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Geeky/Programming Product Reviews

Pownce: really needed?

Yesterday I got an invite to Pownce (http://pownce.com/ScaleOvenStove/). Pownce is the next thing from Kevin Rose, the founder of Digg. It is an application that works on the web and desktop. You can send messages, links, files to your friends and to public. It is kind of like twitter but with more options, and there is the desktop aspect.

image 

The desktop app is written on top of AIR (Adobe Integrated Runtime) – which is in experimental beta right now, which kind of sucks, but yeah, it works. One thing that I really don’t like, is that you can’t minimize the app to the systray, its open, or closed. Doesn’t seem like their are many options in the app as well. Basically a suped up flash app that runs on your desktop.

I have some friends on there, that I invited, that really aren’t my friends (that is the way I got an invite) – I have a couple invites left if someone that I would actually send stuff to would like one.

This app reminds me of an app I started a while ago, PeTuPe – to share files and such with your friends (which maybe one day I will just make and complete it). Just another p2p app/IM client. I don’t see any real benefit at this point, but maybe something more will come out of it.

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Product Reviews

Open Pandora rocks

I have listened to Pandora here and there for a while, and it is ok, I just hate having a browser open, and I wanted to integrate my Last.FM profile info and put the song in MSN Windows Live Messenger. Pandora on the web just wasn’t doing it for me.

I heard about Open Pandora a while ago but never checked it out, but decided to the other day, wow – cool application.

I recommend that you check it out!

Open Pandora: http://openpandora.googlepages.com/

 

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Product Reviews

FeedDemon 2.5

Fired up FeedDemon today and it told me there was an update to 2.5 – I went for it. Seems like a lot of nice improvements

One that really stuck out was the Dinosaurs: Feeds that haven’t updated in 30 days. I removed a ton of feeds that haven’t updated in over like a year.

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Geeky/Programming

New ICQ Version Release – ICQ6

I have been using ICQ for a loooooong time (my original number is in the first 500,000). ICQ as an app though has become bloatware, too many options, features. I have been using Trillian for a while now, except it seems to like to crash. I don’t like GAIM Pidgen, or Miranda, and others just don’t cut it.

Just so happens I looked up ICQ again yesterday, and it was on their site for an ICQ6 beta, well I really wanted to try but it was a limited beta. I went back today by happenstance and I can download ICQ6, so I am going to try it out, see how they have changed it, or lived up to the hype.

 

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Geeky/Programming

GPS Update

Well, If you look at the right side of my blog, I have an update. I have been working all day on getting the GPS stuff to work. I made an app to sync with my Bluetooth GPS, and upload the coordinates in decimal to my website. Then I read it and create a Google Map. There is a lot more to come, but it is pretty good for  2 for 1’s at G Allen’s outside (of course, the GPS works). Check it out!

 

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Geeky/Programming Life

T-Mobile Dash + GPS + Mologogo = Debacle

I have my cool new T-Mobile dash, and my Pharos Bluetooth GPS, but I just want more.

Currently I can see where I am on the phone using Windows Live Search Maps,  but I just want more.

I want to be able to post up my coordinates every minute or so, save them or map them or what have you.

Mologogo seems to be the answer to that, but there are always issues. First off, the site can’t seem to stay up for more than 10 minutes at a time. I did some digging and found the IP address, so I added that to my host file

216.127.82.54 www.mologogo.com

Second, the SmartPhone version seems buggy, not feature complete like the other versions, etc. There doesn’t seem to be a place to set up a remote URL feature so I can post up the coordinates to my own server, which is really what I want to do.

Also, I am looking into GPS.Net again. I will play with the trial, #1 because the final version is 250 bucks, and previously I could never get it to work right. Maybe if I get something going I will just use that and forget mologogo.

Hopefully I can get something going here this weekend, I want to be able to track my coordinates as well as take a picture, upload to flickr or some URL and save it with the waypoint. Then I want to create .kml files for Google Earth so I can track where I have been, and photo tag them. Tall order for this weekend , but we will see. I will be on vacation in Seattle/Portland starting middle of next week and I want to track my vacation, like where I go, etc. We will see 🙂

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Geeky/Programming

Launchy the Launcher

After using Vista for a few months, I am so used to the search/find instead of start->run. I really miss this feature when I use XP at work.

Stumbled across Launchy. Pretty sweet app. Hit alt+spacebar, start typing, after a few characters, it finds the exe or whatever you are looking for, hit enter and it opens. Saves a ton of time!

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Geeky/Programming Life

Family Tech Support Lifesaver – TeamViewer

Earlier this week I read about TeamViewer on Lifehacker. I figured, yeah, just another gimmick, like GotoMyPC, whatever. So I just made a mental note and moved on.

If you ever have had to deal with long distance friends and family and their computers, you know what I am talking about. People don’t know what they are doing when it comes to setting things up, and since you aren’t there, they try to get you to help over the phone or IM, and it ends up being a debacle.

Steve Tech Support

Microsoft tried to add remote support in XP and Vista, but it just doesn’t work! Remote Assistance is what I am talking about. Every time someone tries to request “Remote Assistance” from me, I can never connect, it always ends up being back and forth trying to get connected, and not solving the person’s problems.

So, today my mom was like “I just bought a new printer, hooked it up to the desktop in the basement, but I want to use it on my laptop, shared , you know”

Well, trying to talk a relative through windows networking is basically like trying to talk Spanish to someone in China. (“Chinaman is not the preferred nomenclature dude” [Walter from The Big Lebowski])

Anyways, I’m like, ok, good test for this new “TeamViewer”. I install it quick, on my desktop at home, Vista, no issues. Mom – install it. Give me the “Partner ID” and “Password”, in 2 seconds, I am connected. And remember now, this laptop she is on has 1 or more firewalls running, which is what is causing the problems in the first place with the printer sharing. I connected to her with no issues. So I poke around, get the computer name and just check it out. Good. “Mom – go install TeamViewer on the desktop, give me the info so I can connect”. I go play a song on the piano, before I am done, she IM’s me back the info, and I connect. No issues.

So now I have 2 remote’s up. I first disable Windows Firewall on both, try to ping each by name. The laptop can get to the desktop, the desktop cannot get to the laptop. Go back to laptop, dig around. Trend Micro running as well. Tried adding a subnet rule so it trusts the internal network. No Dice, not intuitive and I’m not spending all afternoon on this. Disable the firewall. Try pinging both again by name. Works. Add a printer, search the “workgroup” (I verified earlier they were the same). Find printer, add it, print test page. Done.

Tell mom – “you don’t need a firewall (or two) because you are behind a router”

Close TeamViewer, all is well.

I would recommend to anyone who needs to connect to someone remote this new TeamViewer app. Works great, and saved me time 🙂

Go here to get TeamViewer: http://www.teamviewer.com/index.aspx

BTW, that picture is a representation of my l33t graphic skillz. Yeah, look out graphic designers, I’m coming for ya!

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Geeky/Programming

T9Space.com Mobile Browsing Proxy

Read about this on Mashable! tonight. Its a site that is a proxy for social networking sites so you can browse them on your mobile. T9Space.com

I tried it out tonight on my Dash and yeah, its sweet. Can finally get to MySpace and Wikipedia on my mobile (Facebook already has m.facebook.com, but I will check that out too).

If you mobile browse alot, check it out.

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Product Reviews

FeedDemon is cool!

FeedDemon – no, its not the devil 🙂

I have been reading RSS feeds for some time now, probably 2003-2004, I started off with SharpReader, then moved to RSSBandit, then I tried out NewsGator. NewsGator had/has a plugin for Outlook, and before Outlook 2007 this was cool, I used it for awhile. I noticed though that I wasn’t getting as much out of it as I was from using NewsGator online. The one cool thing about NewsGator is that is more of a feed storage engine than anything. I can use the Media Center plugin to read feeds there, there is some mobile stuff, and I can goto any computer or use any program that supports the NewsGator API and my feeds OPML sync across all clients.

I have also tried BlogLines but just never thought it was user friendly enough. I also tried Outlook 2007 for about 10 minutes and knew right away I would be back like the NewsGator plugin for Outlook.

So, a while back, NewsGator aquired FeedDemon, and in it’s early form, it was kind of so-so. They recently upgraded it and you can get it here. I downloaded it a couple weeks ago, and wow – what a great tool.

I subscribe to between 350-400 feeds at any given time, and it gets to be a lot, and FeedDemon really helps me sort through the crap, and read feeds faster. The cool things are Watches and News Bin. I can set up a search on keywords and it will find them so I can read those faster, also, I can quickly save a post to a News Bin and go back to it later. It also integrates with IE (which is OK, I use Firefox all the time, but with IE7 at least I feel somewhat secure), and there are tabs within the app itself which makes life easier.

I will say, that there are some features that I think could be added .For one, an easier way to mark pages read, especially at the bottom of a page, and better emailing integration. There is a cool feature that will analyze your feeds and make a “front page” that shows the most popular posts. I wish I could run this on more than just all my feeds, maybe run this on a sub folder, etc.

In any event, if you read a lot of RSS Feeds, I would recommend checking out FeedDemon. It is a 30 day free trial, and $30 after that, which I am gladly going to fork over 🙂