Mailing List + Mac

If you take a look over to the right of your screen between 'How to contact me' and 'Donation' you'll see a new link. I've decided to try and set up a mailing list.

Partly it is so that should the blog fail again I can let people know that I'm still alive. Partly it's for putting stuff that doesn't really fit on this blog and partly I'm wondering if some new and interesting function will come out of it.

It will be an announcement only list, with a fairly low amount of traffic. Needless to say, if you do sign up, then I won't be selling your email addresses to spammers.

This won't detract any writing from this blog, you won't be missing anything if you don't sign up to it.

Hell, given my technical skills, it might not even work.

Now – for a bit of advice, that is advice that you are going to send me, not the other way around…

I've recently moved my 'business' computing work to an Intel Macbook. And very nice it is too. However I'm wondering if I'm missing some essential 'must-have' bit of software or widget. At the moment I'm using Colloquy for IRC chat, Adium and Skype for MSN and similar (I have iChat, but have no contacts). Obviously I'm using Firefox. For writing I'm using Writeroom and SubEthaEdit (although at some point I'll get Pages as NeoOffice seems a bit flaky for me). For blogging I have Ecto and for FTP I use Cyberduck. Most importantly I've found a game of Solitaire and have managed to get World of Warcraft working (although Second Life is terribly slow).

So my question is this – what should I be installing on this computer? What is the essential, or just plain enjoyable, software should I be getting.

Any advice?

Oh yes…Big news in a few days…

55 thoughts on “Mailing List + Mac”

  1. NetNewsWire for, well, newsfeedsDeerPark – Firefox optimized for Mac processors (for my PPC Mac, don't know if they have one for the Intels)

    Azureus for bittorrent (even though it's a resource hog sometimes)

    Ecto for blogging

    Audacity for editing mp3s

    Cyberduck for FTP

    Quicksilver is awesome

    Smultron for text editing

    KisMac for Wifi Sniffing / Wardriving

    MacTheRipper for DVD ripping

    VisualHub for video encoding

    Google Earth

    That's all I can think of right now. Here's a link for open source goodies for the mac:

  2. I have Text Wrangler (a cut down free version of BBEdit) for multi-file text edit/FTP. Pages is pretty nifty, and PrintShop is the photoediting program I'd get if I didn't already have PaintShop Pro on a Windows box.

  3. Check out apost from my new blog.I'm also switching to Mac, and that list of some top apps may be of some assistance to you. Each application is linked to its site for opinions, screenshots, etc.

  4. I signed up.Something that might need tweaking is that it addresses the confirmation email to the surname only of the user. So my email started:


    Which I thought was rather funny. Hehe.

  5. MarsEdit for blog posting and NetNewsWire for rss aggregation.QuickSilver for making stuff happen quickly.

    Parallels Desktop for running windows onna mac.

  6. Big news? Hmm…1 – Some kind soul has paid to have the door replaced on the Fiesta.2 – Some kind soul has bought you a new car.3 – Promotion & subsequent massive salary increase.4 – You are moving to the country where rabbits and deer will roam your garden.5 – You are doing a three month customer relations exchange with an ambulance crew in California.6 – You have a new manager who knows what he/she is doing.7 – The government is about to pass a law saying all drunks have to be respectful to ambulance staff.8 – You are getting a 56 reg ambulance.9 – Marriage.10 – Other.Vote now!

  7. I suggest VLC from – this is a media client that'll play pretty much every media fileIf you're going to download torrents (there are SOME legal applications for this technology) use “torrent tomato” in the main or Azureus if you want to download individual files in a torrent rather than the whole torrent. Azureus is a Java app and as such runs a bit slower than torrent tomato. I've d/l-ed files with Azureus and always maxed out at around 80-100KBps whereas I've been able to get up to 700KBps with TT (8Mbit line)

  8. 4- I wants the bunnies!Realistically, I'll go with 10 – other, and say something to do with Da Book.

  9. “Partly it is so that should the blog fail again I can let people know that I'm still alive.”So if you died, would the mailing list tell us?Everybody's dead, Dave…

  10. First, you should actually be using safari on a mac, not firefox. Safari is much faster! You can set up tabbed browsing and such too.

    1. GIMP is a free photoshop type thing. Its almost as good as photoshop and works similiarly.
    2. Skype and the Skype widget let you make free phonecalls via the internet. If you haven't heard of skype by now, I'd be a little surprised!
    3. Google Earth lets you look at, well, the earth…
    4. Gmail notifier sits in the bar at the top of the screen alongside the time and will tell you when you have a new email
    5. Sticky windows allows you to drag your windows to the side of the screen so they turn into a little tab for you to access later. Its very useful!
    6. Desktop manager allows you to have multiple workspaces which is handy if you have a billion things open!

    You can find pretty much all the widgets in the world ever here and a lot of mac programs here.

    Man, I'm such a mac geek. If you have any questions about anything, I'd be happy to try and answer them for you… 🙂

  11. World of Warcraft – uh oh, could this mean the end of the blog? It's certainly responsible for much lack of achievement for me.See you in Azeroth.

  12. All the cool kids are running Unbuntu Linux on their Macs now. I'm serious. People with apple logo tattoos are switching away from OSX and the whole iLifestyle because if the increasing closedness of the software. Plus Linux does everything a Mac or PC can but for free. Makes me wonder why I still use Windows exclusively…

  13. Hi TomI can recommend Parrallels. It's a nifty piece of software that lets you run MS Windows within a window in OS X. You can jump from one to the other seamlessly and drag'n'drop files and the like. It's not a simulator like Virtual PC so it's very fast where the latter wasn't.

  14. Ubuntu doesn't quite do everything a mac or PC does. You have to use emulators etc and the free ones like wine, really aren't very good. Its also more difficult to get the drivers for things like wireless cards, webcams and other such things.If you're going to install ubuntu, don't get rid of OS X totally, have your computer dual boot between the two. Since its an intel mac though, you could always just have it dual boot windows/OS X and then theres no need for Linux (which can be messy and difficult to use)!

  15. More Mac stuff:Chimp, .chm file reader.

    ffmpegx, versatile graphical front-end for lots of Unix video format converters.

    MacMAME, arcade game emulator.

    Max, audio file converter.

    MT-Newswatcher, Usenet client with Bayesian spam filtering.

    Taco HTML Edit, does php too.

    Audio Hijack, records any audio stream.

    Cocktail, maintenance utilities.

    Delocalizer, removes unwanted langauges, saving disk space. Adobe apps *don't* like being delocalised!

    Fire, multi-protocol IM client.

    Linotype FontExplorer X, font manager superior to Font Book.

  16. Good Lord. I feel like I'm the only person who stills uses a Windows PC. I have no idea what any of you are talking about – in fact it sounds legitimately like some foreign language. I do like Macs, though and have a question for the obviously Mac experienced out there. Is running Windows (as a dual boot – don't panic) on the Intel based MacBook really as easy as they say it is ? If so, then maybe the best of both worlds is really here. Cool hardware, OS convenience.

  17. I have plans in place should I die suddenly…(Basically my brother knows my login and password and will put something up on the blog. This is assuming that we both don't die at the same time…)

  18. I've tried all different types of Linux, and I'm afraid I'm just not impressed. Lack of drivers and the like tend to make things a struggle. Also I'm getting too old to have to install stuff by typing in arcane comand line entries.One for the geekier than me I'm afraid.

    (And what do Linux distros do that Win/OSX don't? Besides being Open I really can't see the benefit. I was brought up on closed software and it never did me any harm).

  19. No – I've been in WoW since it was released over here. Just on various Windows machines. Now I realise that I can run it on a Mac (Cheers Puckman), there is little need for me to lug around my windows laptop.'Earthen ring' mainly although a bit of Horde on 'Scarshield'.

  20. Well there is no real need for me to dual-boot, as I can do all my 'business' stuff on Mac software just as well as Windows.Although I may do so one day just so I can annoy rabid Mac-vangelists at conferences…

  21. Oh I'm 'Bi' don't worry – my desktop will remain Windows (for the playing of games mainly and for the use of MS Office), just that I can pretty much retire my Windows laptop.

  22. 1 – I beat it into shape myself after the garage told me that I looked strong enough to do it myself.2 – Hahahahahaha, I'm looking to inherit my mum's car.

    3 – No such thing in my job.

    4 – And leave London? I need air that can be *chewed*.

    5 – *Dream* (apart from the getting shot at part).

    6 – We have new management, I'm reserving judgement but they don't seem _too_ bad.

    7 – But then I'l just end up getting a lot of people arrested, then the police will say that they are too drunk for the cells and I'll have to take them to hospital anyway.

    8 – One has been seen driing around Newham these last few days (Museum piece, but still…)

    9 – Need to have a girlfriend first, and those Russian sites won;t take my credit card details.

    10 – Correct!

  23. VLC keeps falling over with video files at the moment – I think I'll need to take a closer look at it.

  24. Good choice on the switch, I recently did the same. I recommend:1) Newsfire for a desktop RSS reader:

    2) Textmate for text editing:

    3) Quicksilver is a must have and I suggest reading the forums to make the most of the app:

    4) AppZapper for easy removal of any program or application:

    There are few others but i believe they were all mentioned above. Good luck!

  25. I'm giving a lot of your sugestions a go, although I'm leaving Cocktail alone as it looks like I could properly screw up the whole system with that…

  26. GraphicConverterSOHO Notes from Chronos (formerly StickyBrain)

    BlogBridge for rss

    Pages (takes some getting used to, but great results)

    PersonalOrganizer from Chonos

    Transmit for ftp

    Web Minimalist


    Don't be scared of Cocktail

    Have fun with your Mac!

  27. Better word processors: Mellel or Nissus WriterTextexpander-saves hours

    Camino over firefox-no plugins but fastest browser I have used

    I like MarsEdit and Netnewswire

    Act-on for useage



    Coverflow-itunes fun

    VLC-video watching

  28. Having used a Mac now for a decade (except at work) I recently got Parallels and a copy of XP Home. The reason was that I wanted to run Garmin GPS software and Tracklogs digital mapping stuff, and after much searching I couldn't find a Mac alternative. I was sceptical about how good Parallels would be, having previously tried Virtual PC – but I have to say it really is excellent, *do* believe the hype. It is very useful to be able to run XP on a Mac OS desktop, dragging and dropping stuff, and sorting out all the irritating niggles that Macs aren't currently allowed to do in a Windows world. Parallels only takes seconds to start up and run XP – so you don't have to shut down the Mac, boot into XP, and vice versa when you've finished. I'd rather be able to do everything with the Mac, but sometimes I can't. Parallels allows me to get round this in a pragmatic way, and after all, an OS is a tool to do something, not a religion 🙂

  29. If you're bi, I'm tri… I'm not so happy about having to use windows though.You can get MS office for mac too and if you're not willing to pay, there's always open office which seems good enough.

  30. Well, yes and no. Its great if you're set on using one or the other but if you're going to switch between the two, its a pain in the ass to have to reboot every five minutes.There's always virtualization but that's not as easy!

  31. gosh can't imagine you playing horde.. what class are you?(I seem to have a “thing” for Taurens) Though quite happy as a nelf.

  32. You need to tweak you Az settngs then. Sure, it's a resource hog but that won't change your download speed. The number and quality of your connections do that. Try turning down your upload speed in Az and see what happens. Tomato is nice but Az gives you way more control.FWIW

  33. Glad to hear you finally succumbed to the light side…A spattering of recs from me, (sure these are already mentioned)

    I use Camino – a maccy version of Firefox for browsing.

    Transmit for FTP

    Netnewswire for RSS / feeds

    handbrake for ripping DVDs into H264 or mpegs

    Growl for cool notifications

    Stellarium for cool astronomy

    Gmail notifier

  34. Ana – I think you missed the point: Parallels is a virtualisation solution so you don't have to reboot. That's how you can drag & drop between Windows-in-a-window and the rest of your Mac.

  35. I second the vote for Safari – also it has the worlds best bookmark management system, way ahead of anything else.It also does RSS aggregation very nicely.

    VirtueDesktops is also great. It's a vitrual desktop manager, means you can have apps open left right and centre and not spend your whole life shuffling windows – which admittedly it easier on the mac, but still…

    And finally – wow, aren't there a lot of us mac users on here.

  36. Ha! you and me both (last weekend..)I'll drop you a line and let you know what I have installed and also how I've been gettting on….

  37. I've tweaked and researched and fiddled and sacrificed mangy pigeons on an alter of 3 day old chicken fat (the fiddling was the most fun part), but still Az tops out @ 80-100KBps. I have an old dual 867 G4 and I think no matter what I do, the Java implementation in OS X (10.4.7 btw) just can't keep up. Maybe newer machines don't get the problem that I get?

  38. I'm glad you asked, since I've found a few new toys to play with myself in other people's replies! I'd second Sophie and Gary T's recommendation of Camino if you can do without Firefox extensions: I don't know how I forgot it.

  39. Well, a couple of notable bloggers at least. You'll find that there has probably been as much, if not more, trade in the opposite direction. (I know a couple of people who have quietly gone back from Linux to Windows but keep quiet about it!).You're right though – Linux, particularly Ubuntu – is the 'cool' alternative. So it really depends on your motivation. Some people have always dug the hippy side of Apple, but some of us like the quality and design side.

    >Plus Linux does everything a Mac or PC can but for free.

    In the most raw technical sense that is true – you can edit videos, burn DVDs, rip audio – but Linux is still years away from producing something like iLife or iWork with it's themes. Also most Linux developers have come from a Windows or X-Windows background – which means their app design skills often lag a little behind what Mac users are used to.

    It will be interesting to see if Doctorow sticks with Linux.

    (The weird thing was discovering that someone so high up in the EFF wasn't a Linux user already).

  40. What I have :Todos – shows all your applicationsQuicksilverGrowlTextmate – rival to BBEdit and TextWrangler. Great if you've come from a Unix editor background. Can even edit HTML and get a live preview of your page.The Omni apps – OmniGraffle/OmniOutliner – simply two of the best Mac apps. You can get a very good deal on the Omni bundle through a Mac user group until end of August I think (40% off)iWork – Pages is more DTP-lite than a Word Processor but it's great for newsletters, flyers, etcDelicious Library – I never knew I needed a book / CD / DVD cataloguing application until I tried it.CoverflowBrowsers – I mainly use Safari over Firefox, because I prefer the way the RSS integration works. Other browsers installed – Shiira, Sunrise, Opera, Camino, Flock and Amaya (the W3C browser/editor). Oh, and the nightly build of WebKit which is worth looking at to play with Drosera and the 'Inspector' which is a really nice way of exploring the CSS on people's sites.Graphics : Seashore (Mac version of Inkscape).Media : VLC, Libra (multiple iTunes libraries), MacTheRipper, ffmpegX, and the player.Web Development : Aptana, NVU, Transmit (paid), CyberduckAlternative terminals : Terminator, iTermtestdisk/photorec – will recover media files even after they have been deleted, from virtually any type of 'disk' (including memory cards) – and free.Others : Comic Life + Crossword Forge (my wife is a teacher).Belight Swift Publisher – very similar to MS Publisher but not compatible with it.Quirky / not used much yet:Kip JumpcutOpal outliner

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