Joe's Quest


jitouch, the Solution for Multi-touch Gestures of OS X Lion

A lot of people find that backward/forward multi-touch gestures in Snow Leopard for Finder, iTunes, web browser like Chrome/Firefox, are not available any more in Lion. I wrote a solution for that in July. Later in August, the solution is not working due to the update of 10.7.1.

MagicPrefs is the software I recommended before, which is free, and gives so many gesture functions for trackpad, Magic Mouse. A few days ago I found another software, jitouch, which shows you the new definition of Multi-touch Gesture. It presents dozens of new gestures that you can define for dozens of functions.

Firstly, solve the backward/forward problem.

I know this is what you came here for. Please follow me, we take MacBook built-in trackpad as example:

  1. Download jitouch here and install it.
  2. Go to System Preferences – Trackpad. In tab Point & Click, uncheck the box “Three finger drag”. Maybe you would like this on. But it may cause some mis-selecting text in backward/forward action, you can take a try later. Your choice.
  3. In tab More Gestures, make sure Swipe between full-screen apps is with the option Scroll left or right with FOUR fingers. It ensures that swipe with 3 fingers gesture is not occupied by system.
  4. You can find jitouch setting in the bottom Other group of System Preferences. Click into it. In Trackpad tab, make sure Enable jitouch for Trackpad is checked. In the list box below, find out Three-Swipe-Left/Right. If there’s no, click “+” button to add it. Relate it to Keyboard Shortcut: CMD+[ (for Left)  and CMD+] (for Right) and save it.
  5. Make sure there’s no conflict between system and jitouch setting.
  6. Open Finder, iTunes, Chrome… and take a try!

Ok, why jitouch?

I feel, compare to MagicPrefs, the sensitivity of jitouch is more accurate. You can see a * . Meanwhile, MagicPrefs could do the same thing and MagicPrefs is FREE! Still, your choice.

And any other tips?

  • Don’t make yourself confused by adding too many gestures. Even if you can remember, if you are using different computers in company and at home, relying on so many convenient functions makes u suffer in the other place (esp. Windows. In the mean time, I say, Go Geeks, Go! :D).
  • The gestures of “n-Fix other-Tab” in jitouch is brilliant, default setting of “Previous Tab / Next Tab” etc. is quite handy. Don’t waste it.
  • Cheers for keeping the “Smooth History (Official name: Swipe to navigate)” of Safari (maybe in some other apps too? I’m not sure yet) and “backward/forward” of Chrome together. Yeah!

Discussion (10)

There are 10 responses to “jitouch, the Solution for Multi-touch Gestures of OS X Lion”.

  1. fra responded:

    · Reply

    Sorry but this doesn’t work for me in *Firefox*. The gesture does’nt activate the shortcut ! (since it’s work for the Finder or Chrome). I don’t understand why !

    • Tkjune responded:

      @fra you may try following solution.
      UPDATE on Sep 15th:
      If you don’t want to use any other 3rd party software, it still can be done. Take Trackpad as example: Keep the default setting no change (2 fingers for Safari smooth history, 3 fingers for full screen app switch), when going forward or backward in Chrome or Firefox etc., press ALT(OPTION) key while swiping with 3 fingers. Thanks to Alejandro to provide the useful tip!

  2. fra responded:

    · Reply

    Hi ! I would like to not touch the keyboard when browsing the web. I’ve installed JiTouch and have configured it for back and forward with 3 fingers swipe in Chrome, Firefox and Finder (according to the shortcuts of these apps). It works for Finder and Chrome but not for Firefox (my browser). I can’t understand why…

    • Tkjune responded:

      @fra I’ve just tested. Seems that chrome and firefox has all been updated to adapt the Lion’s gesture and Firefox does not recognize 3rd party three finger swipe. I turned off jitouch, set “three fingers swipe” in Trackpad preference, and it works in Chrome, firefox and safari (the smooth history is missing). If you don’t mind, you can try this way.

  3. fra responded:

    · Reply

    Hi !
    Which version of Firefox do you use ?
    Does it work with 2 fingers swipe ?
    If I need JiTouch anyway, is it possible to still use this way ?

  4. fra responded:

    · Reply

    Hello again. Just tried with disabling any setting for FF in Jitouch and it works. But sometimes only. Some other times it doesnt work and I dont know why.

  5. fra responded:

    · Reply

    I finnaly found why it works sometimes or not : It works with swipping with 3 fingers only if I’ve used previously a 2 fingers swipe inn the window. Very strange ! Dont know why…

  6. @fra I’m using Firefox 6. For me, I also find it sometimes working and sometimes not. We can only say, it’s not stable maybe? Anyhow, Firefox is my developing tool and for daily use, I choose Chrome.

  7. G33kTech responded:

    · Reply

    Hi everyone.

    I just found out about a free program called “BetterTouchTool”. It allows you to completely customize all swipe actions for your multitouch trackpad, magic mouse, and lets you customize your keyboards and regular mice as well.

    I was able to get the forward and backward options with this program and alot more. its %100 free.

    • Tkjune responded:

      @G33kTech I heard about the app recently too. Thanks for your recommendation. I gonna try it too later sometime. 🙂

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