Thoughtful, detailed coverage of the Mac, iPhone, and iPad, plus the best-selling Take Control ebooks.

 

 

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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

 
 

Hot Topics in TidBITS Talk/05-May-03

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Not surprisingly, TidBITS Talk exploded last week with discussion of Apple's new iTunes Music Store, iTunes 4, and the new iPods. The lack of support for Mac OS 9 users was a sore spot, as was the lack of international availability, given Apple's poor record with iPhoto books and prints. Some posters expressed hope that the iTunes Music Store would prove a boon to artists, but it's hard to see how right away, given abusive recording contracts. Related to this last topic was a thread about the AAC file format and how it enables Apple's digital rights management. A number of people expressed their dissatisfaction with older iPods not receiving all the software features of the new iPods, though others defended Apple's decision. Lastly, we discussed just how Apple was dealing with the transaction fees for so many small sales, with several people advancing different theories.

Stepping outside the musical hubbub, Dan Frakes's recommendations for better ways to distribute Mac OS X software also generated some discussion, with Dan adding a long followup. The public beta of Nisus Writer Express for Mac OS X was bandied about, and Mac OS X 10.2.5's troubles with USB hubs causing kernel panics remained a source of consternation.

Finally, in the meta-discussions about TidBITS itself, there was a back and forth about our policy of rounding prices in TidBITS for readability, which many people appreciate, but others find inaccurate. We also asked for feedback on a few more content management systems we found interesting - if you're informed about the topic, we'd welcome your opinions as well.

 

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