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Real Shortcuts

Shortcuts aren't just for breakfast any more. They never were. What?
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Ever had a shortcut to a file on your desktop? You double click it, OK it runs. But if you want to send the file to someone, or attach it to an email, you're left having to hunt through your directory tree to select the actual file and not its alias.

I propose that shortcuts get "beefed" up a little so that, to all programs but the OS itself, this shortcut appears to be the actual file, meaning you can drag the "shortcut" to your IM window and the *file* will be attached, not the shortcut. After all, it is very rare that you'd want to send a shortcut to someone.

Of course, it would not just be a copy of the file, but a link to the file, just like a shortcut now.

w0lfman, Mar 20 2006

[link]






       I agree, it makes no sense for the computer to let you attach a shortcut to an email message, unless it's a hyperlink.   

       I also pity beginners who copy all their shortcuts onto a floppy disk and then think they've made backups. With all the stupid dumbed-down features Windows has, you'd think they'd warn you about this.
phundug, Mar 20 2006
  

       They don't do that in your OS? What distro are you running?
Galbinus_Caeli, Mar 20 2006
  

       What if you could email me the short cut and if I click on it as long as we are both connected to the internet it opens the file on your computer.... This would preserve the concept of a shortcut as a link to a file and not the actual file.
Braindead, Mar 21 2006
  

       I gotta bone this one for a couple of reasons- #1. You should know how to properly use your computer. #2. Heed the warnings of item #1. 3. I would really hate to have a path leading back to my PC every time I decided to email someone a file.
Jscotty, Mar 21 2006
  

       Your "1" (sorry, don't know the occluded contortional code to type a hash character): No you shouldn't. Knowing how to properly use a computer is merely an interim hack until computers are smart enough to be ambient.
Ian Tindale, Mar 22 2006
  

       /ambient/ - I thought they normally get warmer than that?
Texbinder, Mar 22 2006
  

       Good idea! I am surprised no one else has thought of this. :)
the fiddler, Mar 22 2006
  

       Boysparks, thanks for the suggestions but it's still a bit silly to have to go into Properties and click on Find Target. Now if it was integrated into the context menu... that would be cool.   

       And Galbinus, what's the difference between shortcuts in Windows, Linux and aliases and Macintosh? Surely they all behave the same.   

       Braindead - that's essentially a hyperlink. That's what you're doing when you download a file or stream a video, and you know how long THAT takes :P
w0lfman, Mar 23 2006
  

       [Jscotty], Just because you know how to use a computer and probably have used computers for years does not mean that everyone does, has or should. Its the same a someone saying everyone should be able to decorate, build furniture or arrange flowers. They might be useful skills but not everyone has the time or inclination to learn.
miasere, Mar 23 2006
  

       Oddly enough, I read this about thirty seconds after doing the little right-click-find-target dance. It's bloody easy.   

       I use my desktop for both shortcuts and actual files, depending on needs. Windows, dumbed down as it is, can still be very useful.   

       If somebody can't arrange flowers, I don't want them sending me flower arrangements. If someone can't use their computer, chances are that I don't want anything they've computed--even if they are my boss.
baconbrain, Mar 23 2006
  

       On Mac OS X you just click on an "alias" and then "show original" (I presume Short Cuts are the Windows name for their copied version of aliases)   

       Windows = Dumbos (how do you stand using such a crap, ugly, clunky, bug ridden system) We Mac users love our computers -don't we? I've actually slept with mine! - How sad would you need to be to say that about a Dell?
xenzag, Mar 23 2006
  

       [wolf] Sorry, but I don't know windows or mac. On linux a shortcut (called a "link") is a complete alias for an item. It acts just like the actual file. If you copy the link, you are copying the actual file, same with read, write, delete, or attach. Nothing special about ti being a shortcut except that it isn't taking space in the folder/directory where the link is.
Galbinus_Caeli, Mar 26 2006
  

       On Linux and Unix systems, a symbolic link will do exactly what you want.
-----, Nov 04 2006
  

       Like a hard link on *nix systems?
devnull, Jun 27 2008
  
      
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