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I work from home on my own computer, so of course I have a bunch of apps to get me through the day. You know, I listen to music, send and respond to email, and am constantly using one browser or another. To tell you I stream music using Spotify or use Safari to browse isn’t really letting you in on any secrets of how I get through my day or giving out any tips on what apps I can’t live without.

Instead of looking to the more conspicuous apps that I use everyday and always have open, I want to let you in on some of the apps that don’t seem so integral at first blush, but that I just can’t make it through the day without. (more…)

App.net is an up and coming social network and microblogging service that’s proving to be a worthy competitor to Twitter, with features such as being completely ad-free and an increased character count (256 characters compared to Twitter’s 140). Instead of generating revenue via ads, App.net users pay a small subscription charge to use the service. App.net user numbers have increased dramatically over the last few weeks ever since it launched a free tier service, allowing these paid subscribers to send out invitations for others to join the service with limited accounts, free of charge. Essentially, App.net became a freemium service.

Although the network is still fairly new, there has been active development of App.net clients for the Mac and in this roundup we look at five of the best apps currently available. And if you’re not on App.net yet, keep reading for a shot at some free App.net accounts we have to giveaway! (more…)

How many hours do you spend in front of your Mac each day? The internet is where we find our entertainment and where we go to work. It’s easy to lose track of how much time you’ve spent sitting in front of the screen, and if that number gets to be a big number of hours per day, then you ought to change a few habits, don’t you think?

Today we’ll be showing you a few apps for minimizing bad habits with your computer usage. We’ve got it all: apps that remind you to take a break once in a while from your computer, apps that help you stay focused on your tasks so that you can have more time for yourself, and utilities for reducing eye strain. Let’s do this!
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As a web designer, slicing a mockup or exporting optimized images can be some of the most annoying and time-consuming tasks you must undertake. Granted, some designers and developers don’t do any “slicing,” but at some point, the need to allocate images becomes necessary. Whether that image is part of an element’s background or a slide for a slider, slicing it, exporting it, and optimizing it can take you a some time – unless you decide to get Enigma64, that is.

Enigma64 is a Photoshop plug-in that addresses not only slicing, exporting, and optimizing images, but it also gives you the ability to use Base64 as a method of exporting your optimized image. If your workflow includes some of these steps, follow us after the break to learn more about this incredibly useful plug-in.

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Hey, it’s Matthew, the editor here and on Web.AppStorm. Ever wondered which apps I use to get my work done each day?

For the past few weeks, we’ve been running a series of articles about the Apps We Use, letting you get a peek into the workflow of each of the writers on our team. I’m up this week, and here’s the apps that are most important to me — the apps I require to get work done, productively, on my Mac.

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With the announcement that Google Reader will be discontinued as of July 1, 2013, a lot people are scrambling for another feed reader service. If you’re one of them, you may be looking for more than just a web app to replace Google Reader and want a desktop app for your Mac to create a better reading experience. The problem is that so many Mac feed readers depend on Google Reader and won’t work without it.

We’ve gathered some alternatives you can start using right now ahead of the big shutdown. Some of the best feed readers out there are on the list, and we’ve got a good range of full-featured and minimalist, paid and free. Hopefully you’ll find something that can fill the Google Reader-sized hole in your heart.

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Twitter has hit something of a boom recently. From a small tech startup in San Francisco a mere seven years ago, it has blossomed to one of the largest social networks globally and the tenth most visited site on the Net. The influence of Twitter can be seen everywhere — from TV shows with hashtags in the corner to big companies promoting their brands and products with @names and hashtags — and the words “retweet” and “follower” have entered the prestigious Oxford English Dictionary as proper English words.

The Mac certainly isn’t left out here and you’ll be glad to know that there’s plenty of choice when it comes to Twitter clients. In this roundup, I take a look at eight of the best and weigh up the pros and cons of each one. If you’re unsure about which Twitter client to use, or simply fancy switching to another one, then read on for my recommendations.

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With two Macs on rotation — an iMac and a MacBook Air — plopped on top of 20 years on Apple’s side of the operating system fence, I’ve come to use a lot of apps. More even than I can think of off the top of my head, in fact. But some stick out as essential daily drivers, without which I’d struggle to get anything done.

Here’s a choice selection of the apps I use and rely upon nearly every day.
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It’s a new week with a new set of apps we use daily. Much like Jacob, the first writer in this series, the apps I use vary daily with a few exceptions. But without fail, I will fire up my MacBook Pro and use a bunch of apps throughout the day. Some of the apps on my list are well-known favorites, others a little less known.

Putting together this list has been a joy; hopefully you’ll enjoy it too!

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There’s so many apps in the App Store and elsewhere for the Mac, there’s no way anyone could use them all. We sure don’t. Each of us on the Mac.AppStorm team has our favorite apps that we use for work and more every day, the apps that have stood the test of time for us. We thought you might like to see the Mac apps we each find most important, so we’re starting a new series. Jacob’s first, with his favorite apps, and check back next Wednesday for another of our writers’ favorite apps.

And now, over to Jacob:

Here’s my formulaic morning: Get up and eat breakfast, then open my MacBook Air and start work. What is “work”? That depends on the day. Sometimes it’s writing industry-related news, other times it’s reviewing the latest FarmVille clone, and once in a while I get to do a roundup. Today happens to be one of those roundup days, and I’m excited about it because I get to share some cool stuff with you.

Have you ever wondered what a writer here uses for his daily duties? It’s time to find out, starting with my personal Launchpad of top hits.

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