Every time I re-install my mac there are some apps that I just have to load. Below is the list of my “every mac needs” apps. Share yours and let’s see if we can make this a better list.


By the way for those of you who don’t know I’m writing a book. You can see what it’s about and join a mailing list all at: www.PotentialOfZero.com


  • Google Chrome: Chrome is definitely my browser of choice. Chrome “sandboxes” my tabs meaning no information is shared between tabs. That means whatever I am typing in my banking tab cannot be stolen by another tab I have open. Also, searching with the omni bar is easy and powerful. I don’t need to click over to another search field to find something. Address and search in one. Let’s not forget that chrome offers a private browsing feature. It’s minimalist approach probably the single greatest reason I love chrome.
    Download Chrome

  • Caffeine : OMG, this little program is one of the first things I add to EVERY Mac. It should be standard. Caffeine is insanely simple. Your screen automatically goes dim during movies or when reading things. You can either his the trackpad or go into system preferences and change the screen settings. Most of the time we don’t bother changing our preferences or if we do we forget to change it back, wasting battery. Caffeine is a little coffee cup icon that let’s you toggle  the auto -dimming feature on and off. Sounds insanely simple, try it and u will never live without it again.
    Download Caffeine
  • Afloat is one of those small apps that just make your computing experience better. All it does is keep a window in front of another window. It doesn’t work with all your applications but it does work with most of the native apps. Now I can webchat or watch a movie while I design. I can also keep a chat window on top of my screen like when waiting for message based customer service, that way I can surf while I wait.
    Download Afloat

  • Quicksilver: This app is the reason my doc isn’t filled with 15,000 icons. Quicksilver let’s you use a keyboard shortcut to pull up a search field. Simply type in what you are looking for and hit “return”.  Launch Apps, Search spotlight, Even start an iTunes playlist; without ever opening finder.
    Download Quicksilver
  • You Control Tunes: This app allows you to control itunes straight from the menu bar. It scrolls the song names in a tiny space and allows you to skip forwards and backwards, pause, play or even select a playlist without maximizing itunes. The heads up display allows you to see what song is playing before it starts. Try it before you knock it.Download You Control Tunes
    Note: You need to get a serial number but it’s free.
  • Jumpcut is a little icon that sits in the menu bar. It save your clipboard history. By default it saves 40 entries but the last 15 to choose from.
    Download Jumpcut
  • SMARTReporter works with your hard drive to report whenever there are any errors that can lead to a potential drive failure. A popup will show up on the screen letting you know something is wrong so you can backup your data right away. There’s even a little icon that stays in the menu bar to indicate drive health (Green for good or red for “oh shit”).
    Download SMARTReporter
  • WikityWidget is not a wikipedia widget. WikityWidget will help you kick the sticky note habit. This little program let’s you organize your notes with an automatically generated table of content. Plus it’s searchable. Because it is based on wiki you can insert links to websites or even links to other notes!
    Download WikityWidget
  • Multiclutch is a must have if you use muti touch. Multiclutch let’s you tweak your multi touch settings. I like to jump to the top or bottom of the webpage in Chrome. Normally I would need to hit command + up arrow or down arrow, respectively, but now I can program a 3 finger swipe up and down to do the same. Tweak your multitouch preference with Multiclutch.
    Download Multiclutch
  • Perian is a free, open source QuickTime component that adds native support for many popular video formats. In other words Quicktime will be able to play almost anything.
    Download Perian
  • When Quicktime see’s a video file and is like: WTF??? That’s when VLC becomes your best friend. VLC will play anything. I don’t think I’ve stumped it yet. It’s not as pretty as quicktime but it is a very powerful open source media player.
    Download VLC
  • Unarchiver will solve your uncompressing needs. Aside from zip and rar there are a buttload of compression file formats out there and opening them means finding the appropriate program, usually. Unarchiver covers, well, a buttload of them, maybe not the whole butt but a lot of it.
    Download Unarchiver
  • Disk Inventory X will scan your drive and color code your files. Wondering what happened to that 250 GB hard drive that was supposed to be “plenty of space” now you can see exactly what’s taking up all that space and even deletes as simply as clicking on a square and and deleting (maybe it’s command + delete).
  • Download Disk Inventory X
  • Filezilla is a great FTP app for mac. If you don’t know what FTP is then you probably don’t need this. I prefer Filezilla because it cross platform and faster than Cyberduck. Although Cyberduck is a very close second.
    Download Filezilla
  • Open Office isn’t one app it’s a whole suite. Kick Microsoft office to the curb. This free version of office has you covered and can even open and save in Microsoft Office formated files. Best of All this app is also available for PC and Linux.
    Download OpenOffice
  • Transmission is the best torrent app for Mac. You can use labels to color code your torrents and there’s even a little turtle icon that lets you “speed limit” your torrents when you need the web. Simple but powerful this app is totally Mac. Runner up: utorrent.
    Download Transmission
  • Calibre is a great piece of software to convert books between different file types. Whether you use a Kindle, an ipad or your phone to read ebooks, Calibre has you covered. It allows you to convert between different file types to be able to use the file on your device. Calibre is available on Mac, PC or Linux and is Open source.
    Download Calibre here

    Honorable Mention

    Although Delicious Library 2 isn’t free this program is a must have. Delicious Library 2 inventories your material life. You can scan in your books, movies, music, electronics, video games, apparel, toys and other goods to track your inventory. Selling your stuff on Amazon is built in and you can use your isight camera to scan barcodes to identify your stuff. They’ve even added a voice search and iphone export. These are just a few of the features that make this a great software for cataloging and insurance purposes. Price $40

    Download Delicious Library 2 Trial Here

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