For many years on Mac360 I’ve been able to find good Mac apps for my Friday Freebie Feature. Free is good. But free is becoming more difficult to find.
Macs are selling at record levels. Mac app developers want in on Apple’s gravy train. What was once free now comes with a price tag. When my kids get their naps in sync I have more time to dig through the latest Mac app updates—the free and easy.
The Trick To Get Free Apps
Yes, I know that takes a lot of Mac time.
Yes, I used to be better at it when I had more time and fewer kids.
Yes, my palate is discriminating so I don’t get into every Mac app without a price tag—just those that I would use myself. Since I bought an Apple Magic Mouse I’ve been engaged in various and sundry mouse utilities.
#7 – iMouseTrick: There are Mac mouse utilities that add more functions to a Magic Mouse; more buttons, more swipes, more settings. But—trust me on this—there is only one Mac app I’ve found that does nothing more than automatically click your mouse.
That’s right. iMouseTrick is a one trick pony that ponies up thousands of times. Set it to click your mouse over, and over, and over again, and again. Set it to click and repeat. Set it to click as fast as you want.
Why? I don’t really know, but iTrick Mouse is unique. I’m glad my kids don’t have it on their MacBook.
#6 – MouseZoom: You’d think I have a mouse fetish, what with all the Mac apps that do something with or to your Mac’s mouse. MouseZoom is a simple preference pane which speeds up your mouse pointer as it goes across the screen.
Wait. Do the mouse preferences already provide that function? Yes. But this is more fun. Not much more. But more. And perfect for multiple screens or the new 27-inch iMac screen. Why? Sometimes Apple’s speed settings for the mouse just are not speedy enough, you know?
#5 – DropCopy: I’m fudging. DropCopy isn’t totally free if you have more than three Macs at home. It lets you share files instantly between three Macs on your home network.
If you have more than three Macs then you’re officially upper middle class and you can afford the commercial version. DropCopy creates this cool little zone on your Mac’s desktop. Drag and drop stuff and it auto copies to another Mac.
#4 – IceClean & FinderClean: I was looking for a simple Mac app which would display, on command, the invisible files on your Mac. Why? Because they’re there. It turns out that there are plenty of utilities that do just that and much more, including the duo IceClean and FinderClean.
IceClean is a simple system maintenance utility which uses the Unix utilities on your Mac to optimize files for better performance. My Mac is so fast already I couldn’t tell if it did anything. But free is free.
FinderClean is like a supplement for your Mac’s Finder. That’s supplement. As in vitamins or minerals or herbs. Not suppository. That’s different. FinderClean rebuilds Finder menu items (sometimes those pesky icons disappear, don’t they?). It turns the Dashboard on and off. Rebuilds and optimizes Spotlight, and, because I was looking for it and found it, shows hidden files and folders.
It can also relaunch the Dock, gives you a handy Finder ‘Quit’ menu selection and will force the Trash to empty files even when it doesn’t want to. If I could only get my husband to do chores as easily.
#3 – Nambu & Syrinx: Isn’t Twitter just the most fun social network in the entire solar system? Well, maybe not. But life for Twitter apps on the Mac just got a lot worse since Twitter bought Tweetie, one of the most popular Mac Twitter apps.
What of Tweetie? It’ll end up being free, of course. As is Syrinx and Nambu, which are likely to have fewer users. Free is good, but Tweetie is better than free. Nambu does more than just tweet—you also get to see ads while you don’t pay to tweet.
Nice apps, but they’ll need to revamp their feature set sometime soon.
#2 – Miro Video Converter: One of the things that really bunches my pantyhose or rusts my nail polish is all the crazy video file formats. How many are there now? Twenty seven eleven? Why can’t we just all get along?
Miro Video Converter adds to the confusion by giving Mac users more ways to convert video files for Mac, iPhone, iPad, iPod, Android phones, even PSP.
Convert video files on your Mac to MP4, from AVI to MP4, or H.264 or MOV or WMV or XVID or Theora or FLV to MP4. If you really wanna get your geeky down, convert those same formats to Ogg Theora. If you don’t know what all that means, don’t worry. 99.99-percent of all Mac and smart phone users don’t either.
But it’s free.
#1 – SimpleComic: Alright, I admit it. I can be bribed. No, I’m officially not into comic books, but let me tell you that Simple Comic is the cat’s meow, super, duper, double delux. Well, in truth, my husband is the comic book
weirdo aficionado in the family, and he promised to take me out to dinner if I mentioned one of his favorites, Simple Comic.
There. I did it. Taco Bell, here we come.
Simple Comic, as it turns out, isn’t so simple. It’s a free comic reader which features a one or two page display, page scaling, full screen, rotation, QuickLook, and the ability to handle a bunch of comic files including CBR, CBZ, ZIP, RAR, Tar, and more.
I’m not into comic books but my husband downloaded ComiXology’s iPad app for Marvel Comics. Way cool. This is the way digital media should be digested. Or, is it ingested?
If you did a count, you’ll notice that there’s more than seven on my list of freebies today. That’s by design. I had four originally, but two of them had a twin, which made six, and then my husband’s bribe made it an even seven. Enjoy.