15 Mac OS Apps that have made me a happy switcher

It’s hard for me to believe that it’s only been about a month since I switched to the Macbook Pro. It’s following me pretty much everywhere, and surprisingly has replaced my PDA just as much as my desktop PC. I still use a Thinkpad for work of course, but for anything remotely personal, it’s the mac for me..

Mark asked me for a list of software I’ve adopted now that I’ve made the switch, and I thought I’d share what’s on that list so far. If you’ve been using a Mac for any amount of time, this is probably all old news, but it might save some time for a new switcher like me…

  • Adium – great IM client, works with all the major services (even Lotus notes!) very cool.
  • Skype – Works just like on the PC, but the mac’s built-in camera makes it more fun
  • Audacity – Works great, and has more effects processing than on the PC due to all the Apple-supplied effects.
  • Transmission – Best bit-torrent client I’ve ever used. Click and go – it rocks.
  • Cyberduck – FTP Client – performs as an FTP client should.
  • iTunes – Obviously
  • Firefox– Safari’s cute, but FF is still my favourite
  • Chicken of the VNC – Great VNC client, very useful
  • Fugu – SFTP front end.
  • NeoOffice – A well done port of the OpenOffice suite.
  • Quicksilver – Was beaten into me at PodCamp, very useful tool I’m still getting used to..
  • Flickrbooth – Instant uploads to flickr of PhotoBooth pictures – fun!
  • Smultron – I know, I know.. I’m supposed to use BBEdit or something.. but this is a great editor.
  • VLC – Video player. Plays everything. Get it. Now.


  • Widgetterm – Fully functional unix shell window on the dashboard. For those moments when you need a command-line interface

I’m sure this list will evolve over time, but as someone who attempted the switch in 1998, let me tell you I never got to 15 that time. It’s great to see all this wonderful software now available.

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  1. Mark says:

    Woohoo!!! Thanks.

  2. Nico says:

    I’d add a few:

    Opera. The browser that runs on almost anything with a screen.

    -Fetch Art (it’s everywhere, google it). Not really an app but a plugin for iTunes. Gets album art from Amazon, useful if you don’t have an iTunes store account.

    Flip4Mac WMV. Lets you play .wmv on quicktime.

    Google Notifier. With this and Adium, I never keep GMail open anymore.

    Handbrake. A DVD ripper, useful to have a copy of your movies in your computer or your iPod.

    iSquint. Convert almost any video format to iPod video.

    macam. USB webcam support for OS x.

  3. Rob M. says:

    You might also want to look at some kind of organizer like Notae or similar.

  4. Hi Bob! I am converting as well! The mac book pro is all of three days old; All the info about converts is so helpful!

    Chris Penn just posted his list of apps for me as well- Thanks for your advice!!!

    I had so much fun meeting you in person at Podcamp Toronto- Can’t wait for Podcasters Across Borders!

  5. You’ve only had a Mac for a month? Wow, you could have fooled me at PodCamp! I would have guessed you’d been using that computer for your whole life šŸ™‚

    I’ve had my Mac mini (wanted to start slowly) about six months. The Macbook Pro could be next …

  6. a good resource to find apps that do what you want is Digg like iusethis.com, the top OS X apps resemble your list, but going deeper has some real gems depending on the task at hand.

  7. And of course Kismac for cracking into wifi acces points, err testing security….

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