Tagged: email

30 Mac OS X apps and utilities I love: Part 2

Mac OS X ApplicationsOver the years I’ve installed a lot of commercial software, shareware and freeware on my Macs. I love trying new apps. That being said, most of what I install gets used once or twice, then discarded. A few days ago, I shared the first group of apps I use regularly. Today I have another collection of applications and utilities I use on a regular basis.

The applications listed below contains some names you’ll probably be familiar with, but there’s a reason for that. They’re just superb at what they do, thus very popular.

CaffeineCaffeine

If you work on a MacBook Pro, you no doubt have your LCD screen set to dim and turn off after a relatively short amount of inactivity in order to save battery charge. This is generally fine unless you’re doing a lot of reading or watching a DVD. Caffeine is a small application that lives in your menubar that solves this problem by preventing your screen from dimming and the computer from sleeping. A click of the coffee cup icon in the menubar prevents your computer from sleeping for a user-specified amount of time ranging from 15 minutes to 5 hours (or indefinitely). Caffeine is a free utility.
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Fight spam: Get your free email alias

Email TempAliasIf you’ve been on the Internet for any amount of time, you’ve no doubt grown tired of handing out your personal email address in order to access a site – only to receive loads of spam in return. You could sign up for a free Gmail or Yahoo address, but that’s a little overboard.

Try TempAlias a try. The free service allows you to create a temporary email address that only lasts for a specified amount of time, or a message limit has been reached. The email alias you create forward to your real email address – so you’ll get that “password confirmation” email, but then you’re rid of all the other spam emails forever. This is a great way to protect your privacy!

Archiving emails from OSX’s Mail application

OS X MailThere are lots of ways to archive old emails from OSX’s Mail application for later reading. Many of them require you to work with another piece of software, some require you to “restore” an .mbox file to the proper folder – and almost all of them require you to launch Mail in order to actually read the archived email. While most archiving apps offer plenty of flexibility, they can be more trouble than they’re worth if your needs are simple, and you don’t have the budget for 3rd party apps. If you’re looking for something a little easier with less bells and whistles, I’ve got a quick solution for you. (more…)

This email will self-destruct in 10 seconds

Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to save the world. This message will self destruct in 10 seconds… (queue Mission Impossible theme song!) Sometimes you want to send a private email to someone, the type of email that contains sensitive information. Perhaps you’re plotting to overthrow the board of directors at your company, or maybe just the latest gossip about your boss and his rather disgusting eating habits. Obviously, you don’t want ANYONE but the recipient to see that email. In fact, you’re not even sure you want to risk them saving that email. Enter Privnote. Privnote allows you to send an email that will self-destruct (sans messy explosions, and evidentiary ashes) after reading it, leaving no trace of its existence at all. What makes Privnote cool and different from regular email:

  • You get a link to the note, and once that link is clicked the note is destroyed so it can only be seen once. If someone intercepts the link and sees the note before the person who’s intended to read it, that person will know that the note has been eavesdropped, and can tell you about it.
  • If you want to be notified when your note gets read you can do it by checking the notify box located below the note. Neither email nor instant messaging provides a reliable way to know if, let alone when, your messages are read.
  • If you send a note and suddenly regret having done so, you can click the link yourself which will destroy the note and prevent the receiver from reading it.

Sending large files via email

web_yousendit If you’ve ever had to send a large file via e-mail to a printer or publication at the last minute, only to realize that either your ISP, or the ISP of the person receiving the e-mail cannot send files as large as yours, you know how frustrating it can be. You could get your own domain name and post it on your site, but that seems like overkill. You could use FTP, but your run the risk of having to spend an hour on the phone explaining to some underpaid secretary how to use FTP on her 7 year old PC – not to mention you still need a site to upload it to. Enter YouSendIt. YouSendIt is a “remailer” service, and it’s totally free. You go to their site, upload your file to THEIR server and type a custom message. YouSendIt then sends the person you want the file to go to a simple text message with a link to the actual file that they can download via the Web. Since pretty much everyone on the planet is capable of clicking a link, it couldn’t be simpler. The file remains available for download for a short time, so the end user isn’t forced to download it immediately, though you don’t want them to wait too long, because the files are deleted after a set amount of time.

Disposable email addresses to combat Spam

In an effort to combat SPAM, I came across a disposable e-mail address site. SpamBob offers a free email address that you can use for registering with Web sites that you don’t really want to give out your real address to. While these Web sites offer what appears to be valuable services in the war against spam, I urge you to take caution when using them. Some sites may or may not be a front for spammers to begin with.