Archive for the Frequently Updated Category

*UPDATED – Call Management, ‘Google Style’ – Free, Useful, RevolutionaryD

Posted in Download Management, Frequently Updated, phone, System Monitoring on April 25, 2008 by Ethan Dickenson

11.15.08. Google is not granting access to new beta testers through the Grand Central Website.  It has been several months since they did.  However, you can go to this link

http://www.grandcentral.com/home/reserve

and request to be included in the beta test.  Give it a try!!  I have been using the GC interface and I’m very pleased with all the call management functions.  When Grand Central opens it’s site for ‘production’  use to the masses,  it will revolutionize the way people use their phones.  More soon…   You can read my original post on this subject below.


Grand Central is a company that was purchased by Google about a year ago. It is the greatest new addition to phone management on the market and it’s free! Everyone should check this out. It is currently in Beta but I signed up a long long time ago and, while supplies last, I’ll send you an invitation if you leave a comment asking for one on this article…

When you sign up for Grand Central you get a new phone number. It is the last phone number you will ever need. It assigns you the number and then, through an intuitive GUI, it enables you to forward all your phones so they ring on that single number. You might think, why would I want to do that? It’s a little hard to explain all the advantages but there are many. I’ll do my best to outline the basics but to really understand things you should go to Grand Central’s website and check it out there. For one thing, now all your calls are logged on your computer, so you have a historical database of your incoming calls in a manageable format. It replaces your answering machine so you also have a historical database of all your incoming messages… It allows you to leave ‘group defined’ greetings for the incoming calls that you miss. This means that if you have someone you’ve been dying to get a hold of and you want to tell them something if they get to your answering machine, you can leave a customized message that will play as your announcement just for that phone number. This is a really impressive feature for both business and home use. You can have calls coming from certain numbers sent forward to certain phones. This way, if you always want your Mother to ring your home line instead of your business line you can assign all her phones to ring on your home line! As well, now you only have to remember one number and everyone can contact you via that one number and you set up the rules so when the call comes in it is sent to whatever number you would like it to be sent to. There is even a way to put a web call widget on your blog so anyone can call you and you don’t have to worry about them abusing the number because you have total and complete control when your calls come in! There are a hundred other great things that Grand Central can do to make managing your incoming calls more efficient so check out their website and if you want to give it a try, let me know and I’ll send you an invitation to the beta so you can get your own Grand Central Phone Number!

http://www.grandcentral.com/

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Fontashia Fonterrific fontellicious fontout fontorino fontolla fontetaboutit

Posted in Desktop Enhancement, Entertainment, Frequently Updated, Web Site on September 20, 2007 by Ethan Dickenson

OK today we’re talking fonts. It’s been a while since I ventured out into the font world to have a look at what’s available out there. I’ve done a couple of things that I hope will save you some time. I’ve picked through most of the free sites and I can fill you in on their individual strengths and weaknesses. If you don’t want to look through a bunch of fonts, and you trust my taste, I’ve linked directly to the fonts that I’ve installed on my system. One more thing before I turn you loose: the term ‘breedlink’ refers to something that links directly to a file and it will start downloading. So whenever you see that term, you’ll know that when you click on it a download will start. Below, I’ve given you a link to the sites and a ‘breedlink’ to the fonts on that site that I found to be something I could read and may use.

At Font Freak you can download an endless supply of free fonts. The site layout is very basic. They just list the name of the font in the font’s ‘type’ and that’s all the information you get before you download. This makes for fast downloads but you don’t know what you are getting… The one thing that I really didn’t like about this site is that they mixed in shareware fonts with the free fonts. About 1 of every 10 fonts on the site is a shareware font. I don’t know how they hope to sell anything because you have every size and shape of font imaginable on the site for free.

Visit the fontfreak site at this link:

http://www.fontfreak.com/fonts-a.htm

These are breedlinks to the fonts I installed on my PC from this site.

Breedlink – http://www.fontfreak.com/fonts/a/AccidentalPresidency.zip

Breedlink – http://www.fontfreak.com/fonts/a/AntiKwa.zip

Breedlink – http://www.fontfreak.com/fonts/a/Aramis.zip

Breedlink – http://www.fontfreak.com/fonts/a/Arcitectura.zip

Breedlink – http://www.fontfreak.com/fonts/m/machinescript.zip

Breedlink – http://www.fontfreak.com/fonts/m/maize.zip

Breedlink – http://www.fontfreak.com/fonts/m/mechanihan.zip

Breedlink – http://www.fontfreak.com/fonts/s/sanity.zip

Breedlink – http://www.fontfreak.com/fonts/s/sanskritroman.zip

Breedlink – http://www.fontfreak.com/fonts/s/shrewsbury.zip

Breedlink – http://www.fontfreak.com/fonts/w/wesley.zip

Breedlink – http://www.fontfreak.com/fonts/z/zrnic.zip

———

Fonts 500 advertises themselves as “The Webs Top 500 Free Fonts”.

This site has quickest and easiest layout for downloading fonts. They list several on a page but you don’t get to see much of the font before you download. Same as above only in smaller type but at least you know they are all free so you can download away! I did notice some overlap between this site and Font Freak.

This is a link to the site itself:

http://fonts500.com/

Here are the ‘breedlinks’ to the fonts I installed on my PC from this site.

Breedlink – http://fonts500.com/zip/altea.zip

Breedlink – http://fonts500.com/zip/devroye.zip

Breedlink – http://fonts500.com/zip/ghostwriter.zip

Breedlink – http://fonts500.com/zip/adventuresubtitles.zip

Breedlink – http://fonts500.com/zip/queensland.zip

Breedlink – http://fonts500.com/zip/calligraphicav2.zip

Breedlink – http://fonts500.com/zip/rackham.zip

Breedlink – http://fonts500.com/zip/calligula.zip

Breedlink – http://fonts500.com/zip/oktoberfest.zip

Breedlink – http://fonts500.com/zip/nonpoint.zip

—————————-

Urban fonts was a laid out a little differently. When you ‘mouse over’ a font type it shows you the alphabet in that font and that helps with the selection process but it also slows down your ability to grab a bunch of fonts quickly. So the tradeoff is better knowledge for time put in. Their site is well worth a look. At this point, I was getting tired of downloading fonts and I was getting there seemed to be a lot of overlap with the other 2 sites but it is still a good site and I was happy I found it.

This is the link to Urban Fonts:

http://www.urbanfonts.com/

These are the ‘breedlinks’ to the fonts I thought were best at this site:

Breedlink – http://www.urbanfonts.com/scripts/index.php?aardvarkcafe.zip

Breedlink – http://www.urbanfonts.com/scripts/index.php?acens.zip

Breedlink – http://www.urbanfonts.com/scripts/index.php?salamander.zip

——————

Exljbris, is a totally different site. This is a guy that makes his own fonts and has created a website to distribute them. He has 8 different high quality and original fonts that are all readable and will be nice additions to your font library. I’d recommend you go to their site and download each of them. One bit of advice, if you look at the list of fonts on the left of their web page, you’ll notice that the first is named delicious, I was confused and thought it was a hot link to bookmark their site but it isn’t… Just click on deliscious and it will download the font…

http://www.josbuivenga.demon.nl/index.html

————

Those are the sites I’ve collected over the last couple of years. Please let me know if you know of a better site and I’ll try it out and probably put it in. This is a post that will be updated frequently so come back often to see if I’ve changed anything. Any new posts will be at the top and they will be marked as ‘new’.

Don’t Forage – Terabytes of Free Storage Available Online

Posted in Disk and File Mgt, Download Management, Free Storage on Internet, Frequently Updated, Utilities, Web Site on September 19, 2007 by Ethan Dickenson

This post is about file storage, not to be confused with photo storage, or a backup service. File storage can be used for a lot of different things and I’ve done my best to describe each service below. Generally, I’m talking about any type of file, could be photo, video, audio, text, word… files that you want to share with people, files that you want to store just to be safe and have another copy somewhere, or files you use for a website or a blog. All the services below allow you to link to the file you have uploaded to their site. spiderdanceToday you can store files and grant online access to your friends or the world. The amount of free storage available to everyone in the world is unlimited now. The computing industry has changed so dramatically. See the last paragraph of this post for my thoughts on this subject. But immediately below are links and descriptions to plenty of free storage on the web. I have not identified a ‘best of breed’ in this category because, as you will see, they all have slightly different market niches, messages, limits…

eSnips – Create an account and you can upload 5Gb of music, pictures, video, whatever you want. This site is designed to share with your friends and/or everyone in the world, however, the site your friends go to has so many scripts on it that it some browsers can’t read the page. I don’t want to put a negative spin on eSnips at all because their back end, which you will deal with, is great and I’m sure they will address issues as they come up. They have a flash uploader that works well for uploading several files. You can select several files at once, the file structure is straight forward, and you can mark files as private and manage a nice little 5GB archive for yourself at their site. They also have an uploader that integrates into your web browser and I really like the features it provides. You can tag, describe, and name your files before you upload and you can select to resize photos… If you can, this native uploader that integrates with your browser is the way to go. So enjoy eSnips because they are truly a great site.

http://www.esnips.com/SignInAction.ns

MediaFire – is the first free storage site that I found that offers unlimited space. I wasn’t that wild about their upload page, it is pretty basic but it works and you can set it to download several files at once (about 8 I think) but you have to select each file. I bet they come up with something better soon, because today they are a little behind the curve on uploaders but that could change any day. MediaFire gets points for it’s file structure and sharing ability and, of course, the unlimited space.

http://www.mediafire.com/

Microsoft’s SkyDrive – offers a puny 500mb free and I recommend that you use it! They are a very stable organization and who knows whatsmall kid dance is going to happen with the economy. This site is not designed for you to put a file up and share it with the world. It is designed to be thought of as a remote drive for you personally. I keep personal documents that I really need on this site. I also have a Window’s Live Space account which is like your Windows homepage and is integrated with SkyDrive. I think you’ve got to have a .net ID, which I recommend you take the time to get if you have not done so yet, and the site also integrates with your xbox 360 gamertag. The uploader is file by file so nothing special there but the file structure is the most familiar the most secure and dependable. So if you’ve already drank the coolaid go get yourself your 500MB and sing your praise to the great SkyDrive in the sky.

http://skydrive.live.com/?lc=1033

SendSpace Lite – This service was originally organized as a site to transfer large files and that is still their primary marketing spin. I think they used to have a limit on the amount of data that you stored on their site but they evidently have switched it to ‘unlimited’ recently. The individual file transfer size limit (not to be confused with total storage limit) for free users is 300MB but you can split and join files and they have a good FAQ on their page about it. SendSpace has an uploader (beta) that you download and it runs on your PC. This is not a site you should use for backup because they are very clear about the service being ‘as is’ and without warranty and basically, if the service is available, you can use it. However, with the unlimited restrictions on the amount of data that you can store and the effective locally running uploader, you could push a lot of data out to them very quickly and efficiently but their marketing message is pushing strongly away from providing the type of service you need to depend upon for backup or general availability. You can read about it on their FAQ.

This is a great site to use if you’ve got some large datasets that you may want to share with other people and/or you just want to keep ‘casual’ backups of that data around. It is a great spot to put the large files that you might normally delete from your system. Their ‘MAX’ service (fee based) offers a lot of options which I think would be really valuable to software developers or copyright owners who need to manage the distribution of media. You can set limits on the number of downloads or the amount of time a download is good for. But everything I link you to in this site is free. I only wanted to point out the marketing position of the site and their major direction. Regardless, SendSpace can be of great value to home users like us who take advantage of free services.

I’m giving you 2 different links to SendSpace, they have a program that gives me points if you sign up for a free account through the first link. The points go towards their fee based service which I don’t know if I would find value in or not. Regardless, I guess I would prefer that you sign in through the first link but if you have any reservations about doing that please go a head and use the second link (which is the same you would get if you Googled ‘SendSpace’).

http://www.sendspace.com/invite/t7dt1x

http://sendspace.com/register.html

Divshare – I can’t find a size limit to the amount of space a registered user has on this site. They don’t advertise ‘unlimited space’ like some of the others but they don’t talk about size restriction either. They talk about the limit of a single file transfer of 200MB (2GB if you are a paying customer) but they don’t mention a ‘total size’ for any single user. Divshare has a great flash uploader and you can upload entire folders with it. They also have a native loader that is fast, easy and works really well. DivShare is clear about your files being available “forever” and they give you a link so you can share your filesgirldancer with anyone you please. You can also password protect your files. There is no search engine at their site so files are only shared with the people that you refer to the site. You can create your own ‘player’ at this site and put your logo on it. This is a great tool for maintaining a blog or a website and I may utilize it for that purpose in the future, especially if I decide to add video. I just found out they have an uploader that is integrated with WordPress so I’ve downloaded that and will report back and update this post once I see how it works.

http://www.divshare.com/signup

Whew, this was a more detailed post than I intended it to be. However, unlimited space free of charge is truly worth taking some time to explain and I do wonder how all this will effect our computing environments and our culture. It is an amazing change that the market will take a while to digest and figure out how to use. Once that happens and the value is recognized and taken advantage of, the implications of this free unlimited space will reach deep into our culture. 15 years ago a 40MG drive ran you a couple hundred dollars and now you can get an unlimited amount of space for free on the Internet. You can store and grant on-line access to files of nearly any size and content (varies by service – IE nudity). It is truly a revolution and it is changing the way we think about computing. Once data transfer rates quadruple (or more, next 5 years) and space isn’t a problem, then think of the amount of media that will be hitting us. It’s out of control today but in 5 years it is going to have a gigantic impact on our culture.

‘The List’ – 33 Gotta Have Firefox Extensions

Posted in Firefox, Firefox Extension, Frequently Updated with tags , on September 13, 2007 by Ethan Dickenson

If you don’t want to read my witty commentary on every extension, you can just come to this post andicon19.gif grab my entire Firefox configuration by clicking on each URL and then installing each extension. Someday I may come up with something that simplifies things even more but this is the fastest way to get my configuration in a snap. I have now completed this list and I don’t expect it to change unless I discover some great new ability.

Product 
URL 
Status Bars
https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/1318
Password Exporter
https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/2848
Greasemonkey
https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/748
Stylish
https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/2108
IE Tab
https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/1419
Clippings
https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/1347
PasswordMaker
https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/469
DragDropUploader
https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/2190
Super DragandGo
https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/137
InformEnter
https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/673
Open Profile Folder
https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/545
PDF Download
https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/636
NoScript
https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/722
Save Image in Folder
https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/614
Calculator
https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/1194
TabMix Plus
https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/1122
Google Toolbar
http://www.google.com/tools/firefox/toolbar/FT3/intl/en/index.html
Favicon Picker
https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/3176
SimpleDelicious
https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/4688
All-in-One Sidebar
https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/1027
All-in-One Gestures
https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/12
Zotero
https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/3504
Compact Menu Blue
https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/3722 
Download Statusbar
https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/26 
DownThemAll
https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/201 
Enhanced History Manager
https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/420  
Firefox Universal Uploader
https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/4724 
Flickr Sidebar
https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/1717 
Gmail Manager
https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/1320 
Hyperwords
https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/1941
Menu Editor
https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/710
Stylish		
https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/710

Eventually I plan to link all the names of the products to my post on the product but I thought my readers would find value in this now so I’ve gone a head and put it out here. I hope to have the rest of the work done soon.