Must Have OS X Apps

A list of the free applications that I must have on Macintosh OS X.

Web Browser

I use Mozilla Firefox. Safari, Apple’s built in browser is great, but I like Firefox better.

If you want to be on the front line of social software and empower yourself to add to the internet you can try the rappidly evolving Flock Browser. I use both of these browsers. I have not made the Flock switch, but I am tempted.

Email Client

On my Mac I use wich comes with Mac OS X and is very wonderful. So no need to download anything.


I deal with a lot of audio on my Mac. I have the radio show and kids that make great sounds. To capture and edit I use the following.

I use this great application for audio capture and editing. It supports multiple tracks, has lots of useful filters and is free, what more do you want? Well, a lot actually, but it is a great solution and I produce my GeekSpeak Podcast with it every week. As I said, I have kids and they love to hear them selves. LineIn allows you to hear the source comming into the Line In of the Mac through the speakers… watch out for feed-back. The thing is, if you just want to use your computer as a preamp – this will do the trick, and without it… ahh.


Playing video requires having the right codecs and players that can make sense of all the video out there. On OS X QuickTime is a great player, but you have to pay for full screen and it seems to have more dificulty then it should.

This is the cats meow of Video playing on a Mac. It is very possible this is all you will need to install to play all video formats on your Mac. But I have been using an older copy and therefore also have the following video players. I have mixed feelings about these they are kinda sellouts , what ever that means, but DivX is widely used for encoding video and their codec plays nice with QuickTime… so install it. Here is the trick though – install the free trial and unless you like being upsold don’t give them your email. Some of the features will not work after a while but, as they say: bq. The ability to play and encode DivX videos with the DivX codec does not expire at any time. Video Lan Player is a little geeky (tricky interface) but can play a multitude of formats and can go full screen. Chris just clued me into this great QuickTime plugin that allows Windows Media Files to be played inside QuickTime.. finally! My “pure geek” side finds the persistant existance of Flash slightly evil; it is not an open source solution, which means Macromedia (Adobe) owns it. And I hate that. But every one is using it, so you need to instal it in order to experiance all of this hi-bandwidth goodness called internet video.

Geek Features

You do not need these, but if you like them then you will love them.

The best enhancement to an OS since the mouse. Which is odd because it makes you use the mouse less. This application runs in the background and is triggered by hitting ctrl+space bar. When triggered it displays an overlay space for an icon, which, as you type, is populated by matches. The long and the short of it is you can launch any application, system preference, document, etc. by using the keyboard only. This is a great secure copy, sftp and ftp client for Mac OS X. I use it for putting content on my web servers. ThumbsUp is a wonderful little image tool that allows you to create thumbnails of images. You can drop a whole folder of images on this little app and get images siezed the way you want. I use it for web development all the time.