Kiosk mode is a system-software and user-interface feature that is ideal for computer games and kiosk-style applications. It is useful when you want the user interface elements of the system to behave in custom ways when your application is active—that is, when you want a different user experience from the one that the system user interface normally offers. These customizable features include the dock, menu bar, and task switcher. In addition, with kiosk mode your customized application can observe changes in UI behavior that are made by other active applications
In Mac OS X v10.6 and later, the
NSApplication class supports this customization. It also serves as a replacement for the Carbon
SystemUIMode API available in Mac OS X v10.5 and earlier.
The main goal of kiosk mode is to lock the user into a particular application, either to allow a game to take over the entire screen (in computer game applications) or to prevent uusers at a computer from opening applications that should not be accessible to them (in a kiosk-style application).
This technical note covers several useful techniques that can be used by kiosk developers, outlines the numerous options for kiosk mode, and provides advice on how and when to successfully implement its many features.