26 May 2011

Let’s Name: Online Name Ideas Generator With Integrated Domain Checker

letsname.com logo

Coming up with names is a knack. You either have it or not. Most don’t so that is also why you see all kind of crazy startups names so often.  Any help should be welcomed in that regard then if you happen struggle naming things.

letsname.com site screenshot

Let’s Name is a online Name Ideas Generator with a integrated Instant Domain Checker that can give you a random set of names. Names that are offered based on two  main criteria: 1.- Domain Availability, 2.-Word popularity on Google searches.

This way you get word suggestions that will have at least one of the two top domain terminations (.com and .net) available and that are contextually somewhat relevant based on Google search results.  The name ideas generator is the main feature, but you can also check any name you want word by word in the integrated instant domain checker in the site. Instant as in you only have write the word and it will check and tell you about its domain availability, Google popularity and twitter username availability without even having to click enter once or the page having to fully refresh.

Let’s Name makes for a easy and free way to kickstart  a name ideas brainstorming session on your own while also being able to instantly know if the names you came up with have a good domain available to them and if they are any popular contextually to Google searches.


Let’s Name



24 May 2011

MyBlogLog Is Dead

MyBlogLog logo

MyBlogLog.com is now dead. As Yahoo once again kills a innovative property they bought and then neglected.  MBL was a Blog Social Network that  debuted back in 2005 and that could be added to any existing blog, which allowed any Blogger to also have a extra social profile centered around the Blogs he worked or owned. It was the first one to do something later on Google and Facebook copied with their Blog Badges and to what Facebook also connected to a Facebook Page via the Like Buttons.

MyBlogLog frontpage screenshot

MyBlogLog was one of those Yahoo Acquisitions where I thought that Yahoo had actually  understood the huge potential behind a startup and they were buying it so it could reach that potential for them. One of those where I got it completely wrong.  Yahoo only put resources for MyBlogLog during a year and then let it rot. So from the time when they released their MBL 2.0 version in february of 2008, they were already on Yahoo’s Death Row just like it also happened with Delicious among many other Yahoo acquisitions and projects.  But unlike with Delicious, Yahoo was not interested in selling MBL and for some reason they just wanted it to close it. Back in December 2009 was when the first rumors about MBL being closed down started and because of a snapback of user interest, Yahoo decided to let the property lie there in zombie mode until now.  The way I see it, is that they then calculated that another year would be the time needed for any interest left from users and bloggers to wane. Unfortunately they were right. Because of Google Friend Connect being in every Blogger Blog and also because of the Facebook Page Badges, most of what was interesting about the original MyBlogLog has a perceived replacement of sorts. But even then, the point was not that. The point is about just how bad Yahoo is able to fuck up in executing the potential out of a acquired web property that formed part of a stellar lineup of ideas from the web 2.0 craze.  Ideas that could had gone way further but just didn’t because of how they were handled and instead got extinguished. So long MyBlogLog, so long.

If you want to know why exactly I felt so strong about what could had been done with MBL, then please read the post I wrote back in December 2009 called:

MyBlogLog: A Perfect Example Of Missed Opportunities



23 May 2011

New Options At Appatic

Appatic.com Logo

I finally have added some pages to Appatic. The pages just added are:


The official statement to what Appatic is and also what are the principles of the blog. That means it should be able to serve as a explanation to why the blog is the way it is.

Submit Your App

If you got a app, represent a app or just want to recommend a app that I have yet to write about, now you can do so just by filling out a simple form. I of course don’t give you any promises. But some of you wrote me about having a way to submit a app to me without having to go out of your way and find my E-mail and now there you have it.


Got any question or feedback about the blog? You want to tell me something anonymously without any repercussion? Now there is a form for you to do just  that.


I am going to be offering 100x100 Ad Squares here in Appatic. So if you want a option to support this blog. Please inquire about it using that page.  Ad prices are for a month and for the first few months, I will be offering a special price for ads that rent the space for 3 months.


If you got any suggestion or demand, then you can also leave a comment in this post. Otherwise use the Contact page.


20 May 2011

Free Online JPG To PDF Converter

jpgtopdfconverter.com logo

In terms of file converters, the honest truth is that desktop apps are still way way way better. In the case of JPG to PDF conversion, I have previously posted about Zilla JPG To PDF Converter and i2PDF. Both good and free desktop apps that can convert JPG files to PDF among other formats.  But if you only need a quick JPG to PDF converter and don’t want to download and use a desktop app for it. No doubt that a web app is a better fit.

JPFtoPDFconverter.net site screenshot

JPG to PDF Converter is a free online file converter that does just what it’s name states. A simple and quick single purpose online tool you can use in just a bunch of clicks. From the name and a glance to the converter site everything is pretty much self explanatory.

If you instead were looking for a PDF to JPG converter, then give FM PDF To JPG/JPEG Converter Free 2.0 a look.


JPG to PDF Converter



19 May 2011

dudmail: Free Disposable Email Accounts With E-mail Forwarding

dudmail.com logo

I had posted about a good free disposable email provider before like in the case of the prank styled ShadyMail. And I also had posted about  a good free email forwarder too in the case of Tempalias. But never about a service that did both things right at the same time for free.


dudmail is two different services in one . It is a Free Disposable Email account provider and It is also a Free Email Forwarding service.  The novelty is that you can generate Disposable  Email Accounts without even registering and if you decide to register, then you also get the email forwarding feature.

In the case you only want to generate Disposable Email accounts with dudmail, you can do so by just thinking one up and then checking the inbox for the account you just thought up at:


Just like that. No registering needed, hell you don’t even need to have a look at the dudmail homepage if you don’t want to either. The catch here is that these disposable email accounts work as public, but not publicized email inboxes.  Which should not be a problem since the only way someone would be able to read the email you get in your disposable email inboxes, would be if you had shared the name of your account or if someone had came up with the same inbox name as you for a dudmail inbox. 

So the risk is very low, but I don’t mind stating that you should not use these accounts as actual personal or work email accounts.

A extra perk of the disposable email accounts being just anonymous open inboxes in a webpage is that they also offer you easy to use rss feeds for your disposable email accounts. This way you can add the feed to any feed reader or as a live bookmark if you happen to use Firefox.  All generated feeds also come from a clear url just like the ones from the actual dudmail inboxes:


All of this without even having to register. But if you do register, you also get the ability to forward the e-mails to your actual personal email account and the option to make your generated disposable email accounts at dudmail private too . Finally, you also get to choose from 3 domain terminations for your disposable email accounts:

1.- dudmail.com



Any of these domains work the same way as described in this post just as dudmail. All email logs and contents are only held for 14 days along with attachments. 

Dudmail is really a great online service. Works well, got good features and incredibly is not only completely free but so far  also ad free. Which is very impressive.  Totally recommended.





13 May 2011

Adobe Flash 10.3: Consolidating Flash On Mobiles, Pushing Along On The Desktop

Adobe Logo

Just 3 months from the Flash 10.2 release and here we are again.  I seriously don’t know for sure if this is a record but Adobe is now surely moving faster than ever with their Flash Player releases. 

Flash 10.3 is all about bug fixing and adjustments more than anything. It really didn’t brought as many changes as Flash 10.2 or Flash 10.1 did for the desktop OS side. But on the mobile side? Now that is another story.  10.3 represents the very first release of Flash on Mobile that can be called both stable and polished. It is also no surprise that the first to benefit from this release is Google, As the big G is now the biggest strategic partner of Adobe. Something that may read as a exaggeration until you realize how integral (as in "bundled in”) Flash now is to Google strategies with Android, Chrome, Chrome OS and even Google TV. 

New Features

  • Media measurement (desktop only) – Measuring video usage just got easier. Using Adobe® SiteCatalyst® with Flash Player 10.3, developers can implement video analytics for websites with as little as two lines of code for the first time. Media Measurement for Flash Player allows companies to get real-time, aggregated reporting of how their video content is distributed, what their audience reach is, and how much video is played. Mobile support will be available in an upcoming release.
  • Acoustic echo cancellation (desktop only) – With Flash Player 10.3, developers can create real-time online collaboration experiences with high-quality audio for telephony, in-game voice chat, and group conferencing applications. Developers can take advantage of acoustic echo cancellation, noise suppression, voice activity detection, and automatic compensation for various microphone input levels. End users will be able to experience higher quality audio facilitating smoother conversation flow, without using a headset.
  • Enhanced privacy protection – Flash Player 10.3 enables local storage clearing within browsers’ privacy settings and streamlines the controls of the Flash Player privacy, security and storage settings within the local control panel of desktop OSes.
  • Security enhancements including the support of auto-update notification for MacOS – See the Security Bulletin APSB11-12 for more details.


  • Ton of Bug Fixes and Adjustments

As you will see from the list of new features, for the Desktop side the only really relevant news is that now your browser will also be able to flush out Flash based cookies on demand at the same time regular cookies.  A small feature, but a big win for personal privacy management and something that should be taken as a big deal.

Overall a good release that continues to improve on the big steps taken with 10.1 and 10.2. And while in Windows, Flash has given a good experience for quite a long time now. I have read reports that this release was also a big step for those in OS X and Linux. Something I gather a related improvement for all the work Adobe has done pushing for Mobile and for Google.  Now I just wonder how long it will take for Flash 10.3 to also appear for Blackberry’s The Playbook and for HP’s WebOS. A thought I bet many also had when they started reading about how much this release is for mobile, yet right now only for Android.


Adobe Flash                                                                   <—Official Homepage

Adobe Flash for IE                                                    <— Quick Download Page

Adobe Flash for Other Browsers                 <— Quick Download Page


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10 May 2011

On The Microsoft–Skype Deal


No doubt that the biggest news of the day was Microsoft stating its signed intention to acquire Skype for 8.5 billion dollars.  While there was already a rumor on it first unearthed by Om Malik. Many of the Microsoft Watchers didn’t believe it, more surprisingly not even  Mary .J Foley from ZDnet believed there was much truth to that rumor. Yet truth it was and maybe the reason for such disbelief was that the rumored asking price was for 7 billion. A figure that ended up falling short to the actual 8.5 billion asking price. Thing that surely added to the shock and disbelief.  And in tone to that shock and disbelief many blog posts have already being posted about the deal.  But from the posts already made on the Microsoft-Skype deal, there are many things that are either not being discussed or pointed out I would like to bring up and some I would just like to reiterate on:

Did Microsoft Overpaid for Skype?

Yes, no doubt about it.

Did Microsoft Insanely Overpaid for Skype?

That is something no one can state for sure, read on below so I can explain further on that.

Why Skype went for such a high price?

There are three takes on that:

1.-Skype owners collective perceived value of skype as a whole based on both the company and its patents pre-IPO

2.-Skype perceived value by those bidding to acquire it that could have gone from a weak bid by Facebook, and semi-serious bids by Google, Cisco or who knows.  Rumors go that such bids were around the mark of 3-4 billions, but that was more or less the supposed perceived value of skype pre-IPO. So there is nothing certain on if Google or whoever else was bidding for Skype made bids for over that amount or not.

3.-Skype possible potential value for the first opening month post-IPO.  That could have gone for up to 5 billion.

Why Microsoft didn’t simply waited to see what Skype worth was for the market as a public offering?

For one because it was a gamble, even if Skype had went for 5 billion post-IPO. A acquisition would have required a premium offer of 30-50% above whatever the stock value had went.  Meaning a cost that could have gone anywhere from 6 to 7 depending on what Skype value went and how the news of a Microsoft possible acquisition of Skype would have made the stock spike up at the same time.

And also a second reason was that there was really nothing clear on the chances of Google, Cisco or someone else acquiring it. Microsoft could just not risk it on that part.

But didn’t Skype was property of Ebay?

Yes, they originally bought it for 3.1 billion in 2005. The premise of the acquisition was that they wanted to integrate it with Ebay listings, but never did because apparently they didn’t liked the idea that if they added Skype as a option to Ebay Listings, they would have been forced to allow VOIP competitors to also integrate with Ebay Listings.  Later on Ebay wrote off the Skype acquisition for 1.9 billion and also lost a bit in stock value in the process. But what was more interesting about the price Ebay originally paid is the year that happened been 6 years ago from now and that it didn’t included the patents for the skype core technologies in the deal.  Finally Ebay solved the issues with Skype founders Niklas Zennström and Janus Friis and  sold a 70-percent stake in the company ceding control to Silver Lake, Andreessen Horowitz and the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board, which included a deal where the skype founders would get a 14-percent stake of Skype all based around a 2.7b valuation.

Complicated stuff.

Does it makes sense for Microsoft to acquire Skype for such a high price?

Well, no. They are overpaying, but they really ended up being forced unto that price because they acted late on deciding to buy skype. If they had acted earlier,  price could had been 6-7 billion instead. But it is good to note that according to the Microsoft-Skype Press Live Stream earlier today, the price was set in mid-April.  And acquisition talks started a month ago spurn out of other  talks on exclusive Skype-Microsoft deals that were previously in discussion.

It is worth it for Microsoft on the long run to own Skype?

In my opinion of course it is if the acquisition does came with all of the skype core technologies patents and because of the competitive advantage it gives Microsoft over Google and Cisco.

What is Microsoft going to do with Skype?

So far Steve Ballmer has officially said it will be integrated with Lync, Live Messenger, Outlook, Hotmail and Xbox.  The how and the when of such integrations is what remains at large. But they should vary on a product by product strategy, as that is usually Microsoft M.O.

How is Skype going to make money for Microsoft?

Microsoft is setting Skype as its own Division, this means that they will continue to operate almost as if they continued being a independent company. With the difference of being able to integrate and cooperate with other Microsoft divisions directly.  Skype projected revenue for 2011 is around 1 billion dollars with a $300 million of operating profit. But that is without counting the boost in growth acceleration it could bring to Lync, Kinect and Windows Phone adoption as another selling point to those products.  But perhaps the most interesting scenarios around Skype are on the advertising monetization side now being powered by Microsoft AdCenter, the possibility of Microsoft going as far as integrating Skype with Bing later on and Microsoft now being the handler of Skype previous deals with Verizon Wireless, Facebook, among others.  So there is room for Microsoft to make a lot of money with and because of  Skype.

What will happen with the Skype clients in Android, iOS, Mac, Linux, etc?

Nothing, things should not only stay the way they are now but they could actually improve.

Microsoft stated today that it would continue to support (maintain) and invest (continue to update) in Skype on Non-Microsoft platforms. Citing that Skype on all platforms was a critical component for its growth.  There is even a Steve Ballmer quote on the matter when the question was more or less re-asked:  “I said it and I meant it” as on Microsoft supporting Non-Microsoft platforms with Skype.

Nonetheless it would be a given that Microsoft platforms should get the best integrations and special features. It would be weird if they didn’t.

Could the acquisition of Skype by Microsoft tamper with the current grow of Skype?

While some are speculating on Microsoft bringing damage to the Skype brand via ill will, it would be a total anomaly if that tampered with Skype current trajectory. The reason is that there is only an all-in-one alternative to skype right now. The closest to that is Jajah and Jajah has now been slowed down considerably as it is now part of Telefonica. Other competitors in the consumer side are too small to serve as true replacements like is the case with Viber and Fring. On the business/enterprise side of the equation you only have the usual suspects of WebEx and Cisco.

Many would instead just mention Apple Facetime and Google Voice. But they are not even in the same realm of a service as Skype to begin with. At least not of as this point.

Could the complex assimilation of Skype because of its overlapping with Microsoft products tamper Skype growth and potential?

No,  at least in theory it should not happen as Skype will continue to operate as it is right now regardless of slowly being absorbed and integrated with Microsoft products and overall strategies.

Would not Microsoft becoming the absolute #1 on IM and Video-Chat could be met with a block by regulatory authorities?

Yes, it is possible that could happen. That is why Microsoft has been careful on the language it is using in its intention to buy Skype. Yet you never know if Google and Cisco will not retaliate publicly against the deal as soon as tomorrow.

Why the point that skype is a voip to telephone company too has been downplayed so far by Microsoft?

Right now, that no doubt is because Microsoft multiple partnerships with carriers. So there must be some serious carrier-Microsoft tension at the moment. After all, Microsoft owning Skype makes them  the biggest Global VOIP based Telecom too. You can bet that is the one thing on the minds of carriers and telecoms all around the world.


Is that there cannot be any until the deal is actually approved. But I think that the info I  enumerate as questions and answers do add some perspective to the Microsoft-Skype deal that I have not entirely seen in the coverage of this news.

As a bonus I added  Long Zheng take on how Skype logo would look if Microsoft revamped it.



Microsoft Press Release on the Skype acquisition.

Microsoft On-Demand Press Conference Stream



09 May 2011

All Of MIX11 Content Now Freely Available For Web, Desktop Or Mobile Consume

MIX11 Logo

One of those events that for some reason slipped my mind to post about here on Appatic was MIX11 back when it took place during April 12 to 14. Thing I wish had not been the case because it really was amazing to watch live online via the SL4 video player. It had the very best smooth streaming quality up to now. And it not only adjusted the streaming to the capacity of the broadband line available, but it also was smart enough to differentiate when you were watching it full-screen to then and only then offer you the best possible quality as a way to save bandwidth and because of scaling common sense. Then you had the video quality could go from 240p to 720p dynamically based on your connection to seriously diminish  the chances of the video feed stopping to buffer or  just drop during the live broadcast. But you usually only would see variation in the stream if you were on a flaky or not fast enough broadband connection. I for example saw no variations,buffer stops or drops in my live stream.

But you don’t have to take my word for it as all the SL4 Video Players, for all the keynotes and sessions have that functionality right now too.  However, if you prefer to not watch any of it online via your desktop browser, you can also watch the content up to HD (1080p) via WMP or whatever your desktop video player happens to be in your desktop. Or via any mobile device as the MIX11 website got all the content in the following formats apart from offering you the in-site SL4 video player:

  • WMV HD (1080p)
  • MP4 High
  • WMV "Medium"
  • MP4 “Medium”
  • WMA

And just last week, The MIX11 website gave the following numbers on what all the content from the MIX11 event at the site translates to in Gigabytes:

  • WMV HD (1080p)    128,410,475,374
  • MP4 High                     67,651,541,974
  • WMV "Medium"       47,659,255,467
  • MP4 Device                31,823,782,765
  • MP3                                 1,542,707,911

            Total Media              277,087,763,491

Given they missed counting WMA, that should take the total around to an approximate of 279gb of video and audio data. All there to watch or sift through if so it entices you. There is a hell of a lot of info about WP7, IE9, Silverlight, HTML5, etc, etc and all of its future from the Microsoft view via their product offerings and product strategy.

Finally, the reason why I still dare to do this post even if a bit late. Is because I still see a lot of blogs pushing posts sputtering info as rumor or news based on info from the MIX11 keynotes or MIX11 sessions that is therefore already official or known.  So, since all the data is there ready to consume in many ways direct from the source, I thought that for that reason, it was well worth a reminder post.



MIX11 Sessions

MIX11 Keynotes


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03 May 2011

Pen.io: Simple Online Publishing

Pen.io logo

One of the big trends in online blogging services and online web publishing services in general for the past 3 years has been CMS (content management system) or WPS (Web Publishing System) services becoming simpler, easier and minimalistic.  This tred was leaded by Tumblr and taken to the extreme by services like Posterous and Soup.io on the CMS/Blogging side.  On the WPS side it has been more about services that let you quickly build your web page a la carte as fast as possible like jimdo or even stribe. But now I think that pen.io got to be the very extreme of that approach of going for simpler, easier and minimalistic for when it comes to Web publishing systems.

pen.io site screenshot

Pen.io is a simple, easy and minimalistic online web publishing system that is focused around letting you create text driven web pages. That can be created, edited, published and shared to the whole world in less than a minute. 

To start using this service you just need to input the name of your web page and input a password for that web page and then clicking on the “create the page” button directly in blank web form at  the site homepage.  Nothing to explain or read beyond that for you to start. Fast and easy.


Once you have created your page, you will see in your browser address bar that you got a pen.io domain for your web page based on the page name you chose.  The pen.io domain should then read as http://name.pen.io.

And in that same domain you will note there is pre-filled web page with text. This is pre-filled because of 3 reasons:

1.-It serves as a demo of how a pen.io web page will first look.

2.- It serves as your pen.io user tutorial.


Finally as you then learn from the tutorial this web page is pre-filled with,

3.-It also happens to serve as your dashboard.

Now, you only need to click in the title body or text body to reveal the form you will need to use in order to edit your pen.io web page. And that is really it. You now know everything you could possibly need to know about what pen.io is and how to use it.

Personally, the only reason I would use or recommend pen.io is because it is really the simplest way to create a personal web based journal, a one time use online project or a web page for  any kind of scenario that you think setting up a blogger blog would be a overkill for.

But if you need some more convincing, you can also check out what pen.io considers good usage examples of pen.io in action at

Pen.io Top Pages





01 May 2011

Jobety: A Job Search Engine For Web Designers And Developers

Jobety.com logo

Jobety is a job search engine for web designers and web developers.  With the goal of offering good quality focused results for their also very focused target user.

jobety.com site screenshot

Niche custom job search engines are nothing new, but given that they come and go. Having some bookmarked around is always a good a idea, since you never know when you are going to need a extra gig to make ends meet or the case of needing some extra money. Jobety offers a good choice for any web designer and web developer looking for one time gigs or even full time job options.


To use it,  you only add your job keyword and you location. Then you just filter by time or distance. Results come from aggregated job boards and job posting feeds all over the internet. 






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