In spite of being viewed as the "other guys" in some Mac users' minds, Microsoft has generally put out an excellent productivity suite for the Mac with Microsoft Office. Though the latest package is still not on par with the Windows version (you get only the four main programs--a big difference when you consider the Windows version has 10), Microsoft made a big leap with this latest version for the Mac in several other ways. Not only has it nearly reached feature parity (and cross compatibility) with the Mac counterparts to Word, Excel, and PowerPoint, but it has … Read more
Microsoft announced today it will be taking preorders for Microsoft Office 2011 for Mac. Microsoft says this major update will bring the Mac version of its office suite almost on par with the Windows version of the product. With significantly better cross-platform compatibility, several added new features, and some impressive interface elements exclusive to the Mac version, Office 2011 for Mac might be the best in its class.
Over the past couple of weeks, we had the chance to check out the entire suite--including Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and Outlook--and we think there's plenty to be excited about. New and … Read more
There are few things more frustrating that an unwanted program that launches every time you start your computer, especially when the normal means of preventing this from happening--like checking for it in the Startup folder--don't work. What's worse is when numerous unneeded and invisible processes launch, slowing down both start-up and your computer's performance as a whole. AutoRuns is a simple program that lets users view--and disable--everything that runs on startup, saving both time and irritation.
The program's interface is a little cluttered, with 17 tabs that display the various programs and processes that run on … Read more
Process Hacker from WJ32 is a free open-source utility that displays all the processes running on your PC in a compact, customizable view. It not only shows detailed information on each process but also gives you a range of control that greatly improves upon Windows' built-in capabilities. It offers performance graphs, thread listings, stacks, and much more. You can not only terminate individual processes but entire associated trees; suspend, reduce, restart, and debug processes; view detailed information on network processes and services from a unified listing; create dump files; and call up enhanced Properties Dialogs with as many as nine … Read more
When applications hang or freeze up in Windows, the common solution is to open the Task Manager and terminate the offending program, but sometimes that's not enough. Nenad's ProcessKO is a small utility that can quickly kill a running process or application, especially when Task Manager can't.
At just under 50KB, ProcessKO is about as small as functional Windows software gets in this time of terabyte disks. It downloads as a self-extracting ZIP file and runs as soon as you click the executable file, which makes it completely portable; you can install it on a USB flash … Read more
The old Ctrl-Alt-Del-and-Task-Manager process is usually enough to terminate a locked-up process, but you can lose whatever you were working on. Free Process Freezer from Polaris Software can help save your stuff when a program quits on you. It suspends or "freezes" running processes and resumes them on command, so that you can extricate your system before it crashes, take care of any problems like conflicts or low resources, and resume your work when things are running more smoothly.
At just under 274KB, Free Process Freezer is old-school small, yet it has a full Windows installer. The interface … Read more
A new NASA mission aims to come to grips with the way nature whips up hurricanes.
Set to begin Sunday, the agency's six-week Genesis and Rapid Intensification Processes (GRIP) mission will see a series of planes outfitted with sophisticated instruments take to the skies in an attempt to understand the birth of a hurricane, in order to give people a better chance to prepare for them.
This is NASA's first domestic hurricane project since 2001 and its largest ever. Three NASA planes, several satellites, and four planes from research partners will team up to measure tropical storms as … Read more
It's been our experience that even photo-editing programs that don't offer a ton of features can still be quite useful if they're well-designed; there's something to be said for an easy-to-use, professional-looking program. You can get a good idea of the level of professionalism that SView5 offers by trying to access its online user manual; when we did, we landed on a Web page that said "Sorry, no real manual available yet--you want to write one?" No, what we want is a photo editing program that's easy to use, and SView5 isn't … Read more
Mozilla pushed out a minor update to Firefox on Saturday, slightly adjusting the new plug-in crash protection feature that was introduced last week. Firefox 3.6.6 for Windows and Linux delays the amount of time that the plug-in protection module will wait before terminating an unresponsive plug-in.
Mozilla evangelist Mike Beltzner said in a blog post on Saturday that although Firefox 3.6.4 was beta-tested with nearly 1 million users, after its release the company began hearing complaints from some users, especially those playing games on older computers. The crash protection feature would only wait 10 seconds before … Read more
Firefox 3.6.4 might not sound like a major update, but the latest version debuts an important new feature for Mozilla's browser. Code-named "Lorentz" and available for Windows and Linux, the update includes the highly-anticipated Out-of-Process Plug-in (OOPP) "sandboxing" feature that prevents specific plug-ins that crash from taking down the entire browser. In this initial implementation, OOPP will prevent Adobe Flash, Apple QuickTime, and Microsoft Silverlight crashes from causing browser-wide instability.