Software I Recommend for OS X

Filed Under Apple on 2009-02-17, 14:38

Macbook Pro

It’s been over a year since I made “the switch” to OS X. I bought my Macbook Pro last January and while it’s been a struggle at times, I’ve managed to use it as my primary machine for over a year. I recently got an email from a friend who had just picked up an iMac and wanted suggestions on good software. I figure others might be interested in my favorite OS X apps. Here’s what I sent him as a response:

The #1 best app ever is Quicksilver. It’s super powerful and can do all sorts of crazy stuff, but I mainly use it to launch apps and files. Apple+Spacebar, start typing the name of an app/file and it’ll show up. Hit enter and it launches. It also ties in with other apps to let you control them in ways they weren’t meant to be.

For all my IMing, I’m using Adium. It’s not awesome, but it works.

Growl is also pretty neat to have. It will display messages as things happen on your machine. So like if iTunes is playing in the background, it pops up a brief message to let me know what song just came on.

For Twitter, I’ve recently started using Twhirl, but I still jump on the website every now and then.

For terminal/command line stuff, iTerm1Password is hands down awesome. It has single-handedly saved my sanity.

VLC is much better than Quicktime for video playback. Plex is also preferred by many for a fancier interface. It’s based off XBox Media Center.

Handbrake is my new favorite media conversion utility. If you have a DivX movie or something you want to watch on an iPod, Xbox, whatever, it’ll convert it easily.

Xee is good replacement for Preview for image viewing and slideshows.

iStat Menus is great if you want to see stats on your machine, how hot it is, CPU load, disk writing, etc. It’s handy for when my machine bogs down and I don’t know why. “Oh, Firefox is using 110% of my cpu. Kill task..”

Do any of you have any essential apps you recommend for a new convert?