When my iBook died a few days ago, I got a loner laptop from work to use until I have enough money to buy one for myself again. Getting a loner laptop that you know you are only going to use for a few months is like getting a sublet. When I moved into my sublet apartment on January 1, I knew I was only going to be staying there until the end of March. Knowing that I would have to move all my stuff twice, I sold everything I possibly could on Craiglist and donated or threw out anything else I didn’t absolutely need. My roommate did the same, and we were able to move all of our essentials (minus two or three small boxes we stored at a friend’s place) in a Hyundai Elentra.
I’m setting up the new laptop with the minimum number of installs I need to use this laptop for programming (ruby, php, mysql), using the internet, and doing my day to day stuff like blogging and watching/listening-to/recording video and audio. Here are my essentials:
Essential OS X apps
- iLife - comes bundled with OS X
- textmate for writing code, posts, or just about anything
- quicksilver for launching things quickly
- firefox: do the essential firefox setup
- JungleDisk for backups on Amazon S3
- stuffit -- get it from version tracker so you don't have to enter your email
- svn for file synchronization
- the backpack widget for todos and reminders on backpack
- What about ftp? I use svn, scp, and torrents for all my file transfers now. If I used ftp, it would be either transmit or cyberduck.
- tomato torrent, a simple bit torrent app
- flip4mac wmv player
Some personal tweaks I like to setup:
- Enable full keyboard access: System Preferences > Keyboard and Mouse > Keyboard Shortcuts > Full Keyboard Access > All Controls
- open terminal: set your color preference and under emulation, set _Option click to position cursor_
- Right click on the desktop, Show view options. Icon size: 28x28, Text size: 10pt, Label position: right, Show item info, Show icon preview, Keep arranged by: name. This will keep your desktop nice and clean.
- Set mouse sensitivity in System Preferences > Keyboard and Mouse > Trackpad (or mouse)
- edit bash profile ( ~/.bash_profile ):
alias ls='ls -G' alias e='mate' export PATH="/usr/local/bin:/usr/local/sbin:/usr/local/mysql/bin:$PATH"
- from home directory in terminal:
$ touch todo.txt $ ln -s ~/todo.txt ~/Desktop/todoThis is going to be used for plaintext todos stored on the local machine as described in this lifehacker article. I use plaintext todos when I'm offline or don't feel like posting to my BackPack. The second line I do is if you also want a desktop shortcut. (you will have to relaunch Finder to see the shortcut appear.)
Essentials for Web Development
Very Useful (but not essential) Apps
- the missing sync, to sync my blackjack with my mac
- Microsoft Office or Open Office. I prefer MS Office.
- Adobe Photoshop or the GIMP and Adobe Illustrator
What are your essential apps / tweaks?