It's annoying when you're working in an app on Mac OS X and you want to launch some other app, and because Mac OS X takes so long to launch apps, you switch away and start working on something, only to have the splash screen of the previously launched app come to the foreground and annoy you by stealing the focus.
As far as I can tell, the only way to do this is to launch apps from the commandline, ie make your dock contain unix shell scripts for all the apps you want to launch.
The syntax is, for example, to open TextEdit:
open -g -a /Applications/TextEdit.app
once you've written the script (in TextWrangler, and saved as a UNIX textfile with .sh on the end), make sure you do this:
chmod 755 textedit-launcher.sh
and then rightclick it and choose "Open With -> Terminal.app"