Only one program can be in front, or active, at a time.
To make a different program active, you could simply repeat the technique you used to launch the program initially. Click its Dock icon, double-click a document icon, or whatever.
You can also switch to a different program by clicking its icon on the Dock. Doing so makes the program, along with any of its open windows and toolbars, pop to the front.
But Panther introduces a faster, more direct program-switching feature—faster, because you perform it entirely from the keyboard. Just hold down the key and begin tapping the Tab key (Figure 4-3).
In fact, you can use this feature in three different ways, all of which are well worth learning:
Figure 4-3. Apple calls this Windowslike row of open program icons a “heads-up display,” partly because it’s translucent (like the projected “heads-up display” data screens on a Navy jet windshield) and partly because you don’t have to look down to the Dock to see what you’re doing. (Shown here superimposed on another window to illustrate its translucence.)
Imagine that, for example, you’re doing a lot of switching between two programs—your Web browser and your email program, for example. If you have five other programs open, you don’t waste your time -Tabbing your way through all open programs just to “get back” to your Web browser.