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realmacsoftware

So often, we marvel at the quality of interface design on OS X – the clean, simple layouts, and how you know exactly how to use an app when you first use it. But do you ever stop and think about why this is?

It doesn’t just happen by accident. There are UI designers working tirelessly to make an app look and feel absolutely perfect.

Chris Downer is the UI designer for Realmac Software, the company behind such OS X greats as LittleSnapper, Courier and Rapidweaver. Today, we’ll be talking to Chris about his methods, inspiration and much more.

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Thank you to everyone who entered the RapidWeaver competition last week. It was fascinating to take a look at your websites, and great to run a concurrent competition via Twitter. The results are in, but before announcing the winners I’d like to say a big thanks to Real Mac Software for sponsoring a couple of competitions on AppStorm recently. They’re producing some fantastic apps at the moment!

I’m pleased to announce that the winning, randomly selected commenter is:

The Twitter competition winner, announced last Friday, was @autonomydesign with this delightfully random Tweet (in response to the question “What will you be doing this weekend?”)

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Congratulations to the winners, and sorry to those who missed out. For your browsing pleasure, here are a few of the website links I particularly liked!

Another competition will be kicking off later this week to win a copy of the fantastic Pixelmator, so do get subscribed via Twitter or RSS to be kept up to date!

RapidWeaver is a great app for designing websites in a visual, template driven environment. Having recently reviewed RapidWeaver, we’re lucky enough to have two copies to give away to you beautiful readers. If you’re searching for a simple and powerful way to design a website, look no further.

One copy will be given away via Mac AppStorm, and another via Twitter. To enter:

  1. Leave a comment on this post with your current website address (or, if you don’t have a website, an idea for what you’d like to create with RapidWeaver)
  2. Follow us on Twitter – I’ll be asking a question via Twitter at a random time this week. The best answer will win!

Good luck, and feel free to leave a comment if you have any questions!

There are countless different ways to design a website, and a variety of different tools to make the job easier. These range from writing the raw code in an app such as TextWrangler to using an integrated environment such as Coda. There is a more visual route available as well, commonly called “What You See Is What You Get” (WYSIWYG), which aims to make designing a website a remarkably simple process.

An application called iWeb, part of the iLife suite, is probably already sitting on your Mac. If it doesn’t meet your needs, another popular tool is RapidWeaver – a long standing visual web editor with a decent range of features. This review will showcase the main capabilities of RapidWeaver and explain how easy it can be to have a website up and running in no time.

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After recently reviewing LittleSnapper we’ve managed to snag a copy to give away to our loyal readers. If you aren’t familiar with the app, a good place to start is my review. Essentially, LittleSnapper is:

  • A powerful screenshot and website snapper
  • A great way to annotate images
  • A place to tag and organize inspirational sites and graphics
  • An easy way to share screenshots online

Entering is really simple – all you need to do is take a screenshot of your desktop, upload it to anywhere on the web (MobileMe, Flickr, TwitPic etc) and post a link in the comments below. I’m always fascinated to see the desktops of other Mac users, and it should make a really interesting discussion.

The competition will run for one week, and the winning comment will be chosen at random on the 2nd March 2009. As with all competitions, there’s just one legal point to make – you aren’t eligible to take part if you work for Envato. Only one entry per person please!

Good luck, and I look forward to taking a look at your desktop!

There are a number of different screenshot utilities for OS X, but none with the functionality and style offered by LittleSnapper. Produced by the developers behind RapidWeaver, LittleSnapper provides a tool for capturing inspirational websites or any area of your screen. It’s simple to organize hundreds of screenshots, exporting to a variety of different formats for use elsewhere. Innovative vector editing functionality allows you to annotate and edit screenshots through an incredibly simple interface.

If you regularly feel inspired when browsing the web, LittleSnapper is one way to keep track of all the information you come across. This review will delve into the application, outline the different features on offer, and provide a handy tip for keeping your inspiration in sync between multiple computers.

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