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writing

There is no shortage of so-called ‘distraction free writing’ apps for our beloved Mac platform, a trend that started with the excellent WriteRoom from Jesse Grosjean’s Hog Bay Software in 2008. WriteRoom was the original full-screen minimalist text editor that inspired many similar writing apps that fill the App Store today. The company later followed up with a plain text to-do list app, TaskPaper, and also released QuickCursor, a simple app to edit text from any text field in your favorite text editor. Hog Bay Software not only made it nice to write plain text, but made it simple to do so whenever you want for whatever you want.

After creating the genre, the little company now re-invents it with FoldingText, an incredibly easy-to-use combination of plain text based tools. Geeks, nerds, writers, productivity gurus, rejoice: a new plain text productivity platform is born.

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Students, writers, working professionals – these and more are dependent upon reference sources for things that they write. For an informal, in-house document, there is far more leniency regarding plagiarism and citing references. As soon as work is published, paid for or turned into a professor, however, plagiarism becomes much more of a hot-bed issue.

Novus Scan is an app which promises to help to point out potential occurrences of plagiarism. The app works by creating a database of reference documents which the application can scan in conjunction with the paper or article being written. The app will then highlight any instances of “heavy borrowing” and outright copying present in the paper. I was interested to see how well the app works – even though I’m no longer in school, I was excited to try it out for the miscellaneous freelance writing that I do.

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In the summer of 2009 I began working on my Master’s degree part time. In addition to my degree I also work full time and keep up with other activities (such as writing for this site) all while trying to have some semblance of a life. In December I should complete my Capstone project and graduate.

It’s taken a lot of careful management of time and more importantly energy to keep moving to this point. When I moved to a MacBook as my primary computer last summer, I had to redo my workflow and evaluate the best tools to keep up with my courses. Here I’m going to look at a few of the tools that I’ve used to keep my notes, organize my assignments, complete assignment, and work on my thesis project. (more…)

There sure is no shortage of “simple writing” apps for the Mac out there. Just recently we’ve reviewed (and praised) apps like Grandview and Free, and we’ve also had a few roundups where we’ve taken to compare all the options out there in the “distraction-free writing” app field.

Today we’re presenting to you an app that could fit in with any of the mentioned above, but it has a little twist to it: it imitates the look of Mac OS’s Launchpad to create a very cool native-looking app. It’s appropriately called Launch Write; want to check it out?

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Macs may be used by everyone from NASA to the White House, but they can’t shake the perception that they’re designer goods. People readily accept that Macs are good for creatives, but not for real business work, no matter how many times they’ve been proven to simply be great computers for anyone that cares about a good computing experience.

But maybe it’s because Macs are really just so good for creatives. There’s so many little things in OS X that make it great for writing, for one thing, that I think you can easily say it’s the best OS for writers. (more…)

Reading. Writing. Researching. Revising. Studying. Discussing. These are just a few of the many things that a good English major is expected to do. The workload might seem overwhelming at times. Luckily, a number of different apps exist to help you out along the way.

From writing apps to dictionaries and even publishing tools, a huge variety of Mac apps can definitely find a helpful home in every English Major’s hard drive. This list contains a few of what I consider to be the most helpful apps for an English major.
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Do you love Mac apps? Are you always on the look-out for the latest and greatest Mac software to work faster and be more productive? Do you have a passion for writing and engaging your audience? If so, you might just be a perfect fit for the Mac.AppStorm writing team.

We’re always on the look out for fantastic new writers across the AppStorm network, but we’re particularly wanting to find a few new contributors to Mac.AppStorm over the next few days. All our writing positions are paid, and we’ll work with you to choose apps to review and suggest article ideas.

To write for Mac.AppStorm having writing experience is vital, and we’ll only look at submissions with good linked examples. If you have both a passion for the written word and a love for all things Mac, then we’d love to hear from you. Register your interest here, and we’ll be in touch!

Do you love Mac apps? Are you always on the look-out for the latest and greatest software to work faster, be more productive, and enjoy your free time? Are you an awesome writer who can wield prose like a pro? You sound like the type of Mac expert that we’d love to have on our team!

We’re always on the look out for fantastic new writers across the AppStorm network, but we’re particularly wanting to find a few new contributors to Mac.AppStorm over the next few days. All our writing positions are paid, and we’ll work with you to choose apps to review and suggest article ideas.

If you’re interested, we’d love to hear from you. Read our page on writing for us and register your interest here, and we’ll be in touch!

Should You Apply?

Before you shoot us an email, keep in mind that this is a writing position. We will only consider applicants who show experience in communicating their thoughts in clear, understandable language. If you don’t know the difference between a complete sentence and an incomplete one, this isn’t the job for you.

We last reviewed WriteRoom way back in 2009. It is arguably the app that launched the fullscreen minimal text editor craze that seems at its height right now. In a time when text editing apps were becoming more and more bloated with features in order to stay competitive, WriteRoom was a breath of fresh air making a very convincing argument for what it called “distraction free writing.”

WriteRoom recently hit version 3.0, and we think this major overhaul makes it the perfect time to take a fresh look. If you haven’t seen this app in a while, you’ll want to check it out!

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FADE IN on a young writer seated at his desk, his face alight with the joy of inspiration. He scribbles furiously on a notepad, trying to capture the magic of his movie idea. Outside his office window, a full moon prods him on.

Later, with his idea captured in handwritten notes, he decides it’s time to start typing. “If I’m going do this right,” he thinks, “I better buy some screenwriting software.” Research reveals that the leading software, Final Draft, costs a whopping $239. Our hero is not a professional writer though, so there’s no way he can justify dropping $239 to support an inspirational whim. He searches for something else, something reasonable, and — dare he think it? — something better.

His search takes him to The Mac App Store, where he finds, for $29.99, a brand new product called Movie Draft SE, and as he presses the buy button, he wonders to himself, “Will this reasonably priced app help take my script from inspiration to completion or will it frustrate me to the point where I abandon my award-winning idea before it can reach the second act?”

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