The concept behind the Windows application Launchy is deceptively simple. Press a hotkey, and a small bar appears in the middle of your screen; start typing the name of something, and it’ll hone in and then launch it when you press enter. By default Launchy only targets your start menu folders but you can configure the folders, and thus expanding or restrict the index, as you like. Through add-ons, you can also do basic math, run commands, and -using an add-on called Chromy– scrape Chrome bookmarks and search engines. This means you can actually run targeted searches as if it were the chrome address bar right from Launchy.
I installed Launchy about six months ago, and I already know I can’t live without it. I rarely if ever open the start menu anymore, and I find myself giving many of my more frequently-used shortcuts three or four-letter names specifically to make them more Launchy-friendly.