Monday, March 15, 2010

Take Ten

Ten Things That Are Yours for the Taking

Freeware caution: always scan free downloads of anything for bugs and other threats before dumping the programs into your hard drive.

Cool Reader is "an e-book viewer" that "understands a number of text document formats. Fully customizable palette, text reformatting with any font size, font antialiasing, extra smooth scrolling and a lot of other features turn reading into a pleasure. Read Aloud function saves your eyes" (OS: Win9x/ME/NT4.0/Win2K/XP)

eLIB is "a new FREE tool which helps you categorize, view, catalog ... your ebook collection." Features: "performs a scan of your folders and files with pre-defined or choosen extensions; you can create as many collections as you wish, and even create subcollections; you can drag/drop your collections; generates the thumbnails for PDF, and some MsOffice files (XLS, DOC, PPT); you can manage several databases of your collections, create backups etc.; and you can view PDF, XLS, DOC, TXT and some other files directly in the integrated viewer" (OS: Windows XP, Vista)

Freebie Notes is a great little program for users who just want sticky notes with an alarm timer. With Freebie Notes you can: create electronic notes (stickers) - unlimited number of sticky notes; edit sticky notes in the advanced mode; specify the date and time of reminder; customize the default parameters of electronic notes (their size, text, background and title color, position on the desktop, transparency)" (OS: Win 98/ME/NT/2K/XP/2K3/Vista)

JAlbum allows you to "create and share stunning customized photo albums on any site. Drop folders containing image and movie files onto JAlbum. JAlbum will create thumbnails of your images and display them in index pages in HTML. You can also have JAlbum produce slide shows of your images for easy navigation. The appearance of the generated albums can be fully configured through the use of skins" I've been having a lot of trouble with Photobucket lately so I might try this one myself. (OS: Windows (All) / MacOSX / Linux)

Notefly is a "very small application. Less than 100kb setup. Features: Change color of notes; Make a note sticky on top; Make notes transparent; Create an e-mail of a note; Send a note to your Facebook wall; Tweet a note to your twitter account; Resize notes how big or small you want it; Syntax highlighting for html content notes" (OS: Win 2000/XP/Vista/7)

PhotoNotes is "an easy way to attach labels to your favorite photos. You can mark friends and family, buildings, special places, whatever you like. It is tightly integrated with the Mac OS X Address Book, so it is easy to pick a name for a label. Labels are smart: When you have birthdays in your Address Book, PhotoNotes automatically displays the age of that person, using the camera date. Finding photos of friends is easy with PhotoNotes' extensive Spotlight support. Your albums are automatically indexed. When you search for a person from Spotlight, PhotoNotes automatically displays that person's photos and highlights him or her in the thumbnail previews. You can also export your labelled photos as an interactive HTML page (OS: Mac)

PrestoNotes is "a freeware tool for Windows that lets you write little memos and stick them on your screen. Each note can be entirely customized, including: Image (each note has a text side and an image side); Background and text colour; Transparency; Character fonts; Title bar; Scroll bar; Position and size; Always on top of other windows, or not; Possibility to open or save in an external file (.txt); Add an automatic reminder to any note" The designer also notes that the freeware is multilingual (OS: Windows 95/98/ME/NT/2000/XP/Vista)

SeoDev Content Spinner {Synonymizer} is "used for spinning text content into many variations for further usage, such as submitting spinned pieces of text to website directories, article directories, Web 2.0 sites, blogs and so on." It could also be useful to writers in helping reword a difficult fragment or sentence of prose (OS: Windows 2003, Windows Vista, Windows 2000, Windows XP)

Also from OMZ Software, Telling Folders (scroll down on page) allows you to "easily put any image on top of your folder icons to make them easily distinguishable. QuickLook is supported, so you are not limited to images alone. Drag any file in and see a rich visual representation on top of the standard folder image. Drag a folder in to set its icon – easy. If you accidentally change a folder's icon, Telling Folders' Undo function has you covered (OS: Mac OS X)

Time Tracking Tool is "designed to get an idea of the time passing by while working on different tasks. This tool measures the time of a number of different tasks and can be used for private and commercial purposes (i.e. billing, spent time on a project, time arrangement etc.) as well. After a while, you will be able to view a clear statistic which shows what you spent time on. The Time-Tracking-Tool is written in Java" (OS: listed on a Mac freeware site, but designer notes: "It can be used on every system were a current Java version has been installed")


  1. Useful tools, thanks for the links.

  2. I like the Time Tool. I've been looking for a simple one for when I'm working on someone's computer through a virtual connection.

    But...why would one want to 'spin text'?

  3. Anonymous12:35 PM

    I went head first for eLib (I own thousands of ebooks and it sounds fab), but the download link does not work :( I am going to google it.

  4. Mireya12:53 PM

    Update re. eLib: after googling it, I was able to find it in ZDNet. Anyone not registered to the site interested on getting it, would need to register to have access to the free download.


  5. Mireya wrote: Update re. eLib: after googling it, I was able to find it in ZDNet. Anyone not registered to the site interested on getting it, would need to register to have access to the free download.

    I didn't have a problem accessing the site, but thanks for searching for an alternate download link, Mireya. For those who need it:;col1

  6. Theo wrote: But...why would one want to 'spin text'?

    If you've ever written the same moment in a story from a different POV (ala StarDoc and Illumination, the same novel told from the POVs of Cherijo and Reever, respectively) sometimes you need to reword what you've already written. Same goes for descriptions of the same object or person. With a spinner you can enter the first version of your text and get some alternates generated. I don't think it's a good idea to copy what's generated verbatim, because it's generally clunky-sounding, but it can give you some synonyms and maybe some different structure to use in a subsequent version.


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