I’m joking of course but until Windows 7 came along there was a perceived wisdom that OS X windows management was pretty untouchable and need little or no improvement. In fact I might have mentioned once or twice my love of Expose and how it made using a Mac wonderful compared to Windows. While true, Microsoft really stepped up with Windows 7 and introduced some brand new ways of managing windows particularly around their size and position.
Windows 7 release spawned a number of window management utilities for the Mac. It was hard to keep up with what each tool did and which one actually offered the best features but after a few months of trying various options I’ve settled on Moom from Many Tricks. Moom, so named for those that move and zoom a lot is a $5 app that add’s a lot of functionality. Once installed Moom offers a variety of window management options and one new feature in particular which is very handy.
You access Moom via the keyboard or more commonly by hovering over the green zoom button at the top left of any windows on OS X. Out of the box you can select one of the icons at the top of the Moom window to easily fill the current window to full screen or the top/bottom half of the screen or the left/right half. Most of the time though you want slightly more control. In the grid below the four screen icons you can draw a window size and when you let the mouse go the current window will not only size to what you have just drawn but also pop to that position on the screen. This makes it really easy to deal with lot’s of windows that you want to size quickly.
Dragging the half width/height icons a few pixels—instead of clicking allows you to size windows to quarter size instead of half. While I don’t have a second monitor, Moom also supports easy movement to a second or third monitor while also moving and sizing the window. However you can customise Moom so that your own sizing options are displayed.
You can setup common window sizes and these can be called up via the custom control dropdown as in the above screenshot or via a custom keyboard shortcut. This really gives you easy window management but one new feature added recently is Window Layouts. You organise your window size and positions and save that layout in Moom. Then when you have the applications opened you can easily select the layout and Moom will organise and resize the windows as per your saved layout. I find this really handy for image editing and also for recording the podcast – so easy to get the same repeated window layout quickly without faffing around sizing individual windows. Take a look at this video for a quick demonstration.
So thats Moom. For $5 it’s a bargain. One thing to note is that it’s available on both the Mac App store and from Many Tricks direct. I chose to purchase directly rather than App Store as I’m unsure on the sandboxing proposals from Apple as I can see it restricting app’s like Moom in the future. I might be wrong, but thought it worth mentioning. If you use a lot of app’s day to day on your Mac I really do recommend Moom – it makes managing windows a lot easier.
– Snow Leopard
– Thoughts on install and changes?
– Install was painless – around an hour
– On boot SL asked for ‘System Events.app’ – located in /System/Library/CoreServices/ – pointed to it – never had error again
– Expose update nice
– Click and hold in dock – expose for that app on it’s own
– Works with drag and drop of a file
– Allegedly – doesn’t work for me – drag a file to Textmate, windows pop up in expose mode, drag file – nothing. Drag file from finder to window – success. Buggy?
– Hold down space over a window to zoom to a readable size
– Dock – meus changed, stacks updated to scroll through grids, click on folder to drill within stack view, change yellow minimize behaviour so it shrinks to dock icon instead of it’s own icon on RHS of dock – ctrl click or right click on dock or hold and expose to view
– Quicktime – excellent front end
– Screencasting built in which is simple but won’t replace dedicated screen capture app
– Trim similar to 3GS control – very simple
– Cut out many of the Quicktime Pro controls – bundle Quicktime Pro 7 to soften the blow
– Dumbing down app? Similar to iMovie HD?
– Speed – finder, mail, spotlight
– Big time savings on boot, loading in preview etc. Noticable that on app’s not optimised for Snow Leopard there’s virtually no difference. Should see improvements in 3-6 months?
– 15-20gb of disk space back
– Snow Leopard reports disk size correctly
– In Snow Leopard MacOS 10.6 storage capacity is now reported the way storage vendors specify it: in base 10, not base 2
– New Wake on Demand
– Need 2007 (or newer) AirPort Extreme Base Station or a 2008 (or newer) Time Capsule
– Works over wireless if you have a 2009 Mac
– New soft keyboard – http://www.9to5mac.com/snow-leopard-soft-keyboard
– XL iTablet?
– rumours of 13″ and 15″ tablets in addition to 10″. One of them running OS X
– rumour comes from a “100% reliable” source …. hmmm
– “two touchscreen prototypes…shape of large iphone…in a factory in Shenzuen…one of them running OS X” – claims the source
– could they just be internal prototypes or maybe in future devices??? – Smaller, faster O/S
– Malware scanning tool
– Only detects 2 malwares but can be updated
– Is that why theres a subtle change in latest mac vs pc ad’s from ‘no viruses’ to ‘without thousands of viruses’
– Preview – selecting text easier and markup PDF’s with comments now added
– One for the future, once apps support it, but Mac OS X now has system-wide, user-definable text substitution—see the Text tab of Language & Text in System Preferences.
– Services and automator updated
– Services now application specific
– Use automator, you can create a service
– HDTV ready
– Software compatibility list
– Lot’s of updates yesterday and today – coda, launchbar, superduper, wiretap studio, pathfinder, omni group app’s
– iStat menu’s came out today – lovely app
– Dan Benjamin – Those of you using Adobe Lightroom under Snow Leopard, get info (command-i) and verify that 32-but is *un-checked* for a huge speed boost
– Biggest improvements still to be seen – switch of 3rd party app’s to 64 bit and the increased performance that will bring
– Mail – stops working after a couple of days – shutdown and restart fixes it – may delete accounts and create again
– Flash – older version included so download latest version – http://www.adobe.com/flashplatform/
– Licence and installation
– Needs to be an Intel Mac
– It is an upgrade licence…but you can install from fresh using Snow Leopard without using Leopard disk
– Recommend AppFresh to check your installed app’s and make sure you get up to date software
– 64 bit computing
– Apple app’s are 64 bit – most others aren’t
– Kernel loads in 32 bit for most users, can force 64 by holding down 6 and 4 on boot – can be flaky
– Foundations now in place for dev’s to move to 64 bit
– Leopard could run 64 bit apps but all core were 32
– Half way – next major OS fully 64 bit?
– Proper Review
– John Siracusa – 23 pages, full and factual
– 10.6.1. seeded to testers