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Running a business is hard enough without the stress of having to deal with complicated accounting systems. QuickBooks is one of the most established and user-friendly accounting software packages out there, along with apps such as FreshBooks and Xero.

QuickBooks for Mac is aimed at freelancers, small businesses, finance officers, accountants, and bookkeepers who want to save time by simplifying small business accounting. QuickBooks for Mac is a product that seems to divide Mac users, who either love or hate it. However, it’s one of the more user-friendly finance software packages out there. QuickBooks is developed by Intuit, which also makes Mint, GoPayment, TurboTax, and Quicken, and has a long track record in financial software.

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Moxtra aims to make team communication more flexible. This collaboration app represents a new generation of “Power Communication” tools, designed to change the way teams communicate so that they can work anywhere, anytime on OS X and iOS. It makes an interesting, Mac-flavored alternative to popular cloud-based collaboration software for business such as Wrike, eXo Platform, and Smartsheet.

Moxtra works on MacBooks, iPhones and iPads, although you can also share most things with others who aren’t using these platforms. Moxtra allows you to work on whichever device you may be using in the office, at home, or on the move. Ultimately, Moxtra aims to provide a seamless and faster working experience across both OSX and iOS that removes the need for email and downloading files in exchange for instant messaging and file sharing.

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How do you make teamwork on large projects easier and simpler? Slack is a productivity tool aimed at answering this question, by making collaboration simpler and more productive. Slack is all about increasing transparency and streamlining workflows on everything from small assignments to giant projects with multiple participants.

The Slack Mac app works by dividing projects into ‘Channels’. Each channel has it’s own searchable history, messages, comments, images, videos and rich link summaries. Channels can be integrated with activity on Twitter, Dropbox, and Google Drive all of which you can hook-up to Slack.

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Writer Pro is a bit bipolar. On the Mac, the app takes writing to a different level; elevating Markdown and a clean workflow into a smooth running system that is a pleasure to use. But on iOS, it’s a mess with very little reason to appear on your homescreen. And both apps cost $19.95.

And so, I’m conflicted. I like using Writer Pro, but I don’t enjoy using it on both platforms. In addition, new additional information about the developers has appeared, making me feel even worse. So should you spend $20 or $40 on the Writer Pro app system, or is it best to just walk away? Let’s find out. (more…)

In order to help improve password security, Apple just recently introduced iCloud Keychain in OS X Mavericks and iOS 7. The service is designed is to sync passwords, credit card information, wifi passwords, and account login information across devices.

Though it appears to do those tasks relatively well, it is Apple’s first foray into this field, and there are several well-established contenders already. Today, we’ll compare and contrast iCloud Keychain to LastPass.

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My Desktop can start looking pretty crazy if I’m not careful. I try to keep it clean and all of my files sorted and organized, but I’m just as guilty as anyone of creating a pile of files I’m working with on my Desktop. I end up creating folders to sort them, but that defeats the purpose of keeping everything where I can see it.

Enter Desktop Groups, a useful app for organizing all of that stuff that clutters up my Desktop. Rather than hiding everything away in folders, I can keep all of my files out and accessible. I’ll take a look and see if Desktop Groups can really improve my organization and productivity. (more…)

Control Center, recently added to iOS 7, put a lot of often reached for settings and tools close at hand. While that’s great for iPhone users, it doesn’t do a lot for us on the Mac. There’s some great stuff in there, though, and I’d like to have all of that at my fingertips or the click of a mouse. Controls+ aims to connect Control Center and OS X by putting a lot of the best tools in the menu bar. (more…)

I want an easy way to get inside of package installers, those .PKG files, without actually installing them. Is that too much to ask? It’s not, because Pacifist does just that. In fact, it does a lot more, allowing users to look inside of all sorts of files and find info about installers, too. I tried it out and will let you know all about it. (more…)

Always on the search for a new way to get things done, I jumped at the chance to give Silo a go. It has a companion app on just about every device, so I’ve always got my list and todos on me, something I’ve found is important not only to me but to anyone committed to being truly productive. I put the Mac version of the Silo app through its paces to see how it stands up to the competition. (more…)

I write in Markdown all the time, the easy-to-use writing syntax conceived of by John Gruber (of Daring Fireball fame). The nice thing about the syntax is that it doesn’t require any one specific app, so web writers can use it with whatever text editor they feel like — including default editors like TextEdit for Mac, which is much more powerful than most of us realize, I think.

That hasn’t stopped the flow of Markdown editors from arriving for Mac, though. Recently, I stumbled upon Lightpaper, which will be familiar to anybody who uses Android. Lightpaper Pro is well known on the Google Play Store, and I even reviewed it on Android.AppStorm. I went so far as to include it amongst the most noteworthy Markdown-equipped Android apps. The real question is: can lightning strike twice for developer Clockwork Engine with the Lightpaper Mac app? Read on to find out if this app is worth exploring, even in its beta state. (more…)

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