software for OS X

note
Some of this software may be incompatible with versions of OS X later than 10.4 (Tiger). In many ways, OS X has not improved since then, and I no longer use it anyway (but I do update this list occasionally).

$ = requires key for unimpeded operation

repositories

MacUpdate
reviews and links to popular OS X software updates
HyperJeff
database of OS X software (comprehensive and unusual)
MacPorts | Fink

package management systems for open-source unix software ported to OS X; these may seem easier than compiling from source but one remains dependent upon the package maintainers, and I’ve come to generally use them as a last resort

For recommended command line programs, see Unix software…

utilities

LaunchBar
$ : very useful, quick, configurable keyboard access to find/open/manipulate files/programs; also has multiple clipboard/pasteboard support (free alternative: Quicksilver)
OnMyCommandCM
make your own system-wide contextual menu commands
TextExtras
installs a menu of useful text-handling commands for Cocoa applications
Butler
provides many useful features but I use it simply for it’s excellent multiple clipboard/pasteboard support
PhotoToolCM & QuickImageCM
excellent contextual menu plugins for image manipulation
DEVON technologies
useful service modules (CalcService, WordService), and EasyFind
MenuMeters
CPU/memory/disk/network info in menubar
GrandPerspective
tree map of disk usage
MagiCal
menubar clock with a drop-down tear off calendar
DiskWarrior
$ : repairs HFS+ volumes (where others fail or make matters worse)

if you use a portable

DoubleCommand
remap keyboard (e.g. remap the “enter” key to “option”)
SideTrack
$ : configure trackpad for scrolling and button areas
Screen Spanning Doctor
firmware patch allows many iBook/iMac/eMac models to drive external displays separately (i.e. without mirroring, like PowerBooks do)

network

Little Snitch
$ : internal firewall (for detection/prevention of network connections from the inside out)
CyberDuck
FTP and SFTP client
NetNewsWire
$ : RSS/RDF client (free “Lite” version also available)
browser plugins
fast and clean solution for PDF and MS Word files
Adium
instant-messaging client supporting most protocols (AIM, ICQ, MSN, &c.)
Meteorologist
current weather information and forecasts in dock or menu bar (supports cities around the world)

programming

HexEdit
hexadecimal file editor

media (audio/video/&c.)

VLC | MPlayer OS X Extended
multimedia players for various audio and video formats including most Windows Media files
Perian
QuickTime component that adds native support for many popular video formats

unfiled

UnicodeChecker
explore and convert Unicode
cocoAspell
augment Apple’s spelling service (use dictionaries for many unsupported languages, including improved English dictionaries)