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In today’s interview, we’re talking to Pieter Omvlee of Bohemian Coding. We’ve covered Pieter’s software extensively on AppStorm before, and I’m a huge fan of his notoriously well-designed apps. If you haven’t already, head over to Bohemian Coding and take a look at what’s on offer – particularly if you’re a designer!

Pieter has been kind enough to share a few minutes to talk about the story behind Bohemian Coding, his thoughts on iOS development, how he stays up-to-date with the Mac industry in general, and the hardware and software he uses to get the job done.

I hope you enjoy the interview!

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Whether you’re a power-email-user, or just occasionally jump into Gmail to grab your personal messages, Postbox is a stylish and functional email client worth considering. Recently updated to version 2.0, it’s a powerful alternative to Apple’s Mail.app, and keeps improving with every release.

Today we’re going to take a quick look at some of the features launched in the latest release, and explain how you can get your hands on a free license!

Read on to find out more…

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I remember five years ago when I got my first Mac. Soon after, I had a .Mac account (the old version of MobileMe) in hopes I’d be able to enjoy some of the features of cloud storage and syncing.

Fast forward into today’s culture. Cloud storage is even easier to acquire (even for us Mac users) and syncing online has become an omnipresent feature with services like Dropbox. Today, I wanted to take a look at why people have moved away from MobileMe and give a few possible alternative solutions to avoid paying $99 a year.

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Office 2011 brings plenty of improvements over previous versions, but it’s still far from perfect. And despite the overwhelming dominance of Microsoft Office across Windows and Mac, it certainly isn’t the only suite of office-style tools available.

Personally, I’m a huge fan of the iWork suite. After a sluggish and frustrating first release, I think that it has improved in leaps and bounds. I use Pages and Numbers almost exclusively for all my word processing and spreadsheet work (though I prefer to write in something simpler most of the time).

Another alternative is the excellent OpenOffice, which recently celebrated its 10th birthday. This has really become a viable contender in recent years, and version 3 felt considerably more “at home” on OS X. If you’ve never used OpenOffice before, it’s definitely worth taking a look at.

So, which suite of “office” style applications do you use? Like me, are you an iWork fan? Or do you think that Microsoft Office still leads the way in this area? Share your thoughts in the comments – I’d love to hear what you think!

A few weeks ago, Apple gave a sneak peak of the next version of Mac OS X, 10.7 Lion. Not a whole lot was revealed about the new operating system beyond a new way to access applications dubbed Mission Control (Dashboard + Expose + iOS-style application launcher).

One of the bigger announcements was the introduction of an App Store for Mac OS X. The same way you browse the App Store for iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad applications, you can now purchase, download and install applications for your computer.

With the overwhelming success of the iOS App Store, an App Store for the Mac seems like a natural progression. Not only will it provide a seamless way of browsing and installing applications for the end user, it allows Apple to snag a piece of Mac application sales.

Many things have already been said about the Mac App Store since it’s announcement. Questions have been asked and answers have been speculated. No one really knows how it will turn out, we can only guess based on the continuing success of the iOS App Store and the recently released guidelines.

There are certainly a number of benefits to such a system, for both the user and the developer. There are certainly a few things to be wary about as well…

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I’d like to take a few moments to say thank you to our weekly sponsor, Billings Pro. Every time I ask Mac users about the software they use for managing clients, projects, and time tracking, one name always comes up. Billings.

The basic version of Billings is perfect for freelancers and small companies – but if you run a larger organisation, it’s definitely worth taking a look at Billings Pro. This advanced version offers powerful time tracking, synchronization between different computers, and the ability to review and approve invoices. It’s a powerful beast.

I know that I’m not alone in thinking that Billings is one of the best tools available to the Mac-using freelancer, and the Pro version takes the functionality on offer to a new level. Check out the full overview, and go download a trial to give Billings Pro a try!

In July of this year, Apple announced the 27″ LED Cinema Display and, as most of us would expect, it isn’t a cheap piece of hardware.

Apple has a reputation for producing high quality products – and no one can deny that. There is often a good amount of discussion as to whether they mark their prices up simply because they know the Apple fans will pay for it, or because their products are actually superior to their competitors.

Right now, Apple sells only one computer monitor – the 27″ LED Cinema Display. It specs out (we’ll get into that in a bit) very well and comes in at a beefy $999. In the day of bigger and bigger displays and cheaper and cheaper prices, Apple goes against the flow here a bit by staying at a higher price point.

The question is, do you get what you pay for?

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Winners Announced!

Congratulations to our five lucky winners, who are:

  • Misha
  • Ragnar
  • Susan Vincent
  • Josh Baltzell
  • Phil Höfer

We’ll be in touch soon to let you know how to claim your prize!

Old Competition Announcement

Although I’m used to giving away software here at Mac.AppStorm, it’s always good to have a change of pace from time to time! Today we’re giving away five products from The Lucky Labs – you’ll be able to take your pick of any single item in their store, be it for your MacBook, iPhone or iPad.

The Lucky Labs make some really fun-looking covers and skins for your Apple gear, and you’ll be the envy of your friends with a stylish, funky graphic on your MacBook lid…

Entering is really easy – just leave a comment on this post! We’ll randomly pick the five winners in one week, and will send you an email to explain how to submit your request for a free product.

The Lucky Labs are happy to ship anywhere in the world, so this one’s open to everyone. Good luck!

It’s time for another “Ask the Editor” post today. A big thank you to everyone who sent in their questions – it’s great to have the chance to help you out with your Mac-related queries and quibbles.

Some of the topics covered this week include gaming on the Mac, jumping to the beginning or end of a line, sharing photos with remote family, and setting up your Time Capsule. Read on to find out what my responses are (and how you can submit your own questions for the next article!)

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Skype is one of those programs that is used by almost everyone in one way or another. Whether you have it open all day, or just fire it up to chat with family when you’re away on holiday, most Mac users will have encountered it at some point.

Last week, Skype announced the release of a new Beta for Mac users – Skype 5.0. This new version takes a radical departure from the old Skype interface, in an effort to adopt a “one window” approach and make using the app much simpler.

Although I really like the thinking behind this new version – tighter OS X integration, and a simpler interface – I was really disappointed with a few aspects of the design. Most notably the spacing between elements, which quickly becomes a complete nightmare if you have a long list of contacts.

At the very least, I’d have expected an option to scale down the font size, or switch to a more compact view. At present, it feels like the “one window” approach uses up twice as much desktop space, while only showing half the information I’m used to.

If you haven’t tried it yet, download the beta and let us know what you think! Do you agree with me, or are you impressed with the new, roomier interface?

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