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HappyJoe

Mac window resizing

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HappyJoe    0

Can anyone tell me why the Mac window can only be resized using that little tag on the bottom right? Has it some occult significance or is it just an early design choice that Apple forgot to rectify?

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Apple Geek    15

I don't really think that it has any significance or that Apple "forgot to rectify" it. It is just the way they want it to be done. Kind of like the Menus for different applications being on the top of the screen, instead of in the application window itself. Or the close, minimize, and zoom buttons being on the left side of the application window instead of the right. There are a few things that are just different on a Mac. I'm not trying to sound mean, just trying to explain. (Maybe there is a significant reason but I've never heard of one).

 

Apple Geek

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Neil    0

Ya, as far as I know, the Mac OS has always handled window resizing only through one corner. It actually starts to make sense after a while, when you look at the user interface differences between Mac OS and Windows. MS Windows' windows have always have this 'border' or 'frame' around the entire window, it's thin, but it's almost always there. Mac apps (especially newer ones) are usually flush to the edge of the window and have nothing between it and the rest of your screen. A good example is the Dictionary app, where the left, bottom, and right sides of the window have no border; it is either a scrollbar or part of the definition display. In theory, there should be nothing to grab on too. Adding the ability to resize the window at the top would be inconsistent and unconventional.

 

In my mind, this is similar as to why Macs have, in the past, only shipped with one button mice: it promotes developers to avoid context menus as the primary way to interact with an application. Whenever you shove functions of an application into a context menu, and no where else (which is how most Windows programs handle it) it then becomes a hidden function that either requires the user to figure it out or you must provide some tutorial, help file, or hints as to what you can do. Don't get me wrong, context menus (or right click menus as some people call them) are immensely useful and can increase productivity once you know about them. The hard fact is, most "average" computer users (like my parents) have no idea what the right click is and ideally, they never should have to know.

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HappyJoe    0

Thanks for your responses. Only after posting this did I actually look a bit deeper into this!

 

There are two heresies that make me reach for my pyre matches: one is that 'evolution' is progress and a reaching towards perfection. It's not. It's changes that have occurred (or been made) that have fixed a problem enough for the (animal, software, car) to survive enough for the moment. Another problem, another change (if it's lucky). The other heresy is that all features/characteristics/actions always have a deeper purpose. Seeing a picture of the Virgin Mary in a strangely marked potato, that an apocalyptic message is in the final track of a rock album, etc.

 

Though Apple have a good record of HI research and design, I don't think that the window resizing is a result of it, since having actually Googled some research to my own question. Looking at the 1985 Macs, my guess is that it arose out of the constraints of their tiny screens (8"??) - every pixel of screen space was at a premium - and not bothering to crit the Xerox Palo Alto WIMP interface they copied which had the same little tag. Even the almost-concurrent GEM and Motif UIs had more means of resizing! Also, being v1.0 of a whole new paradigm means it's easy to not get it right first time. And it's stayed, even though it's silly.

 

It's never been questioned enough by the users. The growing droves of switchers who have known better controls might start complaining soon.

 

Or maybe Apple still worries that the MS lawyers will call...?

 

That's my take on it. Maybe we could start making noises that Our Steve will listen to. The silliness of the one-button mouse has been consigned to history...

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andyeb    0

I think it's just an aesthetic thing - those resizing borders around all windows on PCs are just ugly :lol:

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In truth I never even noticed it before you pointed it out.

 

I always have every application in full screen mode and just swipe between them in "Spaces". So I never need to resize the applications. But if I did want to i would like to have at least the option of a little boarder around my apps to resize from all for sides and all four corners. because on a large 24" display moving ALL the way down to the little "resize" tab and back to where ever you where gets to be a bit of a pain and a time waster.

 

anyways I'm not complaining.

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Dolphbucs    2
It's never been questioned enough by the users. The growing droves of switchers who have known better controls might start complaining soon.

 

Just a few observations from someone ( me ) who was once a rabid Windows user who now uses Macs almost exclusively.

 

1) I do quite a bit of "user computer help" including having helped the pro photographers at the last 3 Olympic Games and I have noticed that most computer users never even resize windows except for using the "minimize" or "maximize" buttons ( on either Windows or OS X ) ... and many of those that I have observed actually manually resizing in Windows tend to use the corner method as opposed to trying to get the mouse to find the exact point on each window side where the cursor changes to the crosshairs which allow you to resize. As such I don't understand how Windows controls can be deemed "better".

 

2) The reason ( IMHO ) it may never have really been "questioned" is that users of OS X actually prefer the controls as they are. OS X has been around since 2001 .... if window resizing tools were that much of an issue to Mac users there would have been an uproar by now. Case in point, when Leopard was released there was a huge outcry about the way stacks worked .... and Apple fixed it.

 

3) I really don't understand the tendency of some switchers to want to make OS X behave like Windows. If you prefer Windows, fine .... nothing wrong with that ... just stick with a PC or, if you prefer Apple Hardware, run Windows on the Mac, but please don't try to change things that longtime Mac users are used to. You don't ( or shouldn't ) move to France and wonder why it is not more like New York ... unless of course you never truly wanted to experience something new but rather wanted to change or eliminate everything different.

Edited by Dolphbucs

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Dolphbucs    2
... because on a large 24" display moving ALL the way down to the little "resize" tab and back to where ever you where gets to be a bit of a pain and a time waster.

 

That has never been an issue for me ..... I always set the tracking speed of my mouse to max .... that way moving the pointer to any spot on your screen is much less of a chore.

 

If you haven't tried that before, give it a shot.

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That has never been an issue for me ..... I always set the tracking speed of my mouse to max .... that way moving the pointer to any spot on your screen is much less of a chore.

 

If you haven't tried that before, give it a shot.

 

Your absolutely right. In ernest I was speaking out of theory and not so much experience because as iI mentioned before; my apps are always in full screen mode. but yes, you are right and that would be a great way to speed up the process.

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