Forget the “Start” menu and program shortcut icons, they can be sluggish and too crowded quite fast. A much faster way to go where you want on your computer is by using your keyboard and the open source Launchy.
Launchy is a keystroke launcher so when you need to start any program just call it by pressing “ALT + Space bar”, and then just type the name of the program you wish. Most of the time it’ll show the program you want by typing just the first couple letters of it.
You can even browse the web faster by calling your “Firefox”, press TAB and then just write the name of the website you want. Launchy will take you directly to the page you want.
This is a Windows app, for Linux you have options such as Katapult (KDE), GnomeDo (Gnome), and for Macs the brilliant Spotlight.