Macworld 2007 was a bit of a bust for the Mac. All of the major announcements being consumer products with nary a mention of Leopard or iLife to be found. Which is not to say we aren’t still excited about the iPhone or the AppleTV, they just aren’t Mac products. So I decided to make a list of software available for the Mac that I found to be excellent enough to put my hard-earned money down. Over the next couple posts I’ll bring you lists of some terrific applications the Mac community has developed in the hopes that you too might find worthy of your support.
When it comes to serious text editing on the Mac there is contentious debate between two camps: those who love TextMate and those who love BBEdit. While both are excellent applications and justifiably beloved there are two very good reasons to choose TextMate over BBEdit:
- Ruby on Rails – TextMate is the editor of choice for Ruby on Rails development and, from what I’ve read, handles it significantly more gracefully than does BBEdit.
- Price – TextMate costs about $75.00 (depending on the exchange rate) less than BBEdit. That made a pretty big difference to me.
It’s no simple task to detail precisely why TextMate is such a worthwhile purchase. Unless you have need of a powerful text editor, and many of you might not, you won’t find much to love here. Web developers and software authors, however, have a great deal to love in TextMate’s tag completion, macros, and color coding. TextMate is expandable by means of Bundles and has the support of a devoted cast of developers. If it doesn’t support a desired language “out of the box” chances are good someone has put together a Bundle for you.
TextMate costs €39 and is available at macromates.com.
FlickrExport for iPhoto
Flickr is great and all, but wouldn’t it be even greater if you could upload your photos directly through iPhoto and saving yourself at least two steps? That’s precisely what FlickrExport does. Once installed an extra option is made available in iPhoto’s Export screen. Before uploading you can set tags, change the photo’s title, add a description, and scale the photo as needed. After that it’s just a click and your photos are on Flickr. I can’t imagine using Flickr without it anymore.
Dealing with iPhoto’s keywords using the default set of tools leaves a bit to be desired. I never made much headway into putting them to good use until I picked up this plugin. Keyword Manager adds a few extra windows to your iPhoto allowing you to easily and deftly add keywords to your photos and keep them organized. First, it allows instant access to keyword additions directly through one window and keyword organization through another. Keyword Manager keeps your keywords in hierarchical order. Family photos could be tagged with a name, which is kept under a family category itself nested under the primary category “Family.” Or photos of particular buildings in a city might be categorized under that city (itself under the country in which that city is located). Anal retentive taggers rejoice! Your ability to create Smart Albums will be drastically improved.
Keyword Manager makes a great companion to FlickrExport above as all of these keywords assigned in iPhoto will automatically be posted to Flickr. Your Flickr photostream will thus be kept just as organized as your iPhoto Library.
Keyword Manager costs $19 and is available at bullstorm.se
That does it for my first catalog of Mac applications. Stay tuned for another batch of apps you’ll wonder what you ever did without. Disagreements? Suggestions? Your comments and critiques are appreciated.