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⌘ + K, the Slack keyboard shortcut that saved my life

⌘ + K, the Slack keyboard shortcut that saved my life

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Gig by James Bareham / The Verge

I hate Slack. Not what it represents: unified, media-rich team communication across time and space. But how it's implemented: a slow, memory-hungry web app that hates my computer. Also, my boss banned novelty status emoji, so I'm still a little salty about that.

But I will admit that Slack has some really nice (non-customizable) keyboard shortcuts that make the whole experience slightly more bearable. A comprehensive list can be found on Slack's help site, but here are the three I use the most:

⌘ + K / Ctrl + K

This is sort of like Spotlight for Slack, and I use it all day, every day. Hit the command, start typing into the search box that appears, and hit enter to jump to that conversation. You can jump to a DM with anybody on your team, or teleport to any channel, and you don't even usually have to type the full name — Slack's smart enough to bubble up people you're more likely to interact with, instead of the seventh Josh at your company who works in an entirely different department.

You can also do ⌘ + Shift + K to pull up the direct messages menu, which allows you to create new multi-person direct message conversations.

↑ (the up arrow)

I don't like to typo in work chat, because it makes me look like a big ol' dummo. If I notice a typo in one of my messages, I can click the little "..." Show Message Actions button to edit it, of course, but did you know that you can press the up arrow in an empty message box to edit your most recent message?

I find this really intuitive, because you use the up arrow to cycle through your most recent commands in a typical command line terminal. I don't know if other people find it intuitive, but I do know that it's basically indispensable for anyone who hates typos.


This one's probably the easiest to discover, because when you hover over the "Mark as read" button in the blue unread message banner, it lets you know about the escape shortcut. One nice way to catch up on a Slack backlog is to using Alt + Shift + ↑ / ↓ to iterate through unread channels and DMs, and then hitting escape once you're sure you have the gist of the room.

There’s also a setting to automatically mark any room as read as soon as you visit it, if you prefer that method:

Also, let's not forget the nuclear option: Shift + Escape, which marks all messages read, in all channels, and is a great gift that I treasure in times of madness.

There are a bunch of Slack things that are so second nature now, or common enough UI paradigms, that I don't think of them as shortcuts anymore. Like tab to complete usernames, ":" to create an emoji, and the always-handy ⌘ + Q to save five hours on my laptop's battery life. There are also some things I'm trying to add to my workflow, like the Open All Unreads view (⌘ + Shift + A / Ctrl + Shift + A). I'm also a neophyte when it comes to the dozen or so bots that are available in my team's Slack, but I'm sure I'll familiarize myself eventually.

Let me know if you have any other favorite Slack moves that you've found helpful.

Today’s Storystream

Feed refreshed 5:33 PM UTC Striking out

Andrew Webster5:33 PM UTC
Look at this Thing.

At its Tudum event today, Netflix showed off a new clip from the Tim Burton series Wednesday, which focused on a very important character: the sentient hand known as Thing. The full series starts streaming on November 23rd.

The Verge
Andrew Webster4:28 PM UTC
Get ready for some Netflix news.

At 1PM ET today Netflix is streaming its second annual Tudum event, where you can expect to hear news about and see trailers from its biggest franchises, including The Witcher and Bridgerton. I’ll be covering the event live alongside my colleague Charles Pulliam-Moore, and you can also watch along at the link below. There will be lots of expected names during the stream, but I have my fingers crossed for a new season of Hemlock Grove.

Andrew Webster1:05 PM UTC
Looking for something to do this weekend?

Why not hang out on the couch playing video games and watching TV. It’s a good time for it, with intriguing recent releases like Return to Monkey Island, Session: Skate Sim, and the Star Wars spinoff Andor. Or you could check out some of the new anime on Netflix, including Thermae Romae Novae (pictured below), which is my personal favorite time-traveling story about bathing.

A screenshot from the Netflix anime Thermae Romae Novae.
Thermae Romae Novae.
Image: Netflix
Jay PetersSep 23
Twitch’s creators SVP is leaving the company.

Constance Knight, Twitch’s senior vice president of global creators, is leaving for a new opportunity, according to Bloomberg’s Cecilia D’Anastasio. Knight shared her departure with staff on the same day Twitch announced impending cuts to how much its biggest streamers will earn from subscriptions.

Tom WarrenSep 23
Has the Windows 11 2022 Update made your gaming PC stutter?

Nvidia GPU owners have been complaining of stuttering and poor frame rates with the latest Windows 11 update, but thankfully there’s a fix. Nvidia has identified an issue with its GeForce Experience overlay and the Windows 11 2022 Update (22H2). A fix is available in beta from Nvidia’s website.

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If you’re using crash detection on the iPhone 14, invest in a really good phone mount.

Motorcycle owner Douglas Sonders has a cautionary tale in Jalopnik today about the iPhone 14’s new crash detection feature. He was riding his LiveWire One motorcycle down the West Side Highway at about 60 mph when he hit a bump, causing his iPhone 14 Pro Max to fly off its handlebar mount. Soon after, his girlfriend and parents received text messages that he had been in a horrible accident, causing several hours of panic. The phone even called the police, all because it fell off the handlebars. All thanks to crash detection.

Riding a motorcycle is very dangerous, and the last thing anyone needs is to think their loved one was in a horrible crash when they weren’t. This is obviously an edge case, but it makes me wonder what other sort of false positives we see as more phones adopt this technology.

External Link
Ford is running out of its own Blue Oval badges.

Running out of semiconductors is one thing, but running out of your own iconic nameplates is just downright brutal. The Wall Street Journal reports badge and nameplate shortages are impacting the automaker's popular F-series pickup lineup, delaying deliveries and causing general chaos.

Some executives are even proposing a 3D printing workaround, but they didn’t feel like the substitutes would clear the bar. All in all, it's been a dreadful summer of supply chain setbacks for Ford, leading the company to reorganize its org chart to bring some sort of relief.

Spain’s Transports Urbans de Sabadell has La Bussí.

Once again, the US has fallen behind in transportation — call it the Bussí gap. A hole in our infrastructure, if you will.

External Link
Jay PetersSep 23
Doing more with less (extravagant holiday parties).

Sundar Pichai addressed employees’ questions about Google’s spending changes at an all-hands this week, according to CNBC.

“Maybe you were planning on hiring six more people but maybe you are going to have to do with four and how are you going to make that happen?” Pichai sent a memo to workers in July about a hiring slowdown.

In the all-hands, Google’s head of finance also asked staff to try not to go “over the top” for holiday parties.