Friday, August 18, 2006
After about 2 months on a Mac, I’m ready with my list of top 10 Mac apps. They may not be the most beautiful ones out there, and some of them aren’t free, but they are the ones that I use all the time. I decided not to include the apps that came bundled with my computer.
Candybar. Candybar is a shareware program ($12.95 USD) from IconFactory. It allows you to change the program icons on the Mac. This was the first program I bought that was specifically for the Mac because I love to customize things like this. Right now, I’m using David Lanham’s Somatic icon set.
Cocoalicious. Cocoalicious is a freeware program that displays all of your del.icio.us bookmarks by tag. Like del.icio.us director, but for the desktop. It’s got a built in preview so you can view your bookmarks without having to open a separate browser. I find this much easier to use this to search/edit bookmarks than the del.icio.us web interface itself. What would make it better? Perhaps this. Note: The del.icio.us team just released a new API, and to get Cocoalicious to work with it, you need to change the base URL in the program’s preferences.
DoubleCommand. I’ve mentioned this app already. It’s a freeware program that changes the default keys. Now about once a week, my Mac will not start up properly. After it happens, I find that I have to reinstall the program again. But it’s not a big deal.
Firefox. My favourite web browser. I’ve tried using the Mac-specific browsers like Safari and Camino, but I keep coming back to Firefox, mainly for all the cool extensions. The only thing that sucks is that it can’t use the services menu.
iEatBrainz. iEatBrainz is a freeware program that tags mp3s by looking them up on MusicBrainz. Although it works fine, I think the Windows equivalent (I’m thinking of Music Brainz Tagger, as I haven’t tried Picard yet) is much more powerful. Hopefully there will be a port of the new Picard program to Mac OSX one day.
KeePassX. KeePassX is a freeware password management program. I used the Windows version, so I was so relieved to find that there was a Mac version, and that it could open my password database file. I use it to keep track of site logins, forum logins, and serials.
Quicksilver. Quicksilver is a powerful freeware program. I use it to quickly launch applications, and to browse for files on my computer. There are a lot of features and plugins available that I haven’t even figured out how to use yet.
Sing that iTune! Sing that iTune! is a dashboard widget that detects the current song playing in iTunes, and looks up the song lyrics from the Internet. It is one step better than EvilLyrics (the Windows equivalent that I used before) as it also saves the lyrics into the music file itself. I’m now working on getting adding lyrics to all the songs I have on my computer.
TextMate. TextMate is a shareware text editor that costs €39. I tried a couple of text editors and I liked this one the most. Plus there’s a neat ExpresssionEngine bundle available for it.
xGestures. This shareware program is worth a lot more than the $5 USD it costs (for me, anyway). It enables mouse gestures for all applications. I’ve been so used to using mouse gestures in Firefox and in Opera that it’s wonderful to be able to use it everywhere else. There are settings for global mouse gestures as well as application specific mouse gestures. The only downside? When I have to use a Windows computer, I continually make gestures with my mouse and it takes me a few seconds every time to realize it won’t work there.
So, that’s my list.