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David Appleyard

David Appleyard is a designer and writer based in the UK. He manages Tuts+, along with having founded several design websites including Design Shack and PixelsDaily.

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We’d like to say a big thank you to this month’s Mac.AppStorm sponsors, and the great software they create! If you’re interested in advertising, you can purchase a banner advertisement through BuySellAds, or sign up for a Weekly Sponsorship slot.

Thank you to the fantastic applications we had sponsoring each week during the month, all of which we personally recommend you download and try out!

  • Flux – Billed as an advanced HTML5 Web design application, Flux is capable of creating stunning sites from scratch. Far from being a simple template based solution, it’s a creative design environment.
  • Inspiration Set, and Clipart – The Pages Clipart package contains a total of 1,200 polished clipart pieces, and the Inspiration Set includes 150 Pages templates: 100 from the previous version and 50 brand-new additions.
  • Hearts Cards – This is one of the first solid Hearts games on the Mac App Store, and it’s great fun to play. You can check out a video demonstration at the developer site.
  • Patterno – This unique app is a tiled pattern and background image generator for Mac OS X, and can be a huge time-saver for graphic designers everywhere.

Finally, thanks to you for reading AppStorm this month, and for checking out the software that our sponsors create. I really appreciate it – you make the site what it is!

Today’s interview is with Alykhan Jetha (“AJ”), the CEO of Marketcircle. Developers of popular applications Billings and Daylite, Marketcircle has a long-standing track record as a top-notch Mac software development company.

In today’s interview, we’ll be talking about the Marketcircle team, inspiration for their products, the Mac App Store, and some very interesting updates currently in the pipeline for Billings.

I hope you enjoy the interview!

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Winners Announced

Thank you to everyone who took part in the competition! I’m pleased to let you know that the winners have now been chosen. Congratulations are in order to:

  1. Mats Abrahamsen
  2. Kexxcream
  3. Fernando Feldberg
  4. Kat
  5. Sirirat
  6. Mike Li
  7. Andy Bell
  8. T24G
  9. iamtom
  10. Waqas Abdul Majeed

You license code will be on the way shortly!

Old Competition Post

As well as sponsoring the site this week, Patterno have kindly agreed to offer ten free licenses to a handful of Mac.AppStorm readers.

This unique app is a tiled pattern and background image generator for Mac OS X, and can be a huge time-saver for graphic designers everywhere. Patterno allows to create various images that you may use to design your site, Twitter, MySpace or just to create a new wallpaper for your desktop!

Entering the competition is really easy. All you need to do is:

  1. Post a link to this competition – either on your website, or via Twitter
  2. Leave a comment, letting me know where you posted the link!

Best of luck, and I’ll be picking the winners in just over a week. The competition closes on Wednesday 4th May, but you can head over to the Patterno site to download a trial in the meantime!

The humble menu bar is a fascinating part of the Mac OS X interface. It’s always visible, and holds a remarkably prominent position on your display – far more so than the Dock.

Some people love to keep it as empty as possible, while others have so many menu bar apps that it’s literally full to overflowing. Whichever camp you fall into, almost everyone has at least one or two apps that they feel are worthy of a place in the magical menu bar.

Today we’re going to take a close look at 25 different apps that offer really useful menu bar functionality. Each has a short description, and a example video of the app in-use.

I’m not for one moment suggesting that you download and run all of these. That would be crazy. Rather I hope that you’ll find one or two that particularly stand out for you, and become a permanent resident in the top-right corner of your display…

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Earlier this week, while chatting to someone on Skype, I reached forward and knocked a full cup of coffee straight over my Apple Wireless Keyboard. This wasn’t a minor spillage – the whole keyboard was completed drenched (I don’t do things by halves!)

As quickly as I could, I followed the advice so wisely imparted by a fellow Envato colleague. I took out the batteries, and tipped it upside down to let the liquid drain out.

Two days later and it seems that, unfortunately, the keyboard isn’t going to recover from its coffee encounter. None of the keys work (something of a problem…), and the only key that does work remains depressed constantly! Thankfully it wasn’t my actual MacBook, and the replacement cost isn’t all that bad.

Spilling something on your Mac is everyone’s absolute worst nightmare, but it happens to most of us at some point. Or does it? Maybe I’m more clumsy than most…

Have you ever spilled something on your Mac or keyboard? What was it, and did your machine recover? Let us know in the comments!

I’d like to say a big thank you to this week’s AppStorm sponsor – Patterno. This unique app is a tiled pattern and background image generator for Mac OS X, and can be a huge time-saver for graphic designers everywhere.

Patterno allows to create various images that you may use to design your site, Twitter, MySpace or just to create a new wallpaper for your desktop.

There are 50 pre-defined templates to choose from, or you can create your own interesting effects with just a few clicks. Whatever medium you design for, this is a really handy way to easily create repeatable patterns to use as backgrounds and textures.

Patterno is available for $14.99 in the Mac App Store, or you can pick up a trial copy from the developer’s site. It’s definitely worth downloading and giving a try!

Winners Announced

I’m excited to let you know that the ten lucky winners have been chosen! Licenses will be on the way shortly to the following readers:

  1. Adrusi
  2. Sérgio Miranda
  3. Derek Jensen
  4. Adam Everett
  5. MJ
  6. Tavy
  7. Jonathan Griffiths
  8. sh0ebox
  9. Synnøve
  10. DavidKotaev

Old Announcement

After reviewing ScreenFloat earlier last week, the developers have been kind enough to offer ten free licenses for us to distribute to a few lucky readers!

ScreenFloat is a simple piece of software that can help you take screenshots and keep them on top of any other window. It is good for any type of work that requires you to go back between two windows to copy the content of one to the other. Entering the competition is easy, and requires two steps:

1. Like Mac.AppStorm on Facebook

This is as simple as clicking this little box, and means that you’ll also receive our updates and content on Facebook in the future!

2. Leave a Comment With Your Facebook URL

The next step is to leave a comment on this post with a link to your Facebook profile page. That’s it!

The competition will run for one week, and I’ll be selecting the ten winning entrants after Thursday April 28th. Best of luck, and be sure to check out our review of ScreenFloat for more information about the prize on offer.

As my three-year-old 15″ MacBook Pro starts to show its age, I’m starting to think that I’ll soon be in the market for a new Apple notebook. It’s been a fantastic machine to own, but after three years of lugging a 15″ portable around, I’ve decided that a laptop this big isn’t particularly… portable.

Last year, Apple released a series of new MacBook Air machines that have received rave reviews – both in the major press, and from those equally in the know. The big dilemma here is whether an 11″ or 13″ screen makes the greatest sense. And are either of these really adequate to replace a 15″ display?

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Whatever profession you’re in, there’s a strong chance that as a Mac.AppStorm reader you occasionally need to delve into a FTP client. Whether that’s to transfer a file to someone, update your website, or access a service such as Amazon S3 – there are a multitude of reasons why an FTP app might come in handy.

Personally, I’m a big fan of Transmit 4. It’s a beautiful app with a very thorough feature set – two selling points that make it hard to ignore. In fact, it was one of the apps that originally made me want to switch across to the Mac (along with everything else designed by Panic at the time…)

There are plenty of other contenders, though – Forklift, Interarchy, and YummyFTP to name a few!

These all have their own unique selling points and features – you’d be amazed at how much scope there is for individuality in such a theoretically mundane niche of software. From disks that mount on your desktop to Automator support and “Droplets” – software can actually make FTP fun!

I’d be interested to hear which application you use – feel free to share your thoughts in the comments. Which FTP app do you use, how often do you need to open it, and why?

This week’s wonderful AppStorm sponsor is a new Mac application called Hearts Cards. For the past decade or so, the card game “Hearts” has been a staple time sink for Windows user, but there hasn’t been a great equivalent for the Mac.

With the recent opening of the Mac App Store there have been several attempts to bring this classic card game to Mac users, but many of these have been somewhat half-hearted (if you’ll excuse the pun).

This is one of the first solid Hearts games on the Mac App Store, and it’s great fun to play. You can check out a video demonstration at the developer site, and submit your requests and feedback for future versions.

If you’d just like to give the app a try (it’s only $4.99, after all), you can head straight to the Mac App Store and take a look!

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