Actually, this quick review will cover four of Yellow Mug’s nifty utility applications, not a trio. Sorry. It’s 3 great ones, 1 good one, another one, and 4 free applications. The 4th application is very cool, quite handy, though it’s not one I need, but I’d buy it if it had ONE more feature.
If you’ve been reading this column for long you know I’m a sucker for cool Mac utility applications. Try these and let me know what you think.
There’s umpteen gazillion photo applications available for the Mac. I’ve always wanted one that was quick, easy to use, affordable, and produced those cool “soft edge” photographs.
Adobe’s Photoshop Elements 3 does it but costs an arm and a leg (doesn’t everything from Adobe?). A few other apps offer a couple of “edge” treatments to photos but nothing as easy as Yellow Mug’s EasyFrame.
This is remarkably easy and intuitive (not to mention affordable). First, open Easy Frame. That’s a double click. Then drag a photo onto the main window. Then select a frame from the huge list on the left side column.
Then save. That’s it. Select from a bunch of “frames” including all the soft edge “feathered” frames that I like. There’s simple shapes, fuzzy shapes, sloppy shapes, burned shapes, patchy shapes (not my names), and you can make your own.
When you’ve selected the right frame, save it, or send it to one of a couple of other Yellow Mug applications for additional modifications. What’s EasyFrame need? Integration with iPhoto, and some way to “position” the photo within EasyFrame’s frames.
That’s where EasyCrop comes in.
Depending on your needs, you’ll use EasyCrop to, well, “crop” your photo. Again, it’s drag and drop. Drag your photo or image into EasyCrop, draw a “crop” box of the size, shape, and location you choose.
You’re done. As you draw the crop box, the right had window of EasyCrop shows both size dimensions and the finished photo.
There’s also choices for JPGE, PNG, TIFF images and quality. Nifty. Just nifty. It’s hours of savings over time and only $12. Again, the only apparent flaw is no direct integration with iPhoto, though drag and drop works well (there’s only so much screen space on most Macs, though).
For those of use who make use of the Mac in a professional way, we’re always looking for ways to “speed up” the day-to-day processes, especially with graphics. Yellow Mug Software to the rescue again with a batch application.
Converting photos is usually a multi-step process. Dropping in a watermark or copyright message can be laborious, too. EasyBatchPhoto does it the easy way.
Make the settings the way you want. Format. Quality. Destination folder. File size. Background. Watermark. Opacity. Thumbnails. Rotation. Scaling. Even DPI and EXIF preservation. EasyBatchPhoto is the most expensive of the group at $25 but does the most and can save you that amount after just a few hours use.
Drag a whole folder or bunch of photos or images onto EasyBatchPhoto and your settings get applied to each file. One folder or multiple folders of files within a folder.
Did I mention files? JPEG, PNG, TIFF, PSD and many others, including true lossless JPEG.
Again, the only initial complaint is no direct integration with iPhoto or other photo or image media collection applications. Still, this one gets nearly 5 Stars.
OK, the last application in the trio is #4 (see? that’s how I get more reviews than anyone—I cheat on the count), and for some, VERY handy.
The problem? Sending large files to other people quickly and easily (email doesn’t cut it).
The Yellow Mug Software folks obviously have some experience in graphics files and sometimes those files are large. Huge even. Large files don’t go to well via email as many mail servers won’t take file sizes larger than 5 or 10 megabytes.
FileChute is like a drop chute. Drag the file into FileChute and it gets loaded on .Mac’s iDisk, a WebDAV server, or an FTP server. Automatically.
Better yet, it’ll do on-the-fly archiving into .zip or .dmg, AND give you the link in a little window so you can email the link to whomever.
Once the file is loaded via the chute to the server, anyone with the link can download the file, Mac or Windows or whatever. FileChute will even delete the file after x-number of days.
The file doesn’t even have to be a large, multi-megabyte graphic file. It can be a large, multi-megabyte Word file, or PowerPoint, or video file (think QuickTime).
FileChute loads the file on a server and gives you the link to send to someone. Life is MUCH easier that way.
My only gripe is there’s no way to “secure” FTP and no way to simply save the file locally (I couldn’t figure it out) on your Mac (I use my Mac as a server rather than use FTP).
Again, this Mac developer found a better way to move files around than using a separate FTP client. Sweet.
Now, here’s the kicker. All those applications for your Mac cost next to nothing, work well, work well together, and do quickly what usually takes extra time. They’re fully-working demos, written in Cocoa, and come with lifetime upgrades. Double sweet.
Yellow Mug Software has four (4) other Mac applications that are FREE. SizzlingKeys (for iTunes), SnapNDrag (screen capture), TapDex (contacts), and YemuZIP (it .zips).
It’s like “Buy 5, Get 4 Free.” Or, just get 4 free. Check out the fun at YellowMug. Tell them Tera sent you.