What's the deal with minimizing windows on a Mac?

Discussion in 'macOS' started by bpetruzzo, Jul 14, 2009.

  1. bpetruzzo macrumors regular

    Oct 22, 2005
    For the life of me I can't figure out why this feature is still here. I've been searching for ways people use it, but I can't really find much. Any time I need to clear things, I just hide them. The only thing I can come up with is in the event that someone wants to hide just one of an application's window.

    But also, it seems inefficient. There's a keyboard shortcut to minimize windows, but there doesn't seem to be one to bring it back. Most of the time, it's just annoying because I accidentally click it.

    So, if I may ask, how do you use the minimize function if at all?
  2. MacDawg macrumors Core


    Mar 20, 2004
    "Between the Hedges"
    I use it to minimize windows when I need to

    Woof, Woof - Dawg [​IMG]
  3. martynmc7 macrumors regular

    Dec 30, 2008
    Different strokes for different folks.

    Some people will prefer minimising a windows so it's still physically on the desktop rather than hiding the window.
  4. Shake 'n' Bake macrumors 68020

    Shake 'n' Bake

    Mar 2, 2009
    I minimize my Safari window because when I was new to Macs I didn't know about the hide thing. I usually have just one Safari window open that takes up my whole screen.

    I don't usually minimize more than one window to the Dock at a time. The rest I let run free on my desktop.
  5. upinflames900 macrumors 6502a


    May 20, 2009
    If you have multiple safari windows open it works to minimize one of them while you are working on another.
  6. Shake 'n' Bake macrumors 68020

    Shake 'n' Bake

    Mar 2, 2009
    I know that, but I just don't like to do that. If I've got more than one Safari window open it is more like three or four.

    I don't like the way the Dock feels cluttered when I minimize too many windows to it.
  7. FSMBP macrumors 68020


    Jan 22, 2009
    If I hide Safari, I may forget about having a window open.

    I minimize pages that contain videos/intense graphics and let them load. It would be great that if in the minimized state they would update the icon.

    Anyways, minimizing is useful for some and it is dumb that Apple doesn't have a command to bring back the window.
  8. mrchinchilla macrumors 6502


    Mar 6, 2009
    Well, you can't send key shortcut commands to an inactive application. And when you click it to make it active, it brings back the attributive window anyway. If there's more than one window to the same application and it's the active one, clicking the icon won't do anything.. That's quite annoying, but if there were shortcuts to bring back individual windows, that would be tedious.
  9. FSMBP macrumors 68020


    Jan 22, 2009
    Yeah I was just being picky.

    Hopefully, Snow Leopard's minimization technique (where it hides minimized windows essentially) will be updated to show the minimized window behind the applications icon in the dock (ex. the original stack icon view)
  10. Richard1028 macrumors 68000

    Jan 8, 2009
    You just answered your own question.
  11. mslide macrumors 6502a

    Sep 17, 2007
    This is the only reason I ever minimize a window, and it's rare at that. Usually, I hide windows using the keyboard shortcut and use command-tab to bring them back when I need them. I hate minimizing windows because I need to use the mouse to bring them back.
  12. Cinder6 macrumors 6502


    Jul 9, 2009
    When I use Photoshop, I often have multiple images open. It's nice to be able to minimize the ones I'm not working on, so as to unclutter the screen. I wouldn't want to be able to hide individual windows, because it's nice having the icon there in the dock.

    Working with multiple images in Photoshop on Windows can be annoying, because of the way MDI (doesn't) work.
  13. madog macrumors 65816


    Nov 25, 2004
    Korova Milkbar
    Expose, hiding, and minimizing. At least you have options.
  14. bpetruzzo thread starter macrumors regular

    Oct 22, 2005
    It doesn't seem like it would be too much trouble to make a command-tab type system for minimized windows. I would almost definitely use it then. I often want minimize a single window from an application, but I hate having to move my hand back over to the mouse.
  15. Tomorrow macrumors 604


    Mar 2, 2008
    Always a day away
    I have a button on my mouse mapped to double-click, so I generally double-click the window title bar to minimize. It's faster than navigating to the button.
  16. TuffLuffJimmy macrumors G3


    Apr 6, 2007
    Portland, OR

    and I'm with you OP, I never minimize windows unless I'm playing with the shift slow motion feature. Ever since Exposé, tabs and Spaces I've never really found a situation where I wanted to minimize a window.

    For all you clutterbugs out there go download Spirited Away. It's a tiny menubar application that tracks all your apps and hides them after X* amount of time that they aren't the focus.

    *specified by the user.
  17. bpetruzzo thread starter macrumors regular

    Oct 22, 2005
    That app is definitely pretty cool. I'm gonna see if it fits my workflow.
  18. DaveF macrumors 6502a

    Aug 29, 2007
    Minimize isn't the problem per se. It's minimize plus the poorly designed Dock.

    I dare say, the original NeXTSTEP did it right: minimize created neatly ordered rows of icons along the bottom of the screen without interfering with the Dock at all.

    Minimize as OS X has done it screws up muscle memory, by moving "fixed" icons around in the Dock, and hindering access to commonly used items. It also confounds the Dock metaphor: do Apps go there or Files? Or Windows? Or Dialogs?

    Minimize + Dock = Mess
  19. jmann macrumors 604


    Dec 8, 2007
    bump on a log in a hole in the bottom of the sea
    I never minimize anything or use hide. I just use exposé and make sure to keep it simple by closing the windows I don't really NEED open.


    Attached Files:

  20. Shake 'n' Bake macrumors 68020

    Shake 'n' Bake

    Mar 2, 2009

    What's wrong with it? I like it because I never have to resize a window to fit a website. And I grew up on Windows; we always has IE in fullscreen.
  21. miles01110 macrumors Core


    Jul 24, 2006
    The Ivory Tower (I'm not coming down)
    Check out Witch.
  22. bpetruzzo thread starter macrumors regular

    Oct 22, 2005
    That app is sick! That's exactly the kind of functionality that should be built into OSX.

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