Remember when iCal didn’t look like it had been designed by a fifth grader learning to use KidPix? The only other decision I’ve ever seen Apple make that was so universally panned as the iCal redesign was Ping, but at least you could just turn that off. Whether your aversion towards iCal is due to its tacky design or its cumbersome method of inputting events, you fortunately have no shortage of alternatives when it comes to scheduling your day.
Of course, buried beneath the eye sores is one redeeming quality: iCloud syncing. Many alternative calendars for OS X and iOS still integrate with iCal in order to utilize that syncing power. SmartDay by Left Coast Logic lets you interact with your calendar and to-do lists from the menubar, while adding a few neat features. This isn’t a new concept, so making it an appealing option for Mac users means it needs to introduce some innovative features.
We’re big fans of apps which reside in the Menu Bar here at Mac.AppStorm. Personally, at least two of my most essential Mac apps live up there in the top right hand corner of the screen. However, with the proliferation of useful, lightweight Menu Bar apps, things can begin to get a little crowded in no time at all.
Well, for this admittedly niche problem, there’s an elegant solution in the form of Surtees Studios’ Bartender. Its a utility which promises to give users about as much control over the Menu Bar as one could reasonably hope to have.
I spent two years living in Paraguay, where temperatures are scorching hot and air conditioning is practically non-existent. I had my old MacBook with me the whole time, which I routinely had to open up and clean Paraguay’s ubiquitous red dirt out of. Despite my best efforts, it died an early death, and the culprit, a tech later explained, was heat.
Keeping your Mac cool not only extends its life, but also improves performance. There are a few available utilities that help you keep tabs on your computer’s temperature using the built-in sensors that Macs have. Temperature Gauge from Tunabelly Software is the latest of these apps on the scene.
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 May 17th, 2011.
The “utility” software niche is one that is extremely active in the Mac application community. There is an abundance of fantastic utilities currently available, and that list is ever changing. We love this type of software at AppStorm, regularly reviewing different apps that let you tweak and tune your computer.
With the area changing so fast, we decided to take a look at some of the best and most useful Mac OS X utilities that are available right now. What you’ll see here is by no means an all-encompassing list, but rather a collection of utilities broken up into some basic groups that I found to be very useful to a lot of people.
I hope you discover some applications that will be helpful for you!
With features like voicemail transcription, a master number for all your phones, free text messaging, and custom greetings based on who’s calling, Google Voice has become a wildly popular service for cell phone users. I’ve been using Google Voice for years, and for the most part I’ve found it to be a near-perfect communication tool.
The Google Voice iPhone app is decent, (the Android version is understandably better), but as long you’re sitting at the computer, it’s simpler to use the web interface to access voicemail and send text messages. GrowlVoice eliminates the need to open your browser to use Google Voice, and adds very convenient Growl notifications. How well does it perform?
I’m a big fan of menu bar apps, if you’ve read a few of my articles you probably have noticed how much I’m used to having easy access to certain features directly though the menu bar, without having to quit what I’m doing.
Being a fan of these types of apps, I have also come to collect a ton of them that take up a lot of space and end up getting in the way of my workflow; they aren’t always in the same place and they always get moved around randomly when I boot up my computer.
That’s where today’s app comes in. It’s an app that gives you the ability to organize the items in your menu bar. It’s called MenuBar ReArranger, want to take a look?
While it is true that note-taking apps are a common sight these days, there are only a handful that are specifically made to stay on the menu bar such as Soho Notes, Rapid Note, and Scribblet 2. These menu bar note-taking apps are normally built with minimal features, an easy-to-navigate interface, and run silently in the background.
For today’s review, I’ll be taking a look at a relatively new menu bar notes app called NotesTab by FLIPLAB Ltd., the makers of popular menu bar apps MailTab and MenuTab for Facebook. With the latest update to version 1.2, let’s see if this new member of the family stands and delivers just as well.
So you want to control iTunes from your menu bar? It’s a simple enough task, but which app is right for you? Are there any free options? Can you also control other apps like Spotify and Rdio?
There are a million of these apps on the market but we’ll save the research and present five of the best options around for controlling your music from the menu bar.
Back in 2009, we reviewed xScope, the then-new comprehensive toolkit for designers. xScope offers precision features for measuring, previewing, and organizing everything on your computer’s screen, from element dimensions to color codes in any format.
The Iconfactory recently released xScope 3: a major update to their popular software, promising over 70 new features and improvements in interface and performance, let’s take a look at what’s new!
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!
- Want to learn more tips and tricks to get the most out of your apps and devices? Be sure to follow us at @mactuts!
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