Or, "How I stopped worrying and learned to look in Preferences."
Last week I posted a list of some long running complaints I have been compiling on usability issues with Mac OS X. A big thanks to people that gave me some solutions and workarounds (online and off.) Here is a summary:
Tabbing through forms
This one is probably the most egregious to me. It turns out, this is really just the default behavior. In Safari, you can modify this from Preferences > Advanced and under Universal Access there is (ironically) a checkbox "Press Tab to highlight each item on a webpage." Then they have a little descriptive text that tells you to use Option+Tab as a soft mode to go back to the default behavior.
In OS X natively, go to System Preferences > Keyboard > Keyboard Shortcuts > and you will see a radio button at the bottom labeled "All Controls." This will tab through all controls in a dialog or form - not just text boxes.
Finder and Window management
Reader Gordon shows how to make Finder search default to the current folder: in Finder Preferences, under Advanced, you can set your search to search the Mac, the Current Folder, or the previous Search Scope.
Also, Control + Down arrow is a good shortcut to show all current open documents in the app with current focus.
Gordon also points out the variety of touchpad gestures for shortcuts - something I have been missing out on with the iMac and Power Mac I have been using for the past few years.
From reader Rob: To avoid minimizing your window to the far right: In the Dock settings, checking the "Minimize windows into application icon"
Why these are not the defaults? I have not the foggiest idea. But now that they are changed, I have a much happier Mac and a few less gray hairs!