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Open Files with Finder's App Switcher

Say you're in the Finder looking at a file and you want to open it with an application that's already running but which doesn't own that particular document. How? Switch to that app and choose File > Open? Too many steps. Choose Open With from the file's contextual menu? Takes too long, and the app might not be listed. Drag the file to the Dock and drop it onto the app's icon? The icon might be hard to find; worse, you might miss.

In Leopard there's a new solution: use the Command-Tab switcher. Yes, the Command-Tab switcher accepts drag-and-drop! The gesture required is a bit tricky. Start dragging the file in the Finder: move the file, but don't let up on the mouse button. With your other hand, press Command-Tab to summon the switcher, and don't let up on the Command key. Drag the file onto the application's icon in the switcher and let go of the mouse. (Now you can let go of the Command key too.) Extra tip: If you switch to the app beforehand, its icon in the Command-Tab switcher will be easy to find; it will be first (or second).

Visit Take Control of Customizing Leopard

 
 

TidBITS Watchlist: Notable Software Updates for 20 June 2011

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MailMate 1.2 -- Freron Software has released MailMate 1.2, the company’s IMAP-only email client for Mac OS X. The new release features a new look and functionality for managing attachments, as well as an improved capability to handle HTML content in messages. Several user interface tweaks, particularly around contextual menus, have also been introduced; finally, the app adds the ability — currently marked as experimental — to compose messages using John Gruber’s popular Markdown format. ($39.95 new, free update, 3.0 MB)

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QuickSilver ß60 -- The popular launcher QuickSilver, which was recently resurrected from what looked like a slow descent into obsolescence, has been updated to version ß60. The new release, which is compatible with only Mac OS X 10.6 Snow Leopard, contains a veritable treasure trove of bug fixes and new additions. Among the highlights, you can now perform searches by file extension, find all the recent documents opened by any app, discover which apps are currently visible, and manipulate text using an improved interface. (Free, 1.6 MB)

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Kindle for Mac 1.5.1 -- Amazon has released version 1.5.1 of its popular Kindle app for Mac OS X. This update includes tweaks to the user interface and built-in dictionary to support the German language, the capability of displaying “real” page numbers for Kindle books that include them, and the capability to view passages that have been highlighted by other Kindle users. The Kindle app now also allows you to consult the built-in dictionary without leaving your book. The update is available through Amazon’s Web site; although the Kindle app can also be downloaded from the Mac App Store, the version there appears to be behind by several releases. (Free, 26.6 MB)

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Fantastical 1.0.1 -- Flexibits has released version 1.0.1 of Fantastical, its calendar-management tool for Mac OS X. The new release includes a number of bug fixes that affect several areas of the app, including the capability to invite attendees to a meeting, setting multiple auto-alarms, and changing locale formatting. In addition, Fantastical now also supports a custom URL scheme, which enables external applications to communicate with it more easily and create calendar entries automatically, and provides tighter integration with Microsoft’s Outlook and Entourage applications. ($19.99 new from Flexibits or from the Mac App Store, free update, 7.9 MB)

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Default Folder X 4.4.1 -- Navigating open and save dialogs will be even easier with St. Clair Software’s release of Default Folder X 4.4, which offers performance enhancements, new features, and improved compatibility with applications. New features include display of favorites even if they’re on unmounted drives, preloading of favorites and recent folders to improve performance, a three-finger swipe gesture to navigate up the folder hierarchy, and focus on the search field when Command-F is pressed. Along with some largely cosmetic bug fixes, Default Folder X 4.4 now works better with Firefox 4, QuarkXPress, REALbasic, Chromium, Brother ControlCenter, Shimo, and Neu. Notably, version 4.4 is compatible with Mac OS X Lion Developer Preview 4, which is good news for full compatibility once Lion finally ships. Version 4.4.1 shipped hard on the heels of 4.4 to fix two key bugs. ($34.95 new, free update, 10.5 MB)

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AirPort Utility 5.5.3 -- There’s likely no urgency in downloading this update, but AirPort Utility 5.5.3 fixes various unspecified bugs, along with one that could cause a crash during setup. Snag a copy next time you’re updating other software unless you need to set up an AirPort base station before then. AirPort Utility 5.5.3 requires Mac OS X 10.5.7 or later. (Free, 10.8 MB)

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iMac Graphic FW Update 2.0 -- Apple has released the iMac Graphic FW Update 2.0 to fix an issue that could in rare cases cause an iMac to hang during startup or while waking from sleep. The firmware update requires Mac OS X 10.6.7, but Apple doesn’t say which iMac models it applies to. Therefore, the easiest approach is to rely on Software Update to present you with the update. As always with firmware updates, be careful not to interrupt the installation process. (Free, 699 KB)

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Typinator 4.4 -- We missed this release a few weeks ago, but Ergonis Software has updated their popular text expansion utility Typinator to version 4.4, adding some welcome features and fixing a number of tweaky bugs. Improvements include control over the volume of the expansion sounds, fine tuning of the Quick Search feature, the Command-F shortcut entering the Search field appropriately, and numeric sorting of abbreviations and expansions that contain numbers. The bugs are all highly specific to different programs, and should improve Typinator’s behavior when used within Coda, Espresso, Sparrow, MessengerPro, FileMaker Pro, Adobe InDesign, Script Debugger, LaTeXiT, Google Chrome, Safari, RStudio, RubyMine, MacVim, iCab, MarsEdit, Photoshop, Editra, Unitron, Adobe Illustrator, and MacGiro. Phew! (€19.99 new, free update, 3.8 MB)

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