Finding new music you like is hard. If you’re not completely enmeshed in a community that happens to perfectly match your taste, you’re sure to be missing stuff you’d like, and only Top 40 pop is reasonably represented in the mainstream.
That’s probably why big names like Amazon, Apple, Last.fm, Pandora, and even the top record labels invest heavily in tools that suggest songs and artists you might like, based on databases they piece together from your listening or buying preferences.
Walknote brings its own recommendation algorithm to the table, coupling it with your iTunes music library and an attractive interface. It’s unlikely to surface many obscure gems by artists you haven’t heard of before, but between its genre-sorted recommended mixes and tight integration with YouTube, Last.fm, Amazon, and the iTunes Music Store, Walknote brings just enough to the table to be useful.
A few weeks ago, LaunchBar 5.5 update brought — among other interesting things — a new feature called Snippets, which actually is a complete overhaul of its previous “Text Clippings” feature. As the devs advertised Snippets as “a serious text expansion tool”, I was curious to see how this compares to one of the references in text substitution on the Mac: TextExpander.
So, for one week, I did a little experiment: I closed TextExpander and acted as if it was never installed on my Mac, and chose to use only LaunchBar instead. Read on to find out how all of this turned out.
Storage space is at a premium these days, with SSDs coming standard in MacBook Airs and Retina MacBook Pros. SSDs are speedy and a huge improvement over platter hard drives in most ways, but it’s rare now to have a 500Gb or larger drive built into your Mac. Rather than having to buy a new Mac, or shuffle files between external drives, why not clean up the space that you have? That’s exactly what Detox my Mac, our sponsor this week, can help you do.
Detox My Mac is an advanced deep-clean app for your Mac running OS X 10.5 or newer. It simplifies the tools that you’d normally find in OS X’ disk utilities, and then gives you over 30 extra tools to clean up your Mac and keep it maintained. It’ll help you find and remove old cache files and logs, the extra files left behind when you uninstall apps, and more. You can clean up all of that and more in just 2 clicks with Detox my Mac.
It won’t magically make your Mac brand new, but it will clean out the old cobwebs from old apps and help you have the most space free for the stuff you really want on your Mac. So, if you’ve noticed that your Mac is running out of storage space, now’s the time to clean it up. There’s no reason for all of your SSD’s space to be wasted by junk files that you don’t need anyhow.
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You can get started cleaning up your Mac for free with Detox My Mac basic. Then, for a limited time, you can get Detox my Mac Pro for just $17.95, 30% off its normal price as an exclusive special for AppStorm readers. Just head to http://www.detoxmymac.com/discount-code to get your discounted copy of Detox my Mac Pro this week!
Watch out Evernote. Look nervously in your rear view mirror. You see that hot sports car quickly gaining on you that seemingly came out of nowhere? That’s NoteSuite.
Okay, maybe Evernote doesn’t need to be that nervous because NoteSuite is only available for iOS and OS X — so it doesn’t compete across platforms. But for Mac and iPad users, this app is the next big thing in note taking, task management, Internet research, and file annotation. In other words, NoteSuite wants to be your Mac’s new productivity powerhouse. (more…)
For many of you, March 13th was a dark day. In fact, in the intervening months, just the mention of the words “Google” and “Reader” in the same sentence has been enough to send chills down many a spine. The time has come for all of you who are wedded to the Google style of RSS aggregation to face the facts, though, and find a new home for your feeds.
The innovation and competition among feed readers in the Mac App Store, however, is rather lacking. The granddaddy of Mac feed reading, NetNewsWire, is currently beta testing a new version, and the reading later app ReadKit has emerged as one of the best new RSS readers if you’ve switched to one of the new reading services. Outside of this, the field is looking wide open.
There is one promising entry, though. Mixtab Pro is the $4.99 descendent of the free, long-term resident of the App Store, which was named, simply, Mixtab. It is one of the new breed of magazine-style readers, which provide a highly visual way of staying up to date with the latest headlines. The popularity of many such apps on touchscreen devices shows that this look can be popular, but does that extend to the desktop environment? (more…)
If you’re still using Google Reader, there’s a weekend project that you’ve got to take on: exporting your RSS feeds, and finding a new RSS reader app. That’s because it’s the end of June already, and Google’s shutting down Google Reader on Monday!
Over at Web.AppStorm, we’ve written a tutorial for getting your data out of Google Reader — including your favorites — and into other services. Then, we’ve just rounded up the 5 best online replacements for Google Reader, most of which already work with Mac and iOS apps you likely already have tried out. They’re all great, and we’re sure you’ll find one you like there — even without leaving your Mac behind.
I was recently introduced to Kippt, and I felt like I’d been missing out on something big. It’s similar to Evernote in that you can save notes and links and even annotate the links you’re saving, but there’s a bonus social aspect. Find Kippt users you admire or with similar interests and watch for all the neat stuff they’re clipping.
You’ve done a great job with your Creative Cloud apps. We love the new features, and the new Creative Cloud installation process is worlds better than the old Creative Suite installer. We’re excited about your new direction with training videos, versioned backup, and Typekit font sync. It’s great.
But that hasn’t kept everyone happy. Every time we write about Creative Cloud, our readers let us know how the new subscriptions plans don’t work out for them. Even if they like the new features, they’re not planning to upgrade because of price, or because they want to know that they’ll be able to keep their programs forever. They’re frustrated enough that they’re signing petitions to get you to change back to the old Creative Suite style.
That’s why we’re writing this letter. We think you’re onto something good with Creative Cloud — but you need to go just a bit further to make everyone happy. We think there’s a way to make everyone happy, or at least almost everyone, so here’s the idea. (more…)
Despite its recent acquisition by Yahoo!, Tumblr is still the cool kid of the blogging platforms, and I want to be cool, I really do. But I’ve had trouble integrating myself with the Tumblr community. Mostly it’s come down to the Tumblr dashboard, which I’ve never liked the look of and have always thought was more than a little convoluted.
If only there was a Mac app to create a better Tumblr experience. That’s where Milk comes in. I’m going to try out this feature-packed Tumblr client and see if it can create a better experience. (more…)