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Mac 101: Finder Slideshows

Did you know that you could create a full-screen interactive slideshow just by selecting items in Finder? Finder's built-in slideshows are one of OS X's most fabulous but also most overlooked features. All you have to do is select a bunch of images, control-click (or right-click) your selection and choose Slideshow from the pop-up contextual menu. OS X clears your screen (or screens if you're running on more than one monitor) and begin its presentation.

You have full control over how the slides play back. For example, you can pause, rewind or skip forward by using the interactive controller at the bottom of the slideshow screen. As in QuickTime's full-screen mode, this controller disappears after a few moments and can be brought back by jiggling your mouse. From left to right, the controls let you go back (left arrow), pause (pause/play indicators), go forward (right arrow), switch to an index sheet presentation (four rectangles), toggle between full-screen and actual size presentation (square with arrows pointing out or in), import images into iPhoto (photo with camera) and leave the slideshow (circle with embedded "x").

The index screen presentation allows you to skip between images. Just click the image you want to jump to. The display of your slides scale depending on the number of pictures in your slideshow. If you have just a few pictures, the images are large. If you have, say, 90-odd slides, the images shrink quite a bit. Moving your mouse to any slide causes the file name to appear for that image.

In this article: iPhoto, Slideshows

Erica Sadun holds a PhD in Computer Science from the Georgia Institute of Technology. She has written, co-written, and contributed to dozens of books about technology, particularly in the areas of programming and digital media. An unrepentant geek, Sadun has never met a gadget she didn't need. Her checkered past includes run-ins with NeXT, Newton, and a vast myriad of both successful and unsuccessful technologies. When not writing, she and her geek husband parent three adorable geeks-in-training, who regard their parents with restrained bemusement.