The great strength of Mosaic is that it allows you to effortlessly tile windows in a way that suits your workflow. Its common to want to work with multiple apps visible at the same time, and being able to quickly and neatly place them side by side for example can vastly improve your workflow.
It is important to note however that Mosaic cannot override restrictions imposed on the sizes of windows by the Apps that own them. If the developer of an app has specified that a window cannot be made smaller than a specific size, Mosaic has to adhere to this.
If you are working on a small display, perhaps on a MacBook, or you have your Display Settings configured to make content look large for readability, you may find that using common layouts such as Left Half and Right Half can cause Mosaic to display a warning and the window may not be resized or positioned correctly. This is usually because the layout would make the window smaller than the size restriction imposed by the App. Here is an example of the warning notification in which Finder had a layout applied which was too small for the Finder window to match:
There are several options available to minimise this issue to ensure you get the most out of Mosaic. I shall provide detailed information about each of these below, however the options in brief are:
- Increase the screen resolution setting on your Mac to provide more space
- Adjust layouts to better suit the restrictions of the apps you work with
To provide a detailed example of the type of issue I shall demonstrate a scenario where I am trying to work with two apps (GarageBand and Safari) in order for example to view guitar chords in Safari whilst recording tracks in GarageBand. I have setup my MacBook Pro to use the default screen resolution settings which displays very large text but does not give enough room for large apps such as GarageBand to occupy only half the screen.
So here is the first example, I am dropping GarageBand on the Left layout to make it occupy the left half of the screen:
This is the result. As you can see from the screenshot below, the warning notification has been displayed because GarageBand has a minimum width which is bigger than half the screen, you can also see that GarageBand is wider than expected:
Below I will describe in detail how to adjust the screen resolution to make this type of scenario work better, and also how I might adjust the Mosaic layouts to better suit the apps i am using.
Adjust Screen Resolution
To check your display settings:
- Click the Apple Icon at the top left of the screen
- Select "System Preferences..."
- Click "Displays"
On this screen you will see your current display settings. If you have never adjusted your display settings, you should see something like this:
The resulting screen resolution will depend on the screen size of your Mac. If you click Scaled you will see the following screen or similar:
To increase the resolution you can choose one of the options to the right of the Default option, here I will choose More Space to give me the maximum available screen area, as this is my personal preference:
This gives you much more space within the display for applications, however it should be noted that it results in text being slightly smaller on screen. If you wish to work with applications side by side, you may find this setting more suitable than the default. This is a personal preference and we describe here how to achieve this so that you can make the choice that works for you.
In our GarageBand example, this is the result of adjusting the resolution to More Space and applying the left and right layouts to my two apps:
Adjust Mosaic Layouts to Suit Apps
If you don't wish to increase the screen resolution of your display as described above, you may find that you can get the results you want by adjusting existing Layouts in Mosaic which suit your applications and screen resolution, or you could create new ones.
So in our GarageBand example, lets adjust the Left layout to be called Garage Band and be a bit wider than half the screen (as GarageBand is the app which has a minimum width) and lets change the Right layout to instead be called Safari and occupy the remainder of the screen. Here are my layouts adjusted in the Mosaic Preferences:
Notice that to make the finer adjustment I have changed the Grid to be 10x6 instead of 8x6 for each of these layouts. Now applying the layout in the same way as before:
And here is the results, still using the Default screen resolution, my windows now fit nicely together:
Of course there are lots of ways we could address this same issue, for example it may be that the apps in question only restrict the width, and we could perhaps instead work with top half and bottom half using the default layouts. Mosaic is designed to provide you with the power to adjust to suit your own workflow.
Apps with Resizing Issues
It may also be worth noting that occasionally we encounter an app that does not work correctly with Mosaic. Thankfully this is quite unusual now and almost all apps we test have resized with no issues. We have created an article describing any problems we do experience which we shall update as problems are encountered. This can be found here: