If, like me you spend most of your life rooting around in your downloads folder looking for that tar ball or zip file you recently downloaded then maybe this app if for you?

From the makers of the popular file compression software Stuffit comes the latest in their arsenal of applications. Stuffit Expander 2011 – designed to handle over 30 different file compression types including split and segmented archives.
Not only is it powerful enough to expand just about anything an the click of your mouse, it can also be configured to ‘watch’ a folder such as your downloads folder, and automatically expand a compressed file as soon as it’s finished downloading.
But wait – it doesn’t end there.. It’s also capable of monitoring your email for compressed attachments.. An guess what, it automatically expands those too!
“StuffIt Expander opens files created with WinZip®, 7zX, iShrink, SimplyRAR, Rarify, Rucksack (formerly iArchiver), BetterZip, RarMachine, GUI Tar, CleanArchiver, Springy, TarPit, RAR, Ez7z, Keka, and the compression utilities built into recent versions of Windows and Mac OS X.”
Stuffit Expander is available for Max OS X 10.5 or higher or for Windows XP, Vista and 7 It’s features can also be found in the Stuffit Deluxe package

Tidy SongsI think it’s fair to say you can tell a lot about someone by the music they listen to, and the device they use to listen to it with. Being a big Mac fan, I quite like iTunes – now don’t get me wrong. It’s not perfect by any stretch of the imagination, but it’s not too bad.. However – one area I think iTunes is really bad in, is the sorting and maintaining of large imported libraries.

My library has been under development for countless years now, and contains all sorts of rubbish. I have tried many a time to get it all tip top but have never really found a method that I am happy with. Until now…. Today I stumbled across a duplicate track in an albums folder, and to my horror I decided to use the built in duplicates view. Only to be greeted with over 600 duplicate tracks! So I figured it was about time I did something about it…
A quick search on the internet uncovered many tools claiming to be the best at cleaning up music libraries. Including one I have reviewed before (TuneUp). However, this time I was drawn in by the features of a new app TidySongs.
TidySongs is built on Adobe Air technology, so is available for either Windows or Mac OS X. It has a simple and easy to use interface with the ability to: organise songs, add missing album art, fix misspellings, remote duplicates, rename genres and more!
One feature I like a lot is the automatic fix feature, which is fully automated (as you would expect) but gives you a countdown timer on each track before it makes the changes. Thus meaning you can keep an eye on it and ensure it doesn’t make completely wrong changes. It also has a confidence rating against each change it plans to make making it even easier to spot ones which you think it should leave alone.
Although the app is still at the beginning of my massive iTunes library I am already a big fan and impressed with it’s work. Granted, the application is not free, but the free apps just seem to make things worse!
You can download a trial version of TidySongs here which has some limitations, some features don’t work at all and some features are limited to 100 tracks. 

MAMPIf, like me you spend a lot of time developing websites both on webservers and locally then this tool is perfect for you! I was recently passed a project which required lots of SQL and PHP development. So I took on the task of trying to set up an apache server and a MySQL server. This rapidly became very frustrating thanks to all of the config changes required. 

I then went on a hunt for a simple solution – which is where MAMP came in. ‘MAMP’ (Macintosh, Apache, MySql and PHP) is a fantastic application which needs very few mouse clicks to get it up and running. After a 165Mb download the DMG file offers you two MAMP solutions. The normal MAMP installs which is an Apache server with PHP and MySQL support (among others) with the least amount of fuss or configuration. Which is perfect for the end users who just need a standard, single site solution. 
The second option is an MAMP Pro Trial which is the professional ‘advanced’ MAMP instance. Which offers all of the features of MAMP along with access to some more advanced features such as hosts management, advanced config, selectable users for Apache and MySql, configurable log storage locations and much much more. 
A licence key for MAMP Pro will set you back £39.00, which is fantastic considering it’s capabilities. 
Personally I have chosen to use the standard MAMP implementation, as I generally develop one site at a time and all of the advanced config is already complete of the live servers. It took me approximately 35 minutes to download, install and config my Apache and MySql servers. With most of the time being swallowed up by the download time of the file. MAMP comes bundled with the very popular phpMyAdmin interface, which is an excellent tool for administering and maintaining your MySQL databases.
For a more in depth view of the different features offered by the standard and pro implementations check out the MAMP features matrix.
Once the installation has completed, MAMP presents you with a GUI dashboard view of the services current status, and quick access to some of important functions of the MAMP server implementation.
On the left hand side of the panel, there a quick and easy red/green light notification system. A brilliantly simple way of checking the status of your implementation. On the right hand side you have the options of stopping the services, open the start page (summary page), changing your server preferences and quit’ing the application. Which also stops the services. (unless you change the default option in the preferences.)
The ‘start page’ offers a slightly more advanced overview of your implementation, with links to the bundled tools and links to the MAMP homepage etc.
So, if you want a webserver for your Mac but don’t want the hassle of complex server management MAMP is for you!
You can grab a copy of MAMP here.

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