Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Cool Legacy Apps for OS X

Some apps out there never seem to die. Their developers subsist on a near-lethal cocktail of cigarettes and Red Bull to keep burning the midnight oil so they can deliver new version after new, year after year. How long has Audacity been around? Or GraphicConverter?

However, some developers want off that train and they drop out. Understandable, but that doesn't mean their software has to die with their masochism, I mean, ambition. With that in mind, I thought I'd give a run-down of several software titles whose development has ceased but are still useful and very much not available in the App Store. Let's do this list style:

Bean - An extended version of TextEdit with added features such as live word count, full screen editing, inline graphics, and more. A great, fast alternative to Microsoft Word.

CocoViewX - An iPhoto replacement without the bloat and bizarre file management, CocoViewX offers photo browsing, meta data editing, camera import, and html export.

Cog - This was a music player that I tried out a few years ago in my never-ending quest to replace iTunes. I didn't stick with it because it lacked an equalizer, but now that I have a global equalizer it's no longer an issue and I'm iTunes-free. Cog also properly supports ogg and flac files and handles large libraries with ease.

Desktop Manager - Spaces alternative for Tiger. It just works.

FormulatePro - Want to edit pdf files but don't want Adobe products clogging up your computer? FormulatePro is a good lightweight tool for this. You can insert text, check marks, and also make use of simple drawing tools.

HimmelBar (link updated) - This is an application launcher that sits in your menubar. It looks for applications in common folders like Applications (duh!), Utilities, and Developer and puts them all in one menu for easy access.

Perian - Not an application, but a plugin for Quicktime Player, it lets you play many many many different video formats.

Play - Very similar to Cog, and people on their user forums observed that Play just sounded better than the competition.

Seashore - Photo editor inspired by GIMP but much more lightweight (and more modest in features). Supports layers and you can also save in GIMP's native xcf format, among others.

I'm sure there are many more for the graveyard, but just because the projects are dead doesn't mean we can't still put them to good use. And we can remember fondly when there was a vibrant freeware/shareware community for OS X before it was destroyed by the App Store. Cheers!


  1. I will mention that the Chris' Puzzle jigsaw Classic program is one of the reasons I am not *allowed* to upgrade past Tiger.

  2. Good post. I would add the old ClickToFlash plugin to that list. It's very useful for Webkit based browsers, and it works in tiger too.

    I revived the old scripts thread on MacRumors. I posted new MPlayer scripts for Linux and OS X.

  3. There are more great Mac PPC apps: TenFourFox web browser, IDrive online backup, Komodo Edit, TeamViewer remote assistant, VLC media player, TrueCrypt encryptor, uTorrent bittorrent client, etc.

  4. There are more great mac,pac apps. ten for fox web browser ,ID rive online backup,komodo edit,team viewer remote assistant,vlc media player,true crypt encryptor,u torrent bittorrent client,etc.