The Essential Mac #6: Web Applications

My Essential Mac series profiles those applications that I consider essential- apps so important to my workflow that I won’t upgrade my OS without them.

This final installment of the series covers web applications, and is unique because none of the apps listed below meet the definition listed above. Although I use these apps all the time, I’m not reliant on any of them.

Web Browser

My browser of choice, surprising to many, is Safari, Apple’s default. It’s fast, and I like the way it synchronizes bookmarks and tabs between the Mac, iPad, and iPhone. I feel a much greater confidence that Apple isn’t collecting personal information about me with every click- and I certainly do not feel that about Google Chrome. That said, Chrome is installed on my Mac, and I use it from time to time. It’s my browser of choice on Windows, so I’m certainly familiar with it. If I had to, I could use Chrome or even Firefox as my default. (Of course, since Safari comes from Apple, it’s extremely unlikely that it wouldn’t work after an operating system upgrade).

RSS Reader

I’ve been told that RSS is ‘dead’ and that nobody uses RSS any more. That may be true for some people, but I subscribe to close to 200 blogs and use an RSS Reader multiple times a day. My RSS Reader of choice used to be NetNewsWire, but I’ve recently switched to Reeder. However, Google is turning off their Google Reader service which both of those products rely on in July. Although Reeder promises a solution, their customer service is a little sketchy, so I looked around for alternatives, and for now have settled on Feedly. Feedly has native apps for the iPhone and iPad, but on the Mac it’s just a website.

Twitter Client

Most of my readers know that I am very active on Twitter. Tweetbot is my Mac Twitter client of choice. Still, about 95% of my twitter usage, both reading and writing, takes place on my iOS devices, so if Tweetbot wasn’t available on the Mac, I’d survive. While I’m not a big fan of the official Twitter app, the built-in OS X integration is nice for posting.

That concludes my Mac Essentials series. I hope you found it useful or at least enjoyable. Other posts in the series can be found here:

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