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Tag Archives: Software

Speed Up Your Internet By Combining Multiple Connections Into One

You’re at an Internet cafe and you’re surrounded by a ton of WiFi networks. You got your phone in your pocket, which has a 4G connection. And there’s an Ethernet cable if you don’t want to use any of the hotspots. Normally, you’d pick one of these and download as fast as that one lets you. But what if you could combine all of them and create one super connection? Connectify’s Dispatch software lets you do exactly that. You can even combine several WiFi connections into one, by purchasing a secondary USB WiFi card (or getting a free one if you pledge more than $100). Whether it’s your 4G/3G tethered cellular device, along with another WiFi connection, with a dial-up to boot, you can easily double or even triple your download speeds. The program features a cost-awareness feature that can set priorities for Internet connections so that more expensive connections like 3G/4G will only be used when cheap or free connections become slow or disconnect.

It’s brilliant, only it’s not quite available. It’s on Kickstarter and needs some more funding. $40 pledges gets you the software, while $65 gets you early access to it. Bump that up to $100 and you’ve got the complimentary USB WiFi card as well as a T-Shirt.

[ Project Page ]

What We’ve Always Wanted: Free Software That Makes Our Keyboards Sound Like Typewriters

By David Ponce

That headline has a hint of sarcasm in it, for sure, because… since when is more noise a good thing, right? But it’s not completely untrue either. There’s a certain nostalgia in hearing the sounds of typewriters of old, at least for those of us ancient enough to remember them. In my particular case, I was maybe 5 or 6 years old the last time there was one in my house, and watching the above video instantly brought back memories from back then. In the video you’ll see an Apple device running this piece of free software that works in all applications (email, web, word, etc.) and makes authentic sounds of “letter keys, spacebar, backspace, carriage return and scroll up and down.” It has no other purpose, nor does it need one. It works on OS X only for now.

[ Noisy Typewriter ] VIA [ LikeCool ]

MultiTap Brings T9 Back To Smartphones

By David Ponce

I remember sending my first SMSs on my old Nokia using multitap. Not T9, but turtle-slow multitap. I was too lazy to learn how T9 worked and would make do with the slow method. Then one day a friend told me “type your word, and don’t look at the screen until you’re done.” Holy crap! It was like going from dialup to broadband: T9 was awesome! And that’s the way things stayed until I got an iPhone and never looked back. But there are those still nostalgic for that T9 feel and this application, MultiTap, wants to cash in on that. The app lets you use T9 as well as “Abc, ABC and 123.”

It’s $1.

[ Product Page ] VIA [ UberGizmo ]

Keyboard Key Decals Helps With Photoshop Shortcuts

By David Ponce

To get the most out of software these days, it’s important to learn how to use it properly. This goes as much for operating systems as for specific applications. Something as complex as Photoshop can take months to master, and developing an efficient workflow is important. To do this, you have to learn keyboard shortcuts and this set of decals can help. They are made specifically for the MacBook Pro’s keyboard and are “made using ultra-high resolution pictures, printed on transparent vinyl MPI material from Avery Graphics, which guarantees no residue with 3-5 years outdoor life.” And most importantly they are not expensive: $16.

[ Product Page ] VIA [ UberGizmo ]

Roccat Power Grid And Phobos Keyboard Could Revolutionize Gaming

By David Ponce

Well, that’s a hyperbole. Maybe “positively impact” is more like it, but makes for a shitty headline…

Anyway, there are a bunch of products on the market aiming to improve on the interface between man and gaming machine. For example, we’ve recently seen the Razer Blade, a $2,800 laptop that features a touchscreen beneath the keypad whose job it is to let you access vital game functions. But the Roccat Phobos keyboard combined with the free Power Grid application could ditch the expensive laptop altogether and bring similar functionality to your current gaming rig. The idea is that you’d dock the iPhone into the keyboard and it would become an accessory gaming hub. You’d have access to a bunch of shortcuts arranged in grids (hence the name), with a view into your machine’s vitals, macro keys, social networking pings, volume control, etc. You can edit these grids and include whatever you want into them, and then share your configuration with your friends. It’s pretty cool.

The application in under development at the moment, and Beta testers are being sought. We don’t know when the keyboard itself would come out, nor for how much. But something tells us it should be way south of $2,800.

Hit the jump for a few more pictures of the UI and links.

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Super Mario Bros. Had A Baby With Portal And Mari0 Was Born

By David Ponce

The Interwebs is a fun place where all kinds of dreams can come true. Like if someone thinks that it would be cool to have a game that is a mashup of Super Mario Bros. with Portal, then it just happens. And the dream becomes even more awesome when you realize that this game is free, as in beer. And yes, it plays pretty much just as you’d imagine. Mario has been given a Portal gun, and he can navigate the levels by making good use of it. It’s available for Windows, OSX and Linux, and you control it using a mouse and the ASDW keys on your keyboard, while jumping is assigned to the spacebar.

It’s available now, so check it out.

[ Product Page ] VIA [ DVice ]

The Pudding Machine That Doesn’t Like Children

By David Ponce

Kraft has launched a new marketing initiative that has it distributing free samples of its mousse-like Temptations dessert by Jell-O through a special machine. See, this machine hates kids and yells at them. We, for one, are on its side: kids and pudding are never to be mixed. However it looks like Kraft’s intentions are more demographically based: they’re promoting the product to a specific age range, adults. So what happens is that if you walk up to this machine, a camera will analyze your face and determine your age. If you’re a kid, it tells you to step aside. Adult? Free food!

It presumably uses age-related factors such as the distance between facial features, proportions, or whatever other metric the algorithms deem relevant.

“It has a big gee-whiz factor,” says Ed Kaczmarek, Kraft’s director of innovation and consumer experiences. “This is intelligent marketing. We’re making certain we get the right sample to the right consumer.”

Aside from this, it’s also a big gimmick, but one we don’t mind so much, being tech geeks. If you’re in the Chicago area, look for the machine at your local supermarket.

VIA [ Gizmodo ]

Porn Detection USB Stick

By Chris Scott Barr

This may sound like a silly thing to have in general, but I can think of at least five or six different examples where a Porn Detection USB Stick would come in handy. The prime two examples being helping someone to quelch an addiction, and in the workplace where possession of porn is a crime. Trying to figure out what sort of weird stuff you roommate looks at so you can blackmail them is probably not the best use.

A lot of people may say that to own porn is within their rights, and while that is true, where you stash your porn can get you into trouble (like on a company laptop). This flash will look into archives, and check headers for image and video data, even in files with obscure file types. This would be very useful for a computer illiterate probation officer or even a company IT manager who needs to check some 20-30 computers. This will cost about $100, and will make sure that no one has anything they shouldn’t have.

[ Paraben ] VIA [ Forbes ]

Turn Your Tablet Into A Second Monitor With iDisplay

By Chris Scott Barr

Having a tablet is great, but they are expensive. Don’t you wish that you could get as much use out of one as possible? Well now there’s a handy piece of software that’s going to let you use your iPad, or any Android-powered tablet as a second monitor for your computer.

iDisplay is an app that can be downloaded to your device, and along with the desktop application, extends your desktop onto the tablet. All you need is to sync up the software by entering an IP address, and setting your device on a stand so that you can see it. I’d say that’s pretty handy, and at only $5, it’s cheap too.

[ iDisplay ] VIA [ IntoMobile ]