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22 must-have apps for first-time Mac users

So you have a new Mac in your hands. So what? The first logical way is to populate it with essential applications. But what applications are essential? As a person using Mac from Tangerine's iBook, I think I know one or two things about Mac apps. Here's the list of Mac apps that Mac users should have for the first time.

Launcher: Alfred (free)

One of the most useful applications that I have installed on my Mac is a launcher, and Alfred is perfect for first time Mac users. Mac comes with its launcher-like feature called Spotlight, but Alfred is like Spotlight on steroids.

Alfred will not only help you launch anything with just a few keystrokes, but he can also define words, do math calculations, search for local and internet folders, search for contacts, play iTunes, become a clipboard manager and more. You can also choose one of the themes to change its appearance. By updating your Alfred with a powerpack, you can create custom themes to make Alfred look the way you want, and workflows to reduce repetitive work.

There are alternative launchers that you can try as Quicksilver (free) and Launchbar (24.00).

File and folder management

'Finder' is a file and folder management function that is built into Mac OS X and does a good job. But for more advanced file and folder management, you need help from third-party applications. For the Finder alternative, you can use Path finder (US $ 39.95). In addition to supporting the dual pane window for easy file copying and movement, Path Finder also gives you full keyboard navigation, the ability to batch rename files, compare and sync folders, and more.

In addition to the Finder alternative, you can also automate file management using Hazel . Set the conditions in a folder, and when the conditions are met, make Hazel perform a series of actions. For example, every time you finish downloading a movie file, the file will move to the Movies folder automatically. We have talked about Hazel before, so check out that article if you want to know more about him.

One more tool that you can add to your arsenal is Unarchiver (free). It is an application that can help you extract virtually any file format.

Note taking and timing

What is a computer without a text editor? And today's version of the text editor adds the sync twist to the genre. There are quite a few apps for note taking and syncing in the Mac world.

If you just want a robust text editor, try Text Wrangler (free). But if you want a cross-platform note container, the obvious choice is the gigantic Evernote (free with upgrade options). Or if you want the lighter options, there is Simplenote (free) and the beautiful letter space (US $ 9.99).

Since we are talking about writing tools, why not try Desk PM (US $ 19.99)? This (Apple's best app of the year for 2014 and 2015) is a minimalist writing app that takes a different approach from the old craft. Don't let the blank canvas fool you, as the editing options will be displayed above the selected text. This app is also a robust blogging tool that supports WordPress, Medium, Blogger, Tumblr, Evernote and even Facebook.

Playing and converting videos

Many Mac users consume movies on their machines. Among the many alternative video players, there are two that stand out: VLC Y MPlayerX (both free). These two players can play virtually any media file you throw at them, support subtitles, and many other media playback features. Due to the limitation in the Mac app store, (the latest version of) apps are not available there.

Occasionally, you will need to convert media files from one format to another. The most famous media converter is Handbrake (free). This powerful application has very detailed settings that users can choose from, but unfortunately, the features make it difficult for normal users to use. If you want something as simple as dragging and dropping the conversion, maybe you can try Swap 2 (US $ 9.99).

Editing and manipulating images.

You don't have to be a professional graphic designer to need an image editor. Even everyday computer users need to edit and manipulate images from time to time. You can do anything with Photoshop, but it is too big and expensive for everyday users. The lightest (and almost as powerful) alternative is Pixelmator (US $ 29.99).

If what you need is a bit of screenshots here and there, and quick image annotation, you can try the Skitch Evernote (free) that will quickly fit your screen with a keyword shortcut and save the result to your Evernote account. Here are some Skitch alternatives too, if you don't like it.

And to automatically optimize the image size, you can use ImageOptim (free). Just drag and drop your images into the app window and it will do its magic.

Alternative browsers

Mac OS X Safari is a very capable browser. It is fast, light and does everything a browser does. But having other alternative browsers ready won't hurt either. Maybe you want the same experience wherever you go, or maybe you just want to open a similar website with different identities.

The best browser alternatives are Chrome Y Firefox (both free) with others practically non-existent. In addition to being available for other platforms, these alternative browsers also sync your account across all devices and can be expanded using browser extensions.

Windows management

One of the first things that those who come from the Windows world notice the first time they use Mac is that Mac treats application windows differently than Windows does. In the Mac environment, windows float around the screen. They do full screen, but do not "fit".

If you want to recreate that familiar snapshot feeling on Mac, you can use the help of Spectacle (free). The application will allow you to move and resize windows quickly and easily by combining keyboard shortcuts. For example, you can use Command + Option + F for the window to fill the screen, or Command + Option + Right Arrow to place the window on the right half of the screen.

But if you think Spectacle is not advanced enough for your thirst for window management, you can try Divvy (US $ 13.99).

And more

With literally thousands of applications, there must be many applications that are not included in the list. So if you think there are other apps that should be installed by Mac users for the first time, please mention them in the comments section below.