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After years as Windows only user, I came to the Mac shortly before Lion was released last summer. I was still so new to Mac OS at that time that I failed to notice many of the changes from Snow Leopard to Lion. I did notice the removal color from the icons in the Finder sidebar, however. Like many, I found the loss of color made it more difficult for me to quickly find the icon I wanted. The icons just blended in together more than they did before.

The color is still there. If you look under the Go Menu in Finder, the icons still show in full color. Apple described the change as designed was to reduce emphasis on the interface in favor of content. While effective for that, the loss of contrast didn’t seem worth the tradeoff. As usual, developers stepped in to restore what they saw as lost functionality. SideEffects restores color to the icons Finder Sidebar. How well does it work? Let’s see. (more…)

Many of us have dreams of visiting foreign places and speaking with those of other nationalities and languages. This is a far off goal for many people, especially those who do not have the funds to pay for college classes or time to spend abroad immersing themselves in the language and culture. As a result of these circumstances, many have resorted to computer programs to learn the language of their choosing. The problem is that many of these programs did not work on the Mac and if they did, they were poorly designed and were, quite frankly, an embarrassment. Fluenz saw this as a problem and created a program it hoped would solve it.

Fluenz Latin America Levels 1-5 is a revolutionary computer program that was expertly designed to work on our beloved Macs and also happens to teach Spanish as it is spoken throughout many Latin American countries. The Fluenz team decided to send me a review copy of its Latin America program for Mac for me to try. I have taken the last thirty days and used the program for this review. Lets get right to it and see what I thought!

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Screencasts have become a prime factor when showcasing new applications, creating tutorials, recording gameplay, and so much more. And, as new hardware comes out, these screen recording apps need to stay on top of their game. That includes taking full advantage of Apple’s new Macbook Pro with Retina display.

While there are many screen recording apps to choose from (including QuickTime, which comes preinstalled on OS X), today we will cover Screenflick 2. Screenflick 2 has been updated with a number of new features including support for Retina displays. All these features plus Screenflick’s ease of use make it a sweet addition to anyones toolset.

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Video games are fueled by competition, skills, fun, determination, and of course, bragging rights. In all fairness, competition always brings us to bragging rights. And why wouldn’t it? As long as you are not a cocky trash-talker, bragging rights can be given to those who humbly prove themselves to be at the top of the food chain.

But what is the best way to display your skills? What is the best way to exercise your bragging rights? Video, of course!

For years now, most gamers have depended on a popular personal video recorder to capture their gameplay. Recently however, the famous company that was responsible for EyeTV, Elgato, released a new product. Known as the Game Capture HD, this small device, bundled up with its rocking app, sets a new bar for video game recording.

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Some say this day would never arrive, some even called it abandon-ware, but Things 2 is finally here. Cultured Code, the developers behind Things for Mac, iPhone and iPad released an updated version of their suite of productivity apps today. Also arriving with the set of updates is Things Cloud – Cultured Code’s sync service that keeps your copies of Things updated on all of your devices.

Let’s take a look at Things 2 for Mac as well as Things Cloud and explore what’s new since we first covered this task manager back in 2009 and what might tempt you to make the jump from another task manager.

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While there’s no shortage of image editing applications for the Mac, it’s safe to say that Pixelmator is one of the top contenders when it comes to more ambitious tasks. It might be too much to say that Pixelmator is a full replacement for Photoshop, but it does offer a wide variety of features which will satisfy the needs of many.

Today, Pixelmator received an update, bumping it to version 2.1, codenamed Cherry. And if you haven’t picked up a copy yet, now’s a good time to try it out, as it’s on a summer sale for only $14.99. After the break, we’ll take a look at the changes and how they’ll affect your workflow.

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When it comes to sharing code snippets with others, there aren’t really many services that do it justice. Many lack syntax highlighting, and don’t even have desktop clients to make the experience of uploading a snippet pleasant. There’s plenty of ways to share code, but few that check all the boxes for a perfect Mac-to-web code snippet sharing experience.

SourceBox is an app that allows you to easily upload snippets of code and other text to PasteBin, as well as their own SourceDrop service and other popular sites for sharing code snippets online. If you find yourself often needing to share bits of code, this just might be the app you’ve been looking for. (more…)

If you’ve ever been editing an image and found your eyedropper wandering outside the application window to all of the colors on your desktop and beyond, I can sympathize. You’re not the only one who’s wanted to extend the functionality of Photoshop’s color picker beyond the application and been frustrated when you just weren’t allowed to do that.

Well, be frustrated no more! Meet Frank DeLoupe, a menubar color picker that will work anywhere. Going by Frank for short, this app gives you Photoshop integration and the ability to copy a color’s code to your clipboard. With so much packed into such a tiny app, can Mr. DeLoupe really do it all, or will Frank fall on his face? (more…)

Dropbox has been the go-to for cloud storage for many of us for many years now. Unfortunately, it’s not the easiest cloud sharing service there is, and for those of us who like to keep our files all together, that’s a problem. There are some pretty prominent services, perhaps most notably Cloud.app and Droplr, that allow easy drag-and-drop sharing from your desktop, but Dropbox hasn’t kept up.

Currently in free beta, Droplings is a new app that allows you to share in a similar way to the other cloud services, but from Dropbox. Droplings uploads files to your Dropbox Public folder and creates a download page for your file, just by dragging your files to your menubar. We’ll take a look, after the jump! (more…)

Mountain Lion was released less than two weeks ago, and we’re still finding new features and nice touches Apple put in their latest OS. While you may have read every review, including an excellent one written by Alex Arena here on Mac.AppStorm, there’s still lots to discover in the newest built-in apps.

Notes, Reminders, Messages, and Game Center are Apple’s latest attempt to bring popular built-in iOS apps to OS X Mountain Lion. These apps include connectivity with iCloud as well as some extra features unique to the Mac versions. If you already have other apps you love for taking notes and keeping up with your todos, you may have just ignored these new apps, but there’s plenty included to make them great apps to keep around. Join me as we begin our tour of the latest apps included in OS X Mountain Lion! (more…)

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