Tagit is free and does the basics. It lets you tag files and it helps you to find the files again using the tags. To tag files you drag from the Finder to the Tagit icon in the Dock on your new Mac. You then get a window in which you can type in a tag or how ever many you want to put on a file. Or you can choose from the recently added tags which is nice and quick. Add a star rating too if you like.
To search for files you click on the Dock icon for Tagit and fill in the tags you want to use to find files. Again you can use the recently used tags to chose with one click per tag. You can use more than one tag if you are looking for a subset of all the files in a project. That is Tagit, nothing else to it, except all the files you are looking for come up in a Finder window. You could use spotlight search criteria to further refine the search if you like. Maybe get only the files that have been created within the last seven days, or only a certain kind of file.
Punakea for Tagging files
Punakea is a paid for application which does what Tagit does. When it is running you click on the Dock icon to open the Punakea browser and then you can open the Tagger window for the app. You can also drag files to the icon same as you can with Tagit. In the Tagger there is no list of previous used tags, but when you type letters you get suggestions from the tags you have already used.
So if I want the tag Web Image, by entering the letter W I get a list of the tags beginning with that letter. Use the arrow keys on the keyboard or use the mouse to choose the tag. Click on done when the file has all the tags you want to give it. There is an option to move files into a Punakea managed folder. I already have moved files, such as graphics files to where I want them with using Hazel. If you want to use that move option, it could be handy to see which files you have tagged already.
Click the button to Manage Tags and you will see in the lower pane of the window on the right of the app the Tag name, how many times it has been clicked and how many times used. You get an idea of the popularity by the use of the Tag Cloud system where the more used word are larger in font size, in the list of fonts pane.
The verdict on whether to buy Punakea or not
So the question is should you pay $25 to buy Punakea to do what you can do with Tagit for free. You do get a nice browser with Punakea and you can also tag bookmarks from web pages, which is not possible with Tagit. Personally I don’t mind the integration with Spotlight that Tagit does and the web pages can be tagged if you want to bookmark them, with Delicious. My verdict is that Punakea, while very nice is not offering enough extra functionality to be worth the extra money you have to spend to buy it. Save the money for your next refurbished Mac .