O.K. To begin with, I am using Tiger. So, for the Leopard users (I'm waiting for all my favorite apps to be stable under it- as well as for a few more Apple Revisions :), you may not find this worth your time.
Why I wrote this review. Well, I really like this app. And, I have spent a far amount of time evaluating alternatives. After doing so, I came to the conclusion that IClip is certainly my choice. And, the belief that some on this forum may have been unfairly critical.
First, the reasons why I like IClip so much. Foremost, it is unobrusive (which is an attribute only shared by CopyPaste, in my opinion). And, it is extremely flexible. I now have the left side of my Ibook screen accessing the hidden dock, and hidden in the bottom of my screen is IClips. Works well, as it maximizes my screen space and does not interfere with scrolling- which usually takes place at the extreme right.
The above is worth strongly considering the app, but making it a good buy is the fact of what you can do quite easily with IClips. It has one function that I have not found implemented well with any other clipboard manager (except for CopyPaste + YType- see below). It allows you to easily edit the clippings that you paste into it. This is extremely powerful when used in combination with the ability to concatenate several clipboards into one file (which indeed, is unique to IClips). Extremely useful, for example, in comparing track listings of different CD's obtained from different Internet sources. This just rocks. Saves tons of time- and I am finding more applications for this functionality as I go. Amazing!
So, what about the poor reviews. First, I must admit, I am not a graphics artist needing to copy and paste art of 100 mb's of information. Usually have no need to copy more than a few mb. of info at a time- at most. So, those users who have such problems have little relevance for me. And, in the interchange between a disgruntled user and the IClips ”support guy“ detailed in an early review- I must say the IClips support guy seems to be working really hard to try and fix the problems this user was experiencing. Very hard. I'm sorry that this user's problems were not ameliorated. However, I do think that there was a willingness to try and help- and keep on doing so before the user discontinued their dance of frustration. And, besides, I have been in contact with IClip's support this week- and they responded in a reasonable amount of time with good cheer.
O.K. Some have thought that the program was a memory hog. Well, I guess they have a point- although not very important to me. It consistently utilizes about 20 mb. of real ram computer resources- vs. the 13 mb. used by what I consider it's closest competitor- CopyPaste + YType (I have paid for CopyPaste registration- and was using it solely before switching to IClip). However, interestingly for me- the Activity Monitor indicated that IClips was only said to be using .10 to % of the computer's CPU; vs. 1.0 to 1.5% of the CPU processing power utilized by CopyPaste + YType. This is of course state when neither program is called- which of course increases their CPU use appreciably- although that is to be expected. I am not a programmer, but the Activity Monitor seems to indicate that although the program does take up comparably more RAM, it is a much more efficient user of computer processing time. And, as regards RAM, 10 to 20 mb. more out of 1 g. Ram is not really going to hurt performance any. Especially since if CPU processing power is being used so efficiently.
As regards concerns about the IClip interface, I just have to say that the interface themes for IClips 3 must have been simply amazing!! I find the themes in version 4 to actually be quite pleasing, and somewhat configurable. I have set up the pallet that jumps out when the curson “un-hides” IClips- to be a large rectangular shape with maximum transparency. This allows me to see best what is in each clip- and yet only when I want to.
On my Ibook, Menu room is at a premium, and I was given the option not to have the Icon show up there. Essential- as it simply is redundant when you can call up IClip by keyboard hot switches or by simply pointing to the bottom of the screen. And, yes, I really appreciate the simplicity of the keyboard controls. I have set up keyboard hot switches for copying and pasting. Whenever I use these switches, IClips immediately shows it's clipboards, along with a number associated with each. At that point, I just chose a number- and the clip is either pasted to or from that particular clipboard. Nice. I don't have to move my hands from the keyboard to easily move data to the clipboards. And, I can easily see what I am doing as it happens! Wow, elegance and simplicity.
So, why do I think it better than the competition. Since IClipboard is Leapord only, I couldn't evaluate (and I wish that weren't so, since I am reasonable happy with SOHO notes- also by Chronos). I could not get ShadowClipboard & CuteClips to work, and both programs seemed dated. I really did not like the interface of PTHPasteboard- and it certainly did not offer the functionality of IClips. It is keyboard driven- and I assume, with practice, works well as a free alternative for some. I just felt that the value added by IClips to my computing experience was well worth the money I would pay. And, besides, PTHPasteboard does cost $25 if you wish to have a registered copy. In any event, even if free, I found IClips to be the better value for my needs.
So, that leaves CopyPaste + YType. I have used this extensively, and so understand it's functions. First, it does offer more text processing options than IClips. However, I do not need the extra functionality. The YType editor is simply a system wide spell checher- with the option of replacement of words with suggested alternatives. Some may find this useful. However, for me, it is not that important. And, since I have TypeIt4Me- it provides the same functionality- plus offers me an easier manner to utilize “snippet” short-cuts. And, for me, I could not get TypeIt4Me and CopyPaste to co-exist peacefully.
CopyPaste also offers many functions that can be utilized on any document that you are preparing. It cleans, dices, and parses. No really. It strips text formats clean, decrypts, encrypts, creates all upper case, all lower, undo's email comment, email indentation. You get the idea. Unfortunately, I have little need for all these functions. And, when I did, I had some difficulty in getting CopyPaste to do what I wanted. But, then again, I was not too motivated to learn. For some, all this extra text processing functioning can be useful. Just not for me. Especially if it meant that I could not use TypeIt4Me.
Now, CopyPaste does have an unobtrusive way to enter text into it's clipboards. And, you can use keyboard data entry. However, their is no ability to combine clipboards with other clipboards. This is the most unique feature of IClip that makes it so useful to me. But, if you need the ability to work with text across many different programs and manipulate it in many different ways- then CopyPaste may be more useful. CopyPaste also has the YType program for those challenged by speling (you know who you are, those who didn't get the preceding spelling typo). However, other programs such as the excellent TypeIt4Me do have this capability in much the same way as CopyPaste. And, IClips plays nice with TypeIt4Me. CopyPaste decidedly does not.
Well, that's about it. For me, it's either IClips or CopyPaste + YType. For ease of use and the ability to concatenate several clipboards- IClips wins. For those who have more extensive text processing needs and desire spell check- CopyPaste may be best. It's not as easy to use- but offers more capabilities as a text processor as well as a text manager.
So, here's hoping that to those of you who have read thus far, you will find it useful in making an informed decision regarding a ClipBoard manager.
And, perhaps will give you a more balanced perspective regarding IClip!