We’ve written adnauseum about the wonderful crop of Mac organizers; intuitive, efficient, useful.
What do those utilities have in common with iTunes, iPhoto and dozens of other Mac applications?
My assignment for this article was to review KIT, Keep It Together—another in a long line of excellent Mac organizers.
These things store almost everything: text, documents, images, movies, sounds, web pages, bookmarks, and more.
It’s all straightfoward, drag and drop, and very familiar to Mac users who can spell iLife. As in iTunes and iPhoto.
Very familiar? Yes. Don’t ask me why I didn’t see the significance before, but it’s there. Most of the elegant and useful applications these days copy a set of features from Apple.
Think playlists in iTunes. Think albums in iPhoto. When you start looking around, you’re going to see that same layout in dozens of Mac utilities and applications.
iTunes lets you create playlists in the left hand column. iPhoto lets you create albums and slide shows in the left hand column. Most of the best Mac organizers, such as KIT, Mori, Yojimbo, and others do the same.
Macs are known for having a similar look and feel in the menu structure, so if you’ve used one Mac application, it’s quick and easy to get familiar with another.
So it is with organizers and many other Mac utilities these days.
The layout, the look and fell, is downright scary it’s so familiar.
For example, KIT, like Mori, like many other organizers, uses the left hand column to display various categories. As with playlists and albums, you determine what the categories are, and what goes inside.
One click on the Library category and you can see everything you’ve stored. Organize the
categories via Smart Groups. Sound familiar?
This new metaphor is showing up in many new and updated Mac utilities and applications. It’s in Mori, which we dearly love at Mac360, as well as Mac financial utilities, planners, project managers, and more.
It’s almost too simple. The left hand column displays categories. Click on a category and the list of what’s inside shows up near the top right column. Click on a particular item, and the details show up below—text, images, movies, whatever.
More and more Mac applications are adopting that familiar column left, column right look.
Back to KIT. It’s your Keep It Together application that simply holds a little of everything—documents, photos, movies, sounds, web pages, even text—all in the library (just like iTunes or iPhoto).
Search is quick and familiar. If you’ve used iPhoto or iTunes you can get into KIT very fast—as in instantly. The same goes for Yojimbo, Mori, and countless other Mac applications adopting the new look.
You’ll see it in Apple’s Mail application. It’s sort of in the aging AddressBook. How many other applications on your Mac have that same, familiar look and feel?
Is it a new look? Or, does it trace a history back beyond the early iTunes versions? To be honest, I don’t know. It all just feels so familiar.
If you have examples of historic use of the familiar left column, dual right column look found in so many Mac applications these days, share your knowledge in the Comments sectin below.