Trusty Tools 1: Background and Alfred

This is going to be a few posts that will come out… likely on a Friday and will have the Twitter hashtag #trustytools so you can either ignore or search for it, your pick.

Background


My Monday to Friday job is leading a team of helpdesk technicians and we find ourselves relying  on tools to help us get our job done or just to work smarter. This series of blog posts will go through some of my most frequently used tools both on my computer (Mac) and my phone (iPhone). Hopefully this will be of some help to you. If you have questions or feedback, feel free to reply to me (@thejedi) on Twitter

Alfred


Alfred is probably one of my most used general tools. You can check it out here. There is a free and a pay version. I recommend trying the free version and if you use it enough, pay for it. I paid for it.

If you frequently use Spotlight to search for files and folders, this application takes it to a whole new level. Here is a quick rundown of what I frequently use the app for:

  • Searching for files and folders. Over time, this becomes smarter. It also can preview files as you are searching.
  • Sending common commands to Terminal.
  • Playing songs in iTunes.
  • Searching for a file, then sending it via email to someone using my default mail client.

The free version works great as a launcher similar to Spotlight, but there are more features in the paid version. Check it out here.

By far, the main reason I use this so much is to keep my hands on my keyboard which saves time and is much more efficient than using a keyboard and mouse combination to do the same tasks.

Lastly, it keeps stats for you. Here are my stats.

Since Jan 19, 2011, @alfredapp has been used 5,239 times. Average 12.2 times per day