I have been a medical translator for so many years now, that even when it comes to writing an article on a subject like keyboard shortcuts, the first issue that comes to my mind is how to use them to avoid getting in pain!
People who work on the computer all day, and use the mouse repeatedly, as translators do, tend to develop an inflammation of the tendon in the wrists, known as tendinitis. The pain it causes may be quite severe, and often occurs suddenly. Therefore, here is a good reason why you should start reducing the use of the mouse, and use keyboard shortcuts.
However, let’s leave the medical field for the moment, and let’s talk about efficiency and productivity. Using keyboard shortcuts allows to work faster than the mouse, and reducing the working time brings greater efficiency.
Like any software application, shortcuts in MateCat speed up the translation process by keeping your hands on the keyboard, so you only resort to your mouse when it is unavoidable.
I would like to share a short list of five shortcuts that I think any translator should get familiar with when opening MateCat for the first time. When you know them by heart, you can go through the following list, and learn a new keyboard shortcut every day. Windows and Mac users will have to press different keys on their keyboards.
Obviously, this does not mean that you should forget about your mouse, but reducing its use by replacing it with keyboard shortcuts, will make your translation work easier, faster and healthier!
Here is my list of the must-know shortcuts in MateCat:
1. Confirm translation
Windows: CTRL+Enter Mac: CTRL+Enter, CMD+Enter
2. Confirm translation and go to next untranslated segment
Windows: CTRL+SHIFT+Enter Mac: CTRL+SHIFT+Enter, CMD+SHIFT+Enter
3. Copy source to
Windows: ALT+CTRL+i Mac: ALT+CTRL+i
4. Use translation suggestions (first/second/third suggestion)
Windows: CTRL+1/2/3 Mac: CTRL+1/2/3
5. Perform concordance search on word(s) selected in the source or target
Windows: ALT+CTRL+c Mac: ALT+CTRL+c, ALT+CMD+c
When you have learned the first list, you may want to try another five:
1. Open search (if not yet opened)
Windows: CTRL+f Mac: CTRL+f, CMD+f
2. Undo in segment (available in active segment)
Windows: CTRL+z Mac: CTRL+z, CMD+z
3. Redo in segment (available in active segment)
Windows: CTRL+y Mac: CMD+SHIFT+z
4. Add a new line in the target segment
Windows: SHIFT+Enter Mac: SHIFT+Enter
5. Add a non-breaking space
Windows: CTRL+Shift+Space Mac: CTRL+Shift+Space
And finally, the last seven keyboard shortcuts:
1. Go to next segment
Windows: CTRL+Down Mac: CTRL+Down
2. Return to previous segment
Windows: CTRL+Up Mac: CTRL+Up
3. Go to current segment
Windows: CTRL+Home Mac: CMD+SHIFT+up
4. Go to beginning of the line
Windows: Home Mac: CMD+left
5. Go to end of the line
Windows: End Mac: CMD+right
6. Move the cursor word by word to the right
Windows: CTRL+right Mac: ALT+right
7. Move the cursor word by word to the left
Windows: CTRL+left Mac: ALT+left