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Spatiality Redux

Stock up on your embalming fluids. Keep up the good fight.


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The holiday season is approaching. According to some it's already here. It's a time for giving - and receiving. And what do Maccie fanboys want more than anything else?

Why of course! A spatial Finder!

Pursuant to the recent followup discussion of .DS_Store it's time to take a look at the superset of .DS_Store. Spatiality. In all its glory.

For spatiality means more than just getting the same folder up in the same position all the time with the icons placed in the exact same locations. It means that 'file system browsing' per se is a thing of the past.

You can no longer drill down or drill up through the same window. If you right click and select 'Show Package Contents' a new window will open for you. And not only 'will' but 'must' - that's one of the precepts of spatiality. For the people who dare 'think different'.

Browsing Looking through a folder? See a folder icon that captures your imagination? If you double click on it you won't 'go to' that folder in your current window - you'll open a new one.

Now you've got two windows to close.


Arno Gourdol, instigator of .DS_Store, dressed up for the holiday season. He uses the same kit from 31 October to 31 December each year.

The recent fanboy reaction at Ars resulted in an enumeration of just how many .DS_Store files people had in their file systems. Numbers ranged from 97 to 1278.

1278 folders always coming up in the same location. Move your mouse to the green button in the upper left. Close one window. Now proceed to the next window. And the next. You've only 1275 to go.

You still want to do things like this? Fine. Get somebody to write the program for you. Talk to John Siracusa. He's only been going on about this for over seven years now. With nary a line of code written. The current Finder is only a single year older than the onset of his affliction. He should have had ample time. Ask him now - he's probably dying to do it.

And word has it Woz is trying it too - spatiality that is. And that he likes 'haxies'. Oh well.

As far as commenting on haxies, there's no point when others have already done it well enough.

Speaking as the engineer to whom Cocoa developer support incidents were assigned for over a year I would probably recommend that an app do a startup integrity check and immediately exit if APE is found.

Let me be as clear on this as I possibly can be: altering the behavior of sytem frameworks the way that APE does is not supported. It never was supported, and if I know the Cocoa frameworks team (which I do), it never will be supported by Apple.

If an app works without APE and crashes with APE, then it's APE's fault, QED. If you like UI abortions like WindowShade, then use them if you must, but realise that you do so at your own risk. Don't even waste your time submitting a bug report to Apple or anybody other than Unsanity if you haven't confirmed that the bug persists when APE is removed.


Now we're back to the olden days of System 7, Conflict Catcher, misbehaving system extensions, and rebooting with the shift key down to stop all 3rd party extensions from loading.

This is exactly what OS X was intended to eliminate and why APE is such a bad idea.

No offence, Woz. You're a hero in almost everyone's book. But you created a blue box. And then you created a circuit board. And then the Apple.

But you did not create the Macintosh and you did not create the PC either.

More importantly, you did not create the PDP, or the VAX, or System/360, or System/370, or the SPARC workstation.

And so on ad infinitum. They're in a different ballpark, dude.

Automobiles are still horseless carriages. Aeroplanes are still boats with wings. Directories are still folders. For some.

And it's the destiny of some to try to keep the destiny of others on a substandard neural level.

Remember the 1984 Mac ad? Who was sitting and listening to whom speaking on stage?

Think about it. Think different. Ly.

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