Phil Hassey - game dev blog
Phil Hassey as Syndrome
"Look, stores don't sell
costumes like this to just anyone."

OS X Inconsistent File Picker UI

Well, I’m still quite enjoying my Macbook.  The biggest complaint I’ve got so far is the inconsistency of the file pickers.  These are things where my wife has said, “This isn’t working, look.”  And low-and-behold, due to some coder out there being too smart for their own good, have broken the file picker in various unusual ways.

  • When uploading a file to a website, the file picker that pops up does not let you navigate into your iPhoto Library.  The only way to get a picture out of it appears to be to open up iPhoto and drag a picture from iPhoto onto the Browse button on the website.
  • When changing your desktop background, accessing your iPhoto Library requires clicking on the little arrow to the left of the words “iPhoto Library” .. The whole word should be clickable.
  • My wife was confused by this and didn’t click the arrow and gave up.  Instead she tried last night’s work-a-round and loaded up iPhoto and tried dragging pictures from iPhoto into the “Pictures Folder” area.  This didn’t work.
  • Since we have 10,000 some odd pictures, the mini iPhoto Library browser that appears when you click the arrow is pretty much useless.  Especially how it removes the year from the listing.  So the only reasonable way we could figure to get a background picture chosen was to open the Finder and attempt to drag pictures from iPhoto onto the Pictures folder.  Talk about taking the long way.
  • When selecting a photo in the Finder and then pressing Delete, it doesn’t do anything.
So it seems there are at least 3 sorts of file pickers in OS X that I’ve seen so far.  They don’t work consistently.  As my father-in-law says, “They (Macs) are better than computers used to be, but they still aren’t any good for dummies like me.”

One Response to “OS X Inconsistent File Picker UI”

  1. Rob Says:

    One thing that iPhoto and iTunes offer is the reveal or show-in-finder command. Usually when I want to do something like this – I run iPhoto, find the pic I want, right click and select “Show File”. It then pops to the Finder with that file highlighted. You can then drag that file into a file picker dialog.

    I didn’t know you could pick photos from the iPhoto lib using the wallpaper config dialog.. I always kept a second folder for wallpapers and cloned pics into it, and just left the desktop background set to cycle amongst everything in that folder.