We've picked out the 11 best cross-platform apps based on Adobe AIR technology that will help you streamline your YouTube experience, track client time accurately, stitch photos into one panoramic shot, and much more.

Adobe AIR is software that lets developers create apps for a number of different platforms. So, it no longer matters whether you're using a Mac, a Windows PC, a Linux machine, or a mobile device - an Adobe AIR app will work with them all.

But, despite AIR's impressive ability to blur the line between your desktop and the web, AIR apps are by no means web-only. In fact, some of them have nothing to do with the web at all.

We've put together a list of the 11 coolest Adobe AIR apps around, an elite collection made all the more admirable by the apps' price, which is free.

To get started using any AIR application, simply download and install AIR from Adobe. Once you've done that, downloading and opening an AIR app on your desktop will trigger the standard AIR installer - think of these files as traditional .msi or .exe setup applications, except that AIR handles the installation.

DeskTube: desktop YouTube app

YouTube is one of the most popular sites on the internet anyway, but DeskTube brings the fun of browsing YouTube directly to your desktop.

Although DeskTube offers little more functionality than you'd get from YouTube by default, much of the app's appeal lies in what it doesn't include - like flashing advertisements and inane comments.

Aside from scrubbing off a lot of YouTube's dross, DeskTube provides Twitter integration, upload tools, and more.

DestroyFlickr: Supercharge your Flickr experience

DestroyFlickr provides a slick, attractive interface for browsing and searching the popular photo-sharing web site Flickr. DestroyFlickr is a bold name, but the functionality and feel of this impressive application live up to the hype.

Rather than trying to mimic Flickr on your desktop, DestroyFlickr makes the image look as good as it can, removing it from the bright glare of the Flickr homepage and parking it in front of a muted, dark gray background.

With nice animations, attractive design, and integrated tools for editing your Flickr photos from your desktop, DestroyFlickr supercharges the Flickr experience.

CleVR Stitcher: sew photos together

The bad news: few of us can afford a camera capable of pulling off beautiful wide-angle shots that capture awe-inspiring landscapes. The good news: with CleVR Stitcher on your side, you can join any number of pictures together to create the majestic panorama you're looking for.

To use CleVR to create a single panoramic photo, first snap several pictures of the scene with a little overlap between each picture. Then load the pictures onto your computer, fire up CleVR, and use the app's simple stitching tool to assemble your masterpiece.

NEXT PAGE: TweetDeck and eBay Desktop

  1. These cool downloads enable you to banish your browser
  2. TweetDeck and eBay Desktop
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We've picked out the 11 best cross-platform apps based on Adobe AIR technology that will help you streamline your YouTube experience, track client time accurately, stitch photos into one panoramic shot, and much more.

TweetDeck: all tweets in one place

You've no doubt heard of Twitter, the popular microblogging service used by everyone from Britney Spears to Stephen Fry, but if you're still posting to and reading Twitter through the service's vanilla web interface, you're not getting the optimal experience.

 

TweetDeck puts the navel-gazing fun of Twitter on your desktop. This AIR app now probably rates as the most popular Twitter client.

eBay Desktop: power help for auction shoppers

A severe global economic downturn is all the more reason to frequent the popular auction site eBay - so you can save a little cash when you shop. And the eBay Desktop application outshines the website by a mile.

If you're tracking an auction as a buyer, for example, eBay Desktop offers real-time listing information, including as-they-happen item alerts and a big timer that counts down to zero in sync with eBay's servers. Unfortunately, in its current form eBay Desktop doesn't have much to offer the power seller, but it's a can't-miss for the shopper.

Pandora Desktop: stream music on your desktop

Pandora Radio is a US-based music-streaming website that creates streaming music stations based on your tastes. There's absolutely nothing to Pandora beyond the Pandora player, which makes it a perfect candidate for AIR-and is no doubt why Pandora was quick to create this AIR application.

With Pandora Desktop for Air, you don't need to fire up your web browser or keep Pandora buried among your browser tabs. Instead, the radio station runs as a standalone desktop application, with integration into your system tray, including right-click options for changing stations, viewing the currently playing track, and playing or pausing the track. Sadly it only works in the US.

NEXT PAGE: Klok and Nomee

  1. These cool downloads enable you to banish your browser
  2. TweetDeck and eBay Desktop
  3. Klok and Nomee
  4. Font Picker and ReadAIR

We've picked out the 11 best cross-platform apps based on Adobe AIR technology that will help you streamline your YouTube experience, track client time accurately, stitch photos into one panoramic shot, and much more.

Klok: very slick time-tracking

Klok doesn't integrate with the web at all, but it does a superb job of tracking all your time spent on projects, client work, and pretty much anything else. The Klok application features a beautiful interface, impressive tracking tools, a reports view for analysing your time in pretty charts, and simple tools for exporting your time sheet.

Whether you work as a freelancer, consult, or just want to keep a closer eye on where your time goes, Klok does the trick nicely.

Nomee: organise your social networking apps

Connecting people is what the web does best, but between Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, instant messaging, your blog, and all the rest, managing those connections can be a headache.

Nomee aims to simplify the process by organising your various online contacts, the sites and services you (and they) use, and the things you like into one attractive desktop application.

The app works by creating contact cards that encapsulate all of this information for you and your friends, enabling you to track the person rather than the websites the person uses.

Snackr: versatile RSS ticker

Snackr puts a real-time news ticker on your desktop, delivering up-to-the-minute news from any RSS feed on the web.

The ticker positions itself along any border of your monitor - top, bottom, left, or right - and displays headlines, sources, and thumbnail pictures from every news item it pulls from the web. Click the item for a preview, and head to the original post if you see something that looks intriguing.

Snackr ships with a slate of popular RSS feeds from the across the web, but you can easily customise the app to display any number of RSS feeds of your choice.

NEXT PAGE: Font Picker and ReadAIR

  1. These cool downloads enable you to banish your browser
  2. TweetDeck and eBay Desktop
  3. Klok and Nomee
  4. Font Picker and ReadAIR

We've picked out the 11 best cross-platform apps based on Adobe AIR technology that will help you streamline your YouTube experience, track client time accurately, stitch photos into one panoramic shot, and much more.

Font Picker: Browse the fonts on your PC

Love a good font? Fire up Font Picker, and it automatically loads all of the fonts installed on your PC. To test your fonts against any piece of text, simply click on any of the 'Type Here' text, enter your own word or phrase, and peruse the output for any font on your PC.

When you're putting together a document that needs to look great, finding the perfect font for the job can mean a lot.

ReadAIR: Google Reader desktop client

If you love Google Reader but aren't enamoured with Reader's default web interface, give ReadAIR a try.

This app syncs with Google Reader to display your favourite feeds in an attractive desktop interface. ReadAIR ships with both Windows- and Mac-specific themes, a more traditional three-pane interface for reading your feeds, great keyboard shortcut support, and other desktop integration features that completely remake the Google Reader experience.

  1. These cool downloads enable you to banish your browser
  2. TweetDeck and eBay Desktop
  3. Klok and Nomee
  4. Font Picker and ReadAIR