Recent versions of Windows have greatly improved a download experience that once left much to be desired. However, many of the third-party apps that came about to address deficiencies in Windows are still around in the form of specialized, often free utilities that promise to improve on the specific functionality of certain features. One of these is Goforsharing's Xcelerator 1.3, a free download accelerator patch that offers enhanced downloading algorithms and architecture that improves upon Windows' built-in capabilities. It's based upon peer-to-peer (P2P) file-sharing network technology. To use Xcelerator, you need a P2P client such as BitTorrent … Read more
Solitaire is a popular game, and over the years many variations have sprung up. Klondike is perhaps the most popular version, the one that people tend to learn from grandparents, parents, or the small suite of games that comes with Windows. Despite its simplicity and ubiquity, Klondike Solitaire remains an entertaining card game, and this basic rendition is quite playable, but not particularly impressive.
The program's interface is plain but attractive, with the cards displayed on a patterned green background. Unlike other versions of solitaire, this program doesn't allow for any customization of the game's appearance; users … Read more
TrayEverything is a handy utility that minimizes programs to the system tray or hides them altogether. Although it has potential, it's best handled with care.
TrayEverything's interface is basic and fairly intuitive, which is a good thing, because it doesn't have a Help file. The program's features are organized with large graphical buttons, the most important of which is the Tray button, which is used to manage open programs. This function seems simple enough; it lists all currently open programs, and users simply double-click on a program to minimize it to the system tray. TrayEverything will … Read more
There are much more visually appealing tip calculators on the market for BlackBerry, but do you really need slick graphics to execute basic computations? Save your money and let this free app control the helm of your dining charges. Nine lines of text comprise FreeTips. Your job is to enter the total bill, number of diners, either tax rate or tax amount, and the percentage you'd like to tip (FreeTips will remember your preferred tax and tips rates between sessions). The app works out the rest: the total bill with the tip included, the total tip, amount each diner … Read more
The words "Biblical concordance" typically invoke images of huge, densely packed reference books in a seminary library or a minister's study, and such tomes are still the mainstay of serious biblical scholarship. However, anyone who reads, studies, or is merely interested in the Bible can benefit from a good concordance, especially if it's in the form of easy-to-use software that's free to boot. Zahn Software, a Christian software developer and publisher, has a fine one with its Digital Bible Concordance 1.3 that not only contains an extensively cross-referenced guide to every word in the … Read more
Yelp for BlackBerry is a first stab to get Yelp.com's core review-reading features on BlackBerry phones. The three-panel start screen lets you browse or search for listings, or access your recent searches. It's not especially flashy, but it did successfully help us find a lunch spot, map it using Bing (movable) maps, and scan reviews for recommended entrees. You'll be able to view photos, launch the Web site, and call the number, but not upload your own snaps while you're actually onsite. We do appreciate the new tool to map directions to a business via … Read more
We have yet to meet a game from PopCap that we didn't like, and Plants vs. Zombies is no exception. The premise doesn't make a whole lot of sense, but we don't care; like most other games from this publisher, it's addictively fun.
The game contains the same high-quality graphics we've come to expect from PopCap. The object of the game is to protect your house from a zombie invasion using a variety of plants in your front yard. Each of the plants needs a certain amount of sunshine (or points) for you to be … Read more
If you've caught yourself scratching your head trying to figure out what type of HDMI cable to buy, you're probably not alone. With so many versions, it's hard to know which does what. However, very soon, you won't have that trouble anymore.
In an effort to make it easier for customers to identify the right products for their needs, HDMI Licensing released Thursday, on behalf of the HDMI Founders, an updated version of the HDMI Adopted Trademark and Logo Usage Guidelines. HDMI Licensing is the agent responsible for licensing the high-definition multimedia interface specification.
The most notable changes in the guidelines are significant restrictions on the use of version numbers and new marketing requirements for cables. These new requirements are designed to simplify the product selection process for consumers, enabling them to purchase an appropriate product based on features, instead of having to do research on what each version does.
According to the new guidelines, adopters will no longer be allowed to use HDMI specification version numbers in the labeling, packaging, or promotion of their HDMI-compliant products. These restrictions go into effect immediately for cable products. Noncable products, however, have until January 1, 2012, to fully comply.
The new guidelines designate all HDMI cable products into five types:… Read more
DualAlign's I2K Quickage Pro provides the tools for stitching together several similar pictures to create a photomontage. This surprising program performed its tasks with excellent results.
The program's interface has a professional layout that is simple to operate, since it only offers the most minimal options throughout. We did need the Help file to understand our panorama options, however. We easily sorted through our collection of photos and selected a few that were very similar, with both images focused on the same subject but taken from slightly different perspectives. The program was slow to stitch together even two … Read more
Photo Stamp Remover offers an admirable service to users, but falls short of meeting all its claims. While the program is simple to learn and operate, its results left us wanting more.
The program's interface required a trip to the Help file, though any roadblocks seemed obvious after a few seconds of experimentation. The program features a bare minimum of commands, which should keep users of all skill levels focused. While learning the program came after some minimal effort, its results left us disappointed. The primary job of selecting an area or watermark to convert was a simple click-and-drag … Read more