My 2 to 3 Mountain Lion Complaints

Discussion in 'OS X Mountain Lion (10.8)' started by swingerofbirch, Aug 24, 2012.

  1. swingerofbirch macrumors 68040

    Oct 24, 2003
    The Amalgamated States of Central North America
    I just got a new MacBook Pro 13" that has Mountain Lion pre-installed. I am new to Mountain Lion, but in no way new to Macs.

    I considered posting 3 separate threads, but I figured this would be better.

    The QuickTime X Recording Problem

    My biggest complaint is about QuickTime X. I use QuickTime X to record video files with the built-in camera, sometimes up to several hours long. On my older MacBook Pro, I believe the maximum resolution of the camera was 640x480 and selecting "Medium" (320x240) from QuickTime resulted in reasonable file sizes. I accidentally left a recording going once for 13 hours, and the final file was only 1.1 GB. The files in Lion saved directly to the Movies folder or any other folder you chose. The file was continually saved to that location: it served as both a temp folder and final destination. The good part about this was that if QuickTime crashed, the file that had been recorded up to that point still worked. This was an improvement in Lion (the previous QuickTime versions recorded to a folder inaccessible to most people who don't know where to look, and if QuickTime crashed, that temp file was unusable).

    Mountain Lion made QuickTime recording unecessarily confusing and far less functional. I created a 40-minute video at the Medium setting, which given my new FaceTime HD is 640x480. I understand that will increase the file size, but I wish Apple gave the option to record in 320x240 still. However, it doesn't account for why a 40-minute recording was almost 2 GB in size. As I said, in Lion a 320x240 recording for 13 hours was only 1.1 GB. Still, maybe that is somehow explainable.

    Here's what's inexplicable. Instead of recording to the folder that you select (Movies or another folder), it records to a document auto-save folder (also not accessible unless you know where to look). Even once you stop the recording, the file doesn't move to the location you pick. It stays in this weird limbo in the auto-save folder. The resulting video appears in a window in QuickTime but in no user-accessible part of the Finder.

    Strangely, instead of being called Movie Recording, the window title changes to Untitled (though with no dark dot in the middle of the red close button like all other Untitled documents). There's an icon in the title bar of the window you can drag like any other titlebar icon. Drag it to the desktop, for example, or the dock. Go to "show original item," and it will take you to the obscure Auto-Save folder. However, if you save it (I'll get to how to do that), that alias is then toast: it says the file cannot be found.

    As a slight aside, this same odd behavior is present in other Mountain Lion apps like TextEdit. Create an Untitled document. It will have a title bar icon. In previous versions title bar icons only showed up when there was an actual file the user could interact with, not a representation of a temp file, and for good reason: The user might drag an alias of that icon somewhere, then save the file, and the alias no longer works. I can't see any reason for Untitled files to have titlebar icons the user can interact with.

    So, onto the lack of ability to save the now-created QuickTime file. So, after recording and stopping the recording, you have an Untitled window with your recording. But it's not saved in the folder you selected. It's not saved anywhere visible to the user in the Finder. It's essentially an Untitled document, and that's how QuickTime treats it. Even stranger, Command-S results in a beep that it can't be saved. There is no file->save. However, clicking the red close button (which as no tell-tale dark dot) invokes a window that asks:

    Do you want to save the changes made to the document “Untitled”?

    That doesn't make sense: I haven't made changes; I've made a movie that was already supposed to be saved, but OK! To save, you need to try closing the window. A problem with this is that you don't get the nice auto-time-stamping you did when QuickTime previously saved the file as it was created.

    Once invoking this method of saving, it lets you select the format. One of the formats is "Movie." The description for Movie says, "Save a movie file that contains media in the same format as the original movie." So basically, the resulting file should be identical to the file you thought had already been saved.

    However, it then goes about "exporting" the video, which in my experience took 40 minutes on a brand new 2.9 GHZ MacBook Pro. Why would it take any time to take a movie from its original format and simply move it to the correct folder?

    Now, lest you think I'm simply complaining about a new-fangled way of doing things, here is verbatim from the built-in Help menu in QuickTime X how recording and saving a recorded video should work:

    "3. To start recording, click the Record button at the bottom of the window.
    To stop recording, click the Record button again.
    4. The movie you just recorded appears in a QuickTime movie window. The movie is automatically saved in the Movies folder, inside your home folder."

    This is exactly how it did work in every version of QuickTime that could record video up until Mountain Lion. I'm honestly not sure whether the new way is a "feature" and the documentation hasn't been updated, or if the new way is a bug. I hope it's the latter.

    The It-Takes-Forever-To-Save in TextEdit Problem

    I'm probably unusual in this, but I, in rapid-fire fashion, open a lot of Untitled TextEdit documents when I'm in class. I take notes in each one, and for whatever reason, I feel like I need a blank slate for new ideas. It works for me. I have always done this, and in Snow Leopard, I could quickly save all these files by quitting TextEdit. It would ask me if I wanted to save the files. I would create a folder with the date of the class, and then just hit the "Return" key repeatedly. This in effect allowed to me to save about 50 documents in less than 30 seconds. It resulted in a folder of 50 untitled documents. But it worked for me: I could use QuickLook in the Finder to find the right document in seconds.

    Lion made this a bit worse. If you quit TextEdit, it didn't ask you to save anything. It just quit. You had to command-W each file to get it to ask you to save it.

    Mountain Lion took my productivity with this to a whole new low. The default save location for every Untitled document is iCloud. That's annoying, but, oh well. So, when you hit command-W (to achieve close-this-window but ask-me-to-save-it-first), you need (if you're me) to switch the location from iCloud to your preferred folder. This takes a few clicks. That is bearable.

    But here's where it gets really bad: for each of the following 50 documents, you have to do the EXACT same thing. TextEdit has no respect for the last location you used to save a document. It ALWAYS defaults back to iCloud. In any other version of TextEdit, the last saved folder would be where TextEdit would default to saving a file, which is how I was able to save 50 untitled documents into a folder of my choosing in less than 30 seconds.

    Why is Apple forcing iCloud upon us like this? People know how to use a file-sytem. They've been doing it almost 30 years. Senior citizens know how! I'm not even asking for iCloud not to be the initial default save location. But why does it have to be the default location after you've already selected a different folder?

    The The Third Thing

    So the two first ones were: QuickTime X and TextEdit saving. The big third one mixed into both of those is the treatment of title-bar icons in Untitled Documents. I couldn't really save it for a third heading because it's mixed into both of the previous issues, and I've already discussed it. Title bar icons for Untitled documents don't make sense.

    The Take-Home
    I guess what annoys me is how obvious these issues are. It's like walking into a house: You might walk in and be a nit-picky person who examines the baseboards. And that's not what I am doing. I am walking into the house and can't turn on the faucet.

    That's how it was with Lion and now with Mountain Lion. I feel more and more like the engineers at Apple aren't testing these things, and I honestly would love to talk to them. I want to help them help me.
  2. hafr macrumors 68030

    Sep 21, 2011
    alt+cmd+w to close all open windows, shift+cmd+d to quick-shift save to-location to desktop, shift+cmd+o for Documents.

    Not perfect, but at least it might facilitate your workflow somewhat.
  3. swingerofbirch thread starter macrumors 68040

    Oct 24, 2003
    The Amalgamated States of Central North America
    Thank you very much. Those are great shortcuts to know. And I really appreciate that you read my thread. Sometimes I have a difficult time being brief.

    I actually discovered something just now that helps even more, and it's pretty obvious now, but before I didn't know it was possible: I turned off iCloud documents and data.

    So, now when I open TextEdit, it doesn't by default save Untitled documents to iCloud, and when you save (if you go to General under Preferences and turn on Ask to save changes when closing documents AND Close windows when quitting an application) I was able to exactly duplicate the workflow I had under Snow Leopard.

    So, now all I need to conquer is QuickTime. I actually called and tried to speak to someone in OS X engineering, and I don't think I actually got to that department, but I sent someone an e-mail who is supposed to try to forward it on somewhere. So, perhaps there is hope with those issues as well.

    Thanks, again.

Share This Page