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Monday's Mac Gadget
by John F. Braun

Want Souped-Up Application Switching? Check Out LiteSwitch X!
June 9th, 2003

LiteSwitch X 2.0 ($14.95 Trialware)
Proteron LLC

One of the few features that the Mac OS has borrowed from Windows is the keyboard-driven application switching via the keyboard. The Control-Tab combination used in Windows is mirrored in Mac OS X via the Command-Tab combination. Combined with a visible Dock, this is a quick way to move among the various application that you may be running, but you may not want to use valuable screen real estate to perform this function. If only there was another option...

LiteSwitch X offers an application switcher that does way more than the switching built into OS X, and helps you save screen real estate to boot. When you activate LiteSwitch X by hitting Command-Tab, a translucent windows appears in the middle of your screen, showing all running applications. Holding down Command and hitting Tab will advance you to the next application. But here's where LiteSwitch starts to shine. If you don't like Command-Tab, you can choose from several alternatives. Good news to those who may want to use the right side of their keyboard instead of the left.

You Can Make Program Icons Large, Or Small

You aren't confined to the center of the screen. Just use your cursor, and you can drag the LiteSwitch X window up or down, though it will always stay centered. And if you don't like the size of the icons, just grab the white bar at the bottom of the window, and you can resize the window to make the icons tiny, huge, or anything in between. If you don't like the look of the LiteSwitch X window, you can also change the color, as well as the transparency level.

There are also other features, including numerous special keys, window layering options, and an application exclusion list, so specific applications won't appear in the window. There's also an OS 9 version, for those that haven't yet made the switch to X.

So take your application switching beyond anything Mac OS X or Windows has to offer, and try LiteSwitch X today!

Have any other applications that supercharge Mac OS X? Send John an e-mail and he'll groove on it.

Monday's Mac Gadget is here to help you with those cool things that we all just have to have on our Macs. Shareware, Freeware, Postcardware, Emailware, and even commercial apps, Monday's Mac Gadget is here to help you find and use the best of these programs.

John is a software engineer who works in the corporate R&D group of a Fortune 500 company, focusing on all aspects of communications technology. He has several degrees that claim he knows what he's doing when it comes to computers. After watching co-workers reinstall Windows, search for device drivers, and experience other horrors during the day, he's glad that he comes home to a Mac (compatible) computer. Have any comments, suggestions, or favorite Gadgets? Drop John a line at

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