8 Fantastic Apps Every Mac User Should Have

by · November 16, 2011

I love finding new and useful tools that both aid in my daily productivity and push me to develop new ways of organizing and working.  The 8 apps below are ones I use almost on a daily basis. Most are free but all are fantastic. If you have others you use please share them!

1) 1 Password

I use 1Password at least 10 times per day. It stores and saves all my passwords for various sites in a secure database that is accessible with … ready for it … 1 password.  The more you use it the more passwords you store for different sites and with the handy plugin for Safari & Firefox logging into different accounts is a simple as choosing your login from a list.  It will even automatically log you in! Other neat features are the password generator so that you don’t have to come up with crazy random passwords, the wallet to store your CC info and auto-fill forms when you purchase things online, and the identity switcher which allows you to create multiple identities and use them to auto-fill registration forms online. 1Phone app is available as well.

Click here for more.

2) Undercover

Undercover is something you hope to never use and runs in the background of your Mac, iPad or iPhone.  Simply put, if your device is ever stolen Undercover is the software that helps you recover it. It gives you piece of mind.  Read more about it here.

3) Evernote

Evernote is a great little tool for remembering just about anything. Make lists, take screenshots & photos, create sticky notes and sync it all effortlessly to other devices. Get it here.

4) Dropbox

Like Evernote this handy app allows you to store files in the cloud and access them anywhere, or, share them with others. It’s great if you have the large file you can’t send thru email, or, want to back-up your files off-site.  It also works with 1Password in case you want to store your master password file off-site and sync it with other devices (such as your iPhone or another Mac at home/work). Drop Box gives you 2 GB for free to start! Click here to get started.

5) Skype

If you haven’t heard about Skype … well.  Skype is your free internet phone.  Chat, make calls, create video conference calls all from your computer! I went ahead and upgraded to a paid version to get my own phone number so that others without Skype could call me mostly for business use, but, the free version is great too! Download it today.

6) Growl

Growl is a neat little notification app that goes unnoticed until you need it. It can be setup to work with several different apps such as iTunes or Dropbox and simply shows notifications you specify for different apps. For me it will show when I’ve completed uploading a file in Dropbox, or when a new song begins playing on Rdio, or when a Skype friend comes online.  It does all kinds of things and is easily customizable to fit your needs. Try it out!

7) Quicksilver

Quicksilver is one of those tools that doesn’t get a lot of press, but, is extremely handy. There’s a bit of a learning curve to the keystrokes, but, once you’ve got it down you can do all kinds of things much quicker than you ever could before. In less that 3 seconds I can find a friend’s phone number and begin dialing them thru my Skype account, or, search for that file on my Mac, or even create a new email without switching to the Mail app.  Read more about it here and don’t give up on it too quick!

8) Omnigraffle

Omnigraffle is a great and fun brainstorming tool. I use to create mind maps, hierarchies and other diagrams quickly and effortlessly. And with a world of stencils, my designs can look professional and communicate effectively. Find out more here. There’s also a version for the iPad!

What else should we be looking at?

  • http://daveshrein.com Dave Shrein

    I would also submit the app Transmit from Panic to the list. http://panic.com/transmit/ LOVE IT!

  • Keith Brown

    I recently got a Mac for work.  Been trying to learn how to do things on a Mac that I already know how to do on a PC. Thanks for these apps… definitely going to check a few of them out

  • Brian Kaufman

    Yep, that’s a good one too. If you like CSS3 & FTP in the same app, check out Espresso: http://macrabbit.com/espresso/

  • http://www.letsgetbrian.com Brian Kaufman

    Welcome to the wonderful world of Mac!

  • http://daveshrein.com Dave Shrein

    Ditto to Brian’s comments… hope you enjoy your stay!