It’s old news now that Google Reader is being shut down on July 1st. It’s also old news that finding the perfect news reading apps for your Mac and iPhone is a bit harder than you’d think at first. There’s a ton of options, but if you just want an easy way to get your news fix and keep your read status and subscriptions synced between your devices, it’s not so simple.
Most of the best options today are new web apps, some of which sync with native iOS apps but few of which have native Mac apps. Stalwart Mac RSS apps like NetNewsWire and Reeder are working on their own syncing solutions which will hopefully come before the July 1st deadline.
But NewsBar, a simple Mac and iOS RSS reader, has its own native RSS engine and can keep your subscriptions, read state, and favorited articles synced between your Macs and iOS devices via iCloud. Today. We’ve looked at NewsBar before, but let’s take another look and see what a year — and iCloud sync — has brought to the equation.
Long a favorite on iOS, Instacast is now in beta release on the Mac. More than just a complement to the version you’ve got on your iPhone or iPad, Instacast for Mac is a fully-functional podcast app built with usability in mind.
But will it be able to supplant iTunes as your go-to iTunes podcast app? We’ll see if the Mac app stands up to its iOS predecessor. (more…)
File syncing services such as Dropbox, Google Drive and Microsoft SkyDrive all have one thing in common: they provide a centrally hosted solution. Your files are stored not only on the devices you’re using but also on their servers. It’s an extremely useful feature as it means you can easily share files to other people without any complicated setup and you’ll always be able to access your files through a web browser. Whilst these services are extremely secure, there are those who are a little wary of having personal (or even confidential) information stored somewhere that they have no control over.
BitTorrent Sync is a new service that provides a decentralised file syncing solution with an emphasis on security and keeping your files off such servers. Is it a worthy alternative for the security conscious?
A computer network exists to ease the transfer of data from one computer to another. Before networks became common in homes and offices, moving even a small file would require transferring the file to some temporary medium, often a floppy disk, taking that temporary storage to the other location, and then copying the file onto the new destination computer. It took more time and effort and moving a file to a computer in another building or location required someone to walk or drive the disk there. Now with the ubiquity of networks this task has become an almost transparent action. We routinely move files around our local networks with little more difficultt than moving files within on our computer.
This easy transfer still only holds in when the source and destination are two computers on a local network. Once you need to transfer a file over the Internet, that is to a computer somewhere else, things get more complicated. This is such a common need and over time several dedicated protocols such as FTP and SFTP arose for this task. Unlike the seemingly transparent transfers on the local network, transfers with these protocols require a specialized client such as Cyberduck or FileZilla to move files between the remote location and your local computer.
The ExpanDrive app seeks to bring the convenience of a local drive to remote storage normally accessed through FTP, SFTP, and on Amazon’s S3 service. It makes a FTP, SFTP, or Amazon S3 connection appear like a USB drive plugged into your computer and transfers to these remote systems as simple as moving a file to an external hard drive. Let’s look at how well it works. (more…)
Cloak is a fantastic little VPN that protects your privacy and allows you to browse the Internet safely on your Mac. Unfortunately, you must pay a price for quality.
Or must you? The team at Spotflux doesn’t think you should pay for privacy, so they have developed a great little VPN that works on Mac, Windows, iOS, and soon Android. As with anything that’s free, there must be a downside, right? Let’s find out. (more…)
In a recent review of the WordPress blog editor BlogEasy, one of our readers, Siglist, had this to say about blogging apps on the Mac:
Having worked on multiple platforms/OSes… Mac/OSX is colletively the bottom of the barrel when it comes to blogware; no contest. …Why is this the case for the Mac world? There is nothing that can be done with basic “markdown” that can’t be done (and then some) with WYSIWYG.
This is a sentiment shared by many Mac users. While MarsEdit has enjoyed a fine history and following, many users are still on the lookout for the ideal WordPress (or other blog) editor.
There’s a brand new app, PixelPumper, that aims to fill this gap. It aims to let you graphically lay out your blog posts, offline, in an app designed around the latest OS X tech. Can it live up to all of that? Read on to find out.
About a year ago we published a review on a up-and-coming web browser called Sleipnir, giving it a great score and calling it a browser you just have to try. Recently a new version of the browser for the Mac has come out, and when we saw that the developer was calling it “the most advanced web browser yet”, we knew we had to take a look at it once more.
In our previous review, we praised Sleipnir for its sleek, clean cut design and its innovative tab navigation. How does the new one fare in these categories, and what’s new in it? Let’s check it out.
If you test anything on the internet, and you have to do it in multiple browsers, you know what a pain that can be. You have to have a couple of computers on hand or be running Windows on your Mac. There are tools that make it all a bit easier, but nothing makes it entirely painless.
Sauce is trying to take the edge off a bit by adding support for nearly 100 browsers right on your Mac. How can this be? Devilry? Magick with a K? Maybe. We’ll find out and see if it weighs the same as a duck.
There surely isn’t any shortage of apps for viewing and interacting with your Instagram feed right from your Mac. We’ve even presented a comparison of a few of them to you not so long ago.
Today we’re going to present you yet another newcomer to the Instagram Mac client market that is a bit different from the rest, in that it lives in your menu bar and is considerably simpler (and cheaper) than the rest. It’s called Instabar, so would you like to take a look at it?