Windows to Mac keystroke mapping - a quick guide In spite of all this attention there was one key stroke combination group that I missed and it didn't get to me until very recently: the behavior of the Page Up and Page Down keys. This is different than the behavior on a Mac. Even when doing this the behavior is different: Windows and Ubuntu keep the cursor position in the same place relative to the window as you scroll down; Mac places the cursor in the middle of the screen.
Many times lately I've found myself paging up and down in a large code file in TextMate , then I'll automatically hit the Down Arrow to just move down a little and since that action moves the view back to the cursor I'm usually back at the top of my document. Frankly I think Apple got this one wrong; it should be the other way around with the Option modifier being used to only scroll the screen.
It is of course too late now to change it and I am working to commit this keystroke combination to muscle memory, however if anyone knows the rationale behind this design choice I'd love to hear it. Mac Switching to Mac. Why don't you change the shortcuts into the ones you prefer in the keyboard preference pane?
January 13, at AM. David Alison said…. Bluejade: Normally I don't care for remapping keys; I'd prefer to use the system defaults whenever possible, hence my query on why Apple thought this was a good idea. Paul Russo said…. There is a reason for the behavior that you dislike: range selection. Range Selection - a primer in case some readers are not familiar with this. Range selection allows you to select a block of data by selecting the first end of the block then shift clicking on the other end of data.
Everything in between the start and the end is selected. For example, in a word processor, a sentence can be selected by clicking on the beginning of the sentence then shift clicking on the end of the sentence. This can be a bit easier than clicking and dragging to select the sentence. Range selection is generic, as are most things on a Mac.
Range selection extends to larger blocks of data. For example, in a word processor, click on the beginning of a chapter, then scroll down and click on the end of the chapter to select the entire chapter. This can be a lot easier and more efficient than clicking and dragging to select a large block of data like a chapter.
The Windows scrolling that you are familiar with, breaks range selection because it moves the cursor when it scrolls. The only way for range selection to extend generically to large blocks of data, is for scrolling to change the view, but not change the position of the cursor. Because range selection is broken on Windows, selecting a block of data requires a click and drag down the window. For large blocks of data, it forces the user to click at the beginning of the data, then drag down to select the whole block of data.
The Windows scrolling behavior causes the selection of large blocks of data to be both tiring and time consuming. The behavior that you dislike is an example of how Microsoft copied obvious Mac functionality, but missed the subtlety of function that makes a Mac consistent and understandable.
is there a "page down" key?
These little subtle details are what makes a Mac a Mac, what differentiates a Mac from Windows. These details are the soul of a Mac. Maybe a bit off topic: Microsoft's breaking of range selection for large blocks of data, is an example of how Microsoft copied the Mac but didn't understand the subtlety of a Mac, the thing that makes a Mac consistent, easier to use, and understandable.
I contend that Microsoft did not understand these things because Microsoft never cared at all. This may be the reason why Mac zealots hated Windows so much, even if most of those zealots could not specifically verbalize why they felt such hatred. January 13, at PM. David: Sorry, my bad for suggesting it.
How to Page Up & Page Down on Mac Keyboards
Though I am using Tiger I don't thing it is different in Leopard :. Gryzor said…. In Mac, I cannot seem to replicate this functionality. Any tips? Ast A.
Moore said…. In Safari and other non-editable documents, i. Preview hit the Space bar to scroll down a page. Hit Shift—Space bar to go up a page. I've been using Mac for six months and still miss some of the useful shortcuts available in WIndows.
How to use Page Down and Page Up on a Mac?
Jeff said…. Paul Russo: Range selection works fine in Windows; if I move to the beginning of a block of text say the start of a document , then hold down the shift key to begin selecting text just like Mac , then my selection extends down with my screen changes. I do not have to grab the mouse in order to do that.
It is no different than the behavior I get on my Mac. This is purely an issue of what action actually moves the cursor position. To use the example you cited, open Text Edit with a large block of text that extends several screens down on your Mac. Move the cursor to the very top of the document, hold down the shift key to begin selecting data and then Page Down a time or two. The cursor though not visible has moved to the end of that selection.
Go Page Up and Page Down on Mac
If you release the Shift key and start navigating around in your document at that point the cursor is placed at the end of the selection. This is actually a bit of a conflict in my opinion. The way Mac handle data selection actually reinforces my view.
I understand the MS hatred thing but there are going to be times that MS gets things right and Apple does not. This, though ridiculously trivial, is one of them. It's adding the shift key that triggers the selection behavior. Believe it or not. It's removing the option key that stops the whole word selection behavior.
David - That's something that I never figured out on Windows. Thanks for the correction. I'm a 17 year Mac veteran. In my mind the purpose of a modifier key is to modify a single action key press, click. Holding down a modifier while performing a drag-like action is completely foreign to me.
On a Mac I do range selection this way: 1. Place the cursor at the beginning of the desired block 2. Scroll down to find my desired end spot. Press [shift] and click the desired end spot. I haven't done a range selection on Windows recently. Now I know! January 14, at PM. While I love my MacBook, I haven't done much heavy-duty editing on it yet, and hadn't yet found this as an issue. My loathing increases almost daily I found it interesting that just before reading this blog, I was in the midst of editing a massive, repetitive document, and when making large selections, it was crucial that I had it selected correctly.
After reading this post, I was wishing yet again that my employer would allow Macs January 18, at PM. Betsy said…. I was googling this topic two keys for page down in OS X and came across this discussion. Be prepared for bluntness. I was also hoping to find a fix that would allow one-handed page downs no jokes, please ; Having to use two fingers when reading multi page documents on the Mac is a pain the behind - OK? I work with a PC at work and switch to Powerbk at home. I am not an expert on things computer by any means. And I shouldn't have to have third party software to make a key do what it says on it.
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Daily I work with some of the poorest written software for PCs, requiring mindless numbers of stupid keystrokes. But the inefficient key commands of the Mac I describe are built in to the hardware. But there are reasonable people asking the "why? Forgive me for being blasphemous. It strikes me as more of a stubborn need to not give in than any adherence to some "Mac Philosophy of Simplicity". Maybe Jobs has money invested in Carpal Tunnel treatment?
Perhaps it's time for Apple to admit that like the two button mouse some PC shortcuts are simply more efficient for editing and navigation? Liz awaiting the flames. Is there a modifier? This is driving me nuts. Works fine on windows if I want to jump to the end or beginning of a url in the browser address bar. If you find that this does not work on your command-line, keep in mind that your shell may just not know what to do with those command, but all those key sequences work pretty well in VIM editor. For you to tell your shell how to interpret them, you either need to create a matching custom termcap entry, or use an existing one with a lot of matching capability.