Clever application launcher/switcher that brings up a customizable shortcut palette at the cursor’s position using a simple hotkey
When it comes to launching or switching applications, there hasn’t been much innovation in the methods we use for quite a while. macOS and Windows both use similar systems, but maybe an entirely different approach can be superior.
Charmstone is intended to minimize mouse movement by bringing your shortcuts to the cursor’s position. Just press a key combination (⌥⌘ by default) and a selection of shortcuts will appear around the cursor.
More efficient app switcher
Moving your cursor to the Dock or menu bar just to switch to an app is slow, as is cycling through your options with Cmd-Tab. With Charmstone, shortcuts will always be in the same place, and you can bring them up at the cursor’s position to minimize unnecessary movement.
After using the hotkey (any combination of modifiers can be configured), move the mouse a small distance and your shortcuts will be displayed. Move it even further, and a second set of shortcuts will replace them. This allows you to have up to 16 apps on speed dial at any given time.
Configure it to suit your workflow
Of course, you can place any apps you prefer in each of the 16 slots, but the customization extends further. You can modify the minimum distance the cursor must travel for the shortcuts to be displayed (down to zero, at which point they will be shown as soon as you press the hotkey), as well as the safe area in the middle.
To launch an app, you normally have to either click the icon or release the hotkeys while hovering over it. However, there is also an option to activate a shortcut simply by hovering.
It would be nice to have a setting for triggering a shortcut only when it is clicked, and perhaps an additional option to keep the shortcuts on-screen even after one is clicked, should you wish to quickly launch multiple applications without having to use the hotkey again after each one.
Smart and easy-to-learn app launcher
It really takes no time at all to get used to Charmstone. While the free version isn’t particularly useful with just four shortcuts, it at least gives you a good idea of what you can expect. If your workflow requires you to switch between apps a lot, it may be exactly what you need.