From time to time I get asked what applications I use most on a day to day basis. That is a really tough question as my ‘day to day’ changes pretty much day to day!
If I am reviewing an application I will use it for everything related to its purpose, even if I have a personal favourite that I use normally.
One thing that I do on a daily basis though is blog! In fact between the personal blogs that I run and the contract stuff that I do I blog more than I care to admit. That said it at least gave me an idea for answering the question on what applications I use the most.
As far as blogging goes these are my top 5. I have consistently used them for a while now and they are like old friends. From time to time I inject a few others, but as a foundation to my blogging these are the 5 tools of my trade:
I am a big fan of MarsEdit more for the flexibility that it provides than for any specific power that it brings to my blogging.
First, I create blogs on different Mac’s depending on whether it is a particular review, personal or photography. Mars Edit not only allows me to easily do this, but it enables me to hold a backlog of previous posts on each Mac which is great for quick references and occasional copy & paste editing.
Second, I use a ‘sandbox’ site to see how some posts look before I post them, particularly with ones that contain a lot of pictures so I like the fact that I can post to the ‘sandbox’ from MarsEdit and then as soon as I am happy with it change the Weblog I want to post to and re post to my blog.
Third, in a similar manner to the above, I maintain multiple blogs so it is good to have them all in one editor especially for cross posting, for example I will often post a photo post on my site that I also want to post on Almerimar Life with just a few adjustments to the text.
I should sneak in here that I use TextMate all the time so it could qualify as a blogging related application, but I use it as a scratch/note pad as well as for odd code stuff etc.
A number of my posts are reviews and where possible I like to include an image from the products site, or a picture of it in use. Picturesque is amazing for those quick alterations that I want to make, especially for resizing the image. It can be a little addictive in that if I am not careful every picture ends up with a reflection or shading, but for my blogging it is an application that is open pretty much all day every day.
An RSS reader is a must have for any blogger and with so many free ones available it is hard sometimes to justify paying for one. Specifically for me is the ability to sync my account across all the Macs (and PC) so that I always have the same information to hand for my reviews and articles regardless of which Mac I am working on.
To be honest it is hard to get too excited about an RSS reader but I do like the current version that they have, especially the right hand column that opens up and shows the articles that you have opened and read in full
I use two browsers all of the time, sort of allocated one for personal use and one for business and projects, and split across two screens. Blogging activity sort of mergers between the two, but I find it invaluable to have both open, especially when writing a comparative article.
I have used Firefox for as long as it has been around and the simple fact is that I love the tabs and the extensions, in particular the one that automatically refreshes the tabs. I find that an ideal way of keeping on top of things.
Camino is a relatively new addition. I have tried Safari several times and just don’t get on with it, but I feel guilty that I don’t and have tried several times with the Vesrion 3, even on my PC, but for now Camino does exactly what I want it to do for a second browser. I use Safari for a few things, and my use of it is growing slightly!
I have been using OmniFocus pretty much since day one and it is certainly looking very good! I am not a big fan of time management applications, and I doubt that I use it anywhere near its full potential. I do find it very useful for keeping track of my actions, drafts, notes, thoughts, ideas etc.
So there you are, another list of Mac applications! As ever let me have your comments and suggestions, and if you have 5 applications that you use for specifics tasks I would love to hear from you. I was thinking of a series:
- 5 for photography
- 5 for coding
- 5 for podcasting
I have drafted posts on photography and podcasting as between those two and blogging that probably accounts for about 80% of my time spent on the Mac