Quick Entry Via Hotkey

What Is It?

Quick entry via hotkey refers to the ability to press one or more keys on your keyboard and bring up a special window that lets you insert a new note directly into your Mac note taking app, without first making the note taking app active. It’s a quick, lightweight way of capturing a note and then getting back to your original task.

Mac Notes Apps with This Feature

What Else Should I Know?

Quick entry via hotkey is similar to clipping, except that it’s slower because you have to stop your current task to add a note to your note taking app. It does come in handy if you need to capture a spur-of-the-moment idea.

How does it work? Typically a note taking app will install a small helper app that watches for key presses on a system-wide basis (by contrast, normally an app only receives keyboard information when it’s the active application). When the OS notifies the helper that a particular key press combination has occurred, the helper presents a small note taking window. When you finish entering the note, the helper either routes the new note to the main note taking app for storage, or stores the note directly within the note repository itself. Adding notes using a helper is generally quicker than invoking the full note taking app because as a smaller program, the OS can activate the helper app much faster.