Mac DockToday’s simple tip is another one about efficiency. Did you know that you can “pin” commonly used programs, so they’re easily accessible?

This is a common UI element, and it works in Mac or Windows. On Mac computers, you have a Dock along the bottom of the screen. You’ll see some open programs in the dock, and you’ll also see a bunch of other icons. Those icons that are there permanently have been pinned to the dock so that you can quickly click on them to open them.

If there’s an icon you don’t need, right click on it (or press Control and click on it with a Mac mouse), choose “Options,” and choose “Remove from Dock.” There are usually a few programs that are pinned by default that you have absolutely no use for.

Instead, you should pick the programs you do use and pin them. To do so, open the program, then right-click (or Control click) on it’s icon in the dock, choose “Options”, and choose “Keep in Dock.”

It is a great idea to pin certain commonly used programs to your dock. For example, I have Google Chrome pinned, because I always use it. I don’t have Word and Powerpoint pinned on my Mac, because I usually use Google docs; however, I used to have the Microsoft Office applications pinned as well.

The point is to choose the programs that you used often and pin them to your dock so that you can work efficiently. By pinning the programs, you can open them straight from the dock without wasting time looking through the Finder or a menu.

In Windows, you can do the same thing, except your pinning the programs to the taskbar. When you open the program, right-click on it in the taskbar, and select an option that says something like “Pin to Taskbar.” This will force the icon to stay in the taskbar at all times, and clicking on it will open it.