The Free Mac Tools I Use Daily

Written by Mimi Flynn

24 February 2014

These are the free Mac desktop tools I use daily for tasks like drafting blogs to managing servers and building apps.

I normally use a Mac, so a few of these tools are pretty Mac-centric.


Mou is a markdown editor that gives you a preview in real time and allows you to edit your .md files with beautiful syntax highlighting.

iTerm 2

iTerm 2 is one of the first apps I install when I set up a new Mac. I love the split pane and that can go between tabs with command+arrow keys. The tab Expose helps me keep track of sessions. Growl keeps me updated with bells and issues. It’s really quite wonderful.


I use Adium for most of my chat needs (if it supported Skype and I didn’t have friends that only used Skype it would be ‘the one’). I can be connected to multiple chat servers (XMPP and Google Chat) and keep all the live chats open in a wonderful tabbed interface. By default it supports encryption, so I can chat away with my more paranoid friends.

SPF13 Vim and MacVim

Vim isn’t Mac centric, although, I do use MacVim for the copying and pasting and overall gui goodness.

For a long time, I was configuring Vim on my own. I was updating .vimrc and .gvimrc files constantly, researching and installing plugins, trying to make it work for everything always. Then, one day, I decided to try out the curated and tested configuration that SPF13-Vim provides, created a .vimrc.local and .gvimrc.local and never looked back.

If you are so inclined, feel free to check out my SPF13 Vim configuration and SPF13 Vim MacVim configuration.