Sometimes, you just need to make some folders--a lot of folders. More than 5 folders, more than twenty folders, more than a hundred folders--you need to generate more folders than you've ever created in a single setting. Maybe this is for work, maybe you're finally getting organized with all the pictures you've taken over the past five years, or maybe you just like makin' folders.
Either way, the typical folder creation process goes a little something like this: you find an open directory, you right-click somewhere, you select "new folder," and you repeat this process a thousand times (with a few extra hours thrown in for renaming).
A handy little application has just come to my attention and, by handy, I mean, "it saves you countless hours of having to repeat the aformentioned frustrating process." If you've ever needed to create and customize a number of folders in a single sitting, then you'll definitely want to click the jump and behold the wonders of this week's top download: New Folder Wizard!
Are you ready to rock? Because you'll be doing a lot of head-banging and dancing around once you've transformed every computer in your living area into a collective speaker system. Perhaps the better question remains unasked: Why would you do this? Because you can. Because you want to. Because it reverses the issue of having to connect to or stream from a central music repository (like an iTunes database) and instead allows you to push tunes out of a single music hub to anywhere you want to them to go.
Also, you want to do this because the app that makes this cacophonous symphony possible--SpeakerShare--is super-easy to use and well worth the small time investment you'll make. For the full details on this virtual conductor, check out the rest of the article after the jump.
Who crashed? Who. I'm asking you, who crashed? Yes, Who, that guy over there on first base...
Only the best downloads get their own warm-up comics. And WhoCrashed is one of the best downloads you'll want to have on your system if you want to figure out the source behind your occasional Blue Screens of Fatal Windows Unhappiness. Install this app on your PC and you'll be treated to a little more information than the gobbilty-gook permeating your average BSOD.
WhoCrashed isn't a panacea--it's not going to give you a little button that says "Fix Me," which will automatically heal your system's upset-whatever like a glass of digital Maalox. Consider this app the Sherlock Holmes of freeware (the book, not the Iron Man version). It'll give you clues and suggest a potential culprit for your woes, but it just can't make everything better without a little deduction and sleuthing on your part.
So why, then, would you download WhoCrashed? Click the jump to find out!
Were only every download as fun as Network Lights. Seriously. This week's download of the week isn't going to transform your computing experience, speed up your PC, or otherwise give you any additional details about your system's operations beyond that which you already have. Sort-of.
As I've mentioned in past posts, one of the critical omissions of the Windows 7 operating system is its brazen elimination of the useful network activity icon from the lower-right corner of your screen. This tiny bit of your Windows desktop, no larger than a little icon on your taskbar, provided you a wealth of information at a glance. Immediately, you could look at the icon and see if your network connection was sending or receiving information--a useful troubleshooting tool if, in fact, no light was blinking. Hovering your mouse over the icon would deliver a complete summary of all the bits and bytes of data you've sent or received since the last reset of your PC.
That's about it.
But still, useful features given that the exact same icon sits in the Windows 7 taskbar... without any of the blinking and without any of the summary features found on its predecessor. Although Network Lights doesn't do much to assist with the latter, its ability to transform your keyboard into a working version of the network activity icon is two parts fun, one part useful.
It's back! I've covered Songbird before, but that's only because it's one of the best open-source alternatives to Apple's iTunes. Well, Songbird just got bumped up to version 1.4.2--a brief fix for a UI glitch that was affecting its December 21 release of version 1.4.1. The latter is really the meat and potatoes of Songbird's latest update, representing as good a time as any to try out this unique and easy-to-use application!
Why Songbird? Well, you won't be locked into using Apple's proprietary iTunes platform... sort-of. For while Songbird supports device synchronization for the app's music files and playlists, users of those i-named Apple devices will still have to use Songbird's clever iTunes export workaround to sync music to their devices. Beside that, Songbird offers a comprehensive amount of media sorting, organizing, and tagging--including playlists that automatically update with new pictures, videos, and tour dates for bands of-interest.
In fact, this is one of Songbird's strongest features. Its built-in Internet-based enhancements deliver a wealth of additional information and functionality beyond what you'd expect to find in iTunes and it's... well, it's single connection to Apple's own Music Store. Shoot, you can even purchase concert tickets through Songbird, not to mention pack a bundle of additional add-ons and customizations to truly trick out your media player/organizer as you see fit.
So what's new with this super-handy music app? Click the jump to see all the big 1.4.1 changes!
How much battery life does your laptop or netbook have? I don't know. I bet you don't know either. Or, at the very least, you're probably relying on a manufacturer's statement as to just how much computing time you can get on a fully charged battery. But as you well know, your battery life can vary depending on how you use your laptop: If you're rocking the brightness at maximum, keeping an active Wi-Fi on at all times, and burning your CPU at full-blast, you're going to run through your available power far faster than if your laptop was doing little-to-nothing.
Sure, you can hover your mouse over the battery icon of your Windows taskbar to estimate just how much juice is left in the pitcher. But if you want a more comprehensive analysis of how your portable PC will perform at full-blast under whatever conditions you've set up, you'll need to turn to a third-party utility for the full breakdown.
And as it just so happens, I have the perfect piece of freeware in mind: Imtec Battery Mark. Click the jump to find out more about this awesome laptop battery tester!
Oh, Windows 7. I enjoy a number of enhancements to the operating system over that of its lesser brother, Windows Vista. However, one of the chief omissions of this new OS has actually been one of the more useful staples of Windows for a long time. It's the good ol' network activity light, a little icon in your tray that would blink on and off to match whenever you sent or received network traffic. Not only was this tiny icon a quick troubleshooting device--no send light when loading an Internet-using application means trouble--but it was a useful way to tell how much bandwidth you've eaten up during your daily computing session, as you'd get your usage stats by simply hovering your mouse over said icon.
But alas, there is no way to resurrect said icon or functionality natively in Windows 7. Sure, you can bring back an icon of-sorts, but it ain't gonna blink. Sorry. It's just a simple little link to your Network and Sharing center. To truly reap the benefits of the old-school network activity light, you're going to have to look to a third-party developer. That, or click the jump, because I've found the perfect little utility that replicates this feature in Windows 7 error-free.
Well, there you have it--someone's gone and made a desktop client for interacting with Facebook. It sounds a little lame at first glance. Facebook, after all, works quite well across a number of desktop and portable devices. Since you need an internet connection to make any kind of use of the service, be it in a separate client or through the usual Web-based format, what's stopping one from simply eschewing any kind of downloaded application and going straight to Facebook-dot-com itself?
Find out the answer to this, and get a preview of the desktop Facebook application, after the jump!
If you're a true geek, then you love experimenting with and comparing all the different Web browsers on the market today. You might have a default browser of choice for rendering most Web pages, but you still keep a number of other browsers available for their usefulness, their speed, or their compatibility in synchronizing to devices you already own (cough the iPhone cough). It's fun to surf the net in different ways. And, depending on the Web site, you might also need to have other options on hand in case a site fails to work in one rendering engine.
So how, then, do you toggle between these browsers? Sure, you could assign each to your right-click context menu and scroll through the "open with..." choices each time you need to switch to a new app. That's kind of ugly and tedious, don't you think? A fun little application called Browser Chooser improves this process by giving you a pretty little GUI for selecting your browser of choice whenever you want to pull up a page. It's a lightweight utility that's as easy to configure as it is to use, giving you the flexibility to pull up a number of different rendering engines at the touch of a button.
It's a pretty slick deal of Amazon to open up its Kindle library to devices beyond those of the company's handheld book readers. But just because the Kindle software has gone multi-platform doesn't mean that it's a sure winner. No, it's the ease-of-use and almost iTunes-like functionality of this simple e-book reader that makes it a great piece of software for your desktop or laptop PC.
You can't do very much with Kindle for PC aside from read books purchased through Amazon's extensive library--which, in itself, makes sense. You wouldn't really want another piece of software to read PDFs, right? Joking aside, the one thing this software does, it does well. Grabbing new book titles from Amazon is as easy as logging into the Web site, hitting download, and waiting for the book to quickly refresh itself in your Kindle for PC home screen. Your collection of digital novels appears as the front covers of each title, and you can sort this list by the order in which you downloaded the e-books, their names, or the author's name.