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Marc Wandschneider is a professional software developer with well over fifteen years of industry experience (yes, he really is that old). He travels the globe working on interesting projects and gives talks at conferences and trade shows whenever possible.

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Mar 09, 2007 | 06:39:47
Announcing JustLooking 2.0 - An Image Viewer for Mac OS X
By marcwan
NOTE: JustLooking 3.3 has been released. You should really be using that version instead. It’s much cooler!

I’m pleased to announce the immediate availablity of JustLooking 2.0. JustLooking is a program to view pictures and images on your Mac OS X (Tiger) based computer. JustLooking is and will always be very free.

New for Version 2.0:

  • Based on the suggestions and feedback from some users, I have completely redesigned and rewritten the user interface for JustLooking, implementing the smoked-black look that a lot of applications are moving towards in Leopard.
  • Image resizing has been made significantly faster and less memory intensive. Image rendering is also much quicker.
  • There is now remote control support in slide show mode:
    • next/prev image
    • pause/restart
    • exit
    • increase/decrease show time by 2 sec
  • Basic saving of rotated images for PNG, GIF (non-animated only), JPEG, TIFF, and BMP file formats.
  • GIF file support has been completely fixed and is now properly working for all animated and transparent images.
  • Hold down “option” key on startup causes app to go to full screen slide show.
  • I have fixed a number of bugs in the program.

I have released JustLooking in all of the following languages:

  • English
  • Russian
  • French
  • Italian
  • German
  • Spanish
  • Finnish

Note that all of the translations except English and Russian have a few missing strings. If you speak one of these languages fluently and are willing to help out translate about 25 strings, let me know and I’ll be grateful for the help! (if you speak any other language and are willing to help, let me know!)


Welcome to JustLooking, an image viewing program for Mac OS X. JustLooking is designed to be used instead of the “Preview” application on your computer for browsing images. In particular, it has the following differences:

  • It focuses on files and directories instead of lists of files. Thus, once you load a file, you can easily navigate through all other files in the same directory.
  • It displays images at their native resolution instead of interpreting DPI information stored in the image meta-data. While images are printed at the maximum resolution possible, on screen they are displayed pixel-by-pixel.
  • Being designed more for viewing of Images, it properly shows animated GIF files.
  • The entire program can easily be manipulated and powered by simple keystrokes for a quick and pleasant viewing experience.
  • JustLooking also supports such basic features as printing and rotating and will hopefully prove to be sufficiently functional for most users’ needs.

It should be noted that the application cannot completely replace Preview, as there are a number of features in the latter that JustLooking simply does not have, such as selecting and copying regions, saving images in various formats, and viewing of Adobe Portable Document Format (PDF) files.

Requirements and Installation

Running JustLooking is quite simple, and the only requirements are:

  • Mac OS X 10.4 or greater
  • 256MB RAM
  • 2.5MB free disk space

JustLooking is installed on any new machine by simply dragging it into the Applications folder.


JustLooking was designed, written, and partially localised (French, Italian, German, Spanish, and some Chinese) by Marc Wandschneider here in Beijing over a couple of casual months. I sat down to write it as a replacement for Preview, as I found the latter to rarely operate in a way that I wanted it to. I tend to keep directories full of images, whether they be traveling, family, or junk I collect from the Intarwebs.

Finder and Preview rarely let me select and view more than a couple hundred of images at a time, and I have large numbers of folders with more files than that.

The following people have helped with Localisation of JustLooking:

  • German – Stefanie Schau
  • French – Laurent Molina
  • Italian – Roberto Bellina
  • Spanish – Carola Clavo
  • Russian – Sergey Melnik
  • Finnish – Markus Peltomäki

Sadly, the Chinese localisation has atrophied to the point of being useless, and I have temporarily removed it—my Chinese is just not good enough yet. i’m hoping to get either it back soon, and maybe even a Japanese version some day!

Help us Out

Speak a language that isn’t in the list of currently localised languages? See some mistakes in the current translation for a particular language? If you’d like to help or offer corrections, I’d love the help. The more languages, the better!!

Coming Up

I’m thinking of adding the following features in future versions.

  • Support for saving more image file formats.
  • Resizing and saving of images.
  • Batch resizes and renames (the holy grail of free image programs).
  • Support for more resizing algorithms.

I’d love to hear if users have any suggestions. Feel free to contact me with any features you’d like to see!

Comments (97) Add Comment | Tags: justlooking mac osx image graphics photos software viewer update
Nice tool
Posted By: .Henrik Mar 12, 2007 05:45:35
Nice tool, just want to say i appreciate it. Maybe I can help you with Swedish localization?
Posted By: marcwan Mar 12, 2007 17:26:10

Thanks for the feedback, I'd -love- a Swedish version. Send me email (marcwan @ this domain) and I'll tell you what you need to do.

EXIF Rotation Data
Posted By: marcwan Mar 18, 2007 18:13:19


I've always personally hated the EXIF Rotation flag, because not every program uses it, and I'm left being very confused as to what "rotating" the image means -- am I rotating it from its original state or from the EXIF-rotated new state? When I want to be sure that my images are the same for display on the web I have to go and double check them all to be sure they're being displayed properly....

But, maybe I could add a preference for this, and let users turn it on as they wish. I would probably just see what other programs like do for user-rotations after that and do something similar.

Thanks for the feedback!


Unmarking File Preferences
Posted By: marcwan Mar 18, 2007 18:15:47


A few people have noted that once you select a file type, you can't unselect it in the Preferences Dialog. This is because I am fighting with the Carbon Launch Service APIs -- There is no way to do this right now.

It's even worse, because soemtimes, I tell Launch Services to use JustLooking to open (for example) GIF files, and then when I show the dialog, I ask Launch Services what the default program is, and it still says Preview (but JustLooking actually IS). It's strange, and I'm working on it.

But it's not a MAJOR feature, so I figure most people can live with it, and reset things in the Finder if they have problems.

Thanks for your patience!
Title Bar .....
Posted By: marcwan Mar 20, 2007 01:16:48
hrmm ....

I'm not sure what control I have over the title bar, but I'll take a look and see if there are any other possibliities. A few users have suggested this ....
Original size
Posted By: silfver Mar 20, 2007 06:23:32

Just installed this app and it's great! There's just one thing I miss: a button for the image original size. I thought the "fit to screen"-button was this at first.

Sounds like a good thing to implement, don't you think? :)
Original Image Size
Posted By: marcwan Mar 20, 2007 17:30:48

You can view the original image size by hitting CMD+1. The zooming keystrokes are:

Cmd+3 (Fit to Window)
Cmd+4 (Zoom dialog)

Posted By: marcwan Mar 20, 2007 17:31:54

There should be quite a few seeds for the BitTorrent version of JustLooking. I'm seeding all the time here in China, and I see at least 6 others. Are you downloading Version 2.0 or 1.1 ??

If it doesn't work, just download using HTTP -- it's okay.
Arrow Key Navigation
Posted By: marcwan Mar 20, 2007 17:32:38

Arrow key navigation has been in JustLooking since version 1.1. Is anybody seeing this NOT work? That would be very bad and a bug I would fix. On the three computers here I have tried, however, it works just fine.

Feature Suggestions
Posted By: marcwan Mar 20, 2007 17:33:29
There are lots of great feature suggestions from users, and I will add them all to the little (well, not so little any more) list I have here of things I want to add. I'll definitely add as many as I can!!!

Thanks so much!!!
Sudden Rush
Posted By: marcwan Mar 20, 2007 17:51:11

There was a sudden HUGE rush of downloads last night, and lots of new Scandanavian users. Did JustLooking just get listed in a magazine or on a mac website or something?

The last rush I had of this size was from MacUpdate .....
arrow key navigation !!
Posted By: marcwan Mar 21, 2007 05:42:00


can you send me an email (address is marcwan @ this here domain) and i'll give you a special build of the program so we can try to figure out what's going on ....


Returning from fullscreen
Posted By: damster Mar 21, 2007 13:09:47

Hi and thnaks again for JustLooking!

I do not get why the non-fullscreen image has not been updated to the one I have reached in fullscreen mode.

I prefer to shift through images in fullscreen (and have to pause then space then space again and then p to pause again). I've found this to be quite a pain when showing a reel to other people, and not wanting the automatics of a slideshow.

Then, upon your return to non-fullscreen, the image is still where one started.

I'd love JustLooking to:

Let me pause the slideshow and use the arrowkeys!
(and show the current image when exiting fullscreen)

OR to have an option to make the background fully black in non-fullscreen.

Smelling Pistake!!!?!??!?!?!?!?!?!??!!?!
Posted By: marcwan Mar 22, 2007 17:59:50

How mortifying! I wil fix that right away. I'm awaiting Swedish and Norwegian translations, and then will do an update with a few bug fixes, along with updated German and French, and apparently now English translations.

Weak! :-)

Posted By: Fabian Apr 02, 2007 15:48:29

I'd like to translate this program to swedish... It's kick-ass...

the olny thing i really miss is like a folder preview mode... like miniatures in win xp...

keep up the good work, and let me know if i can help out with the translation...

Bugs Anyone??
Posted By: Austin Apr 10, 2007 23:36:56
I'd just like to say this is a promising app and well overdue in the Mac world.

I am finding though that the arrow buttons on my keyboard are not working with the program at all (Powerbook G4 titanium). It might also be convenient to have space bar and backspace as next/last commands.

It would be great to be able to view in fullscreen mode without slideshow; to just use the arrows (or space and backspace)to nav through. I think it could also have the option in fullscreen mode to view actual size or fit to screen.

While I'm being picky, it would be great to have the file name descretely place in the corner of the window while in full screen mode.

If you have a PC check out the mother of all viewers.

Rotating JPEGs
Posted By: marcwan Apr 11, 2007 20:29:22

Right now, when you rotate ANY file, you (by default) get a dialog asking you if you want to save it. You can go to the User Preferences, however, and turn this off.

JPEG files, similarly, bring up a dialog but you can also stop this from showing up. So, you can change your experience to be entirely dialog-free (I don't have any dialogs normally).

Other features: good ideas, I'll work on them.

Keyboard navigation
Posted By: marcwan Apr 11, 2007 20:30:37

Argh! I need to figure out what the problem with the keyboard navigation is. It's killing me. Unfortunately, both of my laptops (Powerbook G4 15" and MBP 15") don't have this problem, nor do the Macbook or Mac Minis I have acces to ....

Working on it !!!

Love this, suggestions
Posted By: Brian Apr 28, 2007 14:25:21
Hey man, great program. It's such a sigh of relief compared to the default program. Plus, it works great. One thing I would like to ask you about is anti-aliasing for images. I see diagonals come out rendered jaggedy. Also, if there's an option to turn off the transparent black background. Great program!
second on the resizing
Posted By: tilsammans May 30, 2007 15:11:38
Image resing would be a great feature. I second that request and would love to see it implemented. Besides that, JustLooking is a wonderful app, thanks for making this.
download link
Posted By: marcwan Jun 19, 2007 21:16:18
should be just fine.

did you try again? what sort of browser/OS combo are you using?
Link is still broken
Posted By: Geska Jul 04, 2007 08:51:00
The link for JustLooking 2.0.2 still seem to be broken? I would love to get the update...
Posted By: marcwan Jul 04, 2007 18:58:39
well, you should be using 2.5 by now, and you can always find things by going to the home page and looking there.
Fit to Window vs Scale to Window
Posted By: marcwan Aug 05, 2007 17:38:43
Hey Tronze!

All of those features have been added to JustLooking 3.0, which I hope will be available in a couple of weeks. I have finished coding and am working on translations and bug fixes.

A few suggestions
Posted By: giyad Apr 12, 2008 09:23:49
Hello Marc,

Let me start by just saying how much I love your app. I am a recent switch over from Windows and this is the closest thing I've found to Windows Picture and Fax Viewer. Its such a simple app and does the basic, intuitive things you would want when viewing a photo. I have completely replaced Preview with it. I have come across some little nuances though, three only that I can think of:

I'm using 3.1

1) When I open a photo in a folder containing a series from a trip, it sometimes won't navigate through them in series. So I will open the, lets say 15th, photo and try to go back and forth with the arrow keys. It will do this, but it won't go to the next photo in sequence, rather it goes through some order that I can't actually explain. Maybe its not a problem and its going through an order that I just couldn't figure out, I don't know.

2) This is the biggest problem I've been having, its been more of a problem with OS X than only JustLooking. When I upload photos to my computer, OS X displays any portrait shots that I took proper side up, without me having to rotate them. Thats great, but when I open them in fullscreen mode with JustLooking, or use any other third party app, the image is displayed landscape. I would suggest making it so that when you open the photo in normal mode, the image ALWAYS show up in landscape, as thats the way the image was actually taken. From there we can rotate it or do whatever we want. Or, you could add controls to the fullscreen mode so that we can rotate it from there, which may be the better option.

The problem with doing what Preview does is that it doesn't rotate its "original state" as you mentioned above in a previous comment. But that is what we want to do, that is why Windows Picture & Fax Viewer wouldn't read the EXIF info is because: if you want to rotate the image, its for a reason. So, that means that you want the change to be permanent.

3) Finally, not so big of a deal, is not being able to delete in fullscreen mode. Sometimes you just want to flip through your photos in fullscreen instead of having to exit and delete whenever you find a photo you don't like.

I really appreciate you taking the time to listen to my suggestions! I'm going to post this on your website as well just incase this goes to your junk... Not trying to be a pest ;)... Keep up the good work!!

Raw Files?
Posted By: ChuckH Aug 25, 2008 07:51:59
This program sounds great. Does it work on RAW files as well?


Madison, WI
Great app!
Posted By: PhilH Jul 06, 2009 08:03:15
I like this app a lot but I have one issue. I have some very large image folders and I'd like to view parts of them without starting at the beginning or the end and going backwards. Is that possible to do?
very nice
Posted By: fayznaaz Jul 26, 2009 07:03:06
i wanted to say thank you very much.. - it is exactly what i want .... its very nice programme for image viewer.. "JustLooking"
ones again thanks...
Posted By: Sarah W Jan 02, 2010 01:33:13
Thank you so much for this program! I have always used a PC, and always loved viewing photos in 'windows picture and fax viewer'. I got a macbook for christmas and was very dissapointed by the photo viewing programs on it! But i just downloaded JustLooking and i'm so impressed, what a great program - love it!!!!!!

Thanks again!
Jim Perry
Posted By: Jim Perry Jun 15, 2010 19:03:38
this program is 90% exactly what I'm looking for. It would be absolutely perfect if I could make it zoom with my scroll wheel (especially in full screen mode).
Big Thank YOU!!!
Posted By: Chris Apr 30, 2011 09:00:57
i just moved from Windows to Mac and i was looking for a simple image viewer which will have the arrow moving thing and your software is just great at doing what i want. I tried other viewers but most of them try to auto set the color settings which goes very bad or too vivid. Yours even sees my NEF files! Keeps the original colors and i have arrow navigation. Perfect! You've made my day!
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