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The Ultimate Guide for switching from a PC to a Mac
(Part 2 - coming soon)

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Zooming in without the cursor!

This is a great tip submitted by Freeze (tip is originally from MacWorld.com): Zooming in without the cursor! I talked about the possibility of zooming in on what is on your screen with "Ctrl - Scroll". It is particularly useful when watching a small web embedded video. It does stretch the pixel and you lose quality, but you still keep enough quality for it to be very useful. What I find annoying about it though is that as you zoom, the cursor also gets bigger. You cannot move it on the side, because moving it will move the whole image. It has to be centered in the middle of your video. There is a workaround however.

1st possibility: Before zooming in, after pressing play, click in the address bar. Zoom in and once you are at the right spot, press the left or right arrow. Being in the text box, the cursor will disappear. It will instantly come back as soon as you move the mouse though.

2nd possibility: After zooming in and pressing play, center the video and press "Command - Shift - 4" as though you are taking a screenshot. The cursor will turn into a crosshair so that you can select what you want to take in the screenshot. Because it is in screenshot mode, you can now move the mouse to the side and get rid of that centered cursor. You basically never take the screenshot, because when the video is over, you just have to hit "Esc" to get out of the screenshot mode.

Thanks for the great tip Freeze and MacWorld.com!

Edit: There is actually an even easier way! It was posted by Mike in the comments. When you are zoomed in, just press F8 (or FN-F8 on a Laptop) and the cursor will disappear immediately. Thanks for that Mike!

14 Comments:

Blogger Jimmy said...

You can also get the cursor out of the picture (or at least to the side) by going to System Preferences>Keyboard & Mouse>Mouse>Options(at the lower left for OS 10.4). Here, you can select how the mouse/screen moves when you move the mouse.

September 12, 2007 at 8:52 PM  
Blogger Chris said...

I submitted that first half of the tip in august and it never got posted. I don't care about credit I was just saying.

September 12, 2007 at 8:58 PM  
Blogger Mike said...

Or you can hold down the fn and push F8 and the cursor will disappear. When you move the mouse, the cursor will reappear.

September 12, 2007 at 8:59 PM  
Blogger MacGeek said...

Chris: Sorry about that. It is sometimes hard to keep up with the quantity of email I receive.

September 12, 2007 at 9:08 PM  
Blogger MacGeek said...

Mike: Thanks for that. I added it to the post. It is great.

September 12, 2007 at 9:15 PM  
Blogger Oliver said...

I'm already using this technique and find it quite useful. One thing that annoys me about it, however, is that the whole screen zooms in. Is there a way of using the mouse to zoom in within the window/application you're currently in? I would like to keep everything outside the current window in the same spot so I have access to all the menus, scrollbars etc. This would be particularly handy whilst using Office.

September 12, 2007 at 10:38 PM  
Blogger Jannick said...

Actually the tip about Fn+F8 doesn't work with my notebook, instead it works just fine by hitting backspace which I have been using for quite a while now.
It seems to be the same effect as you describe with the mouse curser disappearing and then reappearing instantly after moving the mouse curser.

September 12, 2007 at 11:47 PM  
Blogger Ludwig said...

jannick is right, at least on my macbook.
Maybe you could add that to your post, too, because it provides an easy way to hide the cursor on both desktops and mobiles, and thus obsoletes the actual tips ;-)

Ludwig

September 13, 2007 at 3:25 AM  
Blogger Awesome said...

To add to the backspace tip for removing the cursor, you can can change the behaviour of the cursor when in zoomed mode to only move the zoomed image when the cursor hits the edge of the screen, rather than the default mode of following the cursor.

The options are in System Preferences>Universal Access>Zoom>Options.
At the bottom of this pane, there are there options under:
"When zoomed in, the screen image moves"

I just leave it as the default setting and use the backspace to get rid of the large cursor.

Speaking of large cursors, it's fun to mess with your friend's or colleague's Mac by making the cursor comedically large in System Preferences>Universal Access>Mouse and Trackpad>Cursor Size.
Of course, when I say 'fun' I mean it in the loosest sense.

September 13, 2007 at 3:51 AM  
Blogger sri2097 said...

After zooming in (to the desired level), hitting Esc also hides the cursor...

September 13, 2007 at 5:58 AM  
Blogger Aleksi said...

Negative screen: cmd+alt+ctrl+8

Thats so cool!!!

September 13, 2007 at 4:24 PM  
Blogger Bob said...

Personally, if I zoom into a youtube movie, I usually click on the outside of the movie (anywhere that's not a link on the page) then, zoom into the movie. Now, if I hit the up_arrow, it will move the screen up (which it can't) and get rid of the cursor.

MacTipper

September 13, 2007 at 8:38 PM  
Blogger Jake said...

How do you zoom in just an application - like i Word??

In the PC version of Office - pressing ctrl and scrolling zooms the window - (e..g. 100% to 125% etc.) but I haven't been able to figure out how to do this on the Mac

September 14, 2007 at 12:50 AM  
Blogger Andrew said...

Hitting tab also works.

October 2, 2007 at 3:30 PM  

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