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Over the last twelve months the iPad has literally taken the technology world by storm. Apple has carved out a brand new niche in the industry, establishing the iPad as the best tablet computer available on the market. And the momentum behind this gadget shows no sign of slowing down…

Since the launch of the iPad, we’ve received countless requests from readers for a new site that’s completely dedicated to the device. I’m incredibly excited to let you know that today marks the launch of a new member in the ever-growing AppStorm family – iPad.AppStorm!

iPad.AppStorm is Alive and Kicking...

iPad.AppStorm is Alive and Kicking...

Don’t Miss Out: Subscribe Now!

We have some absolutely fantastic posts lined up over the coming week, and we’d hate for you to miss out… There are a few different ways to subscribe to iPad.AppStorm – hopefully one of the following options will work for you!

Win an iPad 2!

To celebrate the launch of iPad.AppStorm, we’re going to be giving one lucky reader a brand new iPad 2!

This is the latest and greatest piece of hardware to emerge from Apple HQ, and today you have the chance to get your hands on one completely free of charge!

It’s a marvel of technology, and would be the perfect way to browse the new iPad.AppStorm site! Find out how to enter.

Everyone needs a text editor – whether it’s for in-depth coding, or jotting down a quick note. There are plenty of scenarios throughout the day that don’t require a full-blown word processor, and there’s no shortage of different options available for the Mac.

Much of your decision will likely come down to specific requirements. Do you need a simple syncing solution? Maybe Notational Velocity would fit the bill. Is full-screen, distraction free writing important? Take a look at WriteRoom.

We’ve written about this extensively before, looking at 10 Versatile Text Editors for OS X.

Personally, I flutter between TextMate for coding, and Notational Velocity for everything else – I love knowing that everything I’ve written will be easily accessible through Simplenote.

I’d love to know what your preference is – feel free to leave a vote above, or share your thoughts in the comments!

This week, I’m once again incredibly proud to have Pixelmator as our Mac.AppStorm sponsor. One of my all-time favourite apps, this is a fantastic alternative to the increasingly-bloated Photoshop for all manner of graphic editing work.

Labelled as an “image editor for the rest of us”, Pixelmator’s interface is enjoyable to use while maintaining a simple learning curve for new adopters. If you’re already a seasoned Photoshop pro, you’ll feel right at home with the familiar palette interface and similar tools.

Pixelmator is based on Core Image technology that uses your Mac’s video card for image processing. This means that it’s fast. It supports a huge range of graphics formats, and the price of $59 is a welcome change to the inflated charge for many competing apps.

Although I still use Photoshop from time to time, Pixelmator has become by go-to tool for 80% of tasks that require working with graphics. If you yearn for a faster, sleeker alternative to Photoshop, give Pixelmator a try today.

So often, we marvel at the quality of interface design on OS X – the clean, simple layouts, and how you know exactly how to use an app when you first use it. But do you ever stop and think about why this is?

It doesn’t just happen by accident. There are UI designers working tirelessly to make an app look and feel absolutely perfect.

Chris Downer is the UI designer for Realmac Software, the company behind such OS X greats as LittleSnapper, Courier and Rapidweaver. Today, we’ll be talking to Chris about his methods, inspiration and much more.

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We all remember journals as a childhood thing. They are usually identified with learning to write and it’s something that most adults aren’t used to doing. Journaling, however, is a great way to keep track of the stages of your life and the important events you go through.

It is always nice to go back in your journal and recall feelings, people and events from the past. It’s something that you can use to show your children your travels and adventures. But keeping a physical paper diary has become fairly inadequate, now that we have pretty much everything in digital form.

The app that we are reviewing today is called Day One and it does a great job at helping you keep a journal in the most simplistic manner in your Mac. Read on to find more about it!

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Winners Announced

I’m pleased to announce that the winners of our ColorSchemer Studio competition are:

  • iBenn
  • Sonal
  • Thor Adam
  • Greg Pipkin
  • Tyago Neres

Thanks for taking part, and we’ll be in touch with your license code shortly!

Old Competition Post

We have another great competition for you this week, offering the chance to win one of five licenses for the excellent ColorSchemer Studio!

ColorSchemer Studio makes it fun, fast and easy to find the perfect palette for your next creative project. Whether you’re designing a web site, magazine layout, picking wedding colors, or painting your living room, get your colors right the first time with ColorSchemer Studio.

It’s a really versatile piece of software, and one that we reviewed last year. ColorSchemer is well designed, fun to use, and it takes the anxiety out of coming up with effective and professional color combinations.

Entering the competition is really easy. All you need to do is leave a comment below, letting us know what you’d like to design a colour scheme for!

The competition will run for one week, and I’ll pick five winning comments at random on Thursday, 31st March. Best of luck, and why not take a look at ColorSchemer Studio on the Mac App Store while you wait for the results?

If you’re anything like me, you’ve probably long forgotten about iTunes Visualizers. Right now you’re trying to remember what they are aren’t you? For whatever reason they were something that we thought were great at one point, but they have since lost their luster.

They aren’t directly useful but can be a great addition to a party, or just something cool to look at while listening to some tunes!

There aren’t many folks out there dabbling with Quartz Composer churning out new visualizers so they are a little tough to come by these days. They aren’t the most popular feature of iTunes by any stretch, but it is a pretty fun feature and there are some amazing ones out there. I went searching for some of the best.

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We’re very proud to announce the release of Freelance Confidential, Rockable Press’s newest book on freelancing. This book aims to provide the hard numbers on the biggest issues of freelancing and advice on how experienced freelancers can improve their business.

More than just another single person’s view on freelancing, Freelance Confidential contains contributions from the Editor of FreelanceSwitch, Amanda Hackwith, a panel of 10 expert entrepreneurs, and 3,200 freelancers worldwide.

If you’re a Mac-using freelancer, read on for a little more insight into what the book includes!

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Although many people are perfectly happy using Gmail on the web, I’ve never particularly enjoyed the experience. I spend quite a bit of time reading and replying to email, and prefer to have an appealing interface in which to do so – Gmail might be functional, but it certainly isn’t pretty.

For the past five years or so, Mail.app was my preferred client of choice. It did everything I required from an email client, and synced well across my various devices. But development has slowed in recent years, and little has changed in the app since the release of Leopard.

I’ve recently made the move across to Postbox, and couldn’t be happier. It’s a fantastic piece of software, and one that I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend. If you’re tired of Mail.app (or your webmail interface), Postbox is definitely worth giving a try.

Of course, there are plenty of other alternatives. Take a look at our roundup of 8 Awesome Alternatives to Mail.App on Your Mac for some inspiration.

I’d be interested to hear what you think. Are you content with firing up Gmail.com, or do you prefer a desktop email companion? Let us know in the comments, and don’t forget to vote!

I’d like to take a moment to say a big thank you to this week’s sponsor, Twitterrific. I absolutely love every application that the Iconfactory produce, and this is no exception. It’s thoughtfully designed, beautiful to look at, and a pleasure to use.

If you’re growing tired with sparse updates to the official Twitter client (or the gradual integration of ads), look no further than Twitterrific. It’s a great alternative to the official Twitter client, and performs far better in many areas.

It supports multiple accounts, multiple windows, translation, a unified timeline, themes, and full keyboard control throughout. The latest release, version 4, was a huge update which brought a range of new functionality and a clean, minimal design.

You can buy Twitterrific on the Mac App Store, download the free version, or check out our in-depth review. I’m a huge fan, and really can’t recommend this app highly enough. Go try it out!

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