Mac OS X Dock Positions

I did a quick poll on Twitter the other day – asking where people have their Docks positioned. I have had my dock on the left side for a long time, auto-hiding with magnification turned on. Turns out that is not the best place for me – not by a long shot. I don’t have some over arching point – some random insight – into where you should position your dock. No, I just am fascinated by somethings I found out.

I spent a little bit of time moving the dock around and decided that for me this is what works best:

  • Position dock on left.
  • Use ‘Secrets’ to enable Dock pinning to ‘End’ (this puts the dock on the left edge – coming up from the bottom).
  • Magnification off.
  • Hiding on.

Why the left edge? The only thing I can think of is that being left handed the left edge feels most natural for me.

Why at the bottom and not centered? I used to have it centered for a long time – the problem I always ran into is that I keep Tweetie on the left side and when I go to switch ‘tabs’ I often would pop open the dock. This is no longer a problem when I have it coming up from the bottom as I keep Tweetie pretty high on the screen.

Dude why no magnification? Again I used to have magnification on all the time – I am a huge fan of the way it looks. When I pinned the dock to the bottom magnification would push off the bottom icons as I moved my mouse over the dock. Those icons could still be clicked on, but it made the entire experience, look, and feel wrong. I turned off magnification and I must say I love it this way because:

  • You get fixed targets: no moving and dodging stuff.
  • It looks and feels very clean and fast.
  • Truly feels like ‘pro’ mode to me.

Hiding…? I don’t know why you wouldn’t hide your dock. Sure it takes a half a tick for it to pop up on screen, but not having icon badges distract you is well worth that extra tick.

I wondered how many others use a similar setup – turns out that isn’t many. Take a look at the results of a small Twitter survey:

Position:

Screen shot 2010-12-20 at 9.07.28 AM.png

Magnification:

Screen shot 2010-12-20 at 9.06.12 AM.png

Hiding:

Screen shot 2010-12-20 at 9.05.40 AM.png

Of Note

What really interests me – more than anything else – is just how many people don’t use magnification. My only guess is that because it is off by default, most don’t see the need for it.

Originally posted for members on: December 20, 2010
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