Power Up Your Mac Game with These 9 AppsMay 09, 2022
I’ve been a Mac user most of my computer-literate life. I love my Mac, but there are some things that I find easier in the Windows environment. Locating files is probably the biggest thing. For some reason, I felt like I could never find things on my Mac or even them file them away logically when I initially saved documents.
Enter Setapp. It’s not an app, it’s a suite of apps, 200+ of them. Setapp is a Ukrainian company, like many of the developers in its suite. So, now is a great time to support them. You get everything in the suite for $9.99/mo.
Setapp has apps in about a dozen categories, including Productivity, Writing, Maintenance, Creativity, Security, and Hacks.
Here are my personal favorites:
Clean Shot X
This is a great way to perform screen capture and to record your screen. I love the screen capture because it’s so much more flexible than the Mac default. You can pin something you’ve captured and keep a small image on display until you no longer need it. Then you can save it or delete it.
Default Folder X
This has made file management so much easier for me. It expands the finder view when you go to save a file, offering features such as recent folders and recent files. It helps me put things in the right place to start with and makes file retrieval infinitely easier.
This allows you to set up several customizable finder-like windows. For example, I like to open a view of Downloads side by side with my iCloud files so that I can easily move all the stuff that gets saved to Downloads by default into the right folder. I’ve also got it set to show me images of the files. It’s highly customizable.
This is a search app. For some reason, I find it works much more effectively than Finder. You can search for a value inside of a file or for an element of the file name.
This is a lifestyle app. In life coaching we have the wheel of life — you may have seen it: you rate various dimensions of your life on a scale of 1 to 10 and then you illustrate your results on a pie chart. Grapefruit is sort of based on that concept. You rate your day and select what emotions you are feeling. It’s highly customizable. I track things like what level of consciousness I’m at, whether I have a headache, what headache triggers I’m experiencing, what I ate, how much water I drank, etc. I also added more emotions to the defaults. It has very powerful reporting, too. A wonderful tool for coaches and their clients.
The Mac comes with a corny little app called Stickies. What bugs me about Stickies is that you can’t really save the notes. They get exported to a text file when you save them. SideNotes solves this problem. It opens up a pane on the right hand side of your computer. You name individual notes and then can bring up those notes when you want them, add to them, copy from them, etc. I use it mostly like I used Stickies, as a clipboard for links or other file names that I need to refer back to, copy, etc. This is especially handy when I’m publishing a blog article and dealing with a bunch of URLs. I’ve also used it to capture notes related to a particular topic – for example, dealing with all the steps to take when I had an incident of identity theft. I copied a checklist from a government website and could follow along as I completed the steps and add notes. SideNotes works great on my desktop, less so on my laptop because it does take up a bit of real estate and can interfere with your access to the far right of your screen when it’s open.
If you want to track how much time you’re spending on your work, Timing is a great app. In addition to a start and stop timer, it tracks what apps you are using so it’s easy to recreate your day after the fact to see where you spent your time. You can also set up endless categories and frequently used task names. I like this better than apps like Toggl.
24 Hour Wallpaper
This one is just for fun. You can select an image for your desktop that changes throughout the day. I have a scene of Malibu beach near the Self Realization Fellowship temple. I get to watch the California sunset go down.
I’ve heard a lot of great stuff about this app for writers. I don’t use because I’m a Scrivener fanatic. For some, just access to Ulysses might be worth the Setapp subscription.
Part of the fun with Setapp is the constant discovery. I’ve been using it for over a year and I’ve still only checked out a fraction of what’s available. What I’ve found has been a game-changer for me. Sometimes, there are multiple options to do similar things (like time tracking). I love the variety and flexibility of many of these tools.
I pay a bit extra (a total of about $13/mo) to have a second Setapp instance on my laptop. I’ve become totally dependent on these apps. If you’re looking to up your productivity game on the Mac, check out Setapp. (This link will give us both a free month.)
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