Mac Apps Soup: My favorite Apps for use on my Mac at Function Point

I am a freak when it comes to applications. I know it, everyone in the office knows it, but I just could not stop until I had the perfect setup that allows me to feel good about my working environment. I call this my “Mac Apps soup”.

I would like to introduce SOME of the better applications I use on a daily basis. I realize that not everything is for everyone, but I’ve tried to collect the ones that can be useful for most users.

1Password (App Store)

This is the second application (not first – read more to know what the first is) that gets installed on my computer whenever I reinstall it (which happens every 6 months or so).

This application allows me to sleep at night, knowing that even if a group of terrorists captured me and tortured me, they would not be able to get my bank account password from me … BECAUSE I TRULY DO NOT KNOW IT.

1Password stores all of my passwords (every service I use has a different password), all of the software licenses I’ve purchased, and any accounts I use (the program uses 128 bit encryption to store the information).

Some fun statistics:

  • I have 178 Logins (sites with a login user name and password)
  • I have 80 software licenses

I am sure that if you collect all of the logins you have, and all of the software you have purchased over the years, you would get similar numbers (even if you do not think so).

Login to any of the 178 services I’ve mentioned is always a click away, and it synchronizes seamlessly across my iPad, iPhone and Mac.

Every password is 15 to 18 characters long, with random numbers, special characters and all … 1Password has a password generator that makes it a snap.

The new IOS version of 1Password works just like the desktop version (they also have a windows version for it).

Window Tidy (App Store)

This a true masterpiece, and probably the third program I install on my machine (don’t worry, we will get to the first one soon): it allows for windows snapping and resizing with literally any combination you can think of. In a few seconds, of dragging and dropping your windows, you can set them in any layout you like.

I would recommend checking the “Automatically group layouts when possible” option, that makes it super charged, making the layouts extremely flexible and easy to use.

This application also works very well with multiple monitors, and actually make it possible to move windows between screens when the size of the window does not fit (anyone who is using multiple monitors with different resolutions probably knows what I am refering to).

Total Finder (

Total finder is a mac finder add-on that provides some cool editions to the good old Mac finder.

  • Tabs
  • Side by side split finder
  • A quick keyboard shortcut to slide the finder window. I use COMMAND – E , a legacy shortcut I adopted from using windows for many years (Windows – E opens the windows explorer in windows).

Total finder adds the missing pieces in the mac finder.

Tab Launcher (App Store)

A great little addition to the mac dock, it allows you to add as many tabs with applications as you wish, the layout and position of each individual tab can be determined by just dragging the tab around the screen.

You can use funky colors, add icons, and in general make it very interesting, but the important thing, is that it makes everything that is important to you at your fingertips, one click away, while giving you the space when not used (it folds to the side, almost hidden).


BTW, it works great with a multiple monitor setup as well, you can park those tabs anywhere you want.

Postbox (

A really nice functional and stable email client for the mac, a good replacement for anyone who loves thunberbird. Not much to say there, it simply works !

Total Spaces ( –

When it comes to screen realestate, there is ALWAYS room for more. The problem is that I am already using three monitors, and my CEO would probably send me to a mental institute if I ask for more (plus, I ran out of room on my desk).

So I’ve started to look at the built in Mac spaces, the concept was intriguing, but it was not PERFECT. That’s where Total spaces comes in …

Total spaces lets you use the built in Mac 10.8.2 spaces but with a few tweaks that make it much more workable:

  • Total spaces allow you to rename your spaces (what a concept), so you can actually call “dashboard 1” -> “Development” or whatever you like.
  • Total spaces allow you to arrange your spaces as square (an ability that used to be available as part of the original spaces on the Mac).
  • Total spaces allows for very easy keyboard shortcuts to move between your spaces (I know that you can do it with the “regular” version, but it is very nice.
  • Total spaces adds REALLY cool transition effects (allows for bragging points).

I currently use 4 spaces (in a square arrangement):

  • Development
    • Firefox
    • Development IDE
    • Terminal
  • Communications
    • Postbox
    • Skype
    • Safari with Function Point
  • Databases
    • Navicat for MySQL
    • Development IDE
  • Research
    • Chrome
    • Omnifocus
    • Omnioutliner

You can specify a space for each application, so applications always open in the right space, so there is no need to move applications around.

Typinator (

Typinator allows you to create templates for sentences with placeholders for anything that you need to type more than once in your life …

You can take it to the next level by writing PHP scripts to generate dynamic content with variables.

I use it mainly for specific commands that I am tired of looking up the syntax for, but it can be used for pretty much anything, including writing a “Hi {name here}, it is not you, it is me … ”, by simple typing “finish relationship” as an example … 🙂

You can configure it to popup with any shortcut, or you can come up with your own abbreviations to common phrases you use.

You can also specify abbreviations by applications, so certain ones work only in certain applications.

One of the cool builtin features, is a pre defined list of words that have common spelling mistakes, so it quickly fixes those, as you type (neat eh ?).

Typinator can use a dropbox folder to store its snippets, so all of your machines can be using the same snippets library across all of your mac computers.

Dropbox (

The secret ingredient to my secret ingredients soup. This is the father of all applications, and you guessed it, it is the first one I install when I reinstall my computer every 6 months. I did not want to mention it before, because EVERYONE puts it on their “top 10” list, and I did not want you to stop reading thinking … “here comes another one”.

Since there is enough mentioning of it everywhere else, I will not say more about it.


I hope that you find this list of applications useful. They certainly make my life easier on a daily basis.



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