Saturday, 22 August 2009
Tweet a file : Tweetafile brings an important email functionality to the simple world of Twitter – attachments. Through Tweetafile, Twitter users can send any files (images, PDFs, Docs, videos… whatever) to all of their followers or via direct message to individuals.
Remember The Milk : If you use Remember The Milk to manage your tasks, you can do so via twitter using this app. Add Remember The Milk as your twitter friend and simply DM to add or interact with your tasks.
Twittonary : If you are new to twitter, some of the words twitter users use can be quite confusing. Get help from a twitter dictionary and learn the “twitter lingo.”
Twonvert : 140 character limitations at times can really hold you back. This app converts your text into SMS shorthand language and allows you to say more with less characters.
Twist : Allows you to see “hot trends” on twitter. You can also use the search box to see what people are saying about a particular thing and how much buzz it is creating.
WhosTalkin : Although this app isn’t specifically for twitter, it is a very useful twitter tool. It allows you to search conversations that you are interested in. This helps you interact with like minded people or the whatever subjects interest you at that point in time.
TweetWhatYouSpend : Manage your spending online using twitter. Create an account and use Twitter’s “DM” feature to send tweets. You can export a spending journal later as an Excel or CSV file.
TwitterJobSearch : This service allows you to find job postings on twitter. If you are looking for a “web design” gig, simply enter web design to see what jobs are available related to web design.
IsTwitterDown? : If you are a heavy twitter user this service might be quite useful. It allows you to find out if twitter is down for everyone else or just for you. The page displays a simple answer “Yes” or “No.”
Twiddeo : Upload videos to Twiddeo from your camera phone while on the go. The service then generates a link and posts it to twitter for your friends and followers to see.
TwitterCal : This tool connects your twitter account to your Google calendar. You can add events to Google calendar from twitter by sending direct messages to gcal.
TwitterFeed : Twitterfeed helps you send your Blog RSS feed or atom to twitter and also lets you track the number of clicks your feeds are generating.
PollDaddy : Create polls and post it directly on twitter. This can be extremely valuable when you are researching a subject or need user feedback.
LinkBunch : Due to character constraints, it can be quite hard to send more than one link in a tweet. If you need to send multiple links in one tweet (example : a post that has part1,2,3…), this service can be useful. It collects all links and gives you one shortened link that you can post on twitter.
Tweetdeck : One of the best desktop twitter apps out there. Tweetdeck helps you sort your friends and followers in groups and also helps you manage replies, DMs and search results.
1. Ship shape with a defrag
Regular defragmentation helps to arrange data more efficiently thus making the hard drive work less to access the data. The quicker the moving hard drive works lesser is the load placed on the battery. Thus, your batter can last longer. The effect is minimal, but this efficiency goes hand in glove with hard drive maintenance.
2. Kill the resource gobblers
End the background processes that are not vital. Monitor the resource usage through a ‘Ctrl-Alt-Del’ which brings up the Windows Task Manager (in Windows). If you’re not on the internet, it is safe to shut down the immediate non-essential programs running in the taskbar like the antivirus and the firewall. Weed out unnecessary programs running as start-ups by launching the System Configuration Utility from Run – Msconfig – Tab: Startup. Uncheck the programs which you don’t want to launch and reboot the computer once.
3. Pause the scheduled tasks
It may be a defrag or a virus scan, but make sure it is scheduled for a time when you are near a power outlet. If not then nix them for the moment.
4. Unplug external devices
USB devices are the biggest drainers of battery power. Unplug all external devices like an external mouse, PC cards, Wi-Fi, external speakers, Bluetooth and even an attached iPod.
5. Empty the CD/DVD Drives
Even if you don’t intend to use it, don’t leave any CD/DVDs as leftovers in the drives. A spinning drive sucks battery power like a sponge.
6. Go local
Desist using the DVD/external drives while running on batteries. Shift the content to the hard drive or run using (free) virtual drives like Pismo File Mount or even Microsoft’s Virtual CD ROM Control Panel.
7. Lower the lights
The LCD screen of a laptop is another huge power sink. Calibrate the brightness to the lowest level you can tolerate using the Function key toggles or using the Display Settings applet in the Control Panel.
8. Kill the sounds
Mute the speakers and try avoiding the use of multimedia software to maximize the battery life. Installed sound schemes also drain a battery perceptibly.
9. Rid the screensaver
To maximize battery life by a little, switch off the screensaver.
10. Visit Power Options
Get familiar with power management through the ‘Power Options’ applet in the Control Panel. Both XP and Vista come with advanced power management features which shut off components like the monitor and/or the hard drive after specified intervals. This again depends on the chosen ‘Power Schemes’ (for XP) in the same applet. For instance in XP, ‘Max Battery’ under Power Schemes can be selected for maximum battery optimization.
11. Turn off the looks
Today’s OS’s like Windows Vista come with features like ‘Aero Glass’ which are resource guzzlers. One can turn it off and go for the ‘Classic’ appearance which consumes less power. In Vista, click on Desktop – Preferences – View Colour – Appearance – Classic Appearance and Windows Basic graphical interface. In XP it’s – Display Properties – Theme – Windows Classic.
Linux and even Macintosh are better optimized for longer battery life.
12. Hibernate is better than Sleep
In the Stand By mode (or sleep mode), the computer turns of the hard drive and the display but memory remains active while the CPU slows down. This draws on the battery. In contrast, hibernation mode is better because the computer saves the current state and shuts itself down completely thus saving power.
13. Get the most…work on the least
Working on too many programs while on the battery is a sure fire power drainer. Keep use of graphic intensive applications to a minimum. Working on a spreadsheet consumes much less than playing your favourite game. To increase the life of the battery open just one or two programs concurrently.
14. Ram in more RAM
Adequate RAM reduces the load on Virtual memory which by default resides on the hard drive. Though every extra bit of RAM uses up more power, it increases overall savings by short cutting access to the power hungry hard drive.
15. Keep it clean
A laptop with blocked air vents will generate more heat thus reducing the life of the battery. Clean the air vents regularly to keep operating temperatures low. Allow for open space around the vents for air to circulate freely. Keep the area around the laptop clean to avoid entry of dust.
16. Temperature is a silent killer
Undue heat kills off a battery slowly but surely. Avoid leaving the laptop under direct sunlight or inside a closed car.
17. Avoid the memory effect
A problem more for the older Ni-MH batteries than for Li-Ion batteries on which most modern laptops run. Memory effect relates to the loss of battery charge when they are repeatedly recharged after being only partially discharged. It can be prevented by discharging the battery fully and then completely recharging it. Li-Ion batteries on the other hand have no problems with partial discharges and re-charges and complete discharge is never recommended for this type.
18. Update software and drivers
This sounds a bit incongruous but then newer drivers and software are often designed to be more efficient (and hopefully less resource hungry).
19. Use the right adapter
Ensure that the adapter you use to charge the laptop battery is an original one or one with the correct specifications. A mismatch in the wattage could cause an overload thus damaging the laptop and the battery.
20. Pack it up
If you don’t plan to use the laptop on batteries for quite some time, ensure that the charge is nearly 40 percent – remove the batteries and store it in a cool place.
A typical lithium ion battery has an overall average life of 2-3 years. With some care and caution, its mortality can be delayed.
Have you found your own way to increase battery life of your laptop? Share the ‘life giving’ tips with us in the comments.
How do we go about checking the speed of USB flash drives? Maybe the following light and free software can lend a hand ?
The Check Flash website is in Cyrillic (there is an English option too) but it shouldn’t stop anyone from downloading this light and free USB flash drive speed testing and error checking software.
With Check Flash you can test, manage and format your USB flash drive. You can also run a read-write cycle on your USB flash drive, which returns not only the speed but also any errors (read/write or physical) in your USB drive. The software does not rectify the problem but merely reports it.
Check Flash v1.07 runs as an 812KB sized executable and does not require an installation.
HD_Speed is a pint sized software that can be used to gauge the speed of data transfer on your hard disks, CD/DVD ROMS and USB flash drives. This program is compatible with Windows 2000, XP and Vista only, though it supports both FAT and NTFS volumes.
The 80KB utility does not require installation and runs with a click. Select the drive and hit start. The read/write results show up as a graph and also as real values.
Crystal Disk Mark
Crystal Disk Mark is another disk benchmarking tool that can double up as a USB flash drive speed tester. The screen is simple and gives readouts according to the type of tests performed.
Crystal Disk Mark can carry out sequential read/write tests (i.e. read/write data in order) or random 4KB/512KB reads/writes or text copy. The speed test results are displayed as large numerical in MB/s.The 396KB software runs as a standalone executable straight from the box and is compatible with Windows Vista/2003/XP.
Flash Memory Toolkit
Flash Memory Toolkit is advertised as a collection of utilities for flash memory devices. The toolkit includes options to get detailed device information, erase files and recover files lost after a format, hardware failure or an accidental deletion. Backup and restore functions along with our benchmarking task of measuring the read/write performance of the flash drive is available.
Unfortunately, the free standard version gives us only the ability to judge the Read speeds. To calculate both read/write speeds one has to upgrade to the Pro version. Even with this handicap, the ability to measure read speeds along with the File Benchmark feature (which calculates the time it will take to read or write files of various sizes to the device and returns the results as comparative graphs) is a nice help too.The 766KB software (v1.20) is installable on Windows 2000, XP, XP 64-bit, 2003 Server and Vista.
Similar to the aforementioned software, HD Tune also comes in the free and paid flavors. And again, the free version allows for only read speed testing of our USB Flash drives. It also gives a detailed disk information option along with an error scan.
For more advanced aspects one need to dole out for the pro version. If you disregard the missing features in the free version, it is a handy utility to have around because it gives us a lot of benchmarking information like the maximum, minimum and the average transfer rates (i.e. the read speed) along with access time, burst rate (defined as the highest speed at which data can be transferred from the drive to the OS).HD Tune v2.55 is available for Windows 2000, Windows XP, Windows 2003 Server and Windows Vista.
USB 2.0 has a cutting edge data rate of 480Mbps, and it is rated 40 times faster than the now archaic, USB 1.1, which peaked at 12Mbps. Flash drives are catching up with most now hovering around the 30-40 MB/s mark.
1 Speed.io : Speed.io is a modern DSL speed-test to analyze your broadband internet access
2 2Wire Speed Test : No need to enter any detail just open the link and it will start bandwidth test.
3 McAfee Speed test : Speed test from popular Anti-virus website McAfee.
4 Intel Speed Test : Speedtest from official intel website.
5 SpeedTest : Easy to remember domain name, and nice interface.
6 Bandwidth Place : Click on start and you are good to go with your bandwidth test.
7 SpeakEasy : Option to choose from the different server list to get accurate result.
8 Kify Internet Speed Test :The Kify.com Bandwidth Meter speed test will check the bandwidth of your Internet connection against top DSL, cable modem, and other broadband services.
9 CNET Bansdwidth meter :The CNET Bandwidth Meter speed is one of the fastest and reliable method to check your internet speed.
10 Airtel broadband : Bandwidth test from india top internet provider which also analyze your speedand connection quality.
Sunday, 19 July 2009
- Yahoo! User Interface Library (YUI)
- Ajax Rain
Ajaxlines is a project focused on providing its audience with a database of most of Ajax related articles, resources, tutorials and services from around the world.
- Dynamic Drive
- HTML Goodies
- Mini Ajax
Cool collection of AJAX scripts you can port to your website in no time.
- Page Resource
- Server Scripts
I’m not a search engine optimization (SEO) specialist, nor do I play one on TV. However, even a new business owner who creates and updates her own websites can implement some very basic SEO strategies to make her website appear higher in the organic rankings on certain keyword searches.
Here are the 11 strategies that I regularly implement on my sites for better SEO positioning:
- Page title tags: This is the page information that you see in the blue bar of your browser in the upper left-hand corner when you visit a website. For best SEO, use your top 2 keywords in your title tag. The best way to do that is separated with a bar, as illustrated in this example: Internet Marketing Web Marketing.
- Domain name: If at all possible, use one primary keyword in your domain name. You will have a slight edge over your competition by doing so. If you already have a domain that you have used for some time, include a keyword in the name of files for your website pages. Example: http://www.yoursite.com/internet-marketing.htm if your keyword is Internet marketing.
- Meta tags: These are descriptions on a web page that are not seen by most visitors except when looking at the page source code in their browser. While the keyword and description metatags used to be the primary way that search engines indexed sites, that is no longer the case. However, you shouldn’t ignore them entirely, as it is still worthwhile to include them as a part of your page description. For optimal SEO, your meta description and keyword tags should be no more than 150 characters each.
- Header tags: Header tags are the HTML code that indicate a headline, like H1, H2 and H3 and show up as bolded headlines in your page content. The first 3 header tags are the only ones you need to be concerned about, and the primary header tag, H1, is the most important. Use your primary keyword once in the H1 tag, 2-3 times in your H2 tags, and multiple times in your H3 tags.
- Alt image tag: The alt tag typically describes an image in a floating text window when you put your mouse over the image if the image isn’t able to be displayed. The best use of any
tag is to use your keywords in your image descriptions.
- Content formatting: Search engines pay attention to formatted content, as in when text is bolded, italicized, and underlined. Make sure that you are bolding your keywords in the content of your website.
- Keyword density: Keyword density refers to the number of times a keyword or keyword phrase appears on a web page. Rather than trying to focus on the number of times a keyword appears in the content of your page, aim for a more natural density by keeping your keyword phrases in mind as you write the copy for your page. Optimally, keyword density should be between 2% – 7%. There are a number of keyword density checkers available online to assist you with determining the keyword density of a page.
- Anchor text: Anchor text refer to links on a page that connect your visitor to other pages. So, rather than telling someone to “click here” in the content of your page, include a keyword in your anchor text, as in “click here for dog training tips.”
- Inbound links: Reciprocal link exchange (you link to my site and I’ll link to yours) used to be a great way to attract the attention of search engines to your site. Now, search engines pay attention only to the quality and popularity of the site providing you with an inbound link that is not a reciprocal link. One of the best ways to get quality inbound links back to your site is to submít articles to high traffic article directoríes and submit press releases to paid press release services.
A second way to gain high quality inbound links is by listíng your site in search engine-friendly directoríes in which humans review the listings. Google and other search engines place more credibility in the directories in which the listings are reviewed by real people than they do other kinds of directories. Consequently, these links are weighted more heavily and favorably in the inbound link evaluation process.
- New content: Content is still king, so one way to improve your page rank for a search term is to write high quality articles containing one or two of your keywords in the title and posting those regularly (weekly is best) to your site. Search engines are always seeking good, fresh, content, so your goal should be to make your site into an information-rich resource for your industry.
- Site maps: There are sitemaps that help a visitor navigate a site, and sitemaps that are expressly designed for the search engines. The two are not the same. To enhance your site, submit an xml sitemap to Google Webmaster Central and Yahoo Site Explorer. I use XML Sitemaps to build search engine-friendly sitemaps on my sites.
Search engine optimization strategy is not as difficult as it appears. Take some time to do some keyword research for your site, and then spend another 15 minutes a day employing a few of these strategies until you have a well-optimized site. Why pay for visitors through pay-per-click advertising if you don’t have to?
The traffic rank is based on three months of aggregated historical traffic data from millions of Alexa Toolbar users and data obtained from other, diverse traffic data sources, and is a combined measure of page views and users (reach). As a first step, Alexa computes the reach and number of page views for all sites on the Web on a daily basis. The main Alexa traffic rank is based on a value derived from these two quantities averaged over time (so that the rank of a site reflects both the number of users who visit that site as well as the number of pages on the site viewed by those users).
In April 2008 Alexa revised its methodology so as to “aggregate data from multiple sources to give you a better indication of website popularity among the entire population of Internet users“.
How accurately this method reflects the actual surfing patterns of all Internet users is open to question. However, if you bear in mind that by the end of 2005 the toolbar had been downloaded well over 10 million times you will realize why many people still think that Alexa offers one of the best approximations that we have of website ranking, especially for the top 100,000 or so websites.
That is why Alexa remains an important measure of a website’s
status and is used as a quick way to assess the popularity of a website by advertisers looking for the maximum exposure for the their money. Websites with a higher Alexa ranking also tend to be trusted more than those with a low ranking, so it is in the interest of website owners to get their sites ranked as highly as possible with Alexa.
Here are some quick and easy tips to help you do that !
- Install the Alexa toolbar and set your website as your homepage.
- Copy and paste an Alexa rank widget onto your website. You can get the widget code at http://www.alexa.com/site/site_stats/signup. As well as informing your visitors about your Alexa rank, it will also keep Alexa updated about the number of unique visitors surfing your site.
- Create a customized version of the Alexa tool bar, Then place a link on your site to the download page and invite your visitors to download it. You will also earn Amazon commissions every time a user shops on Amazon via the toolbar link.
- If you have a Wordpress blog there is a plug-in for Alexa Ranking (wp-Alexa-redirect-0.3plug-in) that you can use. Editor’s Note: This plugin may no longer work.
- Submit your site to web directories. Although a lot of directories charge a registration fee, you can still find many that are willing to líst your site free of charge or in exchange for a reciprocal link. A lot of the webmasters who browse web directories have the Alexa bar installed, so if they clíck your link it will help your Alexa traffic rank.
- Become an active participant on Internet marketing and SEO forums. Again, a lot of those forum participants are already webmasters and a high percentage will use the Alexa toolbar when they surf. Place a link to your site in your signature and your rank will improve when any of those people clíck through.
- A lot of Asian and Australian websites feature in the Alexa top 100,000 and you can bet that a lot of website owners will have the Alexa toolbar installed, so it makes sense to join social networking sites that are popular in those regions, such as:
http://www.orkut.com/ – Orkut is owned by Google and is the second most visited site in India.
http://hi5.com/ – Hi5 has an Alexa ranking of 17 at the time of writing this article.
- Become an Alexa expert and post articles that discuss Alexa ranking and SEO tips. This will attract people to your site who may be interested in downloading your toolbar, or people who have already done so. Either way, it will be good for your Alexa ranking. You could even build a whole category of articles on your website devoted to this theme.
- Set up a freebie page on your website and post a líst of useful tools to attract other website owners to your site. Include another link to your Alexa toolbar download page.
- Get into the habit of using Stumbleupon and other bookmarking sites to spread the word whenever you post a new article on your website or blog. Set up a group of fellow website owners so that you can have run reciprocal stumbling campaigns for better results.
If you apply these ten quick and easy methods you will definitely see an improvement in your Alexa rank and you should also start to attract more traffíc to your site!