect that a lot of users who came to the Mac relatively recently from the iPhone may appreciate navigating with gestures on the TrackPad much more than we do.