Tuesday, November 04, 2003

It's the Exposé of Exposé!

AppleInsider updates today with this new report claiming that Apple is developing "Virtual Desktops" for upcoming versions of OS X.

Virtual Desktops is a window management feature. Think Exposé meets fast user switching. All your open windows right now would be contained in one desktop, and then you could have another desktop for different windows, and so on. According to AI's info it would be implemented as a sort of über-Exposé feature.

It even seems that Apple has inserted some of the code for Virtual Desktops in Panther's current Exposé system. By editing a specific string in Terminal (AI has the complete instructions in their report), the F11 key will trigger all the current windows to minimize into a thumbnail on the desktop, rather than sending the windows off the side of the screen. Currently, this only acts as an alternative to the regular F11 action, and it doesn't support multiple desktops (AI also reports that it's also buggy).

If Apple is really developing this feature (and it seems fairly possible), it might not see an official release until OS 10.4 next year. While Apple could probably have it ready to go sooner, they might want to wait and make a big deal out of it next year (you know, to justify us spending another $129).

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