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10.7: Change the background effect in Launchpad Desktop
Launchpad uses a blurred version of your Desktop image for its background. Hitting Command+B while in Launchpad cycles through the original image, the blurred one, a black and white version and a blurred black and white version.

[crarko adds: A couple of people mentioned this. I don't necessarily see much use for it, but apparently one of the Launchpad developers thought it was a nice touch.]
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10.7: Change the background effect in Launchpad | 6 comments | Create New Account
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10.7: Change the background effect in Launchpad
Authored by: pwsloss on Sep 21, '11 07:45:10AM

The reason for sticking with the original (blurred background) image, or its blurred, black-and-white version, must be that the Launchpad icons become hard to see against a lot of possible background images. My rotating iPhoto choices make some icons almost vanish if I select the full-color, hi-res images. The default is blurry on purpose.



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10.7: Change the background effect in Launchpad
Authored by: mchagers on Sep 21, '11 08:35:53AM
[crarko adds: A couple of people mentioned this. I don't necessarily see much use for it, but apparently one of the Launchpad developers thought it was a nice touch.]
Most likely the team couldn't decide on what format to use, so they built in an easy mechanism to switch between the various options, to help them decide. Nice to leave it in in the release version though.

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Not fully black and white
Authored by: hughescr on Sep 21, '11 01:14:41PM

Those "black and white" backgrounds aren't actually fully black and white. They're just very very heavily desaturated. There is a tiny amount of saturation still in there though. Nice way of solving the problem of contrasting icons against an unpredictably-colored background, especially when combined with the blur effect.



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Not fully black and white
Authored by: joelseph on Sep 21, '11 02:56:55PM

I was noticing the very same thing after reading this hint but wasn't sure if it was for real or if i was just imagining things... there is a teensy bit of saturation left in the pic even on the b/w setting.



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10.7: Change the background effect in Launchpad
Authored by: Sigma on Sep 21, '11 11:53:09PM

Interesting that it doesn't adhere to the correct key bindings for the "Dvorak + Qwerty Commands" keyboard layout. Only other applications I know that has trouble with this are adobe's crap.



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10.7: Change the background effect in Launchpad
Authored by: Lri on Aug 14, '12 02:42:44AM

The shortcut was changed to control-option-command-B on Mountain Lion.

You can change the background style permanently with for example defaults write com.apple.dock springboard-background-filter -int 3; killall Dock.

  • 0: no blur
  • 1: large radius blur (default)
  • 2: monochrome, no blur
  • 3: monochrome, large radius blur
  • 4: small radius blur

You can also change the blur radius. defaults write com.apple.dock springboard-blur-radius -float 200 would set it to 200 pixels when not using a HiDPI mode.



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