My Essential OSX apps list

Freshness Warning
This article is over 13 years old. It's possible that the information you read below isn't current.

Scott Johnson recently switched to a Mac and lists some of the software he finds useful. Here’s what I’ve found essential since I switched this past summer.

  • Replace the built-in terminal app with ITerm and you’ll never go back. Tabbed windows, the ability to echo your commands to all tabs at once (great for managing lots of duplicate servers), and more. Open Source.
  • Textmate is the best text editor I’ve used on any platform. I’d like to figure out how to change the code coloring preferences, though. It’s commercial software at about $80. For a good free editor, Textwrangler from the makers of BBEdit is decent enough.
  • For P2P and filesharing apps, try Poisoned. It’s nice to look at, easy to use, and connects to multiple networks. Open Source.
  • SSHKeychain makes logging into the same servers dozens of times each day bearable. Free.
  • Store important files online inside your gMail account with gDisk. Open Source.
  • Apple’s airport utility does a decent job of connecting you to nearby wireless networks, but KisMAC will show you what’s nearby with ease. Open Source
  • Jumpcut is a good clipboard manager. If you’ve never used a clipboard manager, you’re losing productivity every day. Free.
  • OSX comes with a built-in battery guage, but SlimBatteryMonitor is better. After Firefox and Thunderbird, this was one of the first things I installed on my Mac and I’ll never go back. Free.
  • NetNewsWire is the gold standard of Mac feed readers, but Vienna is a great open source alternative.
  • VLC is a video player that’s better than anything else I’ve tried. Plays everything, converts formats, and just plain works. It even is a streaming media server. This one’s available on Windows, Linux, BSD, and even WindowsCE. Open Source.
  • NeoOfficeJ is a port of OpenOffice.org to OSX. Keyboard shortcuts and other UI elements are Mac-friendly. It’s only the OOo 1.1 release now. I can’t wait for NeoOfficeJ to support OOo 2. Open Source.
  • Scott already mentioned this, but I throw my vote behind AdiumX as well. Open Source.

Firefox, Thunderbird, Azareus are all cross-platform tools that I used on Windows and continue to use on Mac.

jose
December 31, 2005 3:06 PM

thanks, adam, i hadn't known about vienna before. i really found NNW to be lacking for my feeds, organization, and the volume of feeds i work with. same with a number of other RSS readers. oddly, my WinXP reader (RssBandit) is far more suited to me lifestyle than most OS X readers are. thanks, good list.

Your comments:

Text only, no HTML. URLs will automatically be converted to links. Your email address is required, but it will not be displayed on the site.

Name:

Not your company or your SEO link. Comments without a real name will be deleted as spam.

Email: (not displayed)

If you don't feel comfortable giving me your real email address, don't expect me to feel comfortable publishing your comment.

Website (optional):

Follow me on Twitter

Best Of

  • How not to apply for a job Applying for a job isn't that hard, but it does take some minimal effort and common sense.
  • Movie marketing on a budget Mark Cuban's looking for more cost effective ways to market movies.
  • California State Fair The California State Fair lets you buy tickets in advance from their Web site. That's good. But the site is a horror house of usability problems.
  • Customer reference questions. Sample questions to ask customer references when choosing a software vendor.
  • Comment Spam Manifesto Spammers are hereby put on notice. Your comments are not welcome. If the purpose behind your comment is to advertise yourself, your Web site, or a product that you are affiliated with, that comment is spam and will not be tolerated. We will hit you where it hurts by attacking your source of income.
  • More of the best »

Recently Read

Get More

Subscribe | Archives

Recently

Assumptions and project planning (Feb 18)
When your assumptions change, it's reasonable that your project plans and needs change as well. But too many managers are afraid to go back and re-work a plan that they've already agreed to.
Feature voting is harmful to your product (Feb 7)
There's a lot of problems with using feature voting to drive your product.
Encouraging 1:1s from other managers in your organization (Jan 4)
If you’re managing other managers, encourage them to hold their own 1:1s. It’s such an important tool for managing and leading that everyone needs to be holding them.
One on One Meetings - a collection of posts about 1:1s (Jan 2)
A collection of all my writing on 1:1s
Are 1:1s confidential? (Jan 2)
Is the discussion that occurs in a 1:1 confidential, even if no agreed in the meeting to keep it so?
Skip-level 1:1s are your hidden superpower (Jan 1)
Holding 1:1s with peers and with people far below you on the reporting chain will open your eyes up to what’s really going on in your business.
Do you need a 1:1 if you’re regularly communicating with your team? (Dec 28)
You’re simply not having deep meaningful conversation about the process of work in hallway conversations or in your chat apps.
What agenda items should a manager bring to a 1:1? (Dec 23)
At least 80% of a 1:1 agenda should be driven by your report, but if you also to use this time to work on things with them, then you’ll have better meetings.

Subscribe to this site's feed.

Contact

Adam Kalsey

Mobile: 916.600.2497

Email: adam AT kalsey.com

Twitter, etc: akalsey

Resume

PGP Key

©1999-2019 Adam Kalsey.