How to Use Exposé and Spaces in OS X to Create a Cleaner Workspace

A simple way to buy some time in the OS X environment is to use Exposé and Spaces. Whether it is an attempt to stay organized, keep the screen uncluttered, or access  an open window with ease, these two features offer an number of solutions worth exploring.

So you’re trying to write a term paper on the plethora of alien technologies present in the Stargate SG-1 television series. Two windows of the word processor are open and several pages from informational websites are plastered across the display in inharmonious disarray.

Switching from web page to web page, dragging the original focus aside in order to draft more of your essay, creates a frustrating hassle that can be reduced with the push of a button or swing of the mouse.From the Apple Menu

To enable, access System Preferences by clicking on the Apple at the top left of your screen. In the drop-down menu click System Preferences… and located in the first row of the preferences pane is Exposé and Spaces. There are several options that allow you to control both features the way you want. First, we shall delve into Spaces:

Spaces Prefs

As you can see from the screenshot I have enabled Spaces by checking the box on the left. In the square beneath the check boxes sits the area in which you can decide the number of rows and columns available when Spaces is activated. The more places, the more areas for which to allocate certain applications or whatever windows you may have open at any given time.

Application Assignments; with this part of the preferences, as mentioned above, applications can be assigned upon opening to a Spaces window of your choosing. Simply click the “+” button to add programs and the “-” to delete those that are no longer needed.

At the bottom of this preference window are ways to call upon Spaces and its varous abilities through shortcuts from the keyboard or mouse.

Next, we attend to Exposé. With this feature one is able to toggle all sorts of the computer’s functions through Active Corners and additional keyboard/mouse shortcuts.Expose Prefs

For instance, I have the top right corner of my screen as a hot corner for Spaces. When I drag the cursor to that area, my four Spaces areas automatically appear. From there I can drag windows to spaces other than the main screen in order to clear the clutter as well as put them in a spot a few quick actions away. If hotkeys are more your style, or you have several processes you would like to toggle, this ability is available as well and in the same fashion encountered in Exposé.

Suddenly, with these tools in your hands, the project is not so time consuming. You have become efficient with the input, the task, and the interface. Congratulations, and good luck!

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