At the end of 2007, I listed a number of applications I couldn’t live without that year. I recently realized I hadn’t updated the list for 2008 so I decided to do it now. Some applications remain unchanged, but others have been replaced or dropped off the list all together. I’d like to say “Thank You” to all the Mac developers out there who help make the Mac the premier computing platform today. These are the applications I couldn’t live without in 2008, in no particular order.
Blogging wouldn’t be as fun or as easy without MarsEdit. The ability to draft posts offline allows me to work anywhere and publish once I get online. I love the ability to add new categories without visiting my WordPress powered site. If you blog without MarsEdit you aren’t being as productive as you could be. My one wish for MarsEdit would be bullet and numbered list support.
While there are a number of good ftp clients for the Mac, many of them aren’t free. I’m not a power ftp user and Cyberduck allows me to get the job done. Cyberduck supports ftp and sftp and has integration with Spotlight, the Keychain, AppleScript, and Growl. If you don’t want to spend money on an ftp client, give Cyberduck a try. If you try Cyberduck and use it frequently, consider a donation to the developer (I donated).
In 2007 I used iBank to manage my household finances. Sometime in 2008 I switched to Cha-Ching as my Mac money management application of choice. Neither application is perfect, but I liked the UI and ease of use of Cha-Ching. Cha-Ching 2.0, currently in beta, improves the UI and a number of other features. There is even a Cha-Ching iPhone application in beta (I’m testing it right now) that will sync your Cha-Ching database to your iPhone. When both of these Cha-Ching applications are officially released, it will create a killer experience.
Mac toting Windows junkies are rejoicing today. One of the two powerhouses in Mac virtualization software released a major upgrade today. VMware Fusion 2.0 was released early this morning. Fusion 2.0 is a free upgrade for existing Fusion owners!
So what’s new in Fusion 2.0? For starters, a lot. You can see the entire list here. What’s new and notable?
- Driver-less Printing
- Numerous UI Enhancements
- OS X Server VM Support
- AutoProtect (automatically take snapshots at regular intervals)
- URL Handling (click a URL in a VM and it opens on your Mac)
- Improved Multiple Display Support
- Improved 3D Performance
- Localized In Six Languages
If you need to run Windows applications on your Mac, Fusion is a great way to do so. A free 30 day trial is available on the Fusion website.
Looks like I might be a little late on this piece of news, but I only found out about it a few minutes ago.
If you like (or just need) Windows on your Mac, one of the leaders in Windows virtualization on the Mac has released Beta 1 of their product. VMware Fusion 2.0 Beta 1 is now available for download. Beta 1 will set you back absolutely nothing; it’s free!
Among the new features in Fusion 2.0:
- Multi-Display Support
- Experimental 3D Acceleration
- Easier Printing
- USB Improvements
The blog post announcing the Beta 1 release has a cool video of the multi-display feature. If you would like to test the beta, you can download it HERE. Don’t forget to file bugs or issues with the Fusion team if you encounter a problem!
VMware has released an update to their wildly popular virtualization software, Fusion. Fusion 1.1.1 is a maintenance release and contains a number of Leopard fixes in addition to some networking, printing, and other fixes. I wouldn’t normally write about a minor release for such a popular software package, but Fusion 1.1.1 fixed perhaps the most annoying “bug” that I’ve come across.
Just after every launch of Fusion prior to 1.1.1, I had to do the most annoying thing. I had to move my mouse to enter in my administrator password. For some reason unknown to humankind, the Fusion password prompt would pop up without being the focus. This meant that after launching Fusion, somehow the application would take focus away from the upcoming password prompt window. Every time I had to move my mouse just to enter in my password to continue booting my XP partition. With the release of Fusion 1.1.1, the password prompt is now the focus and I can continue booting XP without moving my mouse. Hurrah, let us all rejoice!