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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


Chapter 6 of “Take Control of Your Digital Photos” Available

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Let me be blunt. The entire point of taking control of your digital photos is to find them after the fact — what’s the point of taking photos if you haven’t the foggiest idea where a particular one might be later? And the key for that is metadata, lovely metadata, that you can use when searching. In a previous chapter of his streamed ebook, “Take Control of Your Digital Photos,” Jeff Carlson shared his best practices for importing photos, one of which was to assign metadata at import, to the extent possible. That’s all well and good, but only so much can be done at import, and for metadata that applies to small batches of photos, or even to an individual image, you have to roll up your sleeves and apply it later on.

In Chapter 6, “Assign Keywords and Other Data,” Jeff explains how to choose good keywords and assign them to batches of photos in the four photo-management apps he covers: Lightroom, Aperture, Photoshop Elements, and iPhoto. But he doesn’t stop there, and for each program also provides step-by-step instructions on how to fix incorrect dates and apply geotags from both a geotagged reference photo and a separately recorded tracklog. Finally, he makes the case for why you should forgo one of the seemingly coolest features of modern photo-management programs — facial recognition.

As with Chapter 5, “Judge Your Photos,” Chapter 4, “Best Practices for Importing Photos,” “Chapter 3, “Choose a Photo-Management Application,” and Chapter 2, “Shoot Smarter,” this chapter is available for free, but only to TidBITS members; everyone is welcome to read Chapter 1, “A Smart Approach to Photo Management,” to see where Jeff is headed. The full ebook will be available for purchase by everyone once it’s complete.

Publishing this book in its entirety for TidBITS members as it’s being written is one of the ways we thank TidBITS members for their support. We also hope it encourages those of you who have been reading TidBITS for free for years to help us continue to bring you carefully considered, professionally written and edited articles each week (for more details, see “TidBITS Needs Your Support in 2013: Join Our Membership Program,” 17 December 2012).


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Comments about Chapter 6 of “Take Control of Your Digital Photos” Available
(Comments are closed.)

Rich Shipley  2013-07-29 16:38
Chapter 6 article link is wrong.
Jeff Carlson  An apple icon for a TidBITS Staffer 2013-07-29 16:50
Darn. Thanks! I've fixed the link on the Web.
Adam Engst  An apple icon for a TidBITS Staffer 2013-07-30 07:36
Ach, sorry! That's what I get for reusing a previous article as the template while working late at night before a weekend trip... Sigh.
Jim Ledvinka  2013-07-29 17:47
If we buy a tidbits membership, will that let us eventually have the entire photo book for free in PDF format?
Adam Engst  An apple icon for a TidBITS Staffer 2013-07-30 07:26
Not for free, but TidBITS members can save 30% on all Take Control orders.