iMovie 3.0.3 Improves Performance, Finally -- Shortly after releasing QuickTime 6.3 last week (details later in this issue), Apple also made iMovie 3.0.3 available as a free update. As iMovie is built on QuickTime technology, one of its main improvements is better audio and video synchronization when exporting movies to QuickTime format. iMovie 3.0.3 also feels significantly more responsive, a welcome change, and now includes an option to enable or disable the Ken Burns Effect; previously, the pan-and-zoom effect was applied to all still pictures imported into iMovie. Only hinted at in Apple's description of the update is the capability to crop photos using the Ken Burns Effect: Option-click the Finish radio button to apply the same zoom setting as the Start state. (This also avoids an annoying glitch where still photos would experience pixel shifts if the Start and Finish states were slightly different.) Another welcome change is a preference option for specifying that new projects be set to NTSC or PAL format. Although this update doesn't fix all outstanding issues with iMovie 3 - for example, users still report frequent crashes - iMovie 3.0.3 represents significant improvement. The updater is a 12.1 MB download; a full installer is also available as an 82.3 MB download. iMovie 3.0.3 requires Mac OS X 10.1.5 or later and QuickTime 6.3; 256 MB or more of RAM is recommended. [JLC]
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).
- iMovie 3 Tips and Gotchas (15 Sep 03)
Published in TidBITS 683.
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