Sunday, May 28, 2006

Wink


The author of Wink speaks on what Wink is.


"Wink is a software tool to make presentations and tutorials about using software programs. A Wink presentation will resemble a live walkthrough about how to use the software. Also the author presentation can adds comments and explanations to parts of the presentation to explain the concepts and usage to the end user."


It's much simpler like this. Let's say that you want to teach some users to open a file in Microsoft Word. You start Wink, click Capture Now, and start using Microsoft Office. You open a file in Microsoft Office and then stop the Wink capture. Wink had already captured all of your actions on the monitor just now. Now you can edit the .wnk file, add notes to it, insert audio to explain the steps and pause between the tutorials. Once finished, you can distribute all the imported Flash file to all the users without having to teach them one by one. Easy right?


Wink functions:-


  • Cross Platform - Linux and Windows user are all blessed with Wink usage.

  • Input formats - you can capture images from your PC or you can use your own images to build your presentations.

  • Output formats - Flash is just the default output. Check out the freeware itself for more.

  • Smart Capture Tools - Capture screenshots automatically as you use your PC, or based on your mouse and keyboard input.

  • Performance quality - you decide on how big you want your output files to be. Best used for size-conscious webmasters.

  • Useful manuals - don't be afraid of Wink's interface. Check out the excellent manual for a quick start on its usage.


Start building great presentations now! Download Wink from Debugmode - http://www.debugmode.com/wink/download.php

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SIW


SIW - System Information for Windows. It's the brainchild of Gabriel Topala and it provides a single monitoring tool to view your Windows system. It gives detailed information on your system properties and settings, detailed view on installed hardware and software, Windows serial numbers, and etc. It can also do real-time monitoring for CPU, memory, page file usage and network traffic usage. To summarized all this, Gabriel Topala had managed to cram humongous info from your Windows system into one, easy to use interface. That's quite an achievement, IMHO.


It's features:-


  • Detailed info on installed hardware and software - it doesn't get any better than this. It can even detects install media codecs on your PC!

  • Network information - it can display your network neighbourhood, your internal and external IP (if you're behind a router), open ports on your PC - and much more.

  • Win9x password cracker - system info plus password cracker - wow!

  • Eureka - this is an asterisk (*****) password displayer. Makes computing more fun, this kind of tools.

  • ODBC Admin - database administrators, rejoice!

  • OpenGL Test - have i told you that this freeware really digs your Windows that deep?

  • Reports Generator - so your boss wants a detailed report on your system? No sweat. Give him an SIW generated HTML report.


That's some of the best features that I found from this freeware and there's much more. Give Gabriel Topala some donations if you want him to continue on developing great freewares or you can support him by visiting his website at http://www3.sympatico.ca/gtopala/


Download SIW from http://www3.sympatico.ca/gtopala/siw_download.html

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Weather Watcher


You don't have to be Einstein to know what this freeware does. It's a weather monitoring software. Now you don't have to guess or open your TV or radio for all the weather forecasts anymore. Just connect to the Internet and walla! You get all the infos right on your desktop.


It's features:-


  • Automatic forecasts retrieval - retrieve weather forecasts for your city from your PC - current, hourly or daily forecasts are all available. It supports more than 77,000 cities worldwide.

  • System tray support - current tempratures and other forecasts are always available from the system tray. Time intervals for automatic updates can be set.

  • Conversion - don't worry if you can only undestand Fahrenheit instead of Celcius. Get to the options area to change it.

  • Skinnable - for graphic conscious users. I don't really need this. But somebody might love it.

Never miss a weather forecasts anymore. Download this freeware from http://www.singerscreations.com/AboutWeatherWatcher.asp

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Sunday, May 21, 2006

Restoration


This freeware name (Restoration) makes me remember my old RPG gaming days! What this free software do is that it helps you restore recent accidentally deleted files - either you empty your recycle bin accidentally or by Shift+Delete a file. It doesn't guarantee that it can find all the deleted files, but I had managed to restore my "Scary Movie 4" movie deleted clumsily by, umm.. me. That explains that it can work sometimes.


Restoration features:-


  • Simple interface - click a hard disk partition and click "Search Deleted Files" to list all recently, mistakenly deleted files.

  • Zero Installation - you don't need to install it, unzip and run makes it so easy to use.

  • Delete files completely - you can even delete all the restorable files completely. This freeware shoud be named to Restoration and Re-deletion. Ha ha ha. Now you can be rest assured that your sensitive files are not recoverable anymore.


I can't guarantee that this freeware will help you restore all of your mistakenly deleted files - but it's worth a try, isn't it?


Download it from http://www.geocities.jp/br_kato/

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Photofiltre


Please do not correct me for any spelling mistakes. The name of this free ware is really Photofiltre. It is an image editing program but for me, i mostly used it for filtering my images / creating special effects on my photos. I really think that Photofiltre excels in filtering / adding effects to photos.


Photofiltre features:-


  • Complete, image editing freeware - this thing is so complete, I can't believe its free!

  • Wide range of filters - this is the best thing about Photofiltre. Make sure you test the artistic filter, Picasso!

  • Vectorial selections - you can select some portion of images via various tools such as rectangle, lasso, etc.

  • Standard editing toolbar - you will never get lost while using Photofiltre. Photoshop users will will right at home.

  • Image scanning support - now you can directly scan pictures from a scanner to be displayed on Photofiltre.


There are many options for free image editing software out there. But if you are a looking for a program that can quickly change your image effects, then Photofiltre is the best, IMHO.


Try it from http://www.photofiltre.com/

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Periodic Table


This one is not your usual paper based periodic table. For computer addicted chemistry students / practitioners, this freeware computer-based periodic table will be most welcomed by them, IMHO.


It's features:-


  • Detailed , interactive information - click an element and the sidebar will display all the related informations.

  • Element images - this one makes chemistry more interesting.

  • Element discoveries - a little history will never hurt a chemist wannabe :)

  • Sortable elements - sort elements by discovery date, name, atomic number etc.

  • Easy element classification - click a button to differentiate physical and gas elements (example usage)


I don't quite like chemistry during my old education days but nevertheless, this may be appeal some chemistry lovers out there. Tell me if you love it!


Download it from http://www.paulalanfreshney.com/education/pt/index.htm

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Monday, May 15, 2006

7-Zip File Manager


Zipping a file for the first time in my life is quite a wonderful experience. Since then, I am still wondering how did they manage to compress such a big file into smaller, portable version. Winzip must be making a lot of money because they are the pioneers in this compression technology. Now, a new compression technique is on the rise. It's called the 7-Zip format with the .7z extension. Although the name is not as commercial as Winzip, it functions very well in the file compression showdown.


I tried to compress my 40 MB folder with both the .7z and .zip extension with no additional tweaks. 7-Zip format manages to reduce the file size to 32 MB while Winzip .zip format only manage to reduce the file size to 35 MB. We have a clear new winner now!


You can create a .7z compressed file using the 7-Zip File Manager. Some of its features:-


  • High Compression ratio - i've tested this myself. Seeing (and doing it) is believing.

  • Right click file operations - right click a file and 7-Zip the file with ease. Extraction is also supported in this manner.

  • Easy to use File Manager - WinZip has really spawned so many imitators. I can't complain no more.

  • Test function - test your .7z files in case of any compression errors. Great addition for the most paranoid of all people.

  • Zip file support - Hahaha, very funny. WinZip execs must be very angry right now.


7-Zip is quite new on the compression scene and you can promote its effectiveness among your friends. This is one of the way that you can help promote the growth of free software.


Download it from http://www.7-zip.org/

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The Sage


A sage is a wise man. The Sage is wise too but it's not a man, it's a free dictionary and thesaurus :)


The Sage is quite comprehensive and its very easy to use. It contains more than 145,000 references with over 200,000 detailed definitions. Examples of word usage are also available. Not bad for a free dictionary!


Some of its features:-

  • Complete Thesaurus - use a more suitable word from a thesaurus to make you smarter than you really are.

  • Example sentences - don't be afraid if you can't make an example sentence on your own. The Sage is always at your service.

  • Cross Referencing - click a word and you are taken to its definition right away.

  • Wildcard search - the beauty of an online dictionary. No more page flipping over Webster's again.

  • Anagram search - install The Sage and search for the meaning of this word. You really need a dictionary if you don't know.

  • Clipboard support - copy and paste search results easily.

  • History - never forget about your previous search anymore.

  • Tabbed search results - tabbed interface are the in-thing nowadays. Thanks Firefox!

The Sage has won numerous praise for it's comprehensive free dictionary and ease of use from the ever evolving online community.


Get The Sage now from http://www.sequencepublishing.com/thesage.html


And even if after eading all this can't convince you to change to the .7z clan, or if you insist to stay loyal to the .zip gang, i suggest you to use this amazing free ware instead of the original WinZip.

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Wednesday, May 10, 2006

XnView


XnView is a super image viewer. This free software can read hundreds of image file formats, if you dare to name it one by one. It's fast, responsive and will make Windows Explorer thumbnail viewer looks way too obsolete. I love the way it displays all my humongous numbers of images instantly and with a built in file viewer, it can play video file formats too!


XnView features:-


  • Supports variety of picture formats - it claims to read over 400 different picture formats, for example: GIF, TIF, JPG, PNG, BMP, IFF, IMG, WMF, ICO, ... the possibilities are endless.

  • Explorer-like browser - Windows Explorer users will feel right at home. Dumb-proof graphical user interface.

  • Standard File Operations - move, copy, delete, - all the mundane tasks are supported via the easy to use interface.

  • Image Filters and Effects - resize, turn pictures from color to black and white, sharpen, blur effects bla bla bla.. all the usual picture tweaks are easily available.

  • Multiple image conversion - batch conversion from jpegs to gifs, resulting in small file sizes - this process is a breeze with XnView freeware.

  • Other noticeable fun stuffs - reduce red eyes, join images for panorama effects, create web pages, thumnails gallery and contact sheets (try it if you need an explanation on what this is all about :) )


What really stands out for me in XnView is its responsiveness. It renders thumbnails for quick preview of your pics in record time and i really love all the bells and whistles that was included for quick image editing. And yeah, it's available for other platforms too! Linux users - enjoy yourself!


Download XnView for free at http://perso.wanadoo.fr/pierre.g/xnview/endownload.html


As an alternative, or if you love to compare free softwares, read my review on IrfanView, one of the most popular image viewer on earth.

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Sunday, May 07, 2006

AM-Deadlink


AM-DeadLink is not for the dead :). It's a free ware that detects dead links from your browser's bookmarks. Dead links means links that does not exists anymore - maybe the files were removed or the domain is not available anymore. This is very useful when you have hundreds or thousands of links on your bookmarks, it helps cleaning unused / unavailable links fast.


It's features:-


  • Fast detection - it took several minutes to scan and detect my links - 365 of them to be exact. Redirection links are also supported.

  • Popular browser support - Internet Explorer (not so popular anymore), Firefox (yeah!), Opera and Mozilla. It even support bookmarks in CSV or tab delimited files!

  • Link change options - renaming / modifying a link is so easy with the simple but functional interface. A right click will do the job.

  • Duplicate links finder - one more headache, gone with the mercy of this freeware.

  • Bookmark Backup - backup your bookmarks if you are not that sure. Backup will be saved in zip file format to keep it small.


A simple freeware makes life easier, its so true with AM-Deadlinks. Say goodbye to deadlinks!


Download AM-Deadlinks from http://www.aignes.net/deadlink.htm

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Metapad


Notepad has won many fans since Microsoft begin to bundle it with their Windows operating systems. One man, Alexander Davidson loves Notepad so much but he's unsatisfied that Microsoft never enhance the already popular Notepad. That's why he created a replacement for Notepad, the Metapad. Metapad is umm.. , Notepad on steroids.


It's features:-


  • Recent file support - closing and opening up yesterday's text files are now easier. No more folder traversing to find your most recent files.

  • Fixed Window - you can make sure the size of your Metapad remains the same the next time you open it, just save its current Windows state.

  • Auto-Indent text - useful for Notepad based proggers. Indentation is much easier now. No more multiple tab hitting ( increase keyboard's lifetime + reduce metatarsal injury risks :) )

  • Favourites - now you can save and open your favourite text files easily with Metapad.

  • Spell Checking support - you can integrate spell checking with Metapad but you need to work it out with one more free open source program - Aspell. Find the tips on how to do it here


Above are the features that i found most useful for my personal usage and there are more improvements that will woo more Notepad users to switch to Metapad.


You can download Metapad here - http://liquidninja.com/metapad/download.html

or if you need to compare it with another, read my review on KeyNote, another great Notepad replacement.

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Thursday, May 04, 2006

SplitJoin


You have one big file, 1.5MB in size. You have only 1.44MB diskettes with you, it's not enough to cramp that file in one diskette. Network file transfer is not an option. You need to bring that file to somewhere else a.s.a.p. You wish you can split the the file in two so that you can bring it along and join it later.


Your friend show you this review. You are in luck. There's a freeware that can do this. It's called SplitJoin.


It's features:-


  • Split and Join - split files for easy, storable files and join them later when needed. The interface is dumb-proof.

  • Small and fast - it's a free software which is small in size, you can bring it anywhere for easy split-and-joining.

  • Customizable split size - you have 2 CDROMs with 600MB capacity each. Your have a file which is over 650MB in size. SplitJoin will help you in solving this headache.

  • Make a copy of SplitJoin - split a file with SplitJoin attached. You will never forget to bring it again.

  • Parts deletion - upon successful join operation, you can ask SplitJoin to automagically delete the splitted parts.


SplitJoin maybe small in size, but function wise, its so easy to use and things like this saves my time on numerous occassions. Try it!


Download it for free from http://angusj.com/splitjoin/

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