I frequently teach Aperture workshops and I often end up running my presentation and demos from the same MacBook Pro that I use as my everyday workstation. This makes it easy to prepare for workshops, but it can introduce some problems when I demonstrate the Aperture experience as though I were launching it for the first time. Like most experienced users of Aperture — or any software for that matter — I’ve grown used to the customized workspace that I setup inside Aperture.
My customized preferences include setting Photoshop CS3 as my external editor and specifying that Aperture not launch automatically when I insert a CF card. Also, I particularly like customizing the far right of my toolbar with the icons for the three default layouts: basic, maximize browser, and maximize viewer. (Weren’t these in the default toolbar set in Aperture 1.0? Can someone back me up here…?)
At center, the icons for Aperture’s three default view modes
There are keyboard shortcuts for these views, but I’m so used to clicking these icons that I find something amiss when they’re not there.
When I present to groups, I like to roll Aperture back to the pristine default workspace and preferences that a new user would experience. So my solution for easy switching between the default Aperture environment and my customized setup is to backup my com.apple.Aperture.plist file in my ~/Library/Preferences/ directory. Before starting a workshop, I quit Aperture, rename the file com.apple.Aperture.BACKUP and then relaunch Aperture.
Backing up Aperture’s preferences
The application is restored to its default preferences. I can demo the Welcome Screen, setting up the external editor preference, and customizing the toolbar. When I’m done with the workshop, I simply delete the com.apple.Aperture.plist file and remove the .BACKUP from my customized preference file. Relaunch Aperture and things are back to the way I like them.
How do you like to customize Aperture? What icons do you add to (or remove from) the toolbar?