Saturday, February 28, 2009

LinkExtend Firefox Extension - Get a multiplicity of information on web sites

What do you know about that web site you're visiting? Is is safe? Is it popular? Is it reviled? Find out all that and more in a comprehensive display. From the web site:

"Welcome to LinkExtend, the ultimate browsing tool. Enhance your web surfing experience getting link information instantly on computer security, company ethics, child safety, popularity, and much more. Data from many free online services is collected and combined to provide you with comprehensive results. LinkExtend is freeware and contains no adware or spyware."


LinkExtend

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Friday, February 27, 2009

PDF to Word Free - Speedy conversion tool to make a Word doc from PDF

I can't resist a private beta. This one is easy to join. Just enter a valid email address and the code word "nitro." When you're activated, you can upload up to a 10 Mb PDF file and have it emailed back to you as a Word or rtf doc.

"Using our PDF-to-Word conversion technology, you can quickly and easily create editable DOC/RTF files, making it a cinch to re-use PDF content in applications like Microsoft Word, Excel, OpenOffice, and WordPerfect.
Best of all, it's entirely free!"



PDF to Word

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Thursday, February 26, 2009

Stellarium - Fantastic open-source astronomy software

Why pay hundreds for a telescope you'll use 3 times in your life and brave summer heat and winter cold in your backyard and still not see anything you can identify, when you can see it all on your computer screen for nothing? From the web site:

"Stellarium is a free open source planetarium for your computer. It shows a realistic sky in 3D, just like what you see with the naked eye, binoculars or a telescope."


Stellarium

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Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Multi Monitor Mouse - Optimized pointer utility for multiple monitors

This Windows utility shaves seconds off your computer tasks by warping the movement of your pointer across the bezels of your displays. You know, the part that surrounds your screen area? From the web site:

"M3 allows for conventional control of the mouse within each monitor's screen, while permitting immediate warping across monitors when desired to increase mouse traversal speed."


Multi Monitor Mouse

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Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Safari 4 - Now in public beta

Check out the latest version of Safari for Windows.From the web site:

"Top Sites

Thanks to Top Sites, you can enjoy a stunning, at-a-glance preview of your favorite websites without lifting a finger. Safari 4 Beta tracks the sites you browse and ranks your favorites, presenting up to 24 thumbnails on a single page. You can even customize the display by pinning a favorite site to a specific location in the grid. That locks it into position, so you know just where to find it every time you open Top Sites."


Safari 4

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Monday, February 23, 2009

PrinterShare - Share your printer over the Internet

So, why would you want to share your printer over the Internet? To give your deadbeat friends access to your precious ink? No. But maybe you want to send a file to your home printer from another location. Or, if you can't figure out how to share a printer over a home network, sending the print job around the world so it prints in the next room is a solid workaround. From the web site:

"With PrinterShare® you can print documents and photos on other people's printers as easily as on the local one connected to your machine. No special technical knowledge is required from both - printer owner and user. It just works!

With our software you can print directly from your application such as Microsoft Word, Outlook, Photo Editor or any other program you work with to a printer connected to another computer next door or ten thousand miles away (anywhere!)."



PrinterShare
 
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Sunday, February 22, 2009

Education.com - Find the best schools for your kids

When you have to move to a new area and you have school-age kids, you can't beat a web site like this one. The amazing depth and breadth of information available on schools is breathtaking. From the web site:

"Moving to a new area? Thinking about transferring your child within district? Considering a charter, single-sex, or other alternative school setting for your child? As a parent, it can be a challenge to wade through the mountains of data and ..."



Education.com

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EMail Address Crawler for Thunderbird - Scans your email for email addresses

Thunderbird users, do you neglect the little chore of adding contacts when you receive email? Do you find your autocomplete completely useless because you never took the time to add that contact's email address? Well then this Thunderbird extension is just what your tech doctor ordered. From the web site:

"Automatically fill your address books with e-mail addresses extracted from all your e-mails."


Email Address Crawler

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Saturday, February 21, 2009

Freeraser - For when you really, really need to get rid of a file

The analogue world has shredders that chew up and spit out paper documents as a secure way of erasing the existence of a document beyond recovery. Burning is even more secure. But what about in the digital world?

Most folks don't realize that deleting a file on their computer doesn't erase it. All that does is tell the computer that it can use that space on the hard drive to store other stuff. It will eventually be overwritten, but even then it can be recovered for awhile yet.

This standalone app can be run from a thumb drive or from your own machine without installation. It places a temporary biohazard trash bin on your desktop, allowing you to drag and drop files that you really, really want to get rid of. You can specify that level of destruction you need. From the web site:

"# a fast destruction (standard 1-round filling of random data)
# a forced destruction (3 rounds of filling according to DoD 5220.22M standard)
# an ultimate destruction (35 rounds of filling with data according to Guttman algorithm)."



Freeraser

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Friday, February 20, 2009

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Magical Jelly Bean Keyfinder - Dig up your Windows product key

Despite it's cute name, this one isn't fancy or particularly good-looking; it just performs a very useful function that everyone will probably need a few times in their computing lives. It retrieves your Windows product key from your registry in case you can't find it elsewhere, on a CD case or the side of your computer, say.


Magic Jelly Bean Keyfinder

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Wednesday, February 18, 2009

PowerMenu - Enhance your menus and add capabilities

Adjusting how your open windows interact with and position themselves relative to each other is just one of the additional capabilities this app adds to your context menus. From the web site:

"PowerMenu is a small application I wrote back in 1998 that some extra menu items to the windows control menu in addition to the standard "Close", "Maximize", etc options. The extra menus are: Always On Top, Transparency and Minimize To Tray."


PowerMenu

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Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Wallpaper Juggler - Download and juggle your desktop wallpaper

Changing your desktop wallpaper is a great way to liven things up and brighten your day. Wouldn't it be fantastic if you could do that to your walls as easily? Here's an application that will do it automatically according to your specs. From the web site:

"A configurable app for Windows 7, Vista and XP to download wallpapers from InterfaceLIFT.com or WallpaperStock.com and change them periodically."


Wallpaper Juggler

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Monday, February 16, 2009

Postbox - Make sense of your inbox

Your brain's most powerful capability is making sense of things, but even it falls short when faced with your email Inbox. If this is true for you, you can use the generous assistance of Postbox. From the web site:

"Postbox works behind the scenes to catalog everything in your email. We mean everything: every bit of text, every contact, address and link. Every picture, document and attachment. It’s all in the catalog and it’s all searchable.

Just click the Images tab to see a thumbnail gallery of every picture from every message, or the Attachments tab to browse through documents, files and more. And since Postbox does all of it’s cataloging on your own computer, the privacy and confidentiality of your email information is preserved."




Postbox

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Sunday, February 15, 2009

TaskSwitchXP - Boost the way Alt-Tab works in XP

I'm a constant user if the Alt-Tab key combination to switch between windows quickly. The thumb and third finger of my left hand are practically married to those keys. But this application can make that key combo much more powerful for task switching. From the web site:

"TaskSwitchXP is an advanced task management utility that picks up where the standard Windows Alt+Tab switcher leaves off. It provides the same functionality, and adds visual styles to the dialog and also enhances it by displaying thumbnail preview of the application that will be switched to."


TaskSwitchXP

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Saturday, February 14, 2009

FreeCommander - A powerful and free alternative to Windows Explorer

If you want to do more than what Windows will allow with it's Explorer, there are some excellent alternatives, of which FreeCommander is a standout. From the web site:

"FreeCommander is an easy-to-use alternative to the standard windows file manager. The program helps you with daily work in Windows. Here you can find all the necessary functions to manage your data stock. You can take FreeCommander anywhere - just copy the installation directory on a CD or USB-Stick - and you can even work with this program on a foreign computer."


FreeCommander

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Friday, February 13, 2009

WinSplit Revolution - Make better use of your wide-screen

I've talked (or posted) about virtual desktops. Here's a different way to make the most of the screen area you've got. This application splits up your screen cleanly and easily so you can work with several windows at once. From the web site:

"WinSplit Revolution is a small utility which allows you to easily organize your open windows by tiling, resizing and positioning them to make the best use of your desktop real estate.

What can it do? WinSplit is especially useful for high-end LCD screens with high resolutions because it helps you to efficiently manage many active windows. For example WinSplit is useful for owners of the Dell 2407FPW monitor. As you can see in the screenshots below, the advantages of using WinSplit is that it saves you from having to drag and drop windows by allowing you to snap windows into specific tiled configurations using simple keyboard hotkeys."



WinSplit Revolution

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Thursday, February 12, 2009

WindowsPager - A virtual desktop app

As screen area multipliers, virtual desktops are an inexpensive way to go, especially when they're free. Here's a nice, light app that does the trick. From the web site:

"WindowsPager is a desktop-switcher/pager for Windows Vista/XP/2000 to manage 'virtual' workspaces/desktops. It will integrate smoothly into the desktop panel."


WindowsPager

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Wednesday, February 11, 2009

TheSage's English Dictionary and Thesaurus - A free desktop application for writers

A lot of freeware is crap, let's face it. But some of it is gold. Check out the power and heft of this application for writers. From the web site:

"TheSage's English Dictionary and Thesaurus is a professional software package that integrates a complete dictionary and multifaceted thesaurus of the English language into a single and powerful language reference system.

TheSage can look up words directly from almost any program (IE, Word, Firefox, Outlook, Thunderbird,... ) and is 100% portable.

Due to popular demand, TheSage's dictionary is now online. Note that only the definition database is consulted. If you are interested in TheSage's complete package (definition + thesaurus + examples), read on."



TheSage's English Dictionary and Thesaurus

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Tuesday, February 10, 2009

a-squared Free 4.0 - Find and smash malware

You can't ever be too thin, and you can't have too much malware protection. So they say, but it is true that no single anti-malware application is 100% effective, so it's good to have a few good ones at work at all times. Here's another free, yet highly effective, offering. From the web site:

"# Scan your PC for infections of Trojans, Viruses, Spyware, Adware, Worms, Bots, Keyloggers and Dialers.
# 2 Cleaning Scanners in 1:
Anti-Virus + Anti-Spyware
# 4 million users world wide rely on a-squared to clean their PC from Malware."



a-squared Free

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Monday, February 09, 2009

w.bloggar - Post to your blog with ease and accuracy

It's not always convenient or best to post to your blog from the blog's dashboard itself. Sometimes it work better to post from a stand-alone client. Here's one that does the job admirably. From the web site:

"The w.bloggar is an application that acts as an interface between the user and one or more blog(s); in other words, it is a Post and Template editor, with several features and resources that the browser based blog editors do not offer.

Because w.bloggar runs over the Windows GUI, it allows the user to edit posts without being connected to the Internet. Posts can be saved locally; and anytime the user wants to publish a new text, one click on the w.bloggar icon in the system tray brings up the editor, and one more click will post it to the weblog."



w.bloggar

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Sunday, February 08, 2009

JavaRa - Removes older versions of Java Runtime Environment

I was very happy to find this little gem. Java Runtime Environment (JRE) is software that allows you to run applets on your computer, so it's very useful, but whenever you get the most updated version, the older versions remain on your machine just taking up space. JavaRa will search for the most recent version and clean up older versions. From the web site:

"JavaRa is a simple tool that does a simple job: it removes old and redundant versions of the Java Runtime Environment (JRE). Simply select "Check for Updates" or "Remove Older Version" to begin. JavaRa is free under the GNU GPL version two."


JavaRa

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Saturday, February 07, 2009

Email This Bookmarklet - Send any web page from your browser

Friends ask me constantly if I know how to fix this or that computer problem, or if I know a good application to do this or that. Often, I just do a quick search through my second brain, the Internet, to find the answer. You may find stuff on the web that you think a friend might be interested in. Whatever the case, we both need to send the information by email. Here's a simple way to send any web page. From the web site:

"EMAIL THIS is a free service offered by Clickability and powered by Clickability, Inc. that lets you easily email Web site links to friends, family and colleagues.

EMAIL THIS also lets you import your Address Book from your personal information manager (PIM) such as Microsoft Outlook, Outlook Express, Palm Desktop, and Yahoo! Mail and use it to quickly send Web site links to your contacts.

You can also add an EMAIL THIS button to your browser and take advantage of the convenience of emailing information from any Web site. All it takes is one click! Click here for your EMAIL THIS browser button."


Email This

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Friday, February 06, 2009

iSerenity - For when you need to calm down a bit

I need white noise. Absolute silence is unnerving. Perhaps this issue stems from living in an age when something electrical or digital is always running nearby (except during power blackouts, but then the sounds of the hurricane-force winds outside come to the rescue). If you need some rain, thunder, traffic, etc., check out iSerenity, which also has soothing pictures.


iSerenity

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Thursday, February 05, 2009

Foxmarks - Now for IE and Safari

I've used Foxmarks to keep my Firefox installations synced of all my computers for a good while, which is why I'm very excited that I can use it now with IE and Safari.

"Foxmarks is a free add-on for your browser that syncs and backs up your bookmarks across multiple computers and more."


Foxmarks

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Wednesday, February 04, 2009

WeFi - Find free Wi-Fi anywhere

WeFi can be used from your PC or from your phone. It's one of the best ways to find a free Wi-Fi signal no matter where you are or where you're going (within reason, of course). From the web site:

# Find Wi-Fi hotspots around the globe
# Automatically connect to the best Wi-Fi location around you
# Be a part of a community that builds an open global Wi-Fi network
# Have more fun using our chat and find friends



WeFi

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Tuesday, February 03, 2009

CintaNotes - The easiest way to store text clippings

There are many ways to do it, but this is the simplest I've yet seen. And even though it's as simple as it could be, it still has powerful tagging and search features. From the web site:

"CintaNotes will be your essential assistant in the daily task of collecting numerous pieces of information, like your own thoughts and ideas, article excerpts, blog postings, famous people quotes, research data, curious facts, Wikipedia entries, you name it."


CintaNotes

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Monday, February 02, 2009

Google Earth 5.0 - New version lets you roam on mars and ocean floor

Google Earth has always been fascinating to explore, but now it's gotten even more so. Check out the latest version, with:

# Historical imagery from around the globe
# Ocean floor and surface data from marine experts
# Simplified touring with audio and voice recording



Google Earth 5.0

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BatteryBar - A better way to measure your charge

Yes, Windows comes with a battery meter, but it is lacking. If you want more information presented in a more attractive manner, check out this free utility. From the web site:

"BatteryBar is a simple, straight-forward, battery meter that monitors the status of your battery and displays your battery's status in the taskbar.

BatteryBar constantly monitors the status of your battery as you use your laptop. As it monitors your battery, it keeps historical data on your battery and provide you with a very accurate estimate of how much time is remaining on your battery."


BatteryBar

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Sunday, February 01, 2009

Comparer - Compare and contrast file properties

With this application and a plugin or two from the author's web site, you can easily compare the properties of two files to see how they differ. For example, which file was created first? Which is larger? Etc. Features:

# possibility to export viewed details to CSV, HTML or Image files (BMP, JPG, PNG);
# additional image headers can be added to exported files;
# possibility to use external HTML and CSS files for better details export;
# external comparing applications can be configured on separate tab;
# thumbnails support for various file types (thanks to WLX plugins);
# view modes: either all details view or differences only;
# debug mode (view empty) - allows to see plugins' names for which information cannot be extracted;
# drag'n'drop support for adding new plugins - drop WDX file into proper area and you will get files extensions suggestion (if plugin supports it);


Comparer

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