Sitecore Rocks has a few options that help you speed up some of the common developer workflows, like creating templates or items.
The screen for creating templates allows you to also define inheritance and create the standard values item. Most of your templates will actually need the standard values item so just as well create it as soon as possible.
The UI for creating items gives you the opportunity to also set insert options at the same time. If the standard values already exists, it will prompt whether you want the insert options to be configured on the item or as a default in the standard values. Another good reason to create the standard values at the same time as the template.
Opening Presentation Details
During the development you will most likely have to edit presentation details very often. Best practice is to set it on the standard values item. However a lot of the time you can go faster by opening the presentation details selecting a regular item, using Ctrl+Enter. Rocks will show a prompt offering to open the standard values one instead.
This pop up appears if there are no presentation details on the item and the standard values already exists.
Presentation Details dialog
Sitecore Rocks offers a few options when editing presentation details. As well as using the Add Rendering option, you can also simply drag and drop from the Sitecore Explorer.
One of the common tasks is set a data source. Typically you do that by using the properties window (which you can expose with F4 or pressing Enter). There is a quicker way - you can bind a keyboard shortcut to open the Set Data Source dialog. The trick is to bind a shortcut to the Data Sources -> Browse option.
Sitecore Rocks offers an alternate view for the presentation details dialog. In the contextual menu choose View -> Tree View.
This view should really be the default option as it is much easier to work with. You get to see the placeholder nesting in a visual way because it is showing a tree.
In order to change the placeholder where a component is inserted you simply drag it in the tree structure. It also offers options on the right hand pane for setting the datasource and navigate to the definition item or the actual file.
Copying presentation details
Sometimes you want to copy the existing presentation details to a different item. Since presentation details are actually defined in two standard fields, this could be generalised as copying the contents of fields between items.
Sitecore Rocks offers a way to do this: the field painter. You select the item you want to take the values from, and choose Field Painter from the contextual menu (use Commandy to find it quickly).
This will show you a dialog with all the fields of the item, including standard fields. Simply select the ones you want to copy.
When you click OK the dialog closes. Then you select all the items you want to paste the value of those fields to and use the Apply field painter contextual menu option.
Hide Standard Fields
Don't bother showing the standard fields all the time, it just slows down loading items and makes the UI more confusing. The reality is that there are very few of those fields you really need to access.
If you really need constant access to some of those fields, then left click on the field name and select the option Always show this field.
This is useful, for example, if you have to do some work with Final Renderings as that is the only way to edit it using Sitecore Rocks.