Posts Tagged

menu bar

Our giveaway is now closed; congrats to our winners!

There sure are a lot of keyboard shortcuts to remember, especially in some of the bigger third-party apps. I’ve pretty much given up memorizing them all, and usually just look to the menus to find what I want. The problem is that always going to the menu, especially if I’m in an app that uses a lot of menu commands like an image editor, is that I’m being constantly pulled out of the workspace and away from what I’m actually doing.

MenuMate is a nifty little app that will sit in your menu bar or disappear altogether until its needed, but once triggered, it gives you all your application’s menu items to choose from, right where you’re working. We’ll try out MenuMate and see if it’s the timesaver it claims to be and really solves the shortcut problem … and then give you the chance to win a free copy of MenuMate! (more…)

So you’re focused working on something, when suddenly you come up with an amazing idea, or think of something that you’d like to remember for later. If you’re anything like me, you feel the need to write it down right then and there before it goes away forever. But, if you follow any sort of productivity discipline, you also don’t want to lose focus on your main task, or get involved with other intricate apps that could take your precious attention.

A simple piece of paper next to your computer might do the trick, but since you’re already working on your computer, why not do it there? Why not have a simple, small note taking app that runs in your menu bar? We’ve got one of those for you today. It’s good, it’s free, and it’s called Noteworthy+. Why don’t we get deeper into it?

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Taking down notes, whether by hand or on my computer, has always been an integral part of my workflow. Capturing information wherever and whenever, notes always in handy considering that I have such a short memory span to work with.

As such, note-taking apps like NotesTab are of great interest to me, and since version 3 of FIPLAB’s note-taking menu bar app is available for download, I thought I’d take a look at what has changed and what features were added since reviewing it a couple of months back. Likewise, the pro version offers several additional features to make the note-taking experience even better, which I will touch on later in the review. If you’re hesitant to spend an extra $4.99 for the upgrade, but would like to know what you’d receive if you do, read on.

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This post is part of a series that revisits some of our readers’ favorite articles from the past that still contain awesome and relevant information that you might find useful. This post was originally published on September 21st, 2011.

I used to absolutely love menu bar apps. Years ago, it was a fairly tiny niche of the Mac app market that contained only a few really solid gems. These utilities provided a quick and easy way to control iTunes, run a quick maintenance script and get back to what you were doing.

At heart, menu bar apps were essentially thought to be little things that perhaps didn’t quite merit a full on application but still merited a permanent, always-on spot on your Mac. Things have changed though and I find myself becoming annoyed when I download an app and find that it has no alternative to the menu bar mode.

Should developers move past the trend of offering menu-bar-only apps in favor of giving users the power to decide? Let’s discuss.

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Great news! We’ve selected our twenty winners. Each of the entrants listed below will be receiving an email with further instructions on how to claim their prize.

A huge thanks to the folks at FIPLAB Ltd for sponsoring this giveaway and to all of you that entered. We’ll be back with another competition soon and next time your name could be on that list of winners!

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Our featured sponsor this week is MailTab Pro for Gmail, the best way to check Gmail from your menu bar.

If you’re hunting for a quick and slick way to keep an eye on your Gmail account, look no further than MailTab Pro. It’s never more than a single click away and it gives you full access to Gmail’s features. Check, search and send email all right from the menu bar.

You can choose between the desktop and mobile interfaces, use the integrated fullscreen mode or even reduce the opacity and operate in stealth mode. MailTab Pro for Gmail gives you Growl notifications and even has full Google Talk support!

Go Get It!

MailTab Pro for Gmail is currently on sale for $1.99 (50% off), so be sure to grab your copy from the Mac App Store before this deal is over!

Think you’ve got a great app? Sign up for a Weekly Sponsorship slot.


Last week we published an article that got a lot of meaningful discussion going about menu bar apps. In it we outlined the all too common problem of the overflowing menu bar for MacBook users and discussed whether or not the best solution to the problem was to tell users that they are being overzealous or present developers with the request to give us more control over whether a given app appears in the menu or dock.

Today we’re following that up with a poll that simply asks how many third party menu bar apps you typically run at any given time. Are you picky about what earns a spot in your menu bar or are you a menu bar app addict who simply can’t get enough? We want to know!

After you vote, leave a comment below and let us know which menu bar apps you currently have open. Don’t cheat and take the time to open or close any, just take a gander at the top of your screen and give an honest account of what’s currently up there. Which are your favorites? Which do you think you could live without?

Macs these days span the extremes, from 11-inch MacBook Airs to 27-inch iMacs. It’s a prevalent first-world problem: there’s not enough space on your laptop, but everything’s too far away on the big screen. When you’re working on a large screen monitor (or two), especially when you work in design, you lose focus when you go searching through menu bar items way off in the arctic circle of your monitor.

MenuPop by Binary Bakery is an attempt to remedy this by making menu bar items available anywhere on your screen. Read on to find out if this little utility can save you from getting lost in a sea of pixels!

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Music, I think it is fair to say, is a large part of most people’s life. Many of us listen to music whilst we’re on the computer, and, being on Mac, this will probably be through iTunes. But if you want to change the song, pause it, or anything else, you don’t want to disrupt your workflow and open up the bulky musical hub that is iTunes. You could set up a few keyboard shortcuts, but what if you want more functionality?

That’s where Music Commander comes in. Music Commander is a menu bar app, available exclusively in the Mac App Store, which allows you to control certain elements of iTunes from your menu bar, so you can get back to work instantly.

Read on to see how it fares when put to the test.

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We’d like to take a moment to say a big thank you to this week’s sponsor, Music Commander.

Music Commander is an awesome menu bar utility that allows you to control iTunes from anywhere. Music Commander isn’t just another basic iTunes controller mind you, it’s a full-featured iTunes access panel with social integration built right in.

With Music Commander you have access to all your typical controls like play, pause, shuffle and skip, and lots of advanced controls like playlists and ratings. Music Commander shows you the complete information for the current song, including the album art, all right in the menu bar.

Want to share the current song with others? Facebook and Twitter integration make it easy to tell all your friends what you’re listening to. Also, my favorite feature is the Last.fm integration, which automatically scrobbles the songs you hear to your Last.fm account.

You can snag all this functionality for less than a buck on the Mac App Store. If you’re an avid iTunes user, this is one app you won’t want to pass up!

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