For those of you who have already made the plunge into Mac OS 10.5, and those wanting to, you may have seen "Spaces" advertised. Let me recap, Spaces is a "Virtual Desktop", to steal a phrase from the Linux community, it allows you to virtually hide what's on your desktop with out it minimizing to the dock or hiding the application.
Ok, so why would you want to do that? Well, some applications tend to take up the screen real estate, or even worst take over the entire screen. You may still need to use these applications but now you have a "clean" way to handle it.
I have PhotoShop set up to always open in space 2 and Parallels Desktop to always open in space 4. Both can take up a lot of screen space, and as for Parallels Desktop, I set it to full screen.
Working with spaces can sometimes be challenging. For example if you are working in space 2 and click on a URL. Safari, or your browser of choice, will launch. This is assuming it was not running already. So now Safari will be running and visible in space 2. Now if you already had Mail open in space 1, and you click on a mailTo link in Safari, your screen will slide to the right and you will now see Mail.
Sounds simple enough, however if you tend to get really busy, you will see your screen sliding from space to space as you switch applications. After a while you may forget where that stupid window is that you just had up. Believe me, it will happen. Ok, so can you arrange your spaces after everything is messed up? YES!
There are a few ways to do this.
- Open system preferences and click on Expose and Spaces button. Then click on the Spaces tab. From here you can see what applications are open and what space they occupy. BTW: this is also where you can set the space for an application to open into.
- Launch the Spaces application found in the Application Folder. This will open up and show a mini version of your spaces you can then drag the top most window from one space to another. PRetty handy if you need to regroup some applications.
- If you know what space you want to move an application to, simply click and hold a window for that application and then use the ctrl-<space number> keystroke and it will move that application to the numbered space. Example take an application from space 3 and move it to space 1 you would type ctrl-1 while clicking on the application you want to move.