4 Essential Mac Utilities

Here are 4 little apps that I use everyday, and if they did not exist, it would be a problem.

Text Expander

I’m starting out with Text Expander because this app will save you hours of time. It's sole purpose is to make typing faster. Similar to the keyboard shortcuts on iOS, you can set up any abbreviation to expand to a desired output. For instance, I have a shortcut that expands “wweb” to “www.folkloredesign.com”, and I have "hhome" expand to my home address (the double letter upfront is the abbreviation structure I most use). I have shortcuts for my emails, phone numbers, URLs, logins and even emojis. Its a great tool for quickly replying to emails with canned responses or information too. It's not cheap ($35), but once you set it up and start using it, you won’t understand how you’ve gone without it. 

1Password

This is a thougher one to explain. 1Password place to store all your passwords, logins, and payment information in a highly secure and hard to access vault. All you have to do is remember one password. Needless to say, that password has to be very long and secure (mine is 20+ characters long), but there’s only one to remember. Comes with browser extensions that making dropping in credit card info and passwords really easy, and has many security features to keep your vital information locked up and inaccessible to the world. The beauty of it all; I no longer have to remember all my passwords, and even better, I no longer need to keep the same password for every site that needs one. This is the most expensive app on the list ($40), but I got it at 50% off and that was well worth it. It comes with an iOS app, and it looks like the iOS 8 update is going to be great.

Dropbox

Everyone knows what dropbox is. One thing I do, ever since I paid the $100/yr for the now 1TB of storage, is keep all active projects, all my photos, and all my regularly accessed documents in dropbox. That way I can access them anywhere, anytime. and it works as another active backup to your files. Totally worth $100/yr if you ask me. It’s saved me a handful of times. You can also opt for the free account and refer people to maximize your space.

Cloudapp

A quick, low profile file-sharing app. Cloudapp allows you to drag documents, screenshots, and small projects onto this toolbar icon and it automatically uploads it to the cloud and copies the link to your clipboard to paste anywhere. One of my favorite things about it is that you can track how many times the link has been clicked, great for knowing if someone has opened a file, or how many people are clicking the link you just tweeted. It's free for starters, most people won't need anything more than.