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Archive for the ‘Software’ Category

WeFi: Wifi hotspot sharing & mapping application

WeFi map

WeFi is a new collaborative wifi mapping tool that records open wifi networks that your computer can “see” and uploads them to a central database. Anyone can then browse their website for access points anywhere in the world and see them on a Google-powered map. The ultimate goal is to “make open Wi-Fi act more like a wireless infrastructure that can compete with 3G networks, except freely created and shared by the users.”

Wonderful idea, though their site seems to think I’m in Slough. (via Boing Boing)

Apple reveals Windows Safari web browser beta

Apple launches Windows Safari beta

Microsoft ripping off European customers?

Disregarding all the other pointless versions, Windows Vista Utimate Upgrade edition: $249.99 (£127.13) $466.06 (£236.99)

Er, Microsoft. We’re not stupid! How about you come back here and re-price the EU editions of your (already overpriced) new operating system? Thanks.

Follow Santa around the world with Google Earth

Follow Santa around the world with Google Earth on Christmas Eve. There’s also a toy tracker game: Santa’s elves have hidden gifts around the world. Follow the clues to find the next one. A new gift is added each day. (via Lifehacker)

I finally downloaded Second Life the other day. Oh dear.

I finally downloaded Second Life the other day. Oh dear.” Greg Howson at The Guardian seems to have had the same reaction to Second Life as me. I just don’t get it. I’ve played World of Warcraft, and at least that seems to have a purpose… even if it is just effectively collecting harder and harder to obtain artifacts. Can someone enlighten me as to why this thing is so popular?

DigiGuide Lite as a movie guide


I’ve been using the DigiGuide TV guide software for years and was about to download install it on the, less capable, PC in the lounge to let me know what movies are showing on TV in the evening when I get home from work when I noticed they now had something called DigiGuide Lite.

Digiguide Lite is an application which lives in the system tray and updates automatically to show what’s on TV in the UK, regionally adjusted, over the next few hours. One of the best features, for me at least, is the ability to filter shows by type. This means that I can see when I get home from work, at a glance, what movies are on TV that evening. Perfect! The best part? It’s free!

Small business project management: Part 2

I was recently looking for a simple solution for handing day-to-day tracking of quotes and invoices. I mentioned Mark Boulton‘s upcoming Flow web app which enters Beta very soon, but I also re-discovered Side Job Track. It’s changed quite a bit since I last saw it and I’ve decided that I’m going to go ahead and use it for now — it seems that this app (of the ones currently available) is best suited to my present needs.

It’ll be interesting to compare the two upcoming apps, Pro Job Track (Side Job Track for SMEs) and Flow compare when they’re both released. I’ll definitely be keeping my eye on them both.

Now, all I have to do is decide between QuickBooks and MYOB to handle my accounting… and find some time to do some design around all this paperwork!

Hey Gramps, Can I Borrow Your Mac?

Hey, Gramps, Can I Borrow Your Mac? “Apple’s commercials like to portray its users as young and hip. But a new study is offering some contrary information.

When it comes to home computers, nearly half (46%) of Apple’s U.S. user base is 55 or older. That’s compared with only 25.2% of home PC users who are in that age category, reports MetaFacts Inc., a national market research firm.”

iTunes 7: It’s a bit buggy isn’t it?

Engadget has a little article on the glitches within the newly released iTunes 7. I have, so far, only encountered a couple:

Firstly, scratchy playback. This I managed to fix by opening up Quicktime preferences and turning off safe mode, which had inexplicably turned itself on after upgrading.

Secondly, and more annoyingly, I store some of my older music tracks on an external network drive. When I used to fire up iTunes 6 with my iPod installed and had forgotten to turn the drive on, iTunes would happily skip those tracks. They’d still be listed in iTunes and on my iPod, but they just wouldn’t update. Which was all good.

Now, with v7, if I want start iTunes with my iPod connected I have to make sure I’ve started up my network drive, opened the drive in Windows Explorer and then start iTunes… or it’ll just hang using 100% CPU. I have to then force quit the application and the helper before starting it up again.

I hope they fix that bug soon!

Showtime at Apple

Here’s a quick rundown of what’s been announced by Apple this afternoon:

  • iPod beefed up to feature 30Gb and 80Gb models.
  • iPod Nano gets new, uglier, mini-style design. Presumably, as Grid212 mentioned, because of the problem the original had with scratches. It’s also been bumped up to 2Gb, 4Gb and 8Gb models and has a brighter screen.
  • iPod Shuffle gets smaller and restyled to match the new Nano.
  • iTunes 7: Movie downloads, Cover Flow (flip through your DVD and CD covers), updated interface and Automatic Album Art (which sounds rather scarily Big Brother: “As long as you have an iTunes Store account, iTunes will automatically fetch available album art for any CD you imported to iTunes.”).
  • Downloadable games for iPod like Tetris, Pac-Man and Bejeweled.
  • Movie downloads. Still 4:3, though a slightly higher (but still small) 640×480 resolution. It also, predictably, seems to be Disney content right now.

They also announced that they’re working on a sleek looking set-top box tentatively named iTV (no relation, I assume, and, pending a lawsuit from ITV, I am certain it will change) which transmits video from iTunes to TV.