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The Launchpad

The Launchpad

The Launchpad, modeled after the iPad Home page, is a full-screen grid of icons for your applications. You can open it quickly by clicking the Launchpad icon in the Dock, and you can browse through the pages of applications using multi-touch gestures.

The Mac App Store works with the Launchpad seamlessly too. When you install a new application from the Mac Apps Store, the store automatically adds an icon for the new application to the Launchpad.

In the demonstration of the Launchpad, Craig Federighi created what he called a “Productivity folder” by dragging one icon on top of another icon. Lion automatically named the folder “Productivity.” The term “Productivity folder” was not defined, leaving some unanswered questions in my mind. For example, is every folder you create called Productivity? Can you rename the folder? What makes a folder a “Productivity” folder? Are there other types of folders?

It’s not clear at this time if the Launchpad is a reflection of the Applications folder or if it somehow is able to show all the applications installed anywhere on the Mac. Federighi said it is a “super-convenient way to launch all the apps you have on your Mac,” but my guess is that the Launchpad reflects only the Applications folder, and you can still install applications in other folders. This would continue to enable user accounts to have programs that are accessible only to them.

Mission Control

The feature called Mission Control brings full screen apps, Expose, Spaces, and the Dashboard (whose icon has been removed from the Dock) together in one place to provide you with access to everything that’s running on your Mac. Mission Control displays with a simple swipe, and you can get to anything you see on Mission Control with just one click.

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