Google+ was not the immediate Facebook-killer that Google wanted it to be, perhaps, but slowly and surely the search giant has been making its social networking service more and more useful to average folk.
That trend continues with the release of Google+ Auto Backup, a new app that will automatically upload images from your computer to Google+, thus storing them in the cloud.
Apple began sending out MobileMe eviction notices last week. The notices remind anyone still using MobileMe that they have until the end of June to transition to iCloud and/or copy all data stored in their MobileMe accounts to their Mac or PC. Any files stored in MobileMe’s range of services that can’t be converted to iCloud will be deleted. If you opt not to use iCloud, all data in your MobileMe account will be deleted.
Although iCloud offers several advances over MobileMe, there are some MobileMe services that don’t have direct iCloud equivalents. These include MobileMe Galleries for sharing photos and videos, website creation using Apple’s iWeb, and iDisk remote storage and file sharing. File and information sync is available using iCloud, but the functionality is implemented a bit differently than in MobileMe.
There isn’t a single online service that delivers quite the same mix of features and functionality that Apple offered with MobileMe but by combining some apps and services, you can get pretty close to MobileMe’s feature set.
Though it wasn’t in our readers’ top 10, Apple named Localscope the best navigation app of 2011. Yeah, well they ain’t seen nuthin’ — its new update adds a whole new exploratory facet to the app that’s arguably cooler than the app’s original focus.
If iPhoto leaves you cold, or perhaps doesn’t run so well on your older Mac, there aren’t many options for a similar application that combines photo editing and photo library management. Not many, except for Picasa.
Google’s free photo app is a great alternative to iPhoto, generously packed with features and a good choice for people who want to quickly upload photos to the web.
In most respects, it compares very well to iPhoto, including features like face recognition and geolocation data. It comes with a selection of quick edit presets, and easy (but basic) slider controls for detailed editing.
What’s particularly nice about Picasa, though, is its speed. It roars through photo libraries that leave rival photo managers struggling to catch up. On first run, it will zip through your iPhoto library – not copying any files (so don’t worry about disk space) – but indexing all your data there and building up its own copy of the iPhoto library.
Picasa is one of those things it makes sense to have around. It’s free, it’s packed with useful stuff, and even if you don’t put it to immediate use, there might yet come a day when you’ll be glad you have it to hand.
(You’re reading the 28th post in our series, 50 Essential Mac Applications: a list of the great Mac apps the team at Cult of Mac value most. Read more, or grab the RSS feed.)