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sponsor

I’d like to take a moment to say a big thank you to our weekly sponsor, Smaller.

Smaller is a graphical user interface for YUI Compressor on the Mac. It helps you batch minify CSS and JavaScript files with a nice drag and drop interface, and is the perfect tool for web designers and developers who don’t want to delve into the command line.

Simply drag and drop a file, or a folder, and Smaller will intelligently grab all the CSS and JavaScript files from that location. You can also tweak various preferences; append a new file ending, choose whether to overwrite the original file, and adjust a few JavaScript-specific settings.

Smaller is priced at $15, and you can download a 30 day trial to take it for a test run. It’s a wonderfully simple and convenient application, and worth every cent if this is an operation you perform on a regular basis.

I’d like to take a moment to say a big thank you to our weekly sponsor, Postbox. This is a wonderful email client for OS X, that goes far above and beyond the functionality of Apple’s own Mail.app.

The latest release of Postbox brings an array of fantastic functionality, some of which we covered a few weeks ago. This includes a unified inbox, account groups, improved conversation views, and “Quick Actions” for replying to messages.

I’ve been a faithful Mail.app user ever since buying my first Mac, and never found a reason to try anything else (I never fell in love with Gmail’s interface). But after trying out Postbox a few months ago, I haven’t looked back. It’s fast, beautiful, and I’m continually impressed by the little features that make it a pleasure to use.

If you’re growing tired with non-existent updates to Mail.app, I can’t recommend Postbox highly enough. It’s the best desktop email client I’ve ever used, and you should absolutely give it a try today.

I’d like to take a moment to say a big thank you to this week’s sponsor, Jumsoft. In particular, their latest release of Pages Templates 6.0. These are a great way to spruce up your collection of pre-built Pages designs, and some of the new graphical layouts are really gorgeous.

Jumsoft has created a handy mini-site where you can quickly view all the included templates, which gives you a good feel for what to expect.

Pages Templates 6.0 includes 100 different templates, each containing up to 12 sections designed for the type of document. Use single-page templates such as invoice, letter, and poster for basic documents, or choose one of the several multi-layout templates for brochures, newsletters, and other publications.

Most layouts include placeholders for your photos or pictures – simply drag and drop the selected image – and you’ll be able to benefit from all the other fantastic page layout features built into Pages itself. Although the stock designs included in Pages Templates 6.0 look great, they are also very easy to customise. You can choose your own font, change graphics, and easily combine multiple designs into a single document.

If you’d like to find out more, be sure to visit the official Pages Templates 6.0 site, and take a look at what’s on offer. The full collection of 100 templates is available to buy now for $39. Definitely worth considering if you’re a regular Pages user!

I’d like to take a moment to say a big thank you to this week’s sponsor, LittleSnapper. This is a wonderful application for collecting, organising, and sharing inspiring snippets and images you come across on the web.

LittleSnapper really does make this whole process incredibly simple and, if you’re the type of person with screenshots scattered across your desktop, it can be a huge time-saver. I love the design of the interface as well, which feels really intuitive to use.

Editing your screenshots—adding arrows, boxes, and text—couldn’t be easier. And I don’t think I’ve ever come across a more beautifully designed arrow…

When you’re done editing, sharing is versatile and fast, with support for FTP, Flickr, exporting a file, or Realmac’s very own Ember web service.

If you’re a visual person, and like the idea of a central repository for all the inspiring design work you stumble across online, you absolutely have to give LittleSnapper a try. It costs $39, but a completely free trial is available.

This week, I’m incredibly proud to have Pixelmator as our Mac.AppStorm sponsor. One of my all-time favourite apps, this is a fantastic alternative to the increasingly-bloated Photoshop for all manner of graphic editing work.

Labelled as an “image editor for the rest of us”, Pixelmator’s interface is enjoyable to use while maintaining a simple learning curve for new adopters. If you’re already a seasoned Photoshop pro, you’ll feel right at home with the familiar palette interface and similar tools.

Pixelmator is based on Core Image technology that uses your Mac’s video card for image processing. This means that it’s fast. It supports a huge range of graphics formats, and the price of $59 is a welcome change to the inflated charge for many competing apps.

Although I still use Photoshop from time to time, Pixelmator has become by go-to tool for 80% of tasks that require working with graphics. If you yearn for a faster, sleeker alternative to Photoshop, give Pixelmator a try today.

This week, we’re proud to have RapidWeaver 5 as the Mac.AppStorm sponsor. Released just a few days ago, RapidWeaver 5 is a worthy upgrade to an already stellar piece of web design software for the Mac.

Whether you’re just starting out with web design, or you’re a seasoned professional, RapidWeaver has a versatile set of tools that can really help with the visual process of website design. You don’t need to write a single line of code, but you can if you want to.

RapidWeaver comes bundled with an array of stunning designs, and a versatile publishing system. In a few clicks you can have your content uploaded to MobileMe, or any other SFTP or FTP server.

Version 5 introduces the new RapidWeaver add-ons, better handling of site resources, a new site map plugin, and 6 brand new themes. A completely free trial is available if you’d like to download RapidWeaver and give it a try.

We also have an exclusive competition for AppStorm readers, and we’re giving away five licenses for this brand new version. All you need to do is leave a comment on this post, letting us know what type of website you’d like to create with RapidWeaver!

The competition closes at midnight on Friday, and we’ll randomly select the winners shortly afterwards. Good luck, and be sure to give RapidWeaver a try in the meantime.

Winners Announced

I’m pleased to let you know that the winners of the competition have been announced! Congratulations are in order to:

  • Colin
  • Chaka
  • Peter Vangeen
  • Neil Planchon
  • John Mac

Your license codes will be on the way soon!

If you regularly find yourself typing the same piece of text over and over again, TextExpander could be a real life-saver. It’s a simple way to store a library of regularly used text snippets, and easily recall them using a pre-defined keyword.

I use TextExpander countless times every day, and it comes in handy all the time. Whether you often send out very similar emails, or just like to speed up your coding, you should definitely give TextExpander a try.

Version 3 brings a range of new features, including fill-in-the-blank snippets, shortcuts for entering new snippets, a shortcut to edit the last expanded snippet, and snippet search and suggestion via a quick keyboard shortcut. There’s an excellent video tutorial that demonstrates all of TextExpander’s features, including these new ones.

We also have an exclusive discount code for AppStorm readers, good for 20% off the full version TextExpander (single license or family pack). Just use the code APPSTORMTE when checking out, and be sure to do so before it expires on the 5th December!

Our sponsor this week is Radium, a lightweight internet radio player with a wonderfully retro icon! Radium allows you to listen to thousands of radio stations from around the world, right from your OS X menu bar. It’s simple, functional, and an absolutely fantastic way to listen to the radio on your Mac.

In our recent review, we gave Radium a lofty 9/10 rating. For such a simple and understated application, it packs a real functionality punch.

You can listen to all manner of subscription radio services, share songs with your social network friends and followers, adjust equalizer settings, view a song history, and use an array of useful keyboard shortcuts.

If you like Radium as much as we do, you’ll be pleased to discover that AppStorm readers can get 25% off the price of the app this week. Just order your copy from this page, and the discount will be automatically applied.

Be sure to spend a few minutes giving Radium a try today – you’ll be glad you did!

I’d like to take a few moments to say thank you to our weekly sponsor, Billings Pro. Every time I ask Mac users about the software they use for managing clients, projects, and time tracking, one name always comes up. Billings.

The basic version of Billings is perfect for freelancers and small companies – but if you run a larger organisation, it’s definitely worth taking a look at Billings Pro. This advanced version offers powerful time tracking, synchronization between different computers, and the ability to review and approve invoices. It’s a powerful beast.

I know that I’m not alone in thinking that Billings is one of the best tools available to the Mac-using freelancer, and the Pro version takes the functionality on offer to a new level. Check out the full overview, and go download a trial to give Billings Pro a try!

I’d like to take a few moments to say thank you to our weekly sponsor, CleanMyMac. This is a great tool for keeping your Mac in tip-top shape, and packs an impressive functionality punch for the price.

You can uninstall software more effectively, manage and delete plugins and extensions, clean up system caches and logs, remove unnecessary language files, and so much more. I run CleanMyMac every couple of months, and it always manages to free up several gigabytes of unnecessary data.

Although most of this functionality can be achieved for free if you’re a Terminal whizz-kid, I find that $30 (or $15 for a 6 month license) is an absolute bargain for so many helpful tools wrapped up in a gorgeous interface.

Check out the full feature list, watch the introductory video, and free up some time this week to give your Mac a thorough spring autumn clean!

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