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Thursday, March 16, 2006

Mac Freeware Things

Some people claim that they don't want to switch to mac because there is no freeware available, like there is on PC. I switched because I saw there being a lot more freeware on mac than there is on PC, and it is much higher quality stuff. Cocoa makes building shiny and wonderful interfaces a breeze, while Quartz makes adding the little visual flares that encompass good design fast and fun. Mac is an easier platform for building good freeware, and the results show.

These are the freeware programs that have changed the way I work, and have made the mac experience, er, how to put it? Freakin' awesome!

Camino - Safari is a great browser. It really is. It took me a long time to switch to this Cocoa port of Firefox, but eventually, the Camitools extensions brought me over with the promise of blocking all ads forever, and blocking annoying Flash objects. Camino makes browsing a happy experience. Highly reccomended.

Cyberduck - simply the best FTP program I have ever had the pleasure of working with. An uncomplicated, mac-like interface with drag & drop simplicity (as well as the ability to run batch operations, do FTP over SSH, and other complicated things), it has replaced anything else I was using: dreamweaver's built-in FTP, Finder's FTP mapping, or any number of other options. Gold star for this one!

Transmission - This is simply the best BitTorrent client I've ever seen. I've played with quite a few on Windows, from Azureus to BitComet to uTorrent, and none of them is as simple, fast, and dead-on efficient as Transmission. It's lite interface stays out of your way, yet provides all the information you really care about. It's Mac-tastic. Double gold star.

StuffIt Expander - this comes built-in on your Mac, and it's a goodie. Windows has a compression progrgam that handles .ZIP files, but Stuffit handles just about everything from .RAR to .tar/.gzip. I haven't needed to download anything else, whereas a fresh Windows install always requires 7-zip.

And finally: QuickSilver - this one should be on everyone's Mac. This "application launcher" is really a workflow enhancer. With a tap of CTRL+Space (or whatever hotkey you assign it) you can: move files, browse directories, search your computer, post reminders, send email, blog, edit text files... the list goes on and on. All just a few taps of the keyboard away (no mouse required). It's like a command line for people who don't like command lines. I can't explain it better than that, but install it, run through Merlin's tutorials, check out their FAQ's, and you'll see what I mean. Google Desktop and AppRocket are starting to emulate some of Quicksilver's functionality on PC, but I'd be very surprised if anything beats the original.

So, those are my 5 fav freewares. There are a lot more that I use, but these are the ones that really exemplfy what is great about Mac. These are the apps that I use almost every day, that function exceptionally well without getting in your way. If there are any of these that you don't have, I highly reccomend going and getting them now.

Full Disclosure: I am posting this in response to the I Use Freeware contest over at FreeMacWare. They deserve more linkage, and if the contest convinces me to give it to them, well, they're more than worth it. I've had them in my BlogLines since they started, and have never thought about unsubscribing. I have found so many Neat programs from them, it's ridiculous. Keep up the excellent blogging, guys!


Blogger Halfrican said...

You seem to realise......YOU CANT RIGHT CLICK....j/k man

Anonymous Anonymous said...

If you use a mouse with a right button then you can right click.

Anonymous Anonymous said...

dear windows users.
dont say stuff about mac (such as you cant right click) just because you CANT do it.
and btw OF COURSE you can right click, its only a matter of checking a box in the system preferences.

Anonymous Anonymous said...

if you hold control then click it becomes a right click


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