Apple seems to love high margins on all their products, and who can blame them. People still stand in line for Apple’s latest and greatest, so why lower the price. If the Mac’s Dock is not for you, and you’re tired of click-click-click purgatory, what you need is something like Application Wizard.
It’s a Mac app launcher. And quitter. And comes with a few surprises.
The Wizard Does What You Click
The Mac’s Dock is alright by me, but somewhat limited. I like how it’s just down there, mostly out of the way, but convenient enough to use without head scratching.
The Dock’s real problem is when you use it too much. That means too many apps or documents in the Dock makes it less usable. What a conundrum.
Improving on app and document launching is a nifty app called Application Wizard. It won’t solve world turmoil, hunger, health care problems, or desalinate ocean water, but it’s a handy, useful almost fun way to launch and quit apps, and combine a few other useful functions.
Application Wizard looks like a strange drag strip stop light signal; four colored dots that live in your Mac’s Menubar (or anywhere else, floating on the Mac’s screen).
The buttons are easily found and clicked. One button opens apps, another quits apps, another switches between apps, and the last button display a hierarchical menu so you can navigate through your Mac’s disk drive, or display a bunch of other useful functions.
Setup is more complicated that it should be, but that’s because Application Wizard is less wizard than it is Swiss Army Knife. The first menu button and the last button can be customized and you decide what gets displayed in each.
For example, drop in a folder of files to navigate by using just a click. Use the controls to create application groups (all Adobe, all Apple, all Microsoft, or special utilities) which can be accessed with a single click.
Apps can be launched, display, hidden or quit by using the floating Application Wizard bar of buttons.
The hierarchical menu lets you hide apps, or hide others (similar to the Apple Menu). The app also acts as a switcher, but with more functions than the Mac’s normal Command+Tab switcher.
The menus tab brings up active apps first (and you can assign the keystroke combo), and uses a vertical display instead of horizontal (takes some getting used to). The single app mode automatically hides other apps when you switch apps.
There’s even an option to exclude specific apps from being used in Application Wizard. I truly enjoy the one-click access to files on the Mac, including contacts from Address Book, photos from iPhoto.
Using Application Wizard is much easier than setting it up, so don’t get spooked during your test run. Set up a few basic apps, try the switcher, and use the one-click launcher. You’ll find it to be useful, handy, almost fun.
After that, all we need are less expensive Macs. And world peace. And clean water. And…