Developer: Hobbyist Software Limited
Price: $4.99 Download on the App Store
If you're interested in remote controlling the audio and video stored on your desktop or home server, you'll want to check out Hobbyist software's VLC Remote as an alternative to Apple's Remote app, especially if you have a Linux machine.
There are a number reasons you might want to control your media when you're not sitting in front of your desktop machine. Home theater enthusiasts, for example, who have home theater PCs can appreciate having a remote that operates over Wi-Fi rather that the far more common infrared remote control that works only by line-of-site. You can control your media player over Wi-Fi from anywhere in your home.
If you're not familiar with VLC, it's an open-source (i.e. free) media player, encoder and streamer that is capable of playing pretty much any audio and video format out there. It exists in versions for Mac OS, Windows, Linux and other platforms. It's highly flexible and can even run off a thumb drive. Its somewhat lackluster graphical user interface, more than compensates for its versatility.
VLC is widely available for download. Hobbyist software makes it easy for you to configure VLC to play over your internal network of the Internet, which is insecure. First, install VLC. Second, download the setup helper from Hobbyistsoftware, which will configure the firewall built-into Windows. If you're running a third-party firewall, you need to set VLC as an exception. You'll probably have to configure VLC's preferences to use HTTP as a remote control interface. This process may seem involved, but it's actually simple.
Launch VLC and then the VLC Remote, and you're almost there. You'll need to enter the IP address of the desktop(s) you want control into VLC Remote. Again, it's easier than it might seem. Hobbyistsoftware explains how to do that.
The VLC remote has the essential features you need to control your media play such as pause fast forward and fast reverse, select tracks and pretty much everything else you would think a remote control usually does.
VLC Remote comes in Lite and paid versions. The difference is the paid version can be spiffed up with skins.