I have opinions, yes. I have some experience, too. I have a list of applications I’ve used and still use and I’m willing to share with others. One of those that surprises is called Short Menu. It’s an inexpensive Mac utility which does URL shortening. It takes a long, cumbersome, and somewhat ugly website URL and makes it shorter and easier to manage and share.
You may have used an online URL shortening service such as TinyURL. Enter an ugly URL and you get a, well, tiny URL; one that can be used anywhere and shares well. The Short Menu app for the Mac works the same way but includes multiple URL shortening services.
Some of these online shortening services require an account so you don’t overuse or abuse the service, and Short Menu keeps track of them, including the big ones like bit.ly, Rebandly, Hive, Droplr, tiny.cc, Google and others.
There’s also an option to add custom services if you want to get all geeky, otherwise stick with the basics and avoid some of the complexity. Short Menu can take custom services and keep them synced between Macs by using iCloud.
Short Menu has plenty of options and a few different ways to take a long, complicated, messy, and ugly URL and turn it into a svelte and easier to use URL. For example, Quick Short lets you set up keyboard shortcuts which make it easy to grab a URL from the Mac’s clipboard and automatically shorten, and paste a newly shortened URL.
There’s also an option to automate the shortening process so the ugly URL gets changed automatically when you copy it. Not all URLs are created equal, either, and sometimes you need the real thing, but Short Menu keeps you covered with both a black list and a whitelist.
Mac users of almost every experience level will appreciated what Short Menu can do. It’s priced right, available from the Mac App Store or the developers, and despite the low price tag, there’s also a trial version to check it out.
Wait. There’s more. There’s a Short Menu for iPhones and iPads, too, and details sync nicely using iCloud. It’s dead simple to set up and use and gets plenty of well deserved five star reviews. What I haven’t figured out is how to stop all the sounds that tell me all has been copied and converted– without turning off sound entirely. Otherwise, nicely done, easily worth a few bucks.