Mac Gems: Delineato Pro is a clean, inexpensive diagram and mind-mapping app

Josh Centers , Macworld

Josh Centers is the Managing Editor of TidBITS, as well as a contributor to Boing Boing and The Magazine. He sometimes blogs at his eponymous Web site.


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There’s an endless array of minimalist, “distraction free” text editors to capture notes and ideas, but what about more visual, free-form thoughts? Fapptory’s $7 Delineato Pro (Mac App Store link) is a new diagramming and mind-mapping Mac app with a clean design and lack of visual clutter.

Each Delineato Pro document starts fresh with a gray canvas that is limitless in size. There are five other themes to choose from, but they’re mostly similar. To add to the canvas, either double or right-click to bring up a palette of shapes and lines, then drag the desired object onto the canvas. A grid can be enabled to help you align objects.

Delineato Pro is a minimalistic outliner for the Mac.
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Mac Gems: GIF Brewery makes it easy to create animated GIFs

Dan Frakes Senior Editor, Macworld Follow me on Google+

Dan writes about OS X, iOS, troubleshooting, utilities, and cool apps; and he covers hardware, mobile and AV gear, input devices, and accessories. He's been writing about tech since 1994, and he's also published software, worked in IT, and been a policy analyst.
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Animated GIFs—we’ve all seen plenty of them. They’ve become the de facto standard for Internet memes and funny animations, but they’re also useful as alternatives to short video files—any modern browser (or in-app Web view) displays animated GIFs, so you don’t need to worry about which video formats a particular browser supports. In fact, some software vendors have taken to using animated GIFs instead of videos for short demos.

Everyone’s seen this.

But how do you make good animated GIFs? The easiest method I’ve found is the $5 GIF Brewery (Mac App Store link). This nifty utility is simple to use, yet it offers a slew of useful features for creating your own animated images.

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Mac Gems: The Unarchiver is a free, robust file-extraction utility

Jonathan Seff Executive Editor, Macworld Follow me on Google+

Jonathan has been covering the tech industry since 1998. He loves watching TV shows on his iPhone while exercising, and has already indoctrinated his young twins in the ways of the Apple TV.
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Back in the days of 56-kbps modems and 1.44MB floppies, compressing files was a necessity. These days, bandwidth and storage are less of a concern, but there are still reasons to package files into neat little bundles. A zip archive, for example, lets you attach a single “file” to an email message instead of tacking on multiple items. The zip file is smaller than the sum of those separate files—and it’s an industry standard that works across platforms.

OS X has long been able to uncompress zip files and some other archive types, using its built-in Archive Utility, but I’ve switched to The Unarchiver (Mac App Store link) because it supports more formats and offers easier customization options—and it’s just as free as Archive Utility.

When you launch The Unarchiver, its preferences window automatically opens to the Archive Formats tab. There you can see the software’s extensive format support, comprising 58 different file formats. Some, such as rar, are widely used, but you’ve probably never heard of some of the others—and are just as unlikely to encounter them.

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Mac Gems: Lost Photos recovers forgotten images received via email

Jackie Dove Senior Editor, Macworld

Jackie is always looking for creative mischief to get into. So it's fitting that she oversees photography, video, publishing, music, and Web design.
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We all receive photos—scads of photos—via email, many of which we ignore because they’re not worth the bandwidth. But what if you want to show your kid that cute picture of a cat dressed up as a scuba diver—the one you got some past Halloween from who knows whom? As time passes, it’s harder to sort out, much less find and archive, such images. That’s where the appropriately titled Lost Photos (Mac App Store link) comes in.

A lightweight utility from Space Inch, Lost Photos (free; $3 to download unlimited photos) has a fresh, clean interface. The app connects to your IMAP email accounts using a secure connection and extracts all the photos from each account quickly and efficiently. Just type your email address and password into the Lost Photos window, and the app sifts through every message on the server, scraping up any photos it finds and placing them into a folder, named for that email account, on your drive for later viewing. (The app does not remove images from the mail server; it just finds and downloads them.)

Lost Photos lets you choose the parameters of your email search.
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Mac Gems: Spotdox makes all your files accessible via Dropbox

Dan Frakes Senior Editor, Macworld Follow me on Google+

Dan writes about OS X, iOS, troubleshooting, utilities, and cool apps; and he covers hardware, mobile and AV gear, input devices, and accessories. He's been writing about tech since 1994, and he's also published software, worked in IT, and been a policy analyst.
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I’m a huge fan of Dropbox, the online service and app that together let you keep files synchronized between multiple computers, the Dropbox website, and even your iOS devices thanks to the Dropbox iOS app (and many third-party iOS apps that use Dropbox for storing files). Like many of my fellow Macworld editors, I keep all my in-progress work in my Dropbox folder so I can access that work from any device, anywhere, at any time.

But the one significant complaint I hear about Dropbox is that it syncs only the files and folders inside that special Dropbox folder. If you forget to put a particular document or folder inside the Dropbox folder, that data won’t be available on your other devices. I’ve admittedly fallen victim to this limitation myself, wanting to work on a file while away from my office, only to discover that I had apparently left that file on my desktop or in my Documents folder.

Which is why I’ve found Spotdox so useful. Also a combination of a Web service and a Mac app, Spotdox lets you remotely browse the files on your Mac and copy any of them—again, from afar—to your Dropbox folder to make them accessible.

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Mac Gems: Stay keeps your windows exactly where you want them

Dan Moren Senior Editor, Macworld Follow me on Google+

Dan has been writing about all things Apple since 2006, when he first started contributing to the MacUser blog. Since then he's covered most of the company's major product releases and reviewed every major revision of iOS. In his "copious" free time, he's usually grinding away on a novel or two.
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Those who’ve hooked up their MacBook to an external display are probably all too familiar with the dreaded dance of windows (not to be confused with George R.R. Martin’s bestselling A Dance with Dragons): You’ve got all your windows positioned exactly as you like them, then you disconnect your MacBook and blergh—windows every which way.

Sound familiar? Cordless Dog’s $15 Stay has the fix for what ails you. This menu-bar utility lets you save sets of window locations and sizes. So if you like your Twitter client pinned, just so, to the bottom-left corner of your screen, you can tell Stay to remember that window position—and here’s the key—both when you’re running your MacBook on its own and when it’s connected to your external display. If you want your IM client’s contact list to hug the right edge of the screen on your MacBook’s display but the left edge of your external display when it’s connected, Stay can do that too.

Stay's systemwide menu lets you access saved window sets and restore their positions at any time.
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Mac Gems: Pupil is a quick-change artist for the Retina MacBook Pro

Roman Loyola Senior Editor, Macworld

Roman has covered technology since the early 1990s. His career started at MacUser, and he's worked for MacAddict, Mac|Life, TechTV, PC/Computing, and Windows NT Systems.
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As a user of a 15-inch Retina MacBook Pro, I’ve developed a habit of switching the screen resolution based on the task at hand—and how much effort my eyes feel like expending. The Displays pane in OS X’s System Preferences utility doesn’t offer many screen resolution choices—just five on the 15-inch Retina MacBook Pro, four on the 13-inch model, to be exact—and it doesn’t offer an easy way to access those resolutions on the fly. So I use a third-party utility.

Fortunately, a number of resolution-switching utilities have debuted since Apple released its Retina-equipped laptops. The latest, Louder Than Ten's $5 Pupil gives you a systemwide menu; click it, and a list of available screen resolutions appears. Choose the resolution you want, and the screen changes. Simple.

Once you customize your settings, changing resolutions is as easy as choosing one from Pupil's systemwide menu.
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