6 Replies Latest reply: May 11, 2015 5:23 PM by Barney-15E
miz_mdk Level 1 Level 1

This didn't used to happen. One of the reasons I like column view is because you can easily see  a range of folder levels. This makes it easy to see what you have and navigate around,  especially when dragging and dropping files and folders. At least it used to. At some point, maybe with the change from Leopard to Snow Leopard, Finder started jumping into the next column when you click on a folder, instead of letting you just look at the contents of the folder with a single click and moving columns with a double click..


This means you can't just look into a folder and see what's there, and you can't see all of the parent folder[s] and their contents simultaneously, which negates the main benefit of column view. You have to do something with whatever you click on. You have to click and drag the column divider, or scroll sideways, or click and drag the window margin, click back on the parent folder etc to come back and see the big picture - a lot of finagling around just to see what it used to be easy to see.


It looks to me like this happens if I have the the finder window narrowed so I can see another window at the same time, and am in columns that I have widened so I can see longer file names. I am on an 11" Macbook Air and have to do a lot of jockeying around to size windows so I can see more than one at once to compare files, copy information from one window into a document in a different application, etc. (I wish Apple would make it possible to "bring all to front" all windows, even if they belong to different applications - one feature where Mac is inferior to Windows in my book: why can't Apple have cascade or tile windows like Windows does?). There are millions of people with small laptops and netbooks today, but many programs and websites, and aspects of operating systems are not set up to accomodate their dimensions adequately.


If you have the window a little wider and it jumps to the column you clicked on, it seems like it will move back to the parent folder after a slight lag if you just wait, but it's long enough and jerky enough to distract me from my train of thought. It also will jump from right to left if you are in a folder and click on another folder in the parent column, so that then you can only see the contents of that folder. If you double click on the column divider to autofit the file/folder names, it adds a lot of extra space to the right to all the columns, which initiates the drastic jumping behavior where you can only see one column.If you want to drag a file up several levels, it's very slow moving laterally; you have to wait quite a while at the inside edge of the column - in exactly the right place or it won't go.


Part of what's annoying and distracting is that it jumps so suddenly that it is very unpleasant as a visual/sensory expenence. Another part of it is that there's nothing you can do about it. Does anyone else have a problem with this? I have tried to explain it to several Apple people (sorry, they're not all "geniuses" no matter what their title} and none of them seem to understand what it is that bothers me and what I want.

MacBook Air, Mac OS X (10.7.3)
  • Barney-15E Level 8 Level 8

    When you select something in Column view, the item selected must be shown, along with its contents. The selection is the active window. If you don't have the window wide enough to view both, it will scroll. That is how column view is supposed to work.


    List view (without an arrangement set) will not set the selection as the active window and you can disclose each subfolder as you wish without it changing focus.


    To understand what I mean by the "active window," watch the title of the window as you select subfolders. In List view, the title stays on where you started. In Column view, the title changes to reflect that the contents of the window are the selected folder.

  • miz_mdk Level 1 Level 1

    Thank you for taking the time to respond to my question. I understand what you're saying, but I'm afraid I don't accept it.  "The item selected must be shown, along with its contents."   Why "must" it? Why is it "supposed to" work this way, if it interferes with the user experience and function?  Why isn't there an option to disable this behavior? Why is it that it didn't used to do this in older OS's, if this is how it is "supposed to" and "must" operate? Before I had my Macbook Air, I had a 12" ibook for 5 years - the screen was no wider than this, just taller, and I didn't have a problem with Finder doing this until, like I said, maybe Snow Leopard.  Why not give me the option of scrolling or not, instead of the system doing it automatically? And it doesn't "scroll," it  jumps, which is unpleasant and distracting.  This is not in keeping with Steve Jobs' emphasis on the quality of the user's experience, in my opinion.


    I know Apple liimits user choices to keep things simple, but lately I don't think they are necessarily making good choices, maybe because Steve Jobs wasn't able to keep his hand in everything, and now, of course, is gone. By the way, I went to Reed College, where he went to college and hung out for a while, and studied calligraphy and dance with the same teachers he did, all of which he said was a big influence on him. I think I have some idea where he was coming from. Reed is not a place where you just accept things without questioning them. If Steve Jobs had had the attitude that "this is how it's supposed to be, just live with it", Apple would never have made it past the tough times to the position of dominance in the marketplace that it now occupies if he had had that attitude.


    I am hoping that some techie out there will have a trick that will enable me to disable this feature - It happens more often than not when I go looking on forums. If not, I am disappointed, but you never know until you ask..


    Thanks again for your time and attention to my question.

  • bzoooty Level 1 Level 1

    I agree with you entirely, miz_mdk. The "in columns" view is not intuitive. Personally, I would much prefer the view not to "jump" (or move at all, really).

  • Dvanetc Level 1 Level 1

    I have been frustrated by this behavior as well and finally looked for discussions on the subject. What I haven't seen discussed yet is how frustrating it is to click on a parent folder with the intention of renaming it. This has always been done by clicking once, with a slight pause, and clicking again to activate the text in the folder name. The **** thing scrolls to the folder content column and the parent folder is inaccessable for the second click. I'm forced to finagle the window size / column widths back and forth EVERY TIME I want to rename a file.


    Amazed this behavior hasn't been complained about more over the last year or more it's been around. (%$#!)



  • februar Level 1 Level 1

    Apple needs to fix this annoying jumping of the column view.  It should be in Finder Preferences.  It should happen now.

  • Barney-15E Level 8 Level 8

    Im not sure why you resurrected this ancient thread, but development on Lion ceased years ago. Nothing will be fixed, ever.