TIME

Monday, 27 February 2012

MWC 2012: Nokia reveals 41MP cameraphone…

A 41-megapixel Nokia smartphone was among the new technology on show during the opening day of Mobile World Congress in Barcelona.


 
 
 The 808 Pureview offers enhanced low-light performance as well as sophisticated image compression designed to help users share pictures.
Nokia hopes to regain ground lost to Google and Apple in the mobile market.
However, some have criticised Nokia's decision to use its own operating system, Symbian, on the device.
Nokia's other smartphones typically run on Microsoft's Windows Phone software.
Symbian, which first appeared on Nokia phones in the 90s, is widely regarded as inferior to the app and social media-driven Windows Phone system.
"The Pureview 808's Symbian Belle operating system might detract from its appeal to a broader market, where it deserves recognition," said Tony Cripps, a principal analyst with Ovum.
"It's a pity that Nokia was unable to combine the photographic prowess of the PureView 808 with the style of the Lumia 900.
"Such a device may well have been the first smartphone to truly deserve the title of 'superphone'."
 
 

'Breathtaking'
Nokia claims the 808 sets a "new industry standard" in mobile imaging devices.
"People will inevitably focus on the 41 megapixel sensor," said Jo Harlow, executive vice-president of Nokia smart devices.
Nokia say the 808 will set a "new industry standard" for mobile imaging
"But the real quantum leap is how the pixels are used to deliver breathtaking image quality at any resolution and the freedom it provides to choose the story you want to tell."
 

 
 
 

Monday, 20 February 2012

Cisco to challenge Microsoft Skype deal at EU court...

Cisco has said it will challenge Microsoft's $8.5bn (£5.4bn) takeover of Skype at the EU's top court.

The networking giant said conditions needed to be set to ensure Microsoft would not block other video services.
 
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In October, the European Union had ruled the deal would not impede competition.
But Cisco has called on the European Commission to introduce open standards similar to those used for mobile phones.
"Cisco does not oppose the merger, but believes the European Commission should have placed conditions that would ensure greater standards-based interoperability," Cisco's video conferencing head Martin De Beer wrote in a blog post.
European Commission spokesman Antoine Colombani said: "We will defend our decision in court."
Open standards
Skype has over 650 million users worldwide.
 
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Its takeover by Microsoft, announced in May last year, is the software giant's single biggest acquisition.
Cisco offers its own video conferencing service called WebEx. Open standards for video services would potentially allow calls to be made between WebEx and Skype, as well as other services like Google Video.
Without such a standard, Mr De Beer said Microsoft could control "the future of video communications".
"Making a video-to-video call should be as easy as dialling a phone number,'' he argued.
"Today, however, you can't make seamless video calls from one platform to another, much to the frustration of consumers and business users alike."

Saturday, 18 February 2012

How to (Sort Of) Get LinkedIn Installed on your BlackBerry 7 Device

LinkedInBold99002_thumb2222

 

Update: Sergey let us know that this workaround originated from his post on LinkedIn. Kudos for finding it!

I have been hearing from a few readers who are upset that LinkedIn has not continued to support the latest BlackBerry devices with their mobile app. Personally I find that their mobile app has always sort of sucked but their mobile website is actually greatly improved. If you still have a hankering for their app installed on your phone David let us know that you can install it directly from LinkedIn by bypassing their check for supported device. It more or less works on my BlackBerry Bold 9900 with a few annoying glitches in the interface because of the higher resolution screen.

If you wish to live a little on the wild side feel free to download LinkedIn directly from your BlackBerry browser by using this link and let us know how it works!

Hold Off on Upgrading to BlackBerry Desktop Software v7.0 for PCs

DesktopManager
In case you have been considering updating Desktop Manager on your PC to v7.0 I highly recommend holding off for now. We have been hearing reports of multiple problems with Sync and connections working on the new version. Users who have been calling RIM support have been told to wait a few days for the fix and @Bla1ze has confirmed as much on CrackBerry. If you have upgraded to v7.0 and are having issues you can downgrade by downloading the older version from carrier sites like T-Mobile here.

Why RIM should definitely license BlackBerry 10

Forget the rumors of a RIM sale. As with all public companies, the possibility exists. But it appears that RIM is intent on digging itself out of the hole it dog for itself in the last few years. From what we’ve seen in just the last few weeks, they might be onto something. First it was the image of the first BlackBerry 10 smartphone, and then it was the images of BlackBerry 10 running. Both look pretty sharp indeed, and should convey at least a sense of confidence in RIM’s future. Yet they might not be able to go it alone. RIM could need the help of other big mobile players if they’re going to truly thrive in the new mobile environment.

BlackBerry10

That looks like a pretty usable smartphone interface. Of course, it’s just a still, and it does look a bit like BlackBerry 7. But given what we know about BlackBerry 10 — after all, it is based on the tablet OS — we could be in for something big. Add to that a number of other features, including a 3D virtual keyboard, and RIM could really knock this one out of the park. There’s just one problem, though.

They need a serious marketing push.

It’s impossible to deny the negative public perception of RIM right now, particularly in the US. The US is a huge and profitable portion of the global cellular market, and if RIM is going to turn around the BlackBerry brand it has to do so in the States. But how are they going to convince people that the BlackBerry is back for real? Having a stunning product is Step 1, and apparently RIM plans to nail down that one. They’ll need some more oomph to make a big impression, though. And that’s where licensing come in.

While RIM certainly wants to sell BlackBerry-branded handsets, seeing as they make money that way, they do stand to benefit from harnessing the power of HTC, Samsung, and other big mobile players. Those manufacturers are basically running with Android and little else. They do have influence, and they do have clout. If they put their reputation behind a new BlackBerry OS, well, it might turn around some people that RIM wouldn’t otherwise reach.

There’s no doubt that RIM loses out some in this equation, since they might be eating into their own handset sales. But remember, RIM does have other divisions. They’ll still make money on these Samsung and HTC handset sales, not only from the license, but also fromBES and BIS connections. That is, their data center services provide income that other similar companies just don’t realize. It might be enough incentive for them to go ahead with the licensing program.

If anything has become clear in the last few weeks, it’s that BlackBerry 10 has some serious potential. We’d heard the hype before, and now we’re starting to see some of the details leak out. I expect to become more impressed as the leaks grow larger. Here’s the thing, though: RIM has to execute here where they did not in the past. As the old passive line goes, mistakes were made. Now it’s time to learn from those mistakes and forge ahead. It’s not an easy battle, not with the current state of mobile in the US. But RIM appears to be positioning itself well for Blackberry 10. Licensing it to other manufacturers could prove an excellent marketing vehicle.

Learn How to Create eBooks for the iPad with this O’Reilly eBook

 

Apple’s iBooks Author is a free software program that lets you create eBooks with minimal effort. You can either publish your eBooks as standard PDFs, that can be read anywhere, or export them in the iBook format that can also be distributed through Apple’s iBookstore.

iBooks Author, as this video demo suggests, is like a WYSIWYG editor for eBooks. It is nowhere as complex as some of other book authoring programs (for example, Adobe Indesign) and yet you get nice professional-looking eBooks that may also have an element of interactivity.

ibooks_author

The downside is that Apple has developed iBooks Author exclusively for the Mac platform and second, eBooks created using this authoring tool can only be sold through the iBookstore. You are allowed your give away your eBook as free PDFs but you cannot sell them outside the iTunes store.

If you are fine with the various restrictions of Apple and are looking for some help to get started with iBooks Author, here’s brand new title from O’Reilly Media –Publishing with iBooks Author – that should definitely interest you.

This 94-page eBook, authored by Adam Witwer and Nellie McKesson of O’Reilly, discusses every single feature of the iBook Author app but my favorite parts are the little tips and common pitfalls that you are less likely to find in the official help manual. For instance:

1. You can ditch the Media Widget and just drag and drop an audio or video file right from Finder or the Media Browser onto a blank spot in your book, but the end result is the same.

2. If you managed to get Author working on Mac OS X Snow Leopard or earlier, you don’t get to play with the 3D chart options. These depend on the Scene Kit framework, available in OS X Lion. It may seem like you can add one, but Author slows to a crawl and your chart just looks like a garbled mess.

The eBook is available as a free download on the O’Reilly website and you can have it in either PDF, ePUB or MOBI formats depending on where you want to read that book.

Publishing eBooks with iBooks Author – Apple Demo

-by Amit Aagarwal(Digital Inspiration)

Wednesday, 15 February 2012

Images of Blackberry 10 OS leaked, home screen widgets on the way…

image3Crackberry.com (CB) has recently been tipped off on the upcoming feature sets of the upcoming QNX based smartphone OS, Blackberry 10. The images below suggest zealous design changes from the team of The Astonishing Tribe {TAT}.



CB mentions that the leaked documents seem to have come from partners, but the images sure look convincing. Judging by the leaked photos, one of the most exciting feature expected on the new OS is the implementation of home screen widgets on the devices. True that the widgets look like a cross between Android widgets and Windows Phone tiles, they do look sexy and extremely functional. It also seems to be safe to assume that the Blackberry OS shall also have multiple home screens, especially since it seems one can't accommodate more than 4 widgets on one single screen, unless the widgets' sizes are adjustable.
The menu screen of the OS looks very much alike the PlayBook OS 2.0. It even has similar implementation of folders, with 4 random app icons visible on top. The pictures icon does look refurbished, with a random image from the albums visible as the cover art of the icon. What is interesting to note is that there is already a Cut the Rope application icon in the menu list, which surely suggests that the hugely popular game shall be available on Blackberry 10 right from launch.

 
image3


Speaking of apps, one serious concern I have, and hopefully the RIM execs too, is whether the current crop of applications would be able to run on the new operating system. Since the whole backbone and the architecture of the smartphones have been rehashed, I truly doubt so. Which gets me to the question, what happens to the apps Blackberry users have already bought? What adds to the injury is the fact that RIM apps have traditionally been much costlier than those on other platforms. And, I doubt many Blackberry users shall be happy to lose the support for apps that they have paid through their noses for.
image3
image3
The neat and sexy UI of phone call indicates that video calling is not too far for Blackberry devices, unless RIM decides to make that feature possible only between BB devices (maybe via BBM), the way it did with the video calling feature on the PlayBook.
Nonetheless, it must be noted that the platform still looks promising, and the rate at which the number of quality apps are growing for the PlayBook, I am hopeful the BB platform shall surely be a good contender for a third place, with Microsoft, if though it's time is pretty over as far as the top 2 positions in the smartphone market goes.
Microsoft, time to buckle up!



Tuesday, 14 February 2012

iOS 5.1 Will Release Soon

Newly published carrier profiles are indicating iOS 5.1 will be released in March 9. Eleven new profiles have been discovered that are compatible with the update.

The profiles that have been found are intended for operators in Japan, France, Greece, Finland and Sweden. After updating the profile on the iPhone, it will make sure that the network connection works correctly after Apple releases iOS 5.1.

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Apple has been slowly leaking betas for weeks now, more slowly and less regularly than is usual for an iOS beta cycle. In previous years, the new version of Operating System would debut with the iPhone in June and the x.1 release with the iPod touch in September. As for this year, iOS5 did not debut until October with the iPhone 4S and there was no new iPod touch. That is why we are in uncharted territory here.

According to leaks from the beta, it is not expected many new features to be included in iOS5.1. But anyway that sounds interesting because Apple has been known to hold back key features in the past, preferring to introduce them live on stage when unveiling some new devices.

The update will be available for the following devices: iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4, iPhone 4S, iPod Touch 3G/4G, iPad, and iPad 2.

One thing stays blur – whether March 9 is also the date when Apple will announce its next-generation iPad. Some rumors expect that Apple will release iOS5.1 simultaneously with the announcement of iPad3. Although, these are all rumors and it is hard to give a more exact indication about the update release date.

Mobile Phones before and after iPhone

 

Here is a very interesting finding which depicts reality of what mobile phones looked like before and after the iPhone.
The snapshot indicates how drastically has been altered the mobile landscape by Apple upon release its first iPhone in 2007.

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FBI’s Background Investigation on Steve Jobs

The FBI has released its 191 page investigation on Steve Jobs! The file consists of a background investigation that was conducted in 1991 – when Jobs was considered for an appointment to the President’s Expert Council in the Bush I White House, an advisory committee on foreign trade. The file also has records of a bomb threat against Jobs in 1985.

The issue of Steve Jobs’ character has come up on numerous occasions including his biography by Walter Isaacson. For Apple fans Steve’s tendency to be abrasive and aggressive is not something new (probably).

at1

With some other interesting facts, the report also says that there are a considerable number of people that Jobs apparently upset during the years leading up to this FBI investigation.

To create products like the iPhone and iPad, and empire like Apple is not typically done by killing everyone with kindness and constantly differing to the needs and opinions of others.  Jobs was not someone running for sainthood, he was an entrepreneur. If anyone became that popular and successful, one would get his share of the same treatment.

In the document is also mentioned Jobs previous Top Secret security clearance which is his time a Pixar and the work the company did for the NSA (1980s). The clearance was revoked then in 1990.

t1

As is usually the case with FBI investigations, Jobs probably have been asked who should be interviewed; it is interesting who was on the list. It is not clear who these quoted folks are, but if they were among the people Jobs referred the agents to then he did not know his friends very well. Given the number of derogatory comments throughout the report, it seems that Jobs’ friends at the time were not quite so friendly.

The report is available on FBI’s web site, here.

Monday, 13 February 2012

Import contact from Blackberry to Windows mobile using BB desktop sofware.

Import contacts from blackberry to windows phone 7 & vice-versa


 



windowslivemail
Many of us these days have our contacts spread all over the place: Gmail, Yahoo, Hotmail, Exchange, etc. It can be quite a pain.
Starting with Windows Phone 7, Windows Live will take a front and center role with the device, requiring you to use a Live ID to "sign in" on the phone to access your Xbox account, Zune profile, Hotmail/Live Mail, MSN Messenger, Phone Live, etc. This is quite similar to how an Android device requires a Google mail account, which also accesses all of Google's services.
One neat feature that will help simplify things is using Windows Live Contacts(http://contacts.live.com/), which will allow you to import your contacts from

  • Microsoft Outlook
  • Outlook Express
  • Windows Contacts
  • Windows Live Hotmail
  • Yahoo! Mail (CSV)
  • Gmail (CSV)
Those last two options are quite important for many of us and using the CSV export/import system is really quite easy (Gmail --> Contacts --> Export --> Outlook CSV). Likewise, the 'Add People' feature is quite nice, allowing digital import andconstant syncing between the following services:

  • Facebook
  • MySpace
  • LinkedIn
  • AOL Mail
  • Google
  • Outlook
  • etc.
duplicate2
Finally, you can use the Manage --> 'Clean up contacts' option in Windows Live Contacts to find and delete duplicate information, saving a lot of time. Likewise you can use the 'Merge' feature if you have many lists to import.


Photo Comparison: Xperia S and Xperia arc S

 

If you one among the people who think mega pixels doesn’t really matter in the clarity of a photo, here’s something to substantiate your theory. We have a couple of sample photos from the Xperia S (12MP camera) and the Xperia arc S (8MP). From what we see through our eyes it’s evident that arc S’s 8MP beats the S’s 12MP.

Arc S delivers a better snap in low light and normal light conditions. Just see it yourself.

 

                 Xperia arc S Samples                                            Xperia S Samples

x1x2x3x4

Sunday, 12 February 2012

Use Email to Convert Files into Different Formats

 

There exist quite a few online services that let you convert files from one format to another. You upload the source file, specify the output format and within seconds, the converted file in the desired format becomes available for download. That’s easy but there are somes limitations with this approach:

  1. When you want to convert a file, you have to upload it to the file conversion service. This is not an issue when you are converting files from the desktop but how do you upload files from iPhone, Android or any other mobile browser.
  2. Sometimes clients will send you files in obscure formats as email attachments. In order to convert those files in a format that your apps can understand, you will download the attachments to your desktop and then upload them to the file conversion service. That’s work.

Zamzar, a popular tool for converting files online, has added a new option that lets you convert files by email itself. You can forward your email attachments directly to Zamzar, without downloading them to the desktop, and they’ll be converted in no time.

c1

Convert Email attachment into Different File Formats

To get started, you need to forward the input (source) files to a specific email address like format@zamzar.comwhere format represents the file type of the desired output format.

For instance, if you have a Word document that you want to convert to PDF, you can send the file as an email attachment to pdf@zamzar.com. If you have a PDF file that you want to convert into an ebook, the corresponding conversion address would be epub@zamzar.com or mobi@zamzar.com depending on your ebook reader.

Here’s a complete list of input-output file formats that are currently supported by Zamzar. You can convert documents, presentations, ebooks, videos, audio files, archives and more.

In my test, the converted files were delivered quickly and the quality of the converted files was impressive. There’s no need to create any account at Zamzar and you can convert files up to 1 MB in a single batch. You may go for a pro account to convert bigger files that starts from $7 per month.

One more thing. You can only upload files by email and initiate the conversion process but you’ll still have to visit the Zamzar website to download the converted file. It stays on Zamzar servers for about a day and their download page is actually very confusing when accessed on a mobile phone.

KahelOS 020212 Desktop Edition out now!!!

KahelOS, the Linux distro based on Arch Linux, brings out its desktop edition. It comes with GNOME configured as the default desktop environment beforehand, a GNOME Office productivity suite,the Epiphany web browser and so many similar GNOME apps. KahelOS also maintains a rolling-release model of updating software packages using its parent's repositories like ArchLinux. This distro is in the form of a live DVD including a graphical installation program. So, what does KahelOS 020212 entail???

KahelOS

KahelOS 020212 adds new features to the earlier installer version, specially catering to advanced Linux users with a wish to have the freedom of manual partitioning the system with an added capability to resize to NTFS and Linux partitions.
It is GUI Friendly and an automatic dual-boot-with-windows option is also added for ease.

  • The other new features include
  • Updated to bluefish-2.2.1-1
  • Updated to dia-0.97.2-1
  • Updated to evolution-3.2.3-2
  • Fixed “Full Name” Issue on the User Information
  • Fixed Localization
  • Added a community-driven digital distribution service for gamers
  • Added broadcom-wl driver

For the full list of changes,see KahelOS 020212 Changelog.

Zorin OS 5.2 Ultimate released!!!

The Zorin OS Team has released Zorin OS 5.2 Ultimate, the flagship version of Zorin operating system specially made for Windows users. This release features the GNOME 2.X Classic environment in place of the Unity shell by Ubuntu. Find out what all the new release features...
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Zorin OS 5.2 has a variety of updates to Zorin OS 5 Ultimate which includes -security updates
  • upgraded programs
  • a brand new window border theme
  • an updated icon theme
  • an overhauled sound theme that features a fresh, new start-up sound
  • the zRam patch that improves performance under RAM-heavy workloads
Moreover,you get both 32 bit and 64 bit versions of Zorin OS 5.2 Ultimate for a nominal cost of €10 for a download and €15 for a DVD .
Know more on Zorin OS 5.2 Ultimate

Sabayon Linux 8 is here...

Sabayon Linux, the Gentoo-based distro provides the user with an easy-to-use workspace with an attractive look, perfect hardware detection and numerous updated software packages brings out its latest version yet.It is available featuring several desktops like KDE, GNOME, LXDE, Xfce and Enlightenment.

s1

Sabayon Linux 8 features

  • Faster, cleaner and more evolved than any other rolling distro out
  • Up-to-date system  while maintaining full Gentoo Portage compatibility within minutea
  • Performance focussed with GCC 4.6 with Graphite Loop Transformation infrastructure and Link Time Optimizations enabled
  • Upadted to Linux Kernel 3.2
  • Offers additional Server-oriented Linux kernels like OpenVZ, Vserver, Generic Server
  • Natively supports the btrfs filesystem besides ext4, aufs, and others

Read the complete Sabayon 8 Changelog..

Easily Monitor System Resources in Ubuntu With Indicator-Multiload

Do you like to keep an eye on system resource usage in Ubuntu?

Like many people I only tend to do so when my desktop is grinding to a halt because of a misbehaving app. Because of this I’m sometimes too impatient late to gracefully rectify the situation; my desktop becomes so unresponsive that nothing short of a hard reboot is required inorder to solve the screw up in a timely fashion.

But maybe if I kept a cautious eye on hardware usage I would spot rogue apps before they got out of hand. Perhaps by using something like Indicator Multiload: -

u

Features

By default only one graph - Processor - is displayed. If you’re using a multi-core CPU do note that it graphs usage on an ‘overall’ basis rather than per-core. Clicking on this graph displays a menu with more detailed data on other aspects of your system, such as memory, swap, network usage, etc.

The Preferences pane lets you fully configure what parts of your hardware are monitored, how often, and which graphs are displayed on the panel. If you’re a stickler for detail you can also adjust the colours used on the graphs themselves, though I find the default settings to be more than adequate.

Install

Indicator Multiload is available to install in Ubuntu 11.04, 11.10 and 12.04 via the following PPA: -

  • sudo add-apt-repository ppa:indicator-multiload/stable-daily
  • sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get install indicator-multiload

After installation open the Dash and search ‘Indicator Multiload‘ to launch it.

Wednesday, 8 February 2012

IPFire 2.11 Core 56 and PCLinuxOS KDE 2012.02 ISO Released

IPFire is a Linux distro which promises easy installation, nice handling capability and a high level of security. It operates through an intuitive web-based interface that is offered for beginners and professionals. It is maintained by developers concerned about security. Know more about the 2 releases...

Core Update 56 for IPFire 2.11 has been released. It is mainly a bug-fix  and security update.

IPFire

The new features include

  • Images that automatically scale up the partitions at first boot. 
  • Fixed baud rate on flash images
  • Reloads static routes after connecting to the internet.
  • Allows “:” character in configuration settings
  • Fixed changing passwords of proxy users.
  • Fixed block device detection for graphs and other scripts
  • Fixed starting/stopping errors in the openvpn-control binary for net-to-net connections

PCLinuxOS KDE and KDE-MiniME 2012.02 have been released. These are 32 bit quarterly update isos that can also be installed on 64 bit computers.

pclinuxoskde

The new update features

  • Kernel 2.6.38.8bfs kernel for maximum desktop performance.
  • Full KDE 4.6.5 Desktop
  • Nvidia and ATI fglrx driver support
  • Multimedia playback support for many popular formats
  • Wireless support for many network devices
  • Printer support for many local and networked printer devices

Know more about IPFire 2.11 Core 56 and PCLinuxOS KDE 2012.02 ISO Release

SalineOS 1.6 released

SalineOS is an open source Operating System that is lightweight and fast. It is built on the Debian GNU/Linux repositories. It uses Xfce as the desktop environment. Now the SalineOS 1.6 images are available for download. Know more on SalineOS 1.6.

SalineOS

This release brings SalineOS up to date with the Debian 6.0.4 release. This release features a set of Thunar custom actions & scripts to increase the functionality of the Thunar file manager to do following

  • open a directory as root,
  • open a root terminal here 
  • mark as executable 
  • run an MD5SUM 
  • convert stupid image formats (nrg mdf) to standard ISO images 
  • a simple disk usage utility and so on...

Get all the above mentioned custom actions on previous releases of SalineOS by executing the following command in a root termina(this will overwrite any Thunar custom actions that is currently set)

wget http://www.salineos.com/Scripts/customactions.run && chmod +x ./customactions.run && ./customactions.run

Know more on SalineOS 1.6

Snowlinux 2, codenamed 'Ice' is out!!!

Snowlinux is a set of Linux distros that are based on Debian's latest stable release. It has 4 different desktop environment namely, GNOME, KDE, LXDE and Xfce. It is user-friendly and has many useful tweaks and software applications.It also has an Ubuntu-based edition which features the MATE desktop.

SnowLinux

The latest release, Snowlinux 2, "Ice" has the following features

  • improved installer 
  • updated software and packages
  • improved software selection
  • better speed and response
  • all new look and feel
  • several system improvements

Learn more on Snowlinux 2

OpenShot Version 1.4.2 Released!

Another Openshot version is out. Now its the turn of version 1.4.2. This version fixes many locale and translation-related bugs. Find out what all...

o1

The highlights of this release includes

  • Fixed many critical locale-related bugs
  • Fixed reversed clips, for accurate IN and OUT points
  • Updated translations & fixed missing translations
  • Improved help manual
  • Fixed h.264 exporting for non-English languages

Sunday, 5 February 2012

Send Short Voice Messages Over BBM With Free VVM Messenger App (Beta)
Sending short voice messages over BBM is a fun idea. It may not be the most efficient way to communicate, but if it’s something that requires tone, sarcasm or any emotion, then text probably won’t do it justice. From the same developer that brought you the Viira GTD, you can send short voice messages over BBM with this free Beta app called VVM Messenger.
With VVM Messenger, you can send short voice messages up to 25 seconds in length to your BBM contacts for free. In a sense, this app is like PTT (push to talk) and could save you money when traveling. Check it out!
Courtesy blackberrycool

The Subscriber Count of your YouTube Channel Could Go Down

Got a video channel on YouTube? You might see a drop in the subscriber count of your YouTube channel in the coming days.
Google is doing a clean-up and they’ll remove all closed and inactive YouTube accounts from the total subscriber counts . That is, if ‘zombie’ accounts have been following you on YouTube, they won’t be counted as subscribers anymore.
The YouTube team says that once the subscribe count numbers are adjusted, YouTube channel owners can expect an average drop of 4% or less. You might see a higher drop in subscriber numbers if your YouTube channel has been around for a longer period of time because you’ll have relatively more ‘closed’ accounts in your subscriber list.
To learn more about your YouTube subscribers, go to youtube.com/analytics and check the “Subscribers” link under Engagement Reports. It shows your subscriber count by geography, by date and how your various video uploads have affected, positively or negatively, your YouTube growth.

Saturday, 4 February 2012

Surf the Internet privately with Browzar

 

Privacy is the flavor of the season! Every one values privacy on the Internet, but no matter how hard to you try to eliminate your browsing and other online history, temporary internet files, cookies, index.dat file, Flash cookies, etc, you will always end up leaving traces behind on your computer. While this may not affect most computer users, if you truly value your privacy and are looking to surf privately on the web, you can check out freeware Browzar.

browzar

Browzar is a shell browser for Internet Explorer which lets your browse anonymously without leaving any trace. Being based on Internet Explorer 9, makes it that much more secure. It also offers a Private Search too, but you are free to set any alternative search engine of your choice. It does not support ActiveX downloading and auto-complete too.

I found the .com button to be very handy and useful. No need to type the URL including .com or press Cntrl+Enter. Simply type the URL in the address bar and click on the .com button to add www and .com before and after the domain name.

Browzar comes in the installer version as well as a portable version, thereby letting you carry it on your USB stick. So the next time you are using a public computer like maybe at a cyber-cafe, your school or college library and you want to check out some sensitive information, you can simply plug in the USB stick and start browsing with Browzar.  And if you need to close Browzar quickly or don’t want to have the clean up box showing when you exit, simply hit the “Boss Button” or Ctrl + Space keys and Browzar will close instantly.

On exit, Browzar deletes:

  • Temperory Internet Files
  • Cookies
  • Browsing History like list of sites visited
  • Index.dat file
  • Media files
  • Temporary Application data like Flash and Java files.

There is also an option to Secure Delete all your web history. The Secure Delete function can be activated by selecting the function under the Browzar ‘Tools’ menu.

Browzar comes in three flavors or themes:

  1. Browzar Black theme
  2. Browzar Silver theme
  3. Browzar Windows theme.

It is a very light-weight app - just a 222 KB download, and you can download it free from its home page.

You might want to also check out this link which talks of over 25 alternate web browsers for your Windows computer, each offering a different set of features or this one about portable browsers.

If you have liked this post, you might want to check out some more, on topics like Browsers.

Download and Search Music File in 16 Search Engines using Songr

 

There are many programs that let you search the Web and download songs. However, only few are effective in their function. Moreover, they are pricey and sometimes do not offer enough options to download music from multiple services.

If you are a music junkie or the kind of user who regularly downloads and stores the music on computer, try Songr, a freeware with an ad-free interface to search your favorite music.

Freeware to search and download music

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Songr lets you search for download music using around 16 search engines, right from your Windows desktop. s2

The main window of the program, along with simple and minimalist interface offers a dedicated search aggregator for MP3 songs. All a user need to do is enter a keyword. The program then searches the string entered in various search engines shown in the screen-shot below.

In Songr, files are not required to be downloaded first. If you want, you can play them right away, once they have been located, right there in the search field. By simply double-clicking it, the item in the list can be played.

Alternatively, you can download the same item to a hard drive by right-clicking and selecting ‘Download’ or accessing ‘Save’ button from the top of the window. The results are invariably displayed and sorted in order of quality, thereby giving you the chance to easily download the one with best quality.

There is an additional search option in Songr, ‘Search by Lyrics’ that lets a user search for a song by typing part of its lyrics. This is really helpful for someone who remembers just part of lyrics but not the title of the song. Apart from all this, You can download HQ/HD YouTube videos and extract the audio track and even buy your favorite songs from Amazon, eMusic, Rhapsody and Zune.

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Songr Features:
  • Download or listen to streaming music from 16 mp3 search engines
  • Full album search
  • Automatic conversion of results to direct links to listen with your favorite media player
  • Audio extraction from YouTube videos
  • Search by lyrics: Type some words and get the name of the song and an audio preview!
  • Search by artist
  • Download HQ/HD YouTube videos and optionally extracts the audio track as mp3
  • Double clicking a mp3 file opens it directly in Windows Media Player
  • Automatic updates check, to get more search engine connectors
  • Links to buy music from Amazon and Rhapsody
  • Ad-free interface
Pros
  1. Easy to use
  2. Lets you search songs by lyrics
  3. Also downloads YouTube videos
Cons
  1. Results are not perfect always
  2. Downloads can’t be paused

Songr is very light on resources, weighs only 4.0MB and works well on Windows 7 too. Requires .NET Framework 3.5.

5 Best Free Word Processors – Comparision Chart

 

A Word Processor is a software that lets you type, edit, format and customize text. It can also refer to an Office application that lets you type your documents. While there are lots of word processors out there, it is difficult to choose a good one and the one which is perfect for you. To help you out, we have compared the features od some free word processors. Have a look on the comparison chart and let us know which you prefer.

Word Processors Compared

This is a comparison chart that compares 5 different free world processors and tells you about features of each word processor application. The chart is in image format, if you can’t view it properly then click on it to enlarge.

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OpenOffice.org

OpenOffice is an open source Office productivity suite. The suite comes bundled with a word processor, spread sheet, presentation and much more. OpenOffice was first developed and started as StarOffice and was developed by StarDivision and then it was taken over by Sun Microsystems. Click here to download OpenOffice.org.

Jarte

Jarte is a free word processing application for Windows users powered by WordPad engine. The standard version is offered free of cost, but the program is also available in Pro version. The interface and the looks of Jarte are powered by Mac OSX and it has a lot of features. Click here to download Jarte free version.

NeoOffice

All the Mac users, here is something for you, a friend of OpenOffice.org for Mac. Yes, NeoOffice is a free and open source office suite for Mac and it even looks like OpenOffice.org It was ported to Mac by Planamesa Software and it used JAVA technology to do so. It can be run on Windows by some emulation means. Click here to download NeoOffice.

AbiWord

AbiWord is yet another free and open source word processors, it was originally developed by source gear corporations and then was soon adopted by AbiSource. Then they continued with the development of AbiWord and today it is the one of the best free word processors in my opinion. Click here to download AbiWord.

Libre Office

Libre Office is one more free and open source Office suite and is a fork of OpenOffice.org. Libre Office was developed with intentions of good format support. It runs perfectly on Windows. Click here to download Libre Office.

Word Processors Comparison Poll

Please vote for your word processing software. We appreciate your vote.

What do you think is the best word processing application?

OpenOffice.org
Jarte
NeoOffice
AbiWord
Libre Office
Other:

Hope you liked our comparison chart. Comments or observations would be most welcome.

Microsoft Personal Data Dashboard lets you decide how Microsoft uses your data

 

Google has its Google Dashboard, which offers a view into the data associated with your Google Account and lets you change your Google Privacy Settings. Though not so well-known and exhaustive, Microsoft too offers a Personal Data Dashboard that lets you view and manage some of your online personal information and gives you options to opt out where possible.

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Microsoft Personal Data Dashboard

The My Profile tab in the Microsoft Personal Data Dashboard, lists down personal information about yourself, which you, yourself may have filled in while creating a Live account. If you wish you an edit and update your details here.

The My Data tab, lists your Interests, Bing searches and Microsoft newsletters which you may have subscribed too. Based on your Interests, Microsoft Advertising delivers targeted advertising to you. You can also add, delete or confirm the mentioned topics. The Bing search section lists your search keywords and the search results you clicked while signed into Bing. From the Newsletters tab, you can unsubscribe from any newsletter or subscription in this view by hovering over the newsletter and clicking unsubscribe. A nice way to centrally manage all your Microsoft newsletters.

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Under the My Choices tab, you can choose to opt-out of the personalized advertising experience. You can choose to not receive personalized ads on websites that use the Microsoft Advertising Platform, by not allowing it to use your information like Bing Searches, Interests and Profile. In the Microsoft Email Communications section, you can opt out of receiving email promotions or disallow sharing of your data with Microsoft Partners.

Microsoft is working on adding more services to this Personal Data Dashboard and given the heightened awareness of privacy issues now, among users, we hope that it will make the dashboard complete in all respects and very soon too!

Opt out of Microsoft Advertising

Many of Microsoft’s  Websites and online services are supported by Microsoft Advertising. To deliver targeted ads, Microsoft places a persistent cookie on your computer. Using this persistent cookie, Microsoft identifies you and delivers ads accordingly. Apart from delivering relevant ads, this information is also used to try to ensure that you do not see the same advertisements over and over again.

But if you want, you may opt-out of receiving targeted ads from Microsoft Advertising by visiting its opt-out page too. This page not only lets you opt out on a particular computer or browser but also from any computer even after you have signed in to Windows Live.

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You will also see the details of the cookie stored on your computer. Pretty transparent, in my opinion!

Incidentally, if you want to opt out from receiving interest-based advertising you can do so here. On this page, you can also find out which participating companies have currently enabled customized ads for your browser.

Friday, 3 February 2012

Opt out and maintain your privacy when using Google Services


Google’s change in its Privacy terms has been a cause of concern for many. Google has also responded to the wide-spread out-cry about this with the suggestion that you not log in to you Google account, if you have privacy concerns:
You don’t need to log in to use many of our services, including Search, Maps and YouTube. If you are logged in, you can still edit or turn off your Search history, switch Gmail chat to “off the record,” control the way Google tailors ads to your interests, use Incognito mode on Chrome, or use any of the other privacy tools we offer, says Google. You can use as much or as little of Google as you want. For example, you can have a Google Account and choose to use Gmail, but not use Google+. Or you could keep your data separate with different accounts, for example, one for YouTube and another for Gmail.

Prevent Google from tracking your activities

While you can always use a browser like Browzar to surf the web privately, there are also a few steps you can take, if you want to continue using your existing browsers and yet stay private, as far as is possible. To do so, you will have to log in to your Google account and change a few settings.
Turn off search personalization
Google tries to personalize your search results based on your past searches on Google, using Cookies. This search history personalization includes searches you’ve done and the links you’ve clicked on. If you have clicked links of a particular site more often, it may show you links from that site more often.
To turn off search personalization, visit this page which lets you pause and remove your Web History from your Google account. Here you will also see a list of all your earlier searches.
If you click on Pause, your web tracking will be paused, but your web history will not be erased. So check the check-box and click on Remove all Web History.
Confirm with an OK. This will Pause and remove your web history.
Turn off personal results
You can also you turn off personal results. This will also disable other personalization features. You will then be however unable to search across content shared by your friends. If this does not matter much to you, you might want to turn it off. To do so, open your Search Settings.
In the “Search plus Your World” section, select “Do not use personal results.” Click Save.
Searches which are part of the Search plus Your World, like results from Google+ shared by your friends, Picasa albums, Google products, Search History, will no longer appear in your search results.
Opt out of ad personalization
Google actually crawls your email to serve targeted advertising to you, depending on what you write in your mail. You can opt-out of ad personalization using Google Ads preferences page. Visit this page to do so. Do note that you have to opt out of two types of ads.
Opt out of Ads on Search and Gmail:

Opt out of Ads on the web:
After opting out, you’ll still see relevant ads, but Google won’t use additional information to personalize those ads on Google search and Gmail. 
Opt out of Gmail Chat History
Google stores all your chat logs. But you can opt of Gmail chat history. Such chats that have been taken off the record aren’t stored in your Gmail chat history, or in the Gmail chat history of your contact.
To take a chat off the record in Gmail and iGoogle, and prevent Google from saving their logs, click the Options link in the bottom of the chat window and select Go off the record.
Opt out of Google Analytics
Many websites including this one uses Google Analytics to track web traffic and related statistics. But if you wish, you can opt out of websites logging your visits. For this you can use the Google Analytics Opt-out Browser Add-on released by Google.
This plug-in works on Internet Explorer, Firefox, Chrome, Opera and Safari. The add-on communicates with the Google Analytics Java Script to indicate that information about the website visit should not be sent to Google Analytics.
Opt out of YouTube
You can also opt of Google tracking your YouTube video searches, targeted advertising and viewing patterns. To do so, log in to your YouTube account and click on the Videos tab. Next click on History and select the check-box and click on Clear all viewing history.
Next click on Search History. Here, select Pause History. You can also select the check-box and click on Clear all search history.
You can also click on your Settings and click on Privacy.
Next un-check the Please use my account to provide me with relevant advertising check box and click on Save Changes. This will prevent Google from tracking you and providing you with relevant advertising.
If you need to reverse any of the changes made in your Google account anytime, you can do so, by opting back into the feature/s.
You can use Internet Explorer in inPrivate mode, Chrome in Incognito, etc, to avoid your browser saving Cookies and browsing history. In any case, you could also maybe make a habit of clearing  your Cookies more often, especially before using Google.
I am sure there may be more settings where you could opt-out to try and maintain your privacy, while using Google services. If you do know of any more, please do share them here for the benefit of others.
Incidentally, you may also want to check out Microsoft Persornal Data Dashboard, which lets you decide how Microsoft uses your data.