Save time with the iWork and iWeb Inspectors

If you use iWeb, Keynote, or Pages, you’re probably well aware of those programs’ use of Inspectors—small square panels that you use to manage text, objects, animations, movies, and other elements of your project. In iWeb, seven tools live in the Inspector; Pages and Keynote each have 10 tools there.

If you’re a regular user of Keynote or Pages, you probably already know that you can open multiple Inspector windows—just use the New Inspector entry on the View menu. This is a useful trick, assuming you have the screen real estate for it, as it saves a lot of clicking to switch between the tools you use regularly. iWeb, on the other hand, lacks this menu item—hence, you can’t use multiple Inspectors at once. Or can you?

You can save a bit of time opening multiple Inspectors in Keynote and Pages by assigning a keyboard shortcut to the New Inspector menu item (using the Keyboard Shortcuts tab of the Keyboard & Mouse System Preferences panel). That’ll save you a long trip with the mouse. But you can also do this via an undocumented keyboard shortcut—just option-click any icon in the Inspector’s toolbar. When you do, a new Inspector window will open, with the tool you option-clicked as the active tool.

Even better is the fact that this trick also works in iWeb, bringing multiple Inspector window support to that application as well. It’d still be nice to see iWeb gain the same New Inspector menu entry that’s found in Keynote and Pages. But until that happens, this is a convenient workaround.

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