Saturday, December 01, 2007

A preview feature

Here's another feature in Mac OS X Leopard, I discovered it by accident: if you have a file (or folder) highlighted in Finder, hit the space bar, and a huge preview will appear. This is neat because you can navigate a lot of files with the arrow keys and instantly get a full-sized preview of any kind of file, picture, text, Word, PDF, etc. And you don't have to have the app open. (And even if you do, opening a file in an app takes longer.)

This is not the same as coverflow, and may be more useful, because the files are not covering each other.

If you select more than one file and hit the space bar, you will get a slide show which you can leaf through with the arrow keys. I can really use this.

Update: in the interest of balance, I should also report that Leopard is less stable on my Mac Pro than Tiger was. Tiger very rarely crashed, Leopard so far has crashed at least once a week, mostly when I wake up the machine. Poor show.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Sounds very handy. I think they call it Quick Look. Microsoft has something similar, though not as nice, called simply "preview".

Apple makes a lot of fuzz about this, how great it is to not have to open the document just to see what's inside. But in a truly object oriented operating system the user would never have to "open" anything anyway. Nor launch "apps" or pay attention to file types.

So what Apple has done is first screw up their architecture by continuing the age old monolithic app/file model. And then when it's apparent that it isn't working, they try to patch things up by adding new features (= complications) such as this, in order to allow the user to get at their data faster.

This kind of lazy thinking is specifically how MS-Windows ended up such a gigantic mess. Let's hope Apple realises that where they are currently headed with OS X is a dead end, and adjusts their course before its too late.