Tag archive: links

Brought to you by MarsEdit

MarsEditI’ve been a fan of MarsEdit since the second version was released recently, but I was never able to use it for Tagamac for two reasons: 1) terrible tagging support, and 2) no access to the shareware icon images that I use so often in news updates. The first issue was addressed by version 2.1, which implemented a standard tagging interface. The second was a bit more difficult. Daniel Jalkut, the developer, has said that he’s planning on providing some migration mechanism to get images from a weblog into MarsEdit’s media manager, but currently if you need this you’re out of luck.

I don’t give up easily, though, and ever since I relaunched Beckism.com (which as of the relaunch is completely authored in MarsEdit) I’ve been noticing that I’m updating Beckism.com more often than Tagamac because it’s easier. It was time to do something about this, particularly because Tagamac is far more popular, so I hacked away at MarsEdit’s plist and will from here on will be authoring Tagamac using MarsEdit instead of WordPress’s web interface. For those in a similar predicament, I’ve written up a guide on migrating images into MarsEdit, published over at Beckism.com.

Beckism.com completely redesigned

This has nothing to do with tagging. Sorry. I’m in the process of writing a couple awesome articles, if you care, but they aren’t ready for public consumption. Anyway, while I may write about tagging a lot here on Tagamac, I also have another place on the web where I write stuff called Beckism.com. I tend to write about web design, Mac software, fiction, and occasionally me. Basically the stuff in my life that I care about that isn’t tagging.

Check out the new design or read the redesign announcement for yourself! If you’ve visited before, I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised.

Screencast preview of Default Folder X 4

Default Folder XMacWorld’s Dan Frakes has posted an excellent screencast previewing the upcoming Default Folder X 4.0. Version 4′s main changes are a new HUD-style look to the interface, and QuickLook attached to Open dialogs (a feature that, interestingly enough, will have limited support for OS 10.4, as well). Tag-happy individuals, however, will likely be most interested in Default Folder X’s ability to apply Spotlight comments to files when you save them. If you’re rolling your own tagging solution, Default Folder X can be an indispensable tool.

But don’t wait until version 4! If you want access to some of Default Folder X’s sweet capabilities now, you’re in luck. St. Clair Software has an upgrade policy that will allow you a free upgrade to version 4 if you buy version 3.0.6 now. Version 3 is fully Leopard compatible (as long as you aren’t running any 64-bit apps); it just lacks the translucency. For more information, and to download Default Folder X 3.0.6, see the Default Folder X website.

Win yourself a Lost Dog

Lost Dog by Bill CameronThis is completely off-topic, but I like a good read even more than I like a well-implemented file library (I know, it’s pretty crazy). Bill Cameron, a fellow Avenir user, is giving away five copies of his suspense novel, Lost Dog, in the Give a Dog a Home sweepstakes. Lost Dog is a great read; I’m not a big fan of suspense thrillers or crime/mystery novels (I picked it up because I knew Bill from the Avenir forums), but it was a single-sitting read for me and kept me up way past when I should have gone to bed. Definitely a worthwhile way to spend an evening. Or two, if you’re less obsessed than I.

So take a break from tagging those pesky files, head over to Bill’s website, suggest a name for his lost dog, and win yourself a great novel. Or lose and buy it anyway. Whatever works for you. And with that minor endorsement out of the way, I’ll see if I can’t write something pithy about tagging next.

Comparing GTD task managers

Which Getting Things Done application to use has been on my mind lately, thanks in large part to the public release of OmniFocus which was closely followed by the iGTD 2 previews and my own Things screencast. With so many good-looking options either available or soon to be available, I’m sure that more people than I have been wondering which app will be right for them. Since I’ve had a chance to use almost all of them, I figured it would be nice to offer a quick general comparison of the available (and pending) options.

There are some similar aspects to all GTD task managers, but I think one of the primary deciding factors whether or not a particular piece of software will work for you is how much structure you need or desire. With that in mind, here’s the GTD software for Mac OS X, ordered from most structured to least: Midnight Inbox, OmniFocus, iGTD, TaskPaper, iGTD 2 (early development), and Things (approaching public preview). If you’re like me and agonize over task managers, then this is a pretty daunting list (and if you count some of the less polished options, it’s nowhere near complete). However, with an eye to structure, I don’t think it is all that difficult to narrow the list down to a couple of applications that you should try. [read more...]

Tagging files with file libraries

Tags for every situation

  1. Tagging for productivity
  2. File library vs. file system
  3. File system tagging
  4. Tagging files with file libraries

I know it’s hardly standard practice to publish things on major holidays, but I wanted to give my U.S. readers something to do while they’re recovering from eating too much turkey, and I can hardly think of a better distraction than an article that I’ve been meaning to write for months, continuing my series of tagging software recommendations. This time the topic is file libraries, and unlike file system tagging solutions, there’s a lot of good options out there.

To recap, a file library is an application that collects, searches, and browses your files outside of the standard Finder and Spotlight interface. File libraries contain some of the best examples of tagging interfaces currently available on the Mac, and thanks to the limitations Spotlight has with regards to tagging often provide streamlined and useful tagging for a variety of file types. [read more...]

Leopard’s Spotlight: actually useful

Matt Neuburg has posted an excellent article called Spotlight Strikes Back about the primary differences in Spotlight from 10.4 to 10.5, including some tips and tricks on using the new boolean operators and so forth under 10.5. Although I’m not a particular fan of Matt’s NotLight (preferring FileSpot), his observations and advice are right on target.

Definitely a useful article to read if you use Spotlight much (for finding tagged files, for instance), although it doesn’t have anything to do with tagging specifically. (Thanks to Daring Fireball for the link.)

Hawk Wings active once more

Although this has nothing to do with tagging, Hawk Wings, a blog dedicated to Mail.app and all things email, has returned after a long absence with a steady stream of articles and links to handy Leopard-friendly Mail.app plugins. I strongly recommend Hawk Wings; it’s a great resource if you use email a lot (particularly if you’re into Apple’s Mail.app), and besides that it was a big inspiration behind my creation of Tagamac.

Although Hawk Wings is usually focused on Mail.app, it also often provides information about productivity software more generally, so even if you’re not a Mail.app fan, check it out!

Leopard, here we come

Although you are probably already aware, OS X 10.5 Leopard has gone on sale for preorder, and will be arriving Oct. 26th, as the countdown on Apple’s homepage makes abundantly clear.

I haven’t heard word yet what the changes to the metadata are like (the big question: will tagging system files be easier?), but hopefully the metadata will be more tag-friendly and we can get away from the ever-so-imperfect Spotlight comment. I will of course be posting more information as it comes available, and once my copy arrives I’ll try to suss out the metadata changes (if any) as soon as I can.

My own 35 essential Mac (freelancing) apps

A little while ago, Freelance Switch posted a list of 35 essential Mac apps. I wasn’t particularly impressed with the list. Aside from its complete lack of any meaningful organization (except its implied ranking from “most essential” to “less essential”), it included software that hasn’t been released yet while excluding a lot of really great software that’s been out for a while. Sure, Things looks pretty cool, but since no one can use it, how can it be “essential”?

I’ve finally finished writing up my own list of 35 essential Mac apps, posted over on Beckism.com. There’s some overlap with Freelance Switch, and some of the really good stuff from Freelance Switch didn’t make it on because I personally don’t find it particularly essential, so you’ll probably want to check out both lists. Of course, it doesn’t have much to do with tagging (I haven’t needed tagging software for my freelance work, so there isn’t much tagging software on the list), but I figured you’d be interested nonetheless. Enjoy!