App of the Week – Easily Control your Mac’s Windows via Keyboard Shortcuts with Spectacle
In the past, I’ve written about BetterTouchTool and Swapp, both great window management utilities for your Mac. However, I’ve recently found an app that does everything window management wise both can do, and it’s free!
Platform Availability: Mac OS X 10.6 and up
Cost: It’s free! Download it here!
What it is: A window management utility that allows you to assign keyboard shortcuts to make apps fill up the full screen, left half, right half, etc. a la Windows 7.
What it Does: Spectacle comes pre-loaded with its own set of keyboard shortcuts, but you can also set your own. It’s a very simple application, with just a preferences menu to assign the keyboard shortcuts to its different functions
Features: Window Snapping – Just like BetterTouchTool, Spectacle allows you to quickly and easily make your windows take up the entire, left half, or right half of the screen with a keyboard shortcut. No more fumbling with the mouse to move windows into the right place!
Switching Windows Between Displays – Just like Swapp, Spectacle lets you easily shift windows from one monitor to the other. Obviously only useful if you run a multi-monitor setup, but it’s so much more convenient to instantly switch windows over instead of having to drag them with the mouse.
Quarter Window Snapping – For those of you who really need to absorb more than two windows worth of information at once, Spectacle allows you to easily snap windows to take up just a fourth of the screen.
The Competition: Spectacle replaces the window snapping and shifting functionality of both BetterTouchTool and Swapp. I keep BetterTouchTool around for its track pad features, but Spectacle essentially replaces Swapp. Really, there’s only one utility that compares.
Moom – $4.99 – Mac OS X 10.6.6 and Up
Why the Featured App is Best: Moom gives you even more control over the size of the snap grid your window conforms to, and you can access this interface with your mouse via the green circle button in the upper left corner of each window. However, Moom is overkill for many users, and why pay five bucks for something when there’s a free alternative that works pretty much just as well?
Summary: If you hate manually dragging windows to make them the size you desire or moving them over to your other monitor as much as I do, Spectacle will be an invaluable. Like so many other Apps of the Week, it’s free, so what do you have to lose? Check it out, and let me know what you think!
What do you think of Spectacle? Is it more than good enough? Or is the competition actually better? Let us know in the comments!