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Speed dock and Finder window interaction Desktop
I found a trick in Mac OS X to speed up window minimize and expand operations, and speed up general dock usage. For most users, the dock is almost always filled up. When the dock reaches the edge of the screen and another item is added, the dock's contents shrink to allocate room for the item. However, this scale operation can be quite taxing at times, even on a G4.

I found that if I make my dock 6 to 7 "ticks" smaller than the maximum, it is usually enough extra room to accommodate more dock items without having to scale the current items. The speed improvement is really noticeable, and makes using even a sometimes processor-intensive "genie effect" to shrink and expand dock items much more bearable.

[Editor's note: I don't use the dock in this manner (I'm hopelessly addicted to "hide" as opposed to "minimize"), but it does make sense -- the scaling operation can take some time, especially if you have a large number of items in your dock.]
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Speed dock and Finder window interaction | 4 comments | Create New Account
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Dock too big perhaps ?
Authored by: little_dude on Apr 08, '02 04:23:29AM

I really fail to see how a dock can be practical with so many items in it... There's little or no organisation.

My dock has only 5 'fixed' items : finder, mail, IE, Codewarrior and dragthing. Offcourse as I launch more apps they appear too, but this way, my dock is a switching tool between running apps, not between 'to be launched apps'. I don't know how many apps you have running, but I think apple (or someone else) should implement a feature to remove apps from the dock that you don't need to switch to very often (or at all). I use ASM and applictionswitcher for app switching, and dragthing + fruitmenu for launching. As for the genie efect : it's a stupid system because minimizing into te dock loses the location of your windows. This means that to 'unminimize' you'll ALWAYS hate to move the mouse down, click and move back. I use minimize a lot in codewarrior to quickly hide a window, peek in an underrlying one for simple info, and go back to the minimized one. With the minimize in dock effect, I went insane. Unsanity's windowshade saved my life here.

Yeah, I think you can safely say that the dock needs a lot of work... IMHO, the dock is a really rotten piece of software, just written to show off the graphics coolness to PC wienies. Apple missed a HUGE opportunity with the dock to make something totally revolutionary. That aside, OSX rocks offcourse.



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Dock too big perhaps ?
Authored by: osxpounder on Apr 08, '02 02:03:05PM

"This means that to 'unminimize' you'll ALWAYS hate to move the mouse down, click and move back. I use minimize a lot in codewarrior to quickly hide a window, peek in an underrlying one for simple info, and go back to the minimized one. With the minimize in dock effect, I went insane."

Well, it's a new OS, with new & different behaviors, to be sure. I largely agree with your gripes about the Dock, and, in the interest of speed and convenience, I tend to avoid reaching for the mouse if I can. Here are some suggestions, for you and others, that might help you as they have helped me:

1] turn on "Full Keyboard Access" in the Keyboard panel of System Prefs. I prefer to set "Use Control with:" to the Letter keys, so that I can use CTRL-D to go to the Dock, and use the arrow keys to pick out the icons in Dock. Since few Mac apps use the CTRL key for any command combos, and since 'd' for Dock is easy to remember, I find this really convenient.

2] don't minimize. You can use CMD-Tab and CMD-SHIFT Tab to switch among programs without minimizing them OR touching the mouse.

3] *Some* apps [the 'well-behaved' OSX ones, I believe] will let you use CMD-H to "Hide" the app. Some apps, however, have already assigned this key combo to something else. If you use hint 1], above, and enable Full Keyboard Access, you can do something similar to this, instead:

a] CTRL-M [or whatever *you* set as preference in Full Keyboard Access] to activate the app's menu bar.
b] choose "Hide [program name]" from the Application menu [the one with the app's name].

That's more keyboarding than I bother with, tho, so unless I find that an app refuses to "Hide" [hint 3], then I go with hint 2] and use the Tab key combos.

And of course I always have Full Keyboard Access enabled. Hope this helps.



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Dock too big perhaps ?
Authored by: aranor on Apr 09, '02 11:00:16PM

Oh. A lot of programs will also support Cmd-` as a way to switch winows, even if it isn't documented anywhere. Very useful.



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Dock too big perhaps ?
Authored by: dschep on Apr 08, '02 05:16:03PM

my dock has almost any app i use in it, i keep it organized with .app folders or normal folders with tramsperent icons as separators.

schep :)



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