Andy Ihnatko on Panther’s Finder

Posted by Pierre Igot in: Macintosh
November 16th, 2003 • 12:11 am

It happens to the best of us… We get used to one way of doing things. Then all of a sudden Apple releases a software update/upgrade that appears to break that functionality.

We fume. We scratch our heads. We cannot believe that Apple could have been so stupid. (At the same time, we do believe it. Otherwise, we wouldn’t be scratching our heads.)

And then we write a column about it.


Contrary to what Andy writes, the toolbar in Panther’s Finder windows is just as customizable as it is in Jaguar. You can still use “Customize Toolbar…” to add various commands. And you can still drag folders or AppleScript scripts to it.

The only difference is that you have to wait a second or so before you drop the folder/script. During that second, the toolbar becomes “editable” and Mac OS X rearranges things in order to indicate what the toolbar will look like with your new item.

Why the delay? Well, probably because, in Jaguar, it was a bit too easy to select a list of 100 files and drag it to a folder icon in the toolbar and then accidentally drop the 100 files next to the folder rather than on the folder.

The consequence of this was dramatic. Mac OS X would attempt to add 100 files to the toolbar. It was not pretty.

Now with this delay the likelihood of the same thing happening in Panther is much reduced.

It’s actually an improvement, Andy.

The only trouble is… why on earth didn’t Apple extend the same logic to the Dock (where there is no such delay and it is still far too easy to accidentally add stuff, especially in the Files & Folders area).

Oh well. 10.4 anyone?

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