2007 at 05.08 pm posted by Veerle Pieters
I don’t know about you, but I always loved the fact that I can customize my Mac easily. I am talking about changing icons and desktop backgrounds and even themes from time to time with help from ShapeShifter. Today I want to focus on the desktop aspect. There is so much choice out there that it can become a struggle to find high quality looking desktop backgrounds.
Help is on its way
Luckily for us there is some help out there in the form of a desktop background manager. In the interest of fairness I need to mention I've received a serial number to test this out. However, my main principles are still the same as always, if I don't like it I don't write about it.
So if you are on a Mac and you really don't want to be bothered with switching to a new desktop and taking the time to pick the right one, than Desktoptopia will help you out. Desktoptopia will choose them for you and update the desktop by your preferred time interval. The desktops in the pool come from designers in almost every field and have to pass a panel of reviewers first before being added. So they are not just any desktops, quality is important. The application has also a rating system built in that works together with the website.
Is it any good?
I've been testing this tool for a few days now and I must say I like it. Most desktops are really nice. You can see the designer or creator of the desktop in the dropdown menu and if you release your mouse on the name you go to the related website. Some desktops are less my taste, but then again 'my taste' is not the same as anyone else's taste. So it's obvious that you're not going to like all desktops, tastes differ. Though I must say, as good as all of them are of good quality in terms of design, creativity, originality, concept, colors and composition etc. So far I've only rated a few 2 stars and none of them 1 star really. A few have passed already where I rated 5 stars. If you really love the one that is currently loaded, you can always choose to pause the update interval and keep it longer on your desktop.
A few examples
You can also go to the previous or next desktop. One downside, and I'm not sure whether this is a small bug yes or no, is that you can't rate the next or previous desktop. The rating stays fixed on the desktop that was loaded right before you've chosen next or previous, so it's not clear if it works or not. Would be better if it was dimmed out if you have already voted on that one.
Also some, but only a very few, have a bit of a blurred quality on my 30 inch screen. I assume that not all of the desktops are perfectly optimized for my resolution (which is 2560 x 1600). That's probably because the person in question ignored the preferred 2560px x 1600px upload size.
Apart from these 2 minor remarks I really love it. I always have a hard time picking a new desktop. I just can't choose sometimes or have the feeling that I have already looked at it before and I want something new. I know there are other choices, even free ones. However, this app is offering convenience so you don't have to go hunt these wallpapers down yourself, which can be very time consuming if you set your quality standards high. This is just perfect and it's very inspiring as well. There is a 10 day free trial.
Readers of my blog can use a coupon code that drops the normally $20 shareware application down to just $10 until August 24th. Enter "duoh" at checkout and you'll be enjoying some new eyecandy in no time.