Mac OSX applications that I use

(Updated 2013-06-14)

Here’s a list of apps I use on my mac. I maintain it to make it easier for myself to download everything I need in case I have to switch to a new laptop :-)

Apart from the external programs shown below I also use some of apple’s own apps:

  • Iphoto

  • Imovie

  • Pages

  • Numbers

  • Itunes

Downloaded apps


IRC client, though I don’t use IRC nearly as much as I used to.


Ftp, sftp, webdav, s3 etc. client


Well, yes, of course!

Google earth

Great app for a map lover like me.


Converts DVDs to movie files. Handy way of viewing DVDs borrowed from my brother. Or even my own DVDs if the mandatory “don’t copy this” message at the start of the movie irritates me. And especially for viewing my own DVDs on the ipad.


Better terminal than osx’ own Terminal.


My GTD (“getting things done”) app of choice. I also use the ipad and iphone versions of this program (the sync works fine).


Image editor for OSX. Some 15 dollars. It works way nicer on OSX than the gimp-via-xwindows I used before. Installed via the app store.


Small and simple timer or alarmclock. Just a small icon in your menu bar. Great.


Bittorrent client. Handy for downloading ubuntu for the other computer at home and for ancient television series that aren’t for sale in the Netherlands.


Yeah, this video player plays everything. Everything, I tell you.


Set of handy small meters for in your menu bar. Up/download rate, memory usage, cpu usage, disk usage.

Balsamiq mockups

Nice sketch-style mockups. I should use it more often.


Very simple tool to make a quick animated gif screen snapshot. Handy for dropping a quick example into an email or a github issue.


Most of the time I use pages, but for certain tasks libreoffice (or openoffice) works best.


For accessing the notes (=church sermon summaries) I made on my iphone. I then copy/paste them into emacs and publish them on this site :-) So I only use a fraction of what evernote can do. Installed via the app store.

VMWare fusion

A faster virtual machine than virtualbox.


VM manager. Very useful. I also did vagrant plugin install vagrant-vmware-fusion as I’ve got a license for that.


Keyboard shortcuts for window movement. Cmd-alt-f for maximizing a window, for instance.


Editor for .po gettext translation files.


I also use homebrew to install quite a number of regular unix tools.

Specific mention here is for emacs, which I used to install via emacs4macosx, which works fine, but I now chose to do it with homebrew, which works just as well:

$ brew install emacs --cocoa
$ ln -s /usr/local/Cellar/emacs/24.4/ /Applications/

Not yet installed on the new mac

I got a new laptop (end 2014). These are the apps I haven’t installed yet. I might try to do without them:


Helper application for playing windows wmv movies.


For me, the best overall app for my email and newsgroup needs. It connects fine with two separate gmail accounts. There might be a better mail client, but not one that’s also practical for reading newsgroups.

I’m trying out apple’s own Mail program now, as thunderbird can get a bit slow to reply with the big gmail accounts that I have. I’ll need something else for newsgroups, though.


Nice for screencasts: highlights the cursor location, shows keystrokes. I don’t use it very much anymore, but for some screencasts it helps a lot. logo

About me

My name is Reinout van Rees and I work a lot with Python (programming language) and Django (website framework). I live in The Netherlands and I'm happily married to Annie van Rees-Kooiman.

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