I've been introduced (and been using) a couple of little apps in the last week or so. The first is JDarkRoom, which is a text editor that provides a "matrix" style green text on black background interface. I've been using it to write longer blog posts and musings and found it just what I needed to keep me from having distracting toolbar messages. It has a neat word count feature too. Its written in java, so no need to use .NET.
The second application is Launchy, which is a windows utility designed to save time when starting applications. Mark found this application after a discussion we'd had on using Quicksilver (which I intend to get into when I get my Mac), but for now we thought that this was a good "practise" using windows machines.
JDarkRoom from code alchemists
Launchy from Josh Karlin