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Feb. 13th, 2008 @ 09:14 am spaces madness
Hey, OS X 10.5.2 turns spaces into something useful. See this hint to enable, or just do this:

defaults write com.apple.Dock workspaces-auto-swoosh -bool NO
killall Dock


I haven't used it this way long enough to be sure there aren't a bunch of new maddening edge cases, but what I consider to be the critical usage pattern is now possible when it wasn't before. That is: individual spaces devoted to particular tasks. I can have a couple firefox windows open in one space and a couple different ones open in another space, and from within those spaces cycling through the firefox windows will only hit the local ones. If you cmd-tab to an application that has no window open in your current space, only the menu bar will switch; you won't leave your current space and its windows won't come to you.

I think what I'd really like is a cmd-tab equivalent that's local to the current space. Right now if I have A, B, and C open in space 1, D, E, and F in space two, and G, H, and I in space three, cmd-tab gives me nine applications to sift through regardless of where I am.

The ultimate abstraction ought to allow for each space to feel like a fully independent machine, except when you want otherwise. I think it'll have to be thought out much more comprehensively before we get there. Is there any good reason that screen sharing shouldn't be interface-unified with spaces? I want to switch to space three and be looking at another machine in full-screen mode in its native resolution, then switch to space four and be in parallels running linux, again full screen, then back to one. My new desktop will have 32 GB of ram someday and I'm going to emulate half a dozen operating systems full-time just because. Help me out here, apple.
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From:steeltoe
Date:February 13th, 2008 06:26 pm (UTC)
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Neat! Halfway to full functionality! Are there any hacks to make each monitor on a dueal headed display be spaces independent?
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From:extempore
Date:February 13th, 2008 06:37 pm (UTC)
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I don't know, but any minute now (fedex tracking says "on vehicle for delivery" about my new mac pro) I will have my first ever multiple monitor setup and will therefore take a greatly increased interest in the answer to your question.
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From:steeltoe
Date:February 13th, 2008 06:55 pm (UTC)
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Be warned, once you have multiple monitors, it is hard to go back to one lonely pathetic screen.
From:darse
Date:February 16th, 2008 01:14 pm (UTC)
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Thanks for the tip. Spaces is very useful, but the flipping around drives me a little batty at times -- it should work more like multiple screens in X. I agree with the tipster that Spaces should separate projects, not apps, and most of my projects use common work apps, like Firefox and Aquamacs.

I have a full-screen of Spaces running Windoze on VMware Fusion, which is very nice. Fusion is wicked fast on my top-end Mac Pro (way faster than Parallels, and it was also way easier to install -- Parallels gave me no end of grief until i finally punted it). I had read and heard that both were very good, but in my experience Fusion >> Parallels in every way.
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From:extempore
Date:February 16th, 2008 08:49 pm (UTC)
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Parallels kicked the ass of vmware all over the place when it first came out, but I've heard more than once those positions have reversed. I don't know because, so happily, I don't have to. I haven't had a need for windows since whenever the last time I posted about parallels was.