Featured Freeware: Craigslist Reader Pro

This useful app lets users focus solely on Craigslist. It's not perfect, but it does make it easier to hunt down ads in a variety of categories and in a variety of locales.

If you've ever hunted for a job, housing, furniture, or love on Craigslist.com, you'll appreciate the focus that Craigslist Reader Pro brings to your search. The desktop reader isn't pretty to look at, but it quickly lets you hone your search in Craigslist's key cities and categories, even displaying negative search terms and appropriate variables, such as images, price ranges, and--for housing--the allowance of pets.

For each search, Craigslist Reader Pro took a few seconds to load results into the top of four panels. The panel below displays the contents of each entry in an in-app browser. You'll be able to scroll to read contents and can reply to posters by clicking the address shown in the reader. The filter menu was also useful in narrowing an expansive field of results.

The interface is strictly utilitarian, and lacks a Help menu. There's also a panel of ads--an eyesore that doesn't interfere with the program's use. What blunts the efficacy is the lack of e-mail-like management for deleting discarded entries and flagging favorites one-by-one. You can click a button to save all old results, but it won't weed any out. Of course, Craigslist Reader Pro delivers on its promise to display Craigslist content, but better management tops our wish list.