The basic package of applications supplied with OS X is great for simple tasks and educational needs. However, when you’re using Macs as part of your business operations the basic package doesn’t quite hit the mark. This is perhaps a result of lack of features and Apple’s goal to make the software usable by anyone.
In this article I will propose SaaS alternatives to Numbers, Address Book, Calendar, AirDrop and FaceTime. These web-based alternatives offer an array of additional capabilities not found in your pre-installed OS X applications. Read on to find out more!
[Update] This post was originally posted on February 2nd 2012. It was updated on September 25th 2015 to add new business app alternatives.
Actual for WorkflowMax allows you to record time spent on projects without having to log in to the WorkflowMax website, although it does still require an active subscription to WorkflowMax. Actual for WorkflowMax was built to help users more easily record and post time sheets in WorkflowMax to help them focus on the work in hand more easily.
Actual for WorkflowMax makes it much easier to track time as you work and access WorkflowMax jobs without the inconvenience of having to log in to the website each day, as everything is conveniently accessible and managed from your Mac desktop.
OmniPlan is a popular and powerful productivity tool for Mac that helps you visualize, maintain, and simplify your projects. OmniPlan is a project management tool that lets you break down tasks, optimize use of resources, monitor costs and manage your project in a convenient overview of your plans.
Unlike browser-based project management tools such as Wrike, Mavenlink, or JIRA, OmniPlan runs straight off the desktop through the Mac app. It’s ideal for collaborating with colleagues whether it’s changes to schedules, project plans, or simply just to chat with them about something you’re working on.
As you would expect from professional project management software, OmniPlan includes Gantt charts, schedules, summaries, milestones, and critical path highlighting to give you complete control over your project. OmniPlan can be invaluable in helping you anticipate and eliminate problems by identifying bottlenecks, tracking budgets and distributing workloads amongst team members more fairly and efficiently.
Do you ever find with too many windows open on your Mac desktop you get easily distracted when you’re working? There are so many apps and web sites vying for attention on screen sometimes that it’s difficult to focus on one thing at a time. HazeOver is a simple but effective productivity tool that helps you focus on one task or window at a time.
HazeOver works by automatically highlighting the active app window in the foreground by dimming all of the background windows. If, like many people, you have multiple apps open at one time, Hazeover helps improve your concentration by focusing on one app at a time instead of trying to attend to things such as tweets, emails, instant chat messages and Facebook status updates at the same time. Used in collaboration with a project planning app such as LiquidPlanner, ProWorkflow, or Wrike, it can really help you focus on the tasks at hand.
iMindQ is a powerful productivity tool that helps you build mind maps. iMindQ is aimed at businesses, educators and individuals that want to improve their creative thinking, memory and effectively manage, organize and present information.
iMindQ is an excellent tool for creating organic mind maps, concept maps, flow charts and many other types of diagram. It’s also great for solving problems, improving communication, and making plans quicker and more creatively.
If you’re new to mind mapping, its a very simple and effective way to organize information, allowing you to capture the natural flow of ideas. Mind mapping helps you arrange ideas and then makes it easier to identify their interconnections visually. It’s an extremely effective way at visually representing complex ideas, information and data for planning projects, new concepts or conducting meetings and iMindQ does it very well, although it doesn’t quite have the same level of functionality as a full-blown project management software like LiquidPlanner or Wrike.
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.
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.
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…)
Simple file sharing services are great for sharing all types of files — from code snippets to short notes to ready-to-publish PDFs — but most of the time, they’re only used for sharing images. That’s a shame, though. Most of us often need to share text that’s longer than a tweet but that’d make no sense to put into a blog post, and simple file sharing apps are great for that.
Except, they still make it rather difficult to share text. You have to write it in an app, save it to a file, the drag it to your sharing tool of choice. Plus, there’s no way to edit your text once it’s shared, without deleting the original share, editing your original text on your Mac, then re-uploading and re-sharing the text.
Sharing text should be far simpler, which is why Levi Nunnink from the Droplr team just built the brand-new MarkDrop app. It makes sharing text via Droplr — and editing text you’ve already shared — as simple as saving a document in iCloud. It’s brilliant.