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required osx shareware

I'm beginning to realize that talking about my OSX transition here is like when the guy at the post office corners me and talks about sports for five minutes. He's going on about stats and scores and players and all I can think is, "now, is this the game with the round orange ball or the small white one?"

But, hey, this is my site, so here are the top three required pieces of shareware for new OSX converts, based on my thorough week-long experience.


1. Keyboard Maestro. As a long time user of Program Switcher in OS9, I'd gotten used to the windows-style alt-tab method for switching from app to app. Fortunately for me, ClaireWare Software has brought its trusty switcher to OSX, adding a bunch of cool stuff along the way, like multiple clipboards and programmable hot keys. The best part is, when you set Keyboard Maestro to use the apple-tab key combo, it comes up instead of the pesky dock. And the part I love best is that it stacks the apps by the order they're used. Wanna get back to the program you were just in? Just hit apple-tab and you're there. All hands, no mouse, no lookin', no foolin'.

2. FruitMenu. Miss the Apple Menu on good ol' OS9? Bring it back with this smooth piece of shareware.

3. ASM. Short for Application Switcher Menu, this replaces the application menu on the right side of the menu bar.

With thanks to Eduardo, my OSX patron saint.

» Got any osx shareware you can't live without?

{ 1:36pm }



» I don't have a specific application to share, but a nifty site for OS X Applications.

– dilok  { 5.29.02 @ 4:22pm }

» Just a few off the top of my head...
SBook5 - revolutionary contact/information manager. Very smart.
Fire - chat tool (which I think you said you have)
SnapzPro X - screen shots (I think that's shareware; it's outstanding)
WeatherPop - local weather in an icon in yr menu bar
Watson costs, but you should definitely check it out in demo mode (great search tool).

merlin  { 5.29.02 @ 4:32pm }

» Mox Optimize. The two features I like most are the 'enable window buffer compression' and the 'prebinding,' which makes apps start faster.

USB Overdrive lets me configure my 3-button mouse better, and increase the pointer speed beyond the sluggish maximum System Preferences allows.

TinkerTool lets me manipulate font smoothing settings systemwide. I used it to turn off font smoothing for sizes 18pt and smaller for QuickDraw apps, which makes small text readable in IE on a CRT monitor.

And I prefer Proteus to Fire, but neither approach the functionality of the real individual chat programs.

– Manuel  { 5.29.02 @ 4:57pm }

» Oh, how could I have forgotten Watson? Watson is amazing. The rumor is, the next version of Sherlock, included in Jaguar which is coming at the end of summer, will include many of Watson's features.

Derek  { 5.29.02 @ 5:55pm }

» I highly recommend Spy. It's a little menu bar tool that just shows up and down traffic on the network - but it's great for DSL and cable modem connections.

I've tried other monitors that sit in the dock or on the desktop, but Spy is the most unobtrusive. Check it out at VersionTracker.

Paul  { 5.29.02 @ 6:06pm }

» Telnet Launcher is quickly becoming an every day app for me.

– john  { 5.29.02 @ 10:26pm }

» hmmm... so much time and effort trying to make OSX like OS "yesterday" ...


.... Adium...adium...adium..watson...ispq..and all the apps that unix gurus are writing every day.... these are my favorite things.... that and being able to open up a terminal window and startup emacs to write html.....

– You KNow Who..  { 5.30.02 @ 12:12am }

» Hey now K-J, you can't get rid of 10 years of muscle memory overnight. And besides, why *not* let users customize their Apple menus? It's just interface fascism to take something like that away.

More and more my OSX box reminds me of the early days of OS7.Back then, Apple ate up all the cool third party extensions one by one and finally called it OS8. The same thing will happen here - just watch.

Derek  { 5.30.02 @ 1:05am }

» And one more thing: If I wanted to write html in emacs and check mail in pine, I would have installed linux on my old G3. No, baby. This is about burnin DVDs while streaming quicktime and running photoshop, all at the same time. Now only if it made coffee, too....

Derek  { 5.30.02 @ 1:08am }

» Well, I have been using OSX -- as is -- for a few months now and have no complaints. I now cringe when I have to go back to OS 'yesterday' and do something. Not just looking at OS 'yesterday' but having to navigate it.

And Derek, the dock ain't pesky, the dock rocks!

Give the dock a chance, people!

– Beagle Lover  { 5.30.02 @ 1:24am }

» Id add DragThing just for its process menu which brings back the floating application menu, far more useful than searching for open apps in the dock..

plus dockit which adds a handy mounted volumes and aliases window to the side of the screen

honestly even though i have classicmenu and asm installed i never use them.. ive evolved! the dock actually is quite useful some times

– neil  { 5.30.02 @ 2:56am }

» I'm a huge fan of Launchbar on my PowerBook... it's a lifesaver when you need to launch something quickly or if you're a keyboard junkie.

And I've just downloaded Keyboard Maestro (thanks Derek!) which is so much easier than using the dock.

Si  { 5.30.02 @ 3:06am }

» >> I highly recommend Spy. ...
>> I've tried other monitors that sit
>> in the dock or on the desktop,
>> but Spy is the most unobtrusive.

I prefer CeePeeYou to Spy, because it updates equally as fast and shows a number instead of a cryptic circle.
(And If you don't like that Spy installs itself within the seperator bar of ASM, Command-drag it to wherever you like. You can move the clock and anything else up there, too.)

– Manuel  { 5.30.02 @ 9:00am }

» Check out NetMonitor (name says it all).

eduardo arcos barredo  { 5.30.02 @ 9:03am }

» MaxMenus comes in handy once in a while.

sandor  { 5.30.02 @ 11:35am }

» I'm going to give a huge second vote for LaunchBar. There are few programs out there that actually learns how you work. Cant live without it!.

Tim  { 5.30.02 @ 11:37am }

» d (et all),

weatherPOP is the coolest. somehow it's got weather information for london, ontario, canada where i live. i thought that it would just take toronto's and give me that - but no! it's a quick, at-a-glance weather report that hides in your menu bar (like somebody else said).

snapperhead was damn cool while stimpsoft was still pumping out the hardcore stuff. i think somebody new owns that one now, but stimp's SOLscape, smell-o-mints and 'head were pretty damn cool.

snapz pro is hella-radical too. try making a QT flick of something going on and you'll see what i mean. it's the bestest.

oh, and i use transmit all the damn time too. a huge recommendation from Panic.


mat  { 5.30.02 @ 11:41am }

» i'd add WindowshadeX, from Unsanity, to the list. i prefer windowshading over minimizing to the dock. if i need to see what's behind another window quickly, clicking once to windowshade and then immediately clicking once more to expand is much faster than minimizing to the dock, waiting for it to scale to the dock, then moving my mouse all the way down to the dock and clicking to reverse the process. there's a keyboard shortcut to minimize to the dock, but not one to unminimize, right? yeah, that doesn't do me any good, then.

oh, snapz pro x. if you've ever wanted to take a screen shot of a DVD, snapz pro x will do it if you have an nvidia card.

frank  { 5.30.02 @ 2:53pm }

» If there's one piece of OSX software that I'd recommend over anything else, it'd be RBrowser. I can't live without it now, and anyone that's hooked on BBEdit for web development will love the way this app interfaces with it. It's an FTP/SSH/SCP client that uses OSX's finder interface. Drag and drop SSH, open and edit files on the server with BBEdit. It's killer. And worth every penny.

Dan Cederholm  { 5.31.02 @ 6:55am }

» Though I have ASM installed, there are two main reasons why I choose not to use it: 1) When an application is hidden, ASM doesn't bring it out of its hidden state 2) It's in the top right, I'm always reaching for the top left.

For these reasons, for application switching and launching, I use DragThing. As others have stated, LaunchBar's supposed to kick some patootie as well, I'll have to revisit it at some point.

The three apps that I do have installed in the top right of the menubar are Show Desktop (which does what it says), WeatherPop (which reminds me that the weather's great and I should be outside) and PTHClock (to replace the standard clock with additional functionality).

I also got Xounds (adds system sounds) and I stuck the trashcan back on the dektop, where it belongs.

Lastly, for your Intellimouse Explorer mouse, here's the driver.

Jish  { 5.31.02 @ 11:01am }

» Huevos, a tool for submitting queries to search engines is pretty cool. Extensible and open source.

If you're one of those guys that must have emacs on his machine, emacs 21.1 for OS X is out.

Alwin Hawkins  { 6.1.02 @ 12:59pm }

» I have become addicted to a somewhat generic freeware setup:

apache, php, and mysql all running on my powerbook.

Stuck on a plane for 6 hours cross country? no problem! continue to develop locally :)

DevShed has a how to article, but make sure you get the newest packages (and use the curl command to download them)

john athayde  { 6.3.02 @ 7:02am }


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