Welcome to the home of Noah Brier. I'm the co-founder of Variance and general internet tinkerer. Most of my writing these days is happening over at Why is this interesting?, a daily email full of interesting stuff. This site has been around since 2004. Feel free to get in touch. Good places to get started are my Framework of the Day posts or my favorite books and podcasts. Get in touch.

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A Guide to Essential Free OS X Apps

It’s been just over a month since my big switch and I haven’t given a good Apple rundown lately. So, in the style of some great Mac OS X inventories, here’s my guide to essential free OS X Apps.

Quicksilver It’s called Quicksilver, it’s free and it’s the definition of essential OS X software. It is a launcher, a finder interface and just about anything else you want it to be. It’s really an amazing piece of software that makes using OS X a faster and more fun experience.
TextWrangler It’s called TextWrangler. It’s a free text editor that’s great for writing HTML and CSS. You can have multiple documents open at once. It breaks stuff up with colors. I’ve got no complaints.
Adium It’s called Adium and it’s the answer to all your instant messaging needs. Use more than one service? No problem, Adium can handle them all. It’s easy to use, clean to look at and, of course, it’s free.
Firefox It’s Firefox and if you don’t know about it yet, you’ve probably been living in a hole. (Nothing personal to all those hole-dwellers who enjoy the site.) Seriously, it’s my favorite browser, extensions are amazing and once you tab you never go back.
Sidenote It’s called Sidenote. What it does is give you one little box to keep all those random notes in. It takes the idea of stickies and gives them a central location with lots of other options (most of which I haven’t tried). Oh, and it’s free.
Fugu It’s called Fugu and it’s an SFTP client. I’ve been using it since I moved to TextDrive (which requires SFTP because it’s more secure). It’s got a great and simple interface and . . . dum dum dum . . . it’s free.
Bit Torrent It’s called BitTorrent and don’t pretend like you don’t know what it is. It’s only the P2P app of the moment and like all the great P2P apps, it’s free.

That just about concludes this edition of Essential Free OS X Apps. I’m sure you can expect other exciting installments in the future, like Essential Free OS X Plugins and Essential Free OS X Widgets, but until then, may you enjoy many hours of free software goodness.

June 2, 2005