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Mc Apple Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
Is there a way to have MacOS close programs by pressing the "x" on the upper right of any window instead of having to close it through the task bar menu? All OS's have that ability.

A1181, Mac OS X (10.6), Black MacBook
  • rkaufmann87 Level 8 Level 8 (49,925 points)
    Not that I'm aware of however if you just use Command Q that will quit any program and is quicker than using a mouse.

    Regards,

    Roger
  • thomas_r. Level 7 Level 7 (30,460 points)
    Is there a way to have MacOS close programs by pressing the "x" on the upper right of any window instead of having to close it through the task bar menu?


    That is dependent on the individual app. In the Mac OS, there is a very clear differentiation between "application" and "document," a boundary that is blurred on Windows due to the poor choice of window-based menus. When you close a window in a typical document-oriented application, you are just closing the document. I hate the way many Windows apps assume that I'm done with the app just because I closed the document!

    Just get in the habit of learning key shortcuts - command-Q in this case. That's quicker than hitting a button on the screen anyway.

    All OS's have that ability.


    Clearly a false statement.
  • Terence Devlin Level 10 Level 10 (134,550 points)
    Is there a way to have MacOS close programs by pressing the "x" on the upper right of any window instead of having to close it through the task bar menu?


    The simple answer is no.

    By way of explanation: just because I've finished, say, writing a letter doesn’t mean I'm finished with the Word Processor. So why should it quit just because I close the window.

    The rule of thumb is: can I do anything without a window in that app? If I can then it doesn't quit when the window closes. So, finish one letter, close the Window and go command - n and open a new window, (or File -> New) and write another. So, iTunes will continue to play music even though you've closed the window, Photoshop remains open even though I've edited that photo, waiting for the next one.

    If, on the other hand, there's nothing can do in the app without a Window, then it Quits. So, iPhoto, Aperture and SytemPreferences all quit when you close the Window.

    It's one of the differences between Windows and Macs. Like having a Menu Bar independent of the Window and so on.

    Regards

    TD
  • The hatter Level 9 Level 9 (60,850 points)
    Having used Mac for two decades, and Windows 7 and Vista for two years, I much prefer the "lack" of having to quit/exit - and just close the window(s). From curiosity to appreciation and a more flavorful and robust and friendly interfac (the difference in dialogue and what you can do, see, and view options are even more so).

    I use my mouse programmed buttons to close a Window or tab. However, the driver for mouse doesn't offer as many options and shortcuts as I like when in Mac OS. I feft stymied by lack of features and support by my old OS.

    Command + Q does get rid of all the open windows and the application. The Dock has emulated and caught up to Vista/7 though it seems cluttered and has sub-menu for some features but does let you access document windows. No "peak", and no "x" to see AND close the window.

    Launching an app is so fast that I don't see the need to worry if it is closed or left running.
  • R C-R Level 6 Level 6 (16,690 points)
    Mc Apple wrote:
    Is there a way to have MacOS close programs by pressing the "x" on the upper right of any window instead of having to close it through the task bar menu?


    As has already been discussed to some extent, 'closing a program' makes no sense in the Mac OS X user environment. In OS X, you don't "close" programs, you close windows that belong to programs (also known as applications, or apps for short). If the app can support more than one window at a time (& most do) closing a window would not & should not cause the app to quit, (the closest analog to the Window OS's 'close program' function) unless there are no other windows open belonging to that application.

    Once you start thinking in a window-oriented way when using OS X, I think it will become obvious why it works this way.

    Ironically, the OS named "Windows" can't do this because its choice of a graphics user interface (GUI) with each window having its own menu bar (partially the historic result of Microsoft trying to avoid infringing on Apple's GUI patents when it attempted to copy the original Mac OS) made this impractical & awkward.

    BTW, there is no red 'x" in the upper right of OS X windows. The close widget is the red dot on the upper left.
  • Mc Apple Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Thank you all for the insight. It makes sense.
    And yeah, the "x" is on the upper left, sorry.
  • R C-R Level 6 Level 6 (16,690 points)
    The hatter wrote:
    Launching an app is so fast that I don't see the need to worry if it is closed or left running.


    LOL! Apparently you don't use PhotoShop or any of the several other apps that require extensive initialization on startup.

    And personally, I find the Windows 'the app is the window' metaphor a strained, clumsy one in comparison to the OS X 'the document is the window' one. This is especially true for several Windows apps (& some OS X apps that strive for cross-platform uniformity) that I must regularly use that for some stupid design reason claim all the screen real estate they can, as if the only option was a full screen one & users never wanted to layer & arrange windows to see more than one app at a time.

    I suspect that if Apple had been willing to license the original Mac OS to Microsoft & MS didn't have to work around Apple's patents to create its competing OS in the first place, we never would have seen the Windows GUI or the one-menu-bar-per-window space-wasting interface element to begin with.
  • baltwo Level 9 Level 9 (61,995 points)
    …the "x" is on the upper left, sorry.


    Clarification: the red close button only shows the "x" (and the yellow minimize to Dock and green minimize/maximize buttons, the "-" and "+" signs, respectively) when you hover the mouse cursor over any of them. Most people miss that little tidbit and wonder which x you're talking about.
  • R C-R Level 6 Level 6 (16,690 points)
    BTW, on the general issue of a friendly & efficient user interface, you can gain a lot of insight with what is right & wrong with any of them by referring to AskTog: First Principles of Interaction Design.

    "Tog" is Bruce Tognazzini, the UI design guru that among other things literally wrote the book (The Apple Human Interface Guidelines) in 1978 -- 7 years before Windows hit the market -- that many consider to be the first & maybe still the best attempt at comprehensively codifying the abstract principles of good GUI design. IOW, he isn't just another guy with an opinion; his bonafides speak for themselves.

    While the tone of +First Principles+ is scholarly & somewhat abstract (IOW, boring unless you are really into such things), it is worth at least a glance just to see how frequently UI's ignore sound design principles, if not why. In particular, check out the comments about Fitts' Law & its relevance to menu placement. Even OS X has ignored this at times, but Windows pretty much thumbs it nose at the whole concept, & always has.

    OTOH, maybe this is part of why the iPad is considered such a potentially disruptive product. Its implementation of touchscreen technology pretty much reduces the time to "acquire" the target to the minimum possible.
  • R C-R Level 6 Level 6 (16,690 points)
    Most people miss that little tidbit and wonder which x you're talking about.


    And some of us with old eyes can't really see those little symbols very well, especially when the hovering pointer partially obscures them. It is not one of the better design elements of the OS X interface.
  • baltwo Level 9 Level 9 (61,995 points)
    And for those who are interested, here's the latest Human Interface Guidelines, updated 20 Aug 09 to reflect Snow Leopard's changes, especially WRT to stacks and white on black backgrounds that mimic the toys implementation.
  • R C-R Level 6 Level 6 (16,690 points)
    If you are really interested in the nuances of UI design, take Tog's Quiz Designed to Give You Fitts. (Don't cheat, or at least ponder the questions a bit before scrolling down to the answers.)

    The answers, & what they reveal about the subtle intricacies of the best GUI designs, are far from obvious. Tog pulls no punches about what he thinks is wrong with the OS X GUI, as well as the Windows one, & it is hard to argue with that. In particular, notice what he says about how the hierarchical menus differ in the old Mac OS vs. OS X or Windows. (I knew the old way was quicker & easier to use, but I didn't know why until I read this.)
  • baltwo Level 9 Level 9 (61,995 points)
    Thanks, I'll do that tomorrow. Tonight, Stanley Cup playoffs beckons.
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