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Until iCloud matures enough for Apple to upend the entire OS X file management system, we’re stuck navigating folders and documents much in the same way we have since the early days of the Mac. Spotlight has made it a lot easier to find things, but the whole process still seems antiquated, especially in this post-PC world.
Less a Finder replacement than a dramatic re-imagining of the OS X desktop, Raskin—named after the “Godfather of the Mac,” Jeff Raskin—isn’t for the faint of heart. When launched, Raskin rather obtrusively took over my entire screen with a series of columns representing the various folders in my Finder sidebar. Virtually every file at my disposal was visible—and we’re not talking icons. Raskin shrunk down my documents and media so they were visible at a glance, compressing large files and rendering them on the fly so as not to cripple the rest of my Mac.
The whole array is best controlled through pinching and scrolling—it’s practically made for the Magic Trackpad. And after getting over the initial shock to my system, I quickly acclimated to Raskin’s very real-world way of organizing things. Instead of jumping through a folder hierarchy, I was able to easily locate files by remembering where they were placed, much like the pile of bills in my den.
Raskin is as customizable as the Finder (right down to renaming files, labeling, and sorting), but I missed my old desktop wallpaper; Raskin can only be skinned with a solid color.
The bottom line. Even if you’ve never had a problem with the Finder, Raskin will convince you there’s a better way.
Mac OS 10.6.6 or later
Smart, intuitive interface. Smooth Multi-touch support. Brilliant file navigation.
Doesn't work with wallpaper picture. Confusing for inexperienced users.