Mac OS X
Captur makes it easy to take screenshots by sticking all your options up in the menubar. What’s really great about it, however, is the custom options you have. It’ll let you see the screenshot immediately after you take it and save the filename however you like.
Camouflage does one simple little thing: it hides everything on your desktop. Maybe you want to do this to make your screencasts look nice and clean, or maybe you just suck at keeping your desktop tidy. Whatever the case may be, Camouflage will let you pretend there’s nothing on the desktop by hiding it for you. You can even have it change your desktop picture in the process.
8. Clipboard History
Clipboard History is a handy little tool that, unsurprisingly, stores your Clipboard History in your OS X menubar. You can set it to remember few to several items copied to your clipboard and easily restore any of them with a click or a keyboard shortcut.
QuietRead quietly sits up in your OS X menubar and stores URLs you just don’t have time to visit right now. It makes for an excellent, minimalist storage area for your web backlog, and it can do a whole lot more if you pay for the full version. Like what? Searching, syncing to sites like Instapaper and Read It Later, and additional sharing features are just a few examples.
Apptivate is a neat micro-app that lets you assign keyboard shortcuts to applications so you can launch them easily with your keyboard. You can also assign these shortcuts to other things, such as AppleScripts, which can be seriously useful for quick script-based actions.
Mac OS X’s built-in screen sharing (read: VNC) functionality is wonderful, but quickly connecting to your shared screens is not always a pleasant task—especially if you’re connecting to your home computers from a remote network. ScreenSharingMenulet solves all these problems by putting your local shared screens in your menubar while also letting you add easy-to-select shortcuts for any remote screens you may want to connect to when away from home.
Snippets is as lightweight as you get for a text expansion app. It primarily resides in your menubar, but you can bring up a single window for editing. It’s very simple, keeps out of your way, and, at $5, is significantly less expensive than every other text expansion app you can buy on the Mac. While it wasn’t the winner in our text expansion face-off, it’s pretty great. For simple and inexpensive text expansion, Snippets is the way to go.
It’s not terribly inconvenient to access your calendars by going to Google Calendar or iCal, but it’s especially convenient to have a rundown of your day in your menubar. Additionally, if you have events in multiple places (specifically Google Calendar, iCal, and Facebook), CalendarBar can summarize them all for you and even alert you via Growl.
Autograph is a micro-app that’ll run you $3, but it’s pretty awesome. If you ever need to sign a document or get some handwritten text into your computer, Autograph can solve that problem by letting you use your multitouch trackpad as a writing surface. It basically turns your trackpad into a pen tablet. You can sign with your finger, but you can also purchase a compatible stylus for the full-on pen-on-trackpad experience.
CloudApp is incredibly simple: it sits in your menubar and when you drag a file onto it, that file gets uploaded to the cloud. You’re instantly provided with a link in your clipboard and can send it to whomever you like. CloudApp even provides the storage for you.
Got any awesome micro-apps that you love that weren’t on this list? Let’s hear ’em in the comments! (Also, Dropbox doesn’t count. We left it off on purpose because we talk about it all the time and it isn’t always the epitome of lightweight.)