30 April 2010

FakePosters: Create Your Own Motivational-Like Poster

FakePosters Logo

Fake Posters took the idea of Motivational Posters Parodies ( Now a “Classic” Internet Meme ) and made it a online generator and community.  And you know what?. It is a good idea as a somewhat continuous source of amusement. I am actually surprised this idea was not taken on by the Pet Holdings network (icanhaz, failblog, etc) given the  amount of sites they got.

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It could not be easier to use. It should not take you more than 3 minutes, really:

  • Choose a photo
  • Write your title and your text
  • Save your poster and share it.

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    Or just check the posters in the site and edit any poster you like and make your own if you are feeling lazy. You can edit any poster already posted you find in the gallery.

    Once you do you will end with a poster like the one shown below.

     

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  • 29 April 2010

    PicShadow: Add A Custom Shadow To Any Photo

    picshadow logo

    From the same line of thinking as other single purpose online photo tools like Red iGone, Here is PicShadow.

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    A simple online photo tool that lets you add a customized shadow (inclination, depth, color, etc) to any photo up to 3mb, either you upload it or you find it online. It also lets you choose the output file format once you have applied the Shadow.

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    PDFcast: Upload, Search and Share PDF Files Online

    pdfcast.org logo

    I have posted about PDF search engines like Search PDF Books and OpenPDF.  But i didn’t had posted about a PDF documents network before, because i had not found one good enough to recommend.

    PDFCast changes that. This is a Digital Documents Network like Scribd or Docstoc but only for the PDF file format.  It also happens to be a marketplace for selling E-books and Technical Documents as it also allows you to do that if you happen to have a Ebook or the rights for any documents you think people may want to pay for. Otherwise all the other files are for free viewing or downloading.

    Find

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    You can browse for PDF Documents and Ebooks by search or category filters.

    Upload

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    You can upload PDF files up to 10mb and have them displayed in a PDF viewer in a landing page where you can also leave comments.

    Share

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    You can also share that file by embedding the viewer for your PDF file in your blog or website.

    Or by downloading the file and then pass it around if needed.

    In short a great online community and digital documents network for those entirely geared into the PDF format.

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    PDFcast

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    28 April 2010

    Redigone.com: Online Red Eye Remover

    redigone.com

    Red iGone could be the perfect example of a online single purpose tool. It not only focuses in a area of expertise, it truly only does one thing. It removes red eyes from any photo you upload. That is it.

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    27 April 2010

    Pixuffle: A Online Photo Scrambler

    pixuffle logo

    Pixuffle is a single purpose online tool that allows you to open a photo from your PC and then lets you scramble sections of the photo to turn it into a Puzzled Photo.

    You only need to click start to load a picture.

    ( If you are using IE8, you will need to use the compatibility mode for Pixuffle to work. )

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    Once you have loaded a picture, it will place a overlay of four sliders that will let you slide half of the photo in two directions in a endless loop.  Now you only need to mess around with the sliders however you want.

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    Once you are satisfied with how your photo puzzle looks. You can either save it locally, save it locally while also sharing it to the Pixuffle Flickr Gallery, scrap it and load a new photo or simply reset the photo to its original state and start anew.

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    So this is pretty much a reverse photo puzzle because the point is to scramble the photo and not to assemble it back. The result of such scrambles sometimes do have very pleasing/amusing looking results and sometimes they are just a mess ( like my quick example above ). If you like the idea, trying Pixuffle out will only take 1 minute of your time.

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    Pixuffle

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    25 April 2010

    Shady Email: Hide Your Real Email Behind A Suspicious Disposable One

    Shady Email

    From the same developer behind ShadyUrl, now you can have a Disposable E-mail with the same humorous and fun concept.

    Disposable E-mails generators and programs became a nice tool to have around the times of the Web 2.0 craze back in 2004-2005. As people starting using them to sign up to all kind of services in order to avoid the spam that was overflowing into inboxes everywhere as spam filters back then were not a sophisticated as now.  So these Disposable E-mails will forward everything to your real E-mail. But the contents will pass an additional layer of Spam prevention via the Disposable E-mail Service. Add the fact that you will be fully aware of where did you used it and having one will make the possibility of any actual spam reaching you even slimmer.

    Shady Email will let you have a Disposable Email account powered by WhySpam.Me with a suspicious name from a generic looking domain just by filling a simple form.  While the idea of a Disposable E-mail as a way to prevent E-mail Spam is sound already, making it Shady will actually increase its chance of spam never getting to you.  Spam Networks do actually scan all the E-mails addresses they acquire and rank them against a database based on the name and domain. They will still try to spam every account they harvest, but they will get spammed differently and with different intensity based on its ranking. 

    So it not only offers a nice service, it will also make it amusing for you to use it.

    If after a little while of having the Disposable E-mail generated by Shady Email you want to erase it, the only thing you need to do is Open WhySpam.Me and go to the “Manage Spam” section to find that function.

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    Shady Email

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    24 April 2010

    Opera Mobile And Opera Mini Browser Emulators

    Opera Software Logo

    Opera Mobile and Opera Mini are still to this day the most popular Mobile Browsers in the world and that is not just because they are good but because you can find them everywhere. From the cheapest Feature Phone to the highest end Smartphone. But also because it can be even found in other devices like the Wii.  So while Opera is a no-story in the desktop, it is THE story when it comes to mobile. And mobile is the most important new thing to care for when it comes to finding an audience.

    So with that in mind if you have a blog or a website, it is in your best interest if it can be seen well with Opera Mobile Browsers. Thing you can now do without having them in different phones but from your Desktop and your Browser.

    Opera Mobile 10 Browser Emulator

    It is being offered as a download for all the platforms in all the current OS versions so you can install it and check your sites, blog or any site you want and see how it renders in Opera Mobile 10 Browser.  Usually found in most Smartphone OS platforms and as the basis of the Wii Browser.

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    It opens by default in the highest offered by Opera Mobile that is 480 x 800 and you simply resize the window if you want to check how sites would be seen in the other common or not so common smartphone resolutions ( like 480 x 600 or 360 x 480, etc )

    You have all the features you would see by running it in a device so it is a 100% faithful emulation.

    Opera Mini 5 Browser Emulator

    It is being offered In-Browser at a dedicated page in Opera Software website. The only thing you need is to have Java installed in order to see the Demo. Opera Mini 5 is the latest version and it is what is being shipped in the newest feature phones and it is also now being offered for the iPhone thanks to Opera being able to make a special version of it just for the iPhone OS.

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    If you need or want to check the previous version Opera Mini, there is also a link for the 4.2 Simulation that you can see in another page. The Opera Mini Emulators (and simulators) are also 100% faithful to how you would use them in a mobile device.

    Some Notes

    If you see some strange formatting issues in the Opera Mobile browsers that is because of some Auto-Formatting that they automatically apply to how HTML is presented. The problem is that it will either ignore the canvas measures of your template or the measure of the images in a page respective to the an article body.  But usually the page will still be perfectly readable.  Flash, Silverlight, JavaFx  elements  and sometimes Ad units will not be displayed as they are not supported by the browsers.  

    Still great to have these emulators around to easily check your websites or blogs. Recommended.

    Linkage

    Opera Mobile Browser Emulator

    Opera Mini Browser Emulators

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    Docs.com BETA : Microsoft Office Documents Online Storage, Discovery, Sharing And Collaboration For Facebook

    Docs.com Logo

    During the f8 conference Facebook announced a little partnership with Microsoft for the unveil of Docs.com.

    Docs.com unlike what most of the big blogs are reporting, is not meant to be taken as the direct way Microsoft is going to compete with Google, Zoho and Adobe on the Online Office Suite model.

    This new offering first goal is to partly replace Office Live Workplace and it’s second goal is to offer a Microsoft version of what the likes of DocStoc, Scribd, Adobe Share and finally Zoho Docs already offer: A Digital Documents online portal.

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    So the startups most alluded by this new offering will be DocStoc and Scribd as this could compete directly to the core of what they do. The interesting spin on Docs.com is that it right now only connects with Facebook. So you can only share your documents and collaborate in them with your Facebook contacts at this moment.

    A final important thought about Docs.com is that it is being put as a Microsoft FUSE Labs offering.

    This fact in particular means that it is a experimental product that is meant to change and comes without a guarantee of actual release. The way i see it, the idea is sound as many other similar startups have already proved in the Digital Documents biz. The only thing it needs is for it to have connection with LinkedIn and Windows Live to make it the best option for Office Documents because you may not want to keep the documents social at all or because you want to share and collaborate with your business contacts from LinkedIn instead of Facebook

    Docs.com BETA is certainly a great way for you to store, share and collaborate with your Office Documents in Facebook. The only thing to wait is for Office Web to be launched so it can be really used appropriately and a thing left to be seen is how/if Microsoft plans to integrate it with SkyDrive, Windows Live,  Office Web and other possible Social Networks like the mentioned LinkedIn or just leave it as a Facebook only product. Something that i don’t think would make much sense, but you never know.

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    23 April 2010

    Microsoft Fix It Center BETA: Automatic Windows OS Fixer

    Microsoft Fix It Center Online Logo

    Microsoft Fix It is not a new offering at all. It started around 2 years ago as a way to apply Windows OS configurations fixes via scripts in a automatic fashion. The only hurdle was that you had to go and look for the script that could fix a certain error knowing exactly what error you had from a website and then apply the fix with a click. Perfectly fine for Windows OS Power Users, but not exactly friendly to the rest. That said, it still beat the alternative of looking up a possible solution in windows support forums by a long shot.

    Now things are very different as Windows 7 is a lot more resilient to OS configuration errors and registry corruption than XP and Vista ever was. The two things that are the most common reason for bad Windows OS experiences.

    Microsoft Fix It Center BETA is a new product that packages all available Fix It Scripts into a desktop client that you can run to diagnose and solve all kind of Windows errors caused by a vast array of conflicts that can occur via any number of reasons. Sorry if that sounds vague but it is what it does, and it does very well.

    Microsoft Fix It

    Before Fix It Center you had to know the specific error you were looking for and then scan for it in the old Fix website. Now you only need to know what area of your OS functionality is the one that presents a error. You have 25 different areas to choose from. So if it is a printer related error you just click run in the Printer area troubleshooter and let Fix It Center check if it is a known error it can fix automatically.

    Or you don’t even need to be sure of exactly what is wrong. You can check all or some of the areas and see it find the error you are experiencing in order to fix it.

    Once you decide to run a certain area troubleshooter and authorize it to run. I do recommend for you to choose: “Detect problems and let me select the fixes to apply” option in the troubleshooter window before it runs the area diagnosis.

     

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    My reason to suggest you to always do that, is because you may have knowingly modified that area yourself to get extra functionality or to tweak its existing functionality.  The troubleshooter will check for all the default and recommended settings integrity. And if these have been changed it will also revert them along fixing errors if you set for the “Detect problems and apply the fixes for me” option. So you will lose the tweaks and modifications in that area if you do that on top of it resolving a error. If you instead go with my suggested mode it will show the specific issues in that area one by one and you can decide which ones to apply or not apply based in if they are really errors or not. Something you will note right away as it gives you the diagnosis results. If you are still not fully convinced by what it is telling you, it can also run a detailed report on the diagnosis in order for you to be as sure as possible before applying a fix.

    Fix It Center at this moment is in a BETA state (But i found it very solid) and it counts with 300 different scripts for 25 different areas of any of the current Windows OSes: XP, Vista and 7 in either 32 or 64 bits versions.

    New scripts will be added to the software via its online portal as people starts reporting of missing fixes and information of its use to Microsoft. The app is free and the only thing you need is a Windows Live ID. The Information sharing is Opt-In but in this case i also recommend you to check in as it will speed up this software development and release.

    I consider Fix It Center to be a essential windows app because it is not only the best and easiest solution of its kind, but also the official one. It is also even more essential  if you are still using XP or you are keen on keep using XP, while it keeps being a excellent solution to have around in Vista and 7. Totally recommended.

    Linkage

    Microsoft Fix It Center Online                 <— Homepage

    Microsoft Fix It Center BETA                        <— Direct Download Link

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    22 April 2010

    Thumba: A Great Silverlight 3 Based Photo Editor

    thumba.net logo

    Thumba.net is a really swift and clean photo editor. It is at the level of pretty much any of the high end Flash/Flex based Online Photo Editors with the exception of Aviary Phoenix. It was made by Brazilian developers and thanks to that it counts with 3 languages: English, Spanish and of course Portuguese.

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    However unlike the other Online Photo Editors, thanks to it being Silverlight 3 based, it already counts with the OOB (Out-Of-Browser) Mode that lets you install it in your Computer ( Windows & OS X) in only 3 steps if you right-click on it while having it open in your browser of choice. Once installed it will reopen as a local app window.

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    The editor counts with pretty much everything you need in a Photo Editor for basic and medium level photo editing. It also counts with full screen mode in both the browser and desktop version so you can use it in whatever way you want.

    It will be interesting to revisit it once it gets upgraded to Silverlight 4 as that should give the developers ample room to grow given all the new features they can then easily add to it. Thumba works in all browsers and platforms (You need Moonlight 3 Preview 6 in Linux) but it can only work via OOB in Windows and OS X at this moment. It is free and it is one of the best Photo Editors RIA’s around even as new at it is. Very recommended as it is also really easy to use.

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    21 April 2010

    Silverlight 4

    Silverlight Logo

    Last week Microsoft finally released Silverlight 4. A update to the now quite known RIA Runtime that brings a head to head competition to pretty much all of Adobe browser and desktop plugin technologies in a single blow. The updates to Silverlight 4 respective to previous versions of the runtime are not only big, but the biggest jump in functionality and flexibility so far.

    The main reason to saying that, is because now it is all about the so called “3 screens and a cloud” mantra that Microsoft has been chanting in the last 18 months. And how it is now taking shape with Silverlight as the main weapon alongside Windows Azure and IIS7. With Silverlight 4 the jump from the Web to the Desktop is now complete and the jump to mobile and devices (TV’s, TopBoxes, Xbox, etc) has also begun.

    After the 2010 Winter Olympics and many other small events around the world powered by Silverlight. The RIA Runtime is now reaching 60% of desktop computers. For that reason it now has been integrated to Bing Maps and it is part of the premium experience of the Office Web Apps to be rolled out with Office 2010 as it gets released in the Summer.

    It is expected by Microsoft that Silverlight will have a minimum reach of 75% of desktop computers before 2010 ends in the worst case scenario. I do must state that this figure has not been publicly said by Microsoft yet, but that it is a very conservative number considering that it only would need to gain 2% of marketshare a month to reach that number. Current pace is around 2.5% per month since its adoption has maintained in a sustained crescendo from Silverlight 2 to now.

    What is Silverlight?

    Silverlight it is a Cross-Platform , Cross-Medium RIA (Rich Internet Application) Runtime that allows a certain content or application to be used everywhere. The equivalent of that would be the Flash/AIR strategy from Adobe.

    Or as Microsoft puts it from a development perspective:

    Silverlight is a powerful development platform for creating engaging, interactive applications for the Web, desktop, and mobile devices. Silverlight is a free plug-in powered by the .NET framework that is compatible across multiple browsers, devices and operating systems to bring a new level of interactivity wherever the Web works. With support for advanced data integration, multithreading, HD video using IIS Smooth Streaming, and built in content protection, Silverlight enables online and offline applications for a broad range of business and consumer scenarios.

    The Features

    But what it is new with Silverlight 4 and why it is a big deal?.

    According to Microsoft feature matrix these are the new features against what shipped with Silverlight 3:

    • Local Fonts
    • Printing
    • WCF RIA Services
    • Managed Extensibility Framework (MEF)
    • Webcam
    • Microphone
    • Official Support for Google Chrome
    • Output Protection for audio/video
    • Multicast networking
    • Offline DRM
    • Trusted Applications (extended sandbox)
    • IDispatch COM Interop (Windows Only)
    • Group policy object support
    • Full keyboard in out-of-browser for trusted applications
    • Cross-domain network access for trusted applications
    • Custom window chrome
    • Out of browser window settings (position, size etc.)
    • Web Browser Control and Web Browser Brush
    • Notification Toast
    • Right-to-Left / BiDi Text

    You can check the full set of features via the Silverlight Feature Matrix Board

    It is a big deal because it allows for pretty much any kind of small and medium sized application imaginable to be developed regardless if it is a meant for the web or the desktop, for Windows or OS X. Something that before was just not possible to do for Silverlight.

    What is Next for Silverlight?.

    There is still a lot left for Silverlight full story to get its potential, but at the pace it is evolving and expanding i can calculate that it will only need 18 months more to do so. The pieces left are:

    1.-Mobile

    It has just started to show up in Mobile and surprisingly enough it didn’t showed up first in a Windows Phone. Symbian was the first mobile platform where it is now available. It should be mentioned that the state of Symbian version of Silverlight is not even at Silverlight 3 level. It is on a point in between 2 and 3.

    The second platform to get it will be the PMX Windows Phone branch that will launch this May with KIN on Verizon. Windows Phone Classic (WM6.5+) and Windows Phone 7 will not get Silverlight support until after the summer. You can still of course start developing for Windows Phone 7 already.

    MeeGO (Previously Moblin and Maemo) will also get Silverlight support later this year as Microsoft had signed a agreement with Intel to port it for Mobiln and it maintains a good relation with Nokia.

    Until now Microsoft has not made a clear announcement on a intention to support Google Android and Chrome OS. Neither has any statement being made about the iPhone OS. But that may end up falling to the reach of Miguel De Icaza Team (Novell/Mono/Moonlight).

    2.-Devices

    Just early this month Microsoft announced that Silverlight will also get into HDTV’s and Top Boxes among other things. But while that means it will reach your TV, it don’t ends there because Silverlight is also a integral part of Windows CE 7 that will  power a immense spread of devices you will use everyday without realizing it. And that it’s previous version also happens to be the core of all Windows Phone OSes and all Zunes.

    3.-Linux/Apple/Google

    It is no secret that this is a area where Miguel De Icaza will pick up the slack as a way to advance the state of Mono (Open version of .NET) that also encompasses  Moonlight, MonoTouch, MonoDevelop, MonoMac and soon MonoAndroid.

    Miguel has already stated that they will support MeeGo and Android with Mono. There is nothing that says Moonlight 3 will not end up in Android and possibly Chrome OS since Moonlight 3 now works with Chrome in both Ubuntu and Suse as in Firefox. In the case Microsoft decides to not support Silverlight in a official manner for those platforms.

    Moonlight 3 is right now about to reach beta status and it falls in a middle point from Silverlight 3 and 4. Normally that would be of worry but Silverlight 4 is fully backwards compatible with all previous releases and Microsft own Windows Phone 7 version of Silverlight Mobile will be in a middle point from Silverlight 3 and 4.  Other platforms like Symbian and MeeGo will also be having a similar Silverlight level.

    Finally unlike what some say, Silverlight has always worked in the Mac in a official form and so it is the case for Silverlight 4 and future Silverlight releases.

    Final Notes

    In the end what matters is that with Silverlight 4 you will be seeing a lot of cool apps to benefit from and that i will of course tell you about the best of them. But in order for you to use them, you will need to have Silverlight 4 installed.

    Linkage

    Silverlight 4 Download          (Scroll down a little and you will see the download panel at the right)

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    14 April 2010

    Tagxedo: Silverlight Based Interactive Wordle Creator

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    Tagxedo is a Interactive Wordle (Word Puzzle) Creator made in Silverlight that is quite similar to Tagul, with the difference that Tagul is Flash based and that the intention is to create automatic link tag clouds that are also a interactive worldle.

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    In this case is all about the artistic side of wordles at this point. To have a visual representation of something made of words that relate directly or in context to what it is being visualized. Tagxedo is quite a advanced little tool that is still evolving and given the developer seems to be very aware of the development environment of Silverlight. Once Silverlight 4 gets released it is very likely he starts updating it and making it a lot better.

    Right now you can submit a url for a automatic wordle that will represent the homepage or a entry in a site or you can craft it by hand and write down the exact words you want to use. Once you do that you give it the desired shape, size, color, etc, etc you want. Once you finish you can save a PNG snapshot of the wordle and also save it for the public gallery of Tagxedo if you want share your full interactive wordle publicly.

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    A very nice wordle creator. I think the very best one i have seen. But i hope that once Silverlight 4 is out, the developer can add the following missing features:

    • 1.-Printing
    • 2.-Export to Embed  (would be great to have a blog widget of your wordle)
    • 3.-Linking    (So it can also be a proper Tag Cloud)
    • 4.-Backgrounds
    • 5.-Frames

    These 5 features are essential if this tool wants to be offered as a freemium tool as the developer hints.

    But right now even as it is, Tagxedo results in a great little tool that everyone can use because of its amusement value. Later on, it could truly become into a compelling web service utility depending how it evolves. Tagxedo works in Windows, Mac and Linux (if using Moonlight 3 preview)

    Linkage

    Tagxedo            <— Homepage

    Tagxedo App

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    NASA Hidden Universe Windows 7 Theme

    Spitzer Space Telescope Logo

    Nasa Spitzer Space Telescope  from NASA is one of the Space Telescopes that were used in the World Wide Telescope project from Microsoft and they now have released a Windows 7 Theme called Hidden Universe that is full of majestic imagery taken from some of the most remarkable points of time in our universe to this point known of course.

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    Download and enjoy

    Linkage

    NASA Hidden Universe Windows 7 Theme       <— Direct Download Link

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    via Life Rocks 2.0

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    .NET 4.0 Now Ready For Download

    Microsoft .NET Logo

    .NET 4.0 bits are finally up and it comes with some big changes all around as stated in this press release:

    The .NET Framework is Microsoft's comprehensive and consistent programming model for building applications that have visually stunning user experiences, seamless and secure communication, and the ability to model a range of business processes.
    The .NET Framework 4 works side by side with older Framework versions. Applications that are based on earlier versions of the Framework will continue to run on the version targeted by default.
    The Microsoft .NET Framework 4 provides the following new features and improvements:

    • Improvements in Common Language Runtime (CLR) and Base Class Library (BCL)
      • Performance improvement including better multicore support, background garbage collection, and profiler attach on server.
      • New memory mapped file and numeric types.
      • Easier debugging including dump debugging, Watson minidumps, mixed mode debugging for 64 bit and code contracts.
      • For a comprehensive list of enhancements to CLR and BCL go here.
    • Innovations in the Visual Basic and C# languages, for example statement lambdas, implicit line continuations, dynamic dispatch, and named/optional parameters.
    • Improvements in Data Access and Modeling
      • The Entity Framework enables developers to program against relational databases using .NET objects and Language Integrated Query (LINQ). It has many new features, including persistence ignorance and POCO support, foreign key associations, lazy loading, test-driven development support, functions in the model, and new LINQ operators. Additional features include better n-tier support with self-tracking entities, customizable code generation using T4 templates, model first development, an improved designer experience, better performance, and pluralization of entity sets. For more information go here.
      • WCF Data Services is a component of the .NET Framework that enables you to create REST-based services and applications that use the Open Data Protocol (OData) to expose and consume data over the Web. WCF Data Services has many new features, including enhanced BLOB support, data binding, row count, feed customization, projections, and request pipeline improvements. Built-in integration with Microsoft Office 2010 now makes it possible to expose Microsoft Office SharePoint Server data as an OData feed and access that data feed by using the WCF Data Services client library. For more information go here.
    • Enhancements to ASP.NET
      • More control over HTML, element IDs and custom CSS that make it much easier to create standards-compliant and SEO-friendly web forms.
      • New dynamic data features including new query filters, entity templates, richer support for Entity Framework 4, and validation and templating features that can be easily applied to existing web forms.
      • Web forms support for new AJAX library improvements including built-in support for content delivery networks (CDNs).
      • For a comprehensive list of enhancements to ASP.NET go here.
    • Improvements in Windows Presentation Foundation (WPF)
      • Added support for Windows 7 multi-touch, ribbon controls, and taskbar extensibility features.
      • Added support for Surface 2.0 SDK.
      • New line-of-business controls including charting control, smart edit, data grid, and others that improve the experience for developers who build data centric applications.
      • Improvements in performance and scalability.
      • Visual improvements in text clarity, layout pixel snapping, localization, and interoperability.
      • For a comprehensive list of enhancements to WPF go here.
    • Improvements to Windows Workflow (WF) that enable developers to better host and interact with workflows. These include an improved activity programming model, an improved designer experience, a new flowchart modeling style, an expanded activity palette, workflow-rules integration, and new message correlation features. The .NET Framework 4 also offers significant performance gains for WF-based workflows. For a comprehensive list of enhancements to WF go here.
    • Improvements to Windows Communication Foundation (WCF) such as support for WCF Workflow Services enabling workflow programs with messaging activities, correlation support. Additionally, .NET Framework 4 provides new WCF features such as service discovery, routing service, REST support, diagnostics, and performance. For a comprehensive list of enhancements to WCF go here.
    • Innovative new parallel-programming features such as parallel loop support, Task Parallel Library (TPL), Parallel LINQ (PLINQ), and coordination data structures which let developers harness the power of multi-core processors.

    A very developer geared press release as expected. But for the end user it simply means even better .Net Apps with better effects, better performance and compliance to the latest tech.

    There is not a example of a .NET 4.0 app out in the public right now that i know of. But i have personally have been trying out many private beta apps using .NET 4.0 and the first apps i have seen being developed with it are really excellent.  Two of the few that can actually be mentioned by name would be Graphic.ly and Blio.

    These two are very different forms of Rich E-Reading software with built in stores. But other examples of the .NET 4.0 apps i have seen range from a completely translucent and layered 3D Modeling app to a enterprise CRM app that can pull from all kinds of databases and create rich 3D visualizations of the data with projections, etc, etc.  Those are just the ones i have seen but there must be already hundreds of apps like these being developed with .NET 4.0. So the bottom line is that this update is no fluff. It is a big update. And now that the final version of .NET 4.0 is out, the previously private beta apps should be surfacing publicly in the next following weeks.

    1.-Web Installer

    Less than 1mb so it downloads the bits and does the installation automatically

    2.-Standalone Installer

    50mb installer with all the needed bit to install that is not dependent of a online connection while installing.

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    Both work with all the currently supported Windows OSes in 32 or 64 bits:

    Windows XP SP3       (Having it updated is VERY recommended)

    Windows Vista SP1   (But being in SP2 is recommended)

    Windows 7 RTM

    Linkage

    .NET 4.0 Web Installer                 <— Direct Download Link

    .NET 4.0 Standalone Installer    <— Direct Download Link

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    Visual Studio 2010 Windows 7 Theme

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    Microsoft Visual Studio 2010, the new release of the leading IDE of the world is now out:

    http://www.microsoft.com/visualstudio/en-us/

    And with that in mind the guys over at Microsoft Feed got a nice and simple commemorative Visual Studio 2010 Windows 7 Theme

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    Just download and apply.

    Linkage

    Visual Studio 2010 Windows 7 Theme

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    via Microsoft Feed

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    10 April 2010

    TinyPad: A Tabbed Notepad App With Online Syncing And Sharing

    TinyPad Logo

    I have seen many Notepad, GTD, To-Do apps so far and very few are really good in the long run.

    TinyPad is one of the very good ones that can go the distance with whoever uses it. That means you can rely on the app and see yourself actually using it more than just some few weeks or months (unless something a lot better gets you away from it of course). It got a very small installer of just 1.34mb and a very simple UI. If you saw it with a quick glance your would think it is a WordPad.

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    But only if you are still in Windows XP or Windows 2000. After all, the latest WordPad in Windows 7 while it is only as featured as Word For Windows 1.1 (1990) it does comes in a Office 2010 skin and flair.

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    So it is not on those merits that TinyPad shines, it shines in 3 other areas:

    I.- Tabbed UI

    You can have as many Notes you want Tabbed into a single window, and it will be able to show at least 10 at a time in its default window size.

    II.-Exporting & Syncing

    You can have your notes exported into a backup file locally, and you can also have your notes backed up separately and maintain them synchronized based on your notes activity.

    Or export your notes online to SharedNote.com thanks to a partnership that the TinyPad team has with SharedNote.com and once you have them online, you can also synchronize them based on the changes you make to the local counterparts.

    This is great because you then have online backups and also get your own online notes repository you can check from anywhere.

    III.-Online Sharing

    For this you need to have a SharedNote.com account where you keep TinyPad notes and also have a Twitter account. So you can share your notes links via Twitter thanks to the built-in integration with both SharedNote and Twitter.

    Or you can simply grab any sharednote.com note online version link directly from the TinyPad application as the app keeps your online links around once you have published a local note online.

    Then you can share that link in any way you want.

    Some Notes

    TinyPad is a good solution to keep all kind of notes organized and well formatted. You can have GTD notes, To-Do notes and Keep snippets of information in without ever using more than one window.

    Thanks to its integration with SharedNote.com you also get to keep a online back up you can check out from your Smartphone or from anywhere without worries and the Twitter integration is a nice addition to boot in case you want to share them with a friend or the whole world.

    Tomboy would be the main competition of TinyPad and while Tomboy Online is not yet up, Tomboy also got several other things going for it as being completely Cross-Platform and having several Mobile Apps  and a Companion App ( Tasque ) in development indirectly to the main product. 

    Some of the things that bother me about TinyPad is the nonsensical domain for the app being iTinyApp.com instead of TinyPad.com or TinyPadApp.com and they trying to make that little bit rational by having a Mac OS X theme by default in a app that is totally Windows based and geared since it can be installed in any Windows OS from Windows 98 to Windows 7. In the case of Windows 7, it still don’t comes with any Super Taskbar Integration or Aero Glass support.

    But putting my nitpicking aside, it is a great notes app and it is completely free.

    Linkage

    TinyPad

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    WeTransfer: A Elegant Temporary File Hosting And Sharing Service

    wetransfer.com logo

    I have seen many file sharing sites and quite a few temporary file sharing sites. But i had not seen one as well executed and pleasant as WeTransfer.

    It offers the following:

    • Up to file(s) of 2gb
    • No Registration
    • Files available for 2 weeks
    • Files & E-mail is kept private
    • Up to 20 receivers per transfer

    So from that point it already looks very good and since the files are private, available temporary without any long term commitment and without data duplication. WeTransfer is not subject to the problems that other online storage and file sharing sites face. Problems that end up with the sites closing or turning into premium and heavily advertised services.

    WeTransfer site is Flash(or Flex) based and in this very case that is a great thing that reinforces that your file links are truly private and gives you a good uploading experience without prompts or possible browser behavior glitches as with many AJAX based uploaders . It finally also allows the service to survive via a rotation of background ads that are actually quite tasteful, unobtrusive and in some cases even intriguing enough to make you click more than one of the ads as you wait for your file to upload. And since the service is free in every sense and it works very well, in find that a big OK.

     

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    Once you have sent your file or files every recipient will receive via E-mail a special link with all the details you had specified in your upload that leads to a downloading land page.

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    Truly one of the best services in the temporary file sharing/hosting niche i have ever seen. If not the best one. Recommended.

    Linkage

    WeTransfer.Info        <— The Homepage Site

    WeTransfer                  <— The Service Site

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    Xboxtweet: Let Your Xbox Live Achievements Do The Tweeting

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    Having a good desktop Xbox Live Card Windows Widget is a good way to keep track of your Xbox 360 Gaming Achievements but then that is not really enough does it?. Of course not.

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    XboxTweet is a simple way to send your Xbox Achievements to Twitter and to have a 100% public version of your Xbox Live data online via your XboxTweet profile page:

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    This page lists your latest achievements and and places links to your Twitter page, Xbox page and comes with your Game Rank counter. It also makes out a list of the games you have played. This makes also makes XboxTweet a nice Xbox Gaming Social Network on its own, even if everything is automated and you don’t have to really do anything once you sign up. It only requires your Twitter ID via oAuth (so your ID Details never leave Twitter side) and your Xbox Tag Name.

    Once you have signed up it will start tweeting out achievements as they happen:

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    I like XboxTweet and i think that it is a good little idea with a good execution. Using it is just a matter of you wanting to share your Xbox Achievements with your Twitter Friends or not and also wanting a public version of your Xbox Live Data for you to track and share.

    Linkage

    XboxTweet

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    Yogile: Simple Photo Sharing Albums

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    The space of photo sharing startups have gone down quite a lot from some years ago and that is because of the big photo sharing “silos” we now got with Facebook, Flickr, Picasa, Live Photos and things like imageshack.  Places with Billions of photos in their archives and that form part of a larger organization ( Social Network ) have become the a standard way to share photos for almost everyone online.

    Yogile is the complete opposite of that. It is meant exclusively as a more intimate way of sharing photos via albums to groups or your private contacts. While this also exists in the big names of the space. There is nothing as obvious to make your photos more private as the simple reassurance of privacy thanks to obscurity.

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    The photo albums come with 3 different layout views, a slideshow viewer and very plain photo pages.  Another addition in the case of public and group based albums is that there is a quick look icon to check how many people and who exactly are the members of a album and how many photos they have contributed to the album. A simple hover and you get all that info right away. Another button lets you share any album link via E-mail or to multiple contacts if you login with your E-mail ID.

    Another good final quality of the Yogile Albums is that their url don’t needs to be shortened as they are already thought to have a short length:

    yogile.com/word#mln

    So that leaves you with a link anywhere from 19 to 29 characters at most depending the first two words in your photo album title.

    Simple, well designed and fast. A good option for anyone that want to keep photo albums as simple and plain as possible.

    Linkage

    Yogile

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    03 April 2010

    SocializedCard: A Landing Web Page For Your Online Identity

    socializedcard.com logo

    SocializedCard is a Online ID Card provider. While there are other that focus on providing such service as a Widget, they are more about giving you a landing page for Online ID Card.  A Online ID Card is a simple way to expose your public details with links for where you want found online. Be it Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, your blog, your site, etc.

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    Why Would Want This?

    It can be used mainly in two ways:

    I.- A Personal Site/Blog Replacement.

    Maybe you got a Facebook account, a LinkedIn account and even maybe a Twitter account. But that is it. You don’t got a personal blog or you are not interested in sharing it because you use it as a journal or only got open for family and friends. Having this Online ID Card is a good way to have a simple url to share and let your new contact or old friend decide in what way to contact or connect with you Online.

    II.-A Supplemental Personal Web Page

    You got quite a bit of time online, you are a active internet user and you are in a dozen or more different online services/networks.  Having a Online ID Card is a easy way to keep track of them and also let everyone know all the place where they can connect with you independently of wherever you originally met someone online or in real life.  

    The Service

    You have to sign up for a account and once you do you get a SocializedCard URL:

    http://socializedcard.com/YourName

    This url will give you a landing page.

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    In your Landing page you can put your address, public phone number, website address and a Picon (photo icon). It also comes with your localization in a Google map that expands if hovered.

    Then of course you can list any of the links you want to be found and to make it easy to track if you Online ID Card is working, it comes with page views counter at the bottom of your SocializedCard web page.

    Some Notes

    It is a very basic service without thrills or frills.  It works fine and it looks fine enough. The service would be better if it offered some customization and extended itself via a good widget version of your Online ID Card.

    Linkage

    SocializedCard

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