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2.3. Selecting Icons

To highlight a single icon in preparation for printing, opening, duplicating, or deleting, click the icon once with the mouse. (In a list or column view, as described in Chapter 1, you can also click on any visible piece of information about that file—its size, kind, date modified, and so on.) The icon darkens, and its name turns blue (or whichever color you've chosen, as described in Section 8.11).

Sidebar 3. Long and Short File Names

Hey, what's the deal with long file names? I thought this was the big deal in Mac OS X! But I tried saving an AppleWorks document, and it didn't let me use more than 31 letters!

It's true that you can assign a very long name to a file in the Finder. But you may soon discover that pre-Mac OS X programs, and even programs that have been rewritten (Carbonized) to run in Mac OS X, still limit you to 31 letters when naming a new document in the Save As dialog box.

Over time, software companies may get with the program and rejigger their software to overcome this anachronistic glitch. For now, though, all is not lost.

Even though you can use only 31 letters when saving a new document from, say, AppleWorks or Internet Explorer, you're welcome to rename the file in the Finder, using all 256 characters Mac OS X permits. When you reopen the document in the original program, you'll see an abbreviated name in the title bar (a file that, at the desktop, is called My Visit to Bill Gates's House, and Why I'll Take the Apple Bumper Sticker Off my Car Next Time opens into AppleWorks as something like My Visit to Bill Gates's H#B6C5).

The good news is that behind the scenes, Mac OS X still remembers its long name. Even if you edit and re-save the document, you'll still find its long file name intact when you view its icon on the desktop.



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