Monday, July 03, 2006

products of interest to me

from computerworld.com list of 100 great products

7. Adobe Premiere Elements 2
Video Editor ($100) This strong, stable video editing application costs about one-eighth as much as Premiere Pro, Adobe's professional video editor. And it's so good you may not notice the difference.

8. Canon EOS 30D
Digital SLR Camera ($1499) An 8.2-megapixel shooter, the EOS 30D makes many of the pro-level features from Canon's EOS 5D available at a friendlier price. It also earned extremely high marks in our image-quality tests.

11. Adobe Photoshop Elements 4
Image Editor ($100) The latest version of Elements is the most elegant and powerful image-editing and -organizing application available for under $600 (the price of Adobe's pro-level Photoshop CS2).

13. Engadget.com
Gadget Blog (free) Even if Engadget decided to devote itself to game shows and golf, we'd probably still read it, just because the blog's writing is so snarky and entertaining.
16. nVidia GeForce 7600 GT

Graphics Card Chip Set ($200) Our list doesn't focus on outstanding values, but how could we overlook this powerful chip set? At $200, it's a steal.
22. Adobe Photoshop CS2

Image Editor ($600) Anything that you want to do with a digital image, you can do with Photoshop CS2. Not a pro? Avoid CS2's expense by opting for Adobe's Photoshop Elements (#11).

24. Dealnews.com
Online Bargain Tracker (free) Many sites keep track of bargains for you, but Dealnews does more than just provide you with a link. It'll even let you know whether today's deal is better than last week's.

32. Avvenu
Remote File Access (free) Use this utility to set up your desktop PC as a simple file server that friends and family can access securely over the Internet. Avvenu is great for sharing digital photographs without going to the trouble of e-mailing them.

34. Sony Cyber-shot DSC-R1
Advanced Digital Camera ($900) This 10.3-megapixel camera is hardly a digital single-lens reflex model, but for many users it's as close to one as they'll ever need. And unlike most digital SLRs, the DSC-R1 has an LCD monitor that provides a live preview of your subject.

38. SideStep.com
Travel Site (free) Shopping for bargain flights can be a hassle. But SideStep.com collects air fares from multiple sources; you simply check off boxes to sift the results. It works for rental cars and hotel rooms, too.

39. Windows Live Local
Online Mapping (free) Offering attractive maps, with bird's-eye views of some locations, Microsoft's service comes across as almost a hybrid of Google Earth and Yahoo Maps (that's a good thing).

40. Creative Sound Blaster X-Fi
Sound Card ($129 to $400) Creative deserves credit for introducing high-end audio--including multichannel DVD-Audio playback--to desktop PCs. The X-Fi has 7.1-channel output and dedicated RAM for storing sound samples, thus boosting game performance when heavy sound processing is needed.

43. Apple iTunes
Digital Audio Software (free) Not just a conduit for files between Apple's Music Store and an iPod, iTunes is great even if just for your desktop. It's compatible with both Macs and Windows PCs.

44. Olympus Evolt E-330
Digital SLR Camera ($1100) The E-330 shows you a live preview on its LCD--a first for a digital SLR--and it has a useful dust-removal feature (addressing a common bugaboo that afflicts such cameras).

49. Mitsubishi XD460U
Projector ($2100) The XD460U ranked high for overall image quality in our tests, making it a great choice as a crossover projector for both conference-room and living-room use. It relies on a five-segment color wheel to achieve better imaging.

52. NoScript 1.1.4
Browser Add-On (free) Block hazardous JavaScripts site-by-site in Firefox (the browser itself blocks either all JavaScripts or none).

53. Webroot Spy Sweeper 4.5
Antispyware ($30) Spy Sweeper catches more stuff than its competitors do, and it provides sound advice on which adware and spyware pieces to remove.

56. Yahoo Maps (Beta)
Online Mapping (free) Yahoo Maps--the version still in beta--provides great directions, and allows you to determine the route you want to use by setting waypoints.

57. Intuit Quicken Premier 2006
Personal Finance ($80) Quicken has its annoyances--particularly its shameless marketing pitches--but the latest version lets you attach electronic images of canceled checks or statements.

58. ATI Radeon X1900 XTX
Graphics Board ($600) Cards based on ATI's X1900 XTX chip and on nVidia's GeForce 7900 GTX chip (#92) compete for the fastest gaming performance. We think the ATI board delivers slightly better image quality, hence its higher ranking.

59. Javacool EULAlyzer Personal 1.1
License Analyzer (free) We're always urging you to read the end-user license agreements that pop up when you install software--but who has the time or the legal background to read and understand end-user license agreements? Just copy and paste EULAs into EULAlyzer, and it will tell you whether you're getting into something dubious.

61. Kosmix.com
Search Engine (free) Kosmix categorizes search results into major content areas of health, travel, and politics--a valuable feature, though you'll obtain fewer results from Kosmix than you would from Google or Yahoo.

68. Cerulean Studios Trillian 3.1
Instant Messaging Client (free) Using Trillian 3.1 means not having to decide which IM client to adopt, since Trillian works with nearly all of them. Its interface is beautiful, especially compared with AIM--hoo boy, that thing is ugly. You can set Trillian up to log your conversations so that when you forget something you said, you can look it up easily. You can also set up alerts for when people are online, and you can issue a command from your laptop that shuts down the program on your desktop. A new version, called Astra, should be released later this year.

73. Yahoo Music Engine 1.1
Digital Audio Site/Software (free to $10 per month) Subscribe to Yahoo Music Engine and you can listen to anything in the service's library. We like how it integrates with Yahoo Messenger so that you and your friends can share playlists; you can share music over a local network, too.

76. BitDefender 9 Standard
Antivirus ($30) The Best Buy winner from our most recent roundup of antivirus software, BitDefender 9 provides top-of-the-line protection against a rogues' gallery of electronic miscreants.

78. Flickr
Photo-Sharing Site (free to $25 per year) Yet another Yahoo property, Flickr wins out as the best community-based photo-sharing site. Neatest feature: You can tag photos--yours or others'--with keywords and then browse pictures based on those keywords.

82. EvDO
Wireless Broadband ($45 to $80 per month) What's better than Wi-Fi? Wi-Fi speed without the need to be near an access point. Evolution-Data Optimized service, from Verizon Wireless or Sprint, still has some performance issues, but it's a sign of things to come.

85. Qnext 2
P-to-P Communications (free) Not just for instant messaging, this Java-based suite supports IM, videoconferencing, VoIP, file sharing, music and photo sharing, and remote PC access (it won't wash your car or make you dinner, though).

88. Mindjet MindManager Pro 6
Data-Organizing Software ($349) For people who swear by "mind mapping"--using software to organize and manage information through flow charting--this app is the best we've seen.

91. Fujifilm FinePix E900
Point-and-Shoot Digital Camera ($410) Fujifilm's 9-megapixel point-and-shoot captured very sharp images with low distortion, earning top scores in our tests.

92. nVidia GeForce 7900 GTX
GPU ($549) Graphics cards that use this power-hungry processor are so expensive that you'll need to sign on for a second paper route to pay for it. But the payoff is excellent gaming performance.

93. Del.icio.us
Social Networking (free) Both an excellent way to store and categorize bookmarks and an impressive social experiment, Del.icio.us invites you to share your favorite links with friends and larger communities.

94. Serious Magic Ovation
PowerPoint Add-On ($100) Import PowerPoint slides into this tool and add fancy video effects to make your otherwise boring sales presentations the talk of the office.

95. WordPress
Blogging Tool (free) Two practical controls make this product stand out: Photos and art are resizable on the fly inside the editing space, and dividing a blog entry into two parts is simple.

96 Amazon A9 Toolbar
Search Toolbar (free) Share bookmarks among multiple computers, and store notes about sites (if you have opened an Amazon.com account). Take that, Google.

97. ThinkFree Office Online
Online Office Suite (free) ThinkFree gives you Office-compatible word processing, spreadsheet, and presentation applications in a browser window.

98. Greasemonkey
Firefox Extension (free) Now here's a mechanic you can trust. Greasemonkey allows you to add community-built scripts to the Firefox browser. Hundreds of useful scripts are downloadable for free.

99. NewsGator FeedDemon 2
RSS Reader ($30) With FeedDemon's options, you're just a step shy of having news injected intravenously.

100. Sysinternals Rootkit Revealer 1.7
Antispyware (free) This free tool can't fix your rootkit-infested Sony CDs, but it can determine whether your PC has been compromised by them.

Sunday, April 23, 2006

Software to consider for Dell Axim X51v

Saturday, April 08, 2006

Purpose of this blog

This blog is intended to capture thoughts, ideas and personal research into technology-related topics. I plan to use this for my own reference purposes. If you stumble across this and find it useful, you are welcome to add comments, suggest topics etc.

The areas I envisage covering include personal computer security, useful software, how to get a good deal on hardware etc. Basically stuff I know about, or will research because I need to anyway. And if I need to research it, I may as well post it here and capture it.