: beginners must have


Peter Sensei
Aug 28th, 2005, 02:12 PM
In the last while I have noticed a lot of mac switchers and people (myself included) just switching to OS X. My Idea is why not put together a "must have list". We may argue over exactly which program ie macjanitor or Onyx but I think we can all agree that you should have and use something of the sort. Even the source of the programs like version tracker would be useful to beginners.
I would be happy to hear from you all
Thanks Peter Sensei

highapostle
Aug 28th, 2005, 02:27 PM
A sticky at the top of the Help thread would do nicely for this idea :)

andrewenterprise
Aug 28th, 2005, 09:50 PM
I think a sticky on this thread would be a grand idea. Mods.....?

As for a must have, I personally just think OS X is all you really need. Its all I have in a maintenence respect. ;)

lpkmckenna
Aug 28th, 2005, 10:00 PM
Not another "must have" list!

highapostle
Aug 28th, 2005, 10:04 PM
But if we could only create the "must have" list to end all "must have lists" ... :p

trump
Aug 28th, 2005, 10:28 PM
I think more importantly than "must-haves" is Tips and Tricks. When I first started using OS X there were plenty of things I couldn't figure out, like shortcuts (I was trying to do ctrl+v instead of cmd +v) or what the hell the little thingy was near ctrl (option) or what the thing near the Apple was (command). Then there was me not noticing you can do a "right click" by pressing ctrl+left mouse, or that clicking the red circle doesn't actually close a program. Don't get me started on the shock from not having a Start Menu style Application finder and not being able to locate my apps beyond the dock....I was a hardcore Mac Newb

SoyMac
Aug 28th, 2005, 11:58 PM
I think every new Mac owner Must Have the latest David Pogue Apple OS manual.
I believe I've given David Pogue books to at least two new-Mac-owning friends.

Denjira
Aug 29th, 2005, 12:11 AM
iLife'05* http://www.apple.ca
Onyx http://www.boostware.com/os/mac/onyx.html
Qemu http://www.kberg.ch/q/ + Free OS preinstalled http://free.oszoo.org/
Azureus http://azureus.sourceforge.net/
Adium http://www.adiumx.com/
Quicktime Pro* http://www.apple.com/quicktime/download/
ehMac Widget https://www.ehmac.ca/showthread.php?t=1477
Adobe Photoshop* http://www.adobe.com/products/photoshop/main.html

* = To buy

i stole this name
Aug 29th, 2005, 05:32 AM
quicksilver (great launcher) - http://quicksilver.blacktree.com
camino (best browser IMO) - http://www.getcamino.com
Delicious (Not really software but a great free service) - http://del.icio.us
Poisoned (Possibly best Free Mac P2P) - http://gottsilla.net/poisoned.php
Colloquy (Best-looking IRC client) - http://colloquy.info/
Xlink Kai (Console networking) - http://www.teamxlink.co.uk/index.php

Ok, and what has been listed before - c'est my essentials :P

Vexel
Aug 29th, 2005, 09:12 AM
Chicken of the VNC - http://sourceforge.net/projects/cotvnc/
Neo Office/J (Open office for OS X binary) - http://www.neooffice.org/
The Gimp (Photoshop Clone) - http://plasticbugs.com/index.php?p=241

Read Mac sites! This is the way we learn folks. Learn what's new. Get into the dirt and try stuff. You've got nothing to lose.. but a ton to gain. There is so much out there to read and tinker with.. I'm still learning. I've been using OS X since it's inception.

SoyMac
Aug 29th, 2005, 03:53 PM
Hey, Mac Sisters and Brothers - When posting a recommended program and its link, I was wondering if we could be more diligent about putting a description, even a brief one, about what lies at the other end of the link, to help viewers decide before clicking whether or not they are interested.
'Zat make sense?

Don't get me wrong, I really appreciate everyone sharing their favourite links, and if you don't have time, I'd rather you keep posting the links, even without the description.

Thanks, Friends!
:)

iPetie
Aug 29th, 2005, 04:14 PM
This is what I would call the definative list found on another forum. There are no hyperlinks but everything can be found at MacUpdate or VersionTracker.

View video files:

1) Mplayer-alternative video viewer plays all sort of video files including .avi, .mpg, and .wmv
2) VLC- -alternative video viewer plays all sort of video files including .avi, .mpg, and .wmv
3) Quicktime- Apple invented application which plays .mpg, and .mov files
4) Windows Media Player -Microsoft made player to play .wmv, .asx, and all WMP 9 files
5) RealPlayer- Real made player used to play .rm, .ram files, and more


Do some type of file transfers:

1) Interarchy- application which supports FTP, SFTP. HTTP
2) RBrowser- application which supports FTP, SFTP, SSH, FTP-SSl/TLS
3) Transmit- a powerful, flexible, fast FTP client
4) Fetch - easy-to-use full featured FTP application
5) Cyberduck- SFTP, FTP application
6) Fugu- supports SFTP, SCP, and SSH

Make a word processing document or spreadsheet:

1) Microsoft Office- the standard in word processing
2) Appleworks- Apple made all-in-one application which includes simple database, image editing, word processing application
3) Textedit- basic word processor which supports opening simple Microsoft Word files (bundled with Mac OS X)
4) iWork - Wordprocessing and Presentation software package
5) Mellel- advanced multilingual word processor

Create a Presentation

1) Microsoft PowerPoint - standard presentation application
2) Keynote - Presentations with style

Do some basic photo editing/organizing

1) GraphicConverter- great basic image editor and handles many formats
2) iPhoto- basic picture touch up plus catalogs your images
3) iView Media Pro 2- organizes various files such as photos, illustrations, mp3s, and fonts all in one place

Chat with someone online or video chat:

1) Adium- third-party AIM client which also supports MSN, Yahoo, and more
2) iChat- Apple made AIM client which supports video conferencing
3) AOL Instant Messenger- AOL made chat application
4) MSN Messenger- Microsoft made chat application
5) Fire- third-party AIM client which also supports MSN, Yahoo, and more
6) Proteus- third-party AIM client which also supports MSN, Yahoo, and more

Browse the web in style:

1) Safari- Apple made speedy web brower with tabs
2) OmniWeb- fast native browser with side tabs
3) Netscape 7- web browser with theme support
4) Mozilla- open source web browser with integrated mail application and composer
5) Camino- fast open source web brwser with tabs
7) Mozilla Firefox- open source web browser

Fix/repair my hard drive or data failure:

1) Diskwarrior- highly acclaimed disk repair utility
2) TechTool Pro 4- disk diagnostic and repairer

Backup files/restore files/clone a drive:

1) Retrospect- backup your data
2) Data Backup- powerful backup software
3) Data Rescue- rescues data from a drive, but does not fix drives
4) Carbon Copy Cloner- easily clone one drive to another
5) SuperDuper- another clone drive utility
6) FoldersSynchronizer X- Synchronize folders between various folders
7) Pacifist- Custom install any applications which you accidentially deleted from any .pkg file

Want to theme your Mac OS experience:

1) CandyBar- change the look of all of your icons easily
2) ShapeShifter- switch themes safely

Need to zip/unstuff/compress some files:

1) Mac OS X Finder- double click to uncompress .zip files and right click to compress .zip files
2) UnRar X- unrar your files
3) Stuffit- unstuff .sit, .sitx files, and compress them plus more (basic version included in Mac OS X Utilities folder)


Feel geeky and want to try some open-source software:

1) NeoOffice/J-office suite
2) Gimp.app- graphic manipulation
3) Fink- package manager
4) TeXShop- technical typesetting
5) Desktop Manager- virtual desktops
6) R- statistics package
7) ImageJ- image processing/analysis


Desktop Publishing:
Adobe Photoshop - the premier image-editing app on the Mac (or probably any other platform)
Adobe Illustrator - the original vector-based illustration tool
Macromedia FreeHand - another great vector-based illustration tool
QuarkXpress - the more-or-less standard for page layout, from the company that hates you
Adobe InDesign - an excellent page layout tool, but not as ubiquitous. From the company that, deep within its soul, wishes you were on Windows (but will never admit it).

Web Publishing:
Macromedia DreamWeaver - WYSIWYG web authoring environment
Adobe GoLive - DreamWeaver's main competitor
CSSEdit - an excellent standalone shareware CSS editor
Tag - probably not commonly used--since it's so new--but promising shareware HTML editor

Pro-Level Font Management:
FontAgent Pro
MasterJuggler
Suitcase and/or FontReserve

Video Editing:
Final Cut Pro - taking Hollywood by storm, they say. Steep learning curve if you're new to this kind of thing.
Final Cut Express - for mere mortals, at least in terms of price, but still a bitch to learn. Fortunately there are books for this.

Sound Editing:
Logic Pro
Logic Express


Miscellaneous
1) OmniDictionary - look words in a breeze
2) OminGraffle- organize your ideas...
3) Pithhelmet More control over blocking ads.

Manage files differently:

1) LaunchBar - instant access utility which saves one from searching for apps and files
2) Quicksilver - same as above
3) Butler - same as above
4) Path Finder - not happy with the Finder? Try using this as an alternative/complement.
5) Default Folder - gives open/save dialogs a functionality boost.
6) FruitMenu - more features and flexibility in your contextual and apple menus.

So where do I download these Freeware, Shareware, and/or Updates:

1) MacUpdate
2) Versiontracker
3) Apple Mac OS X downloads

highapostle
Aug 29th, 2005, 04:25 PM
Whoa ... all in favour of taking iPetie's post, sticking it in a new thread and making it a sticky?

CN
Aug 29th, 2005, 04:53 PM
iPetie, you are a god :D

iPetie
Aug 29th, 2005, 04:58 PM
iPetie, you are a god :DWell, I like to think so, but really all I did was cut and paste someone else's effort.

I think it is a good basis for a sticky, open to edit by a few. It should be a consistent work in progress.

guytoronto
Aug 29th, 2005, 05:26 PM
Woah! I just flipped through all the suggestions, and can tell that a lot of people here should never make recommendations to beginners. A lot of these programs I have NEVER used in my countless years of Mac-ing.


Onyx http://www.boostware.com/os/mac/onyx.html
Qemu http://www.kberg.ch/q/ + Free OS preinstalled http://free.oszoo.org/
Azureus http://azureus.sourceforge.net/
Adium http://www.adiumx.com/
Quicktime Pro* http://www.apple.com/quicktime/download/
ehMac Widget https://www.ehmac.ca/showthread.php?t=1477
Adobe Photoshop* http://www.adobe.com/products/photoshop/main.html

No, no, and no to all of these. Not at all necessary for a beginner. Photoshop Elements would be a wiser decision.

quicksilver (great launcher) - http://quicksilver.blacktree.com
camino (best browser IMO) - http://www.getcamino.com
Delicious (Not really software but a great free service) - http://del.icio.us
Colloquy (Best-looking IRC client) - http://colloquy.info/
Xlink Kai (Console networking) - http://www.teamxlink.co.uk/index.php


Again, don't use any of these, and I've used almost every Mac program out there. These are beginners people! They don't need IRC clients and something for Console Networking.

[QUOTE=Vexel]Chicken of the VNC - http://sourceforge.net/projects/cotvnc/
Neo Office/J (Open office for OS X binary) - http://www.neooffice.org/
The Gimp (Photoshop Clone) - http://plasticbugs.com/index.php?p=241

I know long time Mac users that have NO CLUE what VNC is, let alone what it's used for. Neo Office and The Gimp would turn any Mac newbie into a Mac hater. These are not programs for beginners.

iPetie is on the right track there. With a few tweaks and some links, that would be an ideal list for newbies to work with.

mr.steevo
Aug 29th, 2005, 05:26 PM
Hi,

I think I posted this link somewhere else on this fourm.

Online QuickTime OS X tutorial for absolute beginners. http://poets.sfsu.edu/osx/OSX3/index.html

s.

Vexel
Aug 29th, 2005, 06:13 PM
[QUOTE=Vexel]Chicken of the VNC - http://sourceforge.net/projects/cotvnc/
Neo Office/J (Open office for OS X binary) - http://www.neooffice.org/
The Gimp (Photoshop Clone) - http://plasticbugs.com/index.php?p=241

I know long time Mac users that have NO CLUE what VNC is, let alone what it's used for. Neo Office and The Gimp would turn any Mac newbie into a Mac hater. These are not programs for beginners.

iPetie is on the right track there. With a few tweaks and some links, that would be an ideal list for newbies to work with.

FWIW.. we're talking about switchers. Not long time Mac users.. and there are plenty of PC users who are quite aware of VNC. For those that don't. It's used for remote controlling other "computers" ie: your old PC.. over a LAN or the Internet. Just in case your Monitor is dedicated to your new Mac Mini but you'd still like to use your Windows box. ;)

Open Office is perfect for people who need an office program. It's one of the best ones out there.. despite being Open Source. Perfect for Beginners who are used to Microsoft Office on the PC.

Most new users also know what photoshop is.. or I would hope they do. The Gimp is another really good solution for saving money.. with a LOT of the editing power that Photoshop has. The link I provided is for GimpSHOP, which is a really easy install for OS X. Showing new users the potential of Unix.. is a good thing my friend.

iPetie.. great post :)

TrevX
Aug 29th, 2005, 07:17 PM
Woah! I just flipped through all the suggestions, and can tell that a lot of people here should never make recommendations to beginners. A lot of these programs I have NEVER used in my countless years of Mac-ing.

So just because you have never used them makes them completely invalid? I believe we're talking about beginning Mac users, not necessarily beginning COMPUTER users. Most people switching TO the Mac could make great use of most of these programs. No two users are the same, and we shouldn't assume they're idiots and wont have any clue how to use any of these programs. I happen to find most of these programs very useful, and they make up a pretty decent list of apps that will help you do most things you want to be able to do on a computer. Its by no means complete, but its a good start.

Trev

lpkmckenna
Aug 29th, 2005, 07:27 PM
Mplayer or VLC, not both
Windows Media Player - yeah, or use Flip4Mac.
RealPlayer - crap. Don't bother, you won't miss it.

Make a word processing document or spreadsheet:
Appleworks - dead program, save your money
TextEdit - stick with this if possible.
NeoOffice/J - if TextEdit is too limiting, use this.
MS Office - last resort, use this. Worth every penny.

Do some basic photo editing/organizing
GraphicConverter - if it came with your Mac, ok, otherwise save your money
iPhoto- if you have a digital camera, this is a must
iView Media Pro 2 - not for a beginner
CoreImage FunHouse - you gotta try this!
Really, if you are a newb and new to photo-editing, start with Photoshop Elements.

Chat with someone online or video chat:
iChat - good enough
AOL Instant Messenger - uh, no, definitely not
MSN Messenger- Microsoft made chat application
Fire/Adium/Proteus - a crapshoot, really

Browse the web in style:
Safari - Apple made speedy web brower with tabs
Firefox - well, it doesn't suck and it's free. A must-have backup.
OmniWeb - save your money
Netscape 7- no no no
Camino or Mozilla - why?

Fix/repair my hard drive or data failure:
Diskwarrior - save your money, buy a backup drive instead
TechTool Pro 4 - save your money, buy a backup drive instead

Want to theme your Mac OS experience:
1) CandyBar - what ever floats your boat
2) ShapeShifter - if you need that kind of thing
Or you can try Iridium. Very cool: http://www.macupdate.com/info.php/id/19074

Need to zip/unstuff/compress some files:
1) Finder- I hope the newbs already have this.
2) UnRar X - what is this? I've never needed it.
3) Stuffit - basic version no longer comes with Tiger

Desktop Publishing:
Photoshop / Illustrator / InDesign / FreeHand / QuarkXpress - if you don't know if you need this, you don't.

Video Editing:
Final Cut Pro / Final Cut Express - if you don't know if you need this, you don't.

Sound Editing:
Logic Pro / Logic Express - if you don't know if you need this, you don't.

Miscellaneous
1) OmniDictionary - great freeware, but Dictionary.app makes it unnecessary.

Manage files differently:
LaunchBar
Quicksilver
Butler
Path Finder
Default Folder
FruitMenu
All cool, but learn the basics of OS X first. FruitMenu is mostly for OS 9 holdovers.

lpkmckenna
Aug 29th, 2005, 07:31 PM
So just because you have never used them makes them completely invalid? I believe we're talking about beginning Mac users, not necessarily beginning COMPUTER users. Most people switching TO the Mac could make great use of most of these programs. No two users are the same, and we shouldn't assume they're idiots and wont have any clue how to use any of these programs. I happen to find most of these programs very useful, and they make up a pretty decent list of apps that will help you do most things you want to be able to do on a computer. Its by no means complete, but its a good start.Actually, it's more than complete. If you bought all that stuff you'd be out several grand. I mean, do you own anything near to that amount of software?

I think recommending $100+ programs to a new Mac users is silly. Don't go advising Logic or Final Cut or Photoshop to someone with a new computer.

lpkmckenna
Aug 29th, 2005, 07:40 PM
A sticky at the top of the Help thread would do nicely for this idea :)I hope nobody stickies this thread.

I would recommend something much more simple: a thread on quality freeware. If that works out, then a shareware thread. I doesn't think we need a games or commercial app thread.

i stole this name
Aug 29th, 2005, 08:06 PM
Woah! I just flipped through all the suggestions, and can tell that a lot of people here should never make recommendations to beginners. A lot of these programs I have NEVER used in my countless years of Mac-ing.



No, no, and no to all of these. Not at all necessary for a beginner. Photoshop Elements would be a wiser decision.



Again, don't use any of these, and I've used almost every Mac program out there. These are beginners people! They don't need IRC clients and something for Console Networking.

[QUOTE=Vexel]Chicken of the VNC - http://sourceforge.net/projects/cotvnc/
Neo Office/J (Open office for OS X binary) - http://www.neooffice.org/
The Gimp (Photoshop Clone) - http://plasticbugs.com/index.php?p=241

I know long time Mac users that have NO CLUE what VNC is, let alone what it's used for. Neo Office and The Gimp would turn any Mac newbie into a Mac hater. These are not programs for beginners.

iPetie is on the right track there. With a few tweaks and some links, that would be an ideal list for newbies to work with.


Uhh, they're beginners, not morons.

Chances are most people who are buying a mac for the first time have already had a PC before and want applications to replace those they used before.

If you haven't used them, and enjoy a bland computing experience, that's great, but don't blight others' path to mac nirvana ;)

P.S. how are Quicksilver and Camino difficult to use/going to make someone hate macs? because if someone finds either difficult to use i believe they shouldn't have the privilage of using a computer in the first place.

SoyMac
Aug 30th, 2005, 12:06 AM
I have to say, I agree with guytoronto.
I've been using Macs for around 6 years. I'm a heavy FCP and PhotoShop user. But I would never suggest a beginner Mac user get FCP (unless they expressed a desire for exactly such a thing).
Looking through the long lists of suggestions, I recognized surprisingly few.
I think a new Apple user should be directed toward the excellent Apple programs that work seamlessly with their new hardware.
Need a communication program ? - iChat.
Do digital photography ? - iPhoto.
Browser? - Safari
You get he drift.

I think that if the Mac Newbie finds this stuff limiting, they will quickly move on to other options on their own, or by requesting our assistance.

draz
Aug 30th, 2005, 11:50 AM
Lest we forget MactheRipper www.ripdifferent.com
-allowing users to back up all their DVDs or move them to their HD

or a great one for mobile users www.macstumbler.com
-Allowing users to see all the availiable wireless networks

THis is the original Mac wireless search tool http://www.istumbler.net/
-and has a slick interface.

OR the most powerful but complicated wireless searchign and cracking utility is:
http://kismac.binaervarianz.de/

-But this is a very sophisticated tool, and not nearly as easy as the one button operation of the others.

THese are all fun tools to have, especially the wireless apps for ibook, and powerbook users.

CubaMark
Feb 17th, 2008, 02:41 PM
Thread-resurrection: A National Sport!

Seriously, though - there was once talk of a pinned item for newbies with useful tips and links....

So let me add a video series of short, quick, sarcastic and funny-as-H-E-double-Hockeysticks: You Suck at Photoshop (http://www.mydamnchannel.com/Big_Fat_Brain/You_Suck_at_Photoshop/YouSuckatPhotoshop5_402.aspx) (Episode 5 is particularly funny).

:)
M

Adrian.
Feb 17th, 2008, 03:17 PM
VLC
MAINMENU
ISQUINT (IF YOU DO IPODS)
TOAST TITANIUM

I don't think it is so much apps you need to know of. Rather, it is just knowing what to do. When I was first learning macs back on 9 I learned just from trying to figure things out. Command keys are good.

In general, I think people come to Macs from PCs with the conception that computers are way beyond understanding. You just try to stay a float without getting viruses and your computing shitting its pants. You need to sit down with someone and have them explain how a mac works, the hoops and the tricks and you will quickly find that your computing experience actually becomes enjoyable. Macs are fun!


It is just experience. You will know the apps you need when you come to need them. Come onto the forums and ask for what will do this and what app will do that. I probably have ten different plug ins on many different programmes that I have just installed over the years that work behind the scenes. Its just experience.


Cheers!

duosonic
Feb 17th, 2008, 05:17 PM
and a link to a website that offers simple instructions for newbies and switchers:

http://www.myfirstmac.com/

Adrian.
Feb 17th, 2008, 05:25 PM
stuffit !!!!!

EvanPitts
Feb 17th, 2008, 05:45 PM
...ISQUINT (IF YOU DO IPODS)

I also suggest ISquint if you want to convert non-standard formats (like .avi) to M4P, which runs smoother and better on more machines, though perhaps with some loss of quality. I use it for videos that I put on my iBook, as the files are smaller for the restricted hard drive space available on that machine.

I also suggest Pure Mac: Software for Macintosh (http://www.pure-mac.com) for a fairly complete list of available applications for OSX, that is updated on at least a weekly basis. I like it because you can go either by category, or look for the updates for the week.

For new users, Firefox is pretty much a requirement, and be sure to download useful add-ons, like iFoxMetal, AdBlock and FlashBlock. The default interface is really kiddie-garbage, iFoxMetal makes it look both professional and more Mac like. And who likes Ads or Flash video garbage anyways?

jlcinc
Feb 18th, 2008, 10:29 AM
EvanPitts,

Thanks, just getting rid of all those adds in Firefox is a god send. Amazingly fast now and much less annoying.

Thanks again.

John

mc3251
Feb 18th, 2008, 10:46 AM
If you are new to Mac and want to do photoediting without spending an arm and a leg-I've been using Pixelmator. It's Leopard compatible and really easy to use.