Thursday, October 30, 2008

Why The I-Dog Sucks

But honestly, would you really spend $35 on this thing. If you're not familiar with this piece of crap, let me introduce it to you: Basically, it's a hunk of plastic with a few flashing lights on it; and it can move in a super-generic and cheesy way; and it can play your music aloud. Wow. Awesome.
Yeah right. So the it has a few "cool" features. It dances (some conditions apply). Its lights are different colours for each type of music. How lame can it get?
One of its marketing tosses is it'll let you "rock out" but for real, I'd rather rock out with an actual rock that with a little toy that makes you want to break its head off. I mean, it's speakers are barely functional; save some money and go out and buy some real ones.
Let me just compare prices with similar things that aren't as dumb. An Osprey-Talon version is $13.95, and this other one is $9.99.
So just a glance inside the (un)wonderful world of i-accesories. Next time you see one of these, just say i-notstupid.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

The Drinks Mixing Authority: Drinks Mixer

15000 is a lot of pretty much anything. Drink recipes are no exception and the largest guide to mixing drinks the web has got to offer is right here. Drinks Mixer has a gargatuan library of drinks; whether you long for a nice liquer, beer, non-alcoholic drink, cocktail or coffee (and more!), this will provide you with everything you need.
The huge number of recipes come from every corner of the world and are detailed with exact ingredient specifications, nutrition facts, user reviews and other notes. For the most ambitious bartenders, they even have instructions on the type of glass to put it in for best effect.
Moreover, for each ingredient listed in the instructions, there is a quick link to a unique ingredient page, filled with a brief description, nutrition facts as well as popular brands and drinks that can be made with the ingredient.
And navigation through all this is easy with a relatively good search system and categories that drinks fall under.
Adding to that, there are multiple other points of interest that you might want to check out: These include a few bartender tips, games to play at parties, terminology and a little information on glassware. But if you're a bit inexperienced in the area of drinks, there are great drink and ingredient recommendations (most popular/featured). On the other hand, if you are knowledgeable in drinks, share that by submitting your own recipes that will be on display for the world to see.
Of course, if you register, you will also have a handy "cabinet" to "store" your favorite drink recipes in. So go on and register and enjoy the plentiful drink recipes on Drinks Mixer

Monday, October 27, 2008

The History of Food: The Food Timeline

The Food Timeline can be a highly useful website during any school project or other research thing.
This page contains a huge number of resources that will impress a culinary master.
One of these is the long detailed timeline of food right from the beginning, at water and ice.
Also, there are descriptions of the histories of a number of foods such as pasta and popcorn in convenient links on the timeline.
Supplementing to this list, there are fifteen other intriguing pages regarding everything from historic food prices to traditional meals organized by decade. And for the teachers, there are interactive lesson plans. For the aspiring chefs, there is a great list of digital cookbooks for each time period.
But if you still don't trust the information, let me just tell you that their several renowned encyclopedias and other publications that are cited as resources.
So if you're ever bored or have some type of assignment related to food, The Food Timeline can be a real factor in determining your success.

On My Watchlist: Zoocasa Real Estate Search

Recently, I was surfing and clicked on ad just out of plain curiousity. It led my to Zoocasa, a seemingly new real estate search that runs only in Canada.
When I arrived at the homepage, I found it to be very clean and uncluttered. To add, the design of the page is much like that of Google but it is much more appealing to the eye.
So I decided to try its search system as this was obviously its main component at saw what it could do. As with top real estate search engines, Zoocasa had several customizable features such as price range, number of bedrooms and number of bathrooms as well as the location.
Naturally, my first instinct was to just type "Toronto, Ontario" into the box and not change anything else. This gave me over 5000 different homes on sale, pretty impressive for something just starting out. All of these listings included a price, location, short description and image and were quite organised. Adding to that, you could sort your results to make finding the perfect home even easier.
Another tool that was provided was the research, that displayed average housing prices in Toronto, organized by number of bedrooms as well as an article about the city.
Lastly, if you make an account with them, you can also track areas or homes, which can be helpful with home-buying.
So there are some minor issues such as the slow loading and non-global/continental search but I think Zoocasa will soon expand so put this site on your watchlist too because it might be big one day. You never know.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

An Online Guide to Psychology: The Encyclopedia of Psychology

Developed by the Jacksonville State University, the online Enyclopedia of Psychology is quite a powerful resource for any psychology-related project.
This great directory of psychology websites contains almost 2000 links that can provide valuable information about this mysterious field. And all this massive database is constantly revised and updated to make sure that it sustains itself as something that can be of use.
Moreover, for easy access, pages are well-categorized, supplementing to its search system. Of course, to help you find what you need, each site has a short and accurate description right under.
And if you know of another site that can be added to this list, there is a page to add it to the encyclopedia.
Plus, if you're feeling particularly curious, you might want to check out a random psyschology site or the most popular links.
So all in all, the Encyclopedia of Psychology is one thing you might want to take a look at, especially if you are studying psychology.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Experiment With HTML: HTML Sandbox

Hyper-Text Markup Language is one of the simpler computer codes but anybody can make a small mistake that could cost them big time. That's why HTML Sandbox was created.
This innovative site allows you to paste any code in HTML or CSS into a text box given and see the result at the page's bottom simply by pressing the "Submit" button.
This could prove very handy for a large web design project or just everyday coding. Some even use it to test every little code they can find or make; and it's really simple and no registration is required.
To add to that, there are quick reference pages for both CSS and HTML, providing basic information on both codes.
So for this free tool just head over to

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Query By Humming Music Search: Midomi

I could spend hours raving about how complex and impressive the science behind query by humming is. Researchers have been trying to develop this for years and I think they've really gotten somewhere with Midomi.
First, let me tell you a bit about what query by humming is. This technology is basically a new version of music search that uses a recording to search through millions of songs. So you just have to attach a microphone to your computer and hum or sing a tune in it. This is then quickly uploaded and run through a massive directory of songs from all languages so you can find out the name of that song that's been stuck in your head for the past week.
Midomi is hands down the most accurate and developed website for this and after I tested it a few times, found that currently its accuracy rate is around 65%. You might think this sucks; and it does. But they are constantly making adjustments and improvements. Plus, every time a new user uploads a recording, they will take "advice" from this to help raise accuracy.
But not only does Midomi do this, it maintains lists of the hottest songs and artists as well as reviews for many things. So this is really your one-stop shop for pretty much all your music needs.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Cheap Book Self-Publishing: Wordclay

I know that I and many of you have always wanted to publish your thoughts in a book, for the entire world to read. Now you can do just that with Wordclay, for under $20.00.
So the story goes like this: I was really excited about a book idea I had and googled "free online self-publishing". I came up with a few sites and went to take a look at them. I obviously didn't find one that was free but did find Wordclay, the cheapest solution.
Then I decided I would really dig into this site. Well first of all, Wordclay's design looked highly professional and contained no coding errors. This is one of the first things I will do to evaluate a site and is one of the most reliable factors. As well, there was even a live chat service (yes, it was human) that answered several of my questions.
Next, I was quite doubtful but so I glanced at the the "How It Works" section and was really enlightened on how simple the process was. All I had to do was select a few size and type aspects, upload a text file, make a cover, select a price and enter a bit of marketing information and my book would be done.
But I was still quite curious so I went to the "Service Store" tab and found that Wordclay provided a quick and easy pathway to copyright registration, an ISBN number, professional editing, press releases and even marketing packs to really give your book a boost.
With all this I made an account and started creating a book. I am in the process of writing it right now but from the looks of it, I know Wordclay will make my book shine when it's ready.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Useful For The Most Professional Presentations: SIL Speech Analyzer

This freeware is extremely useful for anybody who wants to present that perfect speech, that will attract and stun audiences. SIL Speech Analyzer is one of the most advanced speech analysis software in the world that allows you to apply effects and analyze patterns.
Some of the many features include the ability to measure and graph frequency, spectrographic and spectral statistics for quick analysis. One can also analyze the properties of musical recordings and slow or quicken recordings so you can clearly hear each of the patterns.
And of course, you'll be able to quickly pick up the lingo of this software with the useful help contents. Plus, this application is constantly being improved to make you happy.
So when your next presentation comes up, go check out SIL Speech Analyzer.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

New Innovation in Writing: The Papermate Syncro

These days with the ever-expanding horizon of technology, the petty little pencil has been forgotten. But here is one of the reasons to use that old pencil again. The Papermate Syncro.
I know it sounds kind of stupid for me to be raving on about a pencil but I'll show you how pencils are actually advancing just as much as computers.
To begin with, the Syncro has a comfortable grip with a clicker right on it to advance the graphite easily. As well, this pencil features a large eraser that fits right into the pencil and is twisted out. You may not be able to see it easily, but inside there is even a shock absorbing spring that makes writing a lot more comfortable. Finally, the sleek modern look of this mechanical pencil makes anybody look professional and trendy.
So for innovation in writing, try the Papermate Syncro, even though it may be a little yesterday.

Free Sound Effects for Any Situation: The Free Sound Project

The Free Sound Project is a massive online library of free sounds for you to download. People can join and create free accounts to gain access to all sounds, posting their own sounds as well. It's an incredibly easy process and registering takes absolutely no time at all.
There is a great variety of different sounds here, from children playing to the sound of lawnmower blades. All of these can be of use to you, whether in your latest Youtube video or Powerpoint presentation, enhancing anything you want to put them in.
So if you're looking for that one component that will really put your creation at the top of your audience's minds, you might want to consider a sound from The Free Sound Project.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Top 10 Best Freeware

10. Audacity

A powerful sound editor that allows you to apply numerous effects and analyze recorded sounds

9. Wordpress

A blogging application that lets you express your opinion with many more tools than any web-based hosts

8. Youtube Downloader

A simplistic software that makes downloading and converting Youtube videos easy

7. Stickies

A desktop-based freeware that you can use to remind yourself of any important event, with the "stickies"

6. Limewire

A file-sharing application that permits you to download all of your favorite songs and videos for free.

5. iTunes

Apple's accompaniment of their iPod, selling top-quality music, videos and much more; extremely user-friendly

4. Desktop iCalendar Lite

Another desktop-based application that displays a small calendar, to-do and event list on your monitor for quick access and viewing

3. Google Toolbar

Blocks pop-ups, provides quick-links to several of the best Google services, allows you to search with Google even if you're not on Google and more.

2. Adobe Reader

Reads the highly popular PDF format

1. Internet Explorer

If you have anything other than this, I seriously suggest that you switch and if you aren't using the latest version, you should definitely upgrade to either version 7.0 or 8.0 (BETA)

The New Trend in Weather: Portable Weather Stations

Technology constantly advances and weather forecasts are advancing with it, now coming in the super-cool, super-handy portable weather stations.
Perfect for outdoorsmen and camping enthusiasts, these devices have a great number of features. Naturally, the main one is constantly updated forecasts of several days in a user-defined area. Most of these also report humidity, baraometric pressure, UV scale, wind information, POP and even severe weather warnings. Some creative ones even inform you of what type of clothing you should be wearing.
And these conditions are all reported wirelessly so you don't need to do any fancy work with this to set it up.
The prices for these items range from about $40 to $150. Here are some sites to visit if you are interested:

Weather Keeper
Google Products

A Creative Community: Redbubble

As the internet expands, so does the demand for sharing of ideas. This is one of the things that is hard to find on the web but I have found an amazing site that allows users to share artwork, photography, clothing designs, calendar designs and even writing pieces.
Redbubble has created an innovative page that showcases the inner creativity of anybody and everybody who joins. Each of the compositions have a touch that conveys great sentiment and as you view others' things, you will really begin to pick up this concept.
But that isn't the only incentive, for art pieces, if people absolutely love one of your works, they can purchase it in the form of a greeting card, or wall art. But if you're looking for even more, enter one of the numerous contests that will award you with either Redbubble credits to spend on art and clothing or pure cash.
And of course a community isn't a community if it doesn't have groups to join or a very useful commenting system that lets people give you suggestions and complements regarding any of your pieces.
So if any of this interests you, (if it doesn't you might want to see your doctor) pay a visit to Redbubble.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Easy Essay Research: Debatabase

Tired of flipping through hundreds of books looking for information? Debatabase, by the International Debate Education Assocation (IDEA), is one site that will take many hours out of your research.
This service has a wide variety of topics, all organized by theme, making it easy to find pretty much any major subject. Each of these have individual pages, which present a brief summary of the two sides as well as a concise list of pros and cons accompanied by evidence. But these aren't just compiled by anybody; a majority of the topics have renowned editors such as university professors and debate champions.
Even if you are not satisfied with the information provided, at the end, a list of beneficial sites and books are listed for you to make use of. And if you want, you can make your own points in the discussion section as well.
Overall, this web page is well-designed and very handy for any level of report.

Friday, October 10, 2008

A Simplistic Approach to Home Design: BHG Arrange-A-Room

One of the most circulated magazines in the United States has introduced an innovative new online tool that allows users to plan the layout of a room for their next big reno project. Better Homes and Gardens'Arrange-A-Room is a great way to get your ideas down on paper, and can be of assistance to you even though it is totally free.
Arrange-A-Room lets you choose from a vast library of furnishings and other architectural objects. Naturally, you can resize and rotate any items inserted as well to make your design absolutely perfect.
Although the tool is 2-D, its colour, polished drawings and sleek interface allow users to truly visualize what they had in mind.
And even if exact measurements are what you fancy, this can be of great help to you as you can enter specific rotation levels and sizes.
With this, you can make the home office you've dreamed of come to life. You can make your shoddy old bedroom into one you'll want to stay in all day. Even your bathrooms and entertainment centers will become easy to design.
All in all, when you need a free home design application but don't want to download, Arrange-A-Room will be your best friend.

A Comprehensive Free Web Host: 110MB

The most endorsed free web host is showing no signs of slowing down. With an ever-expanding list of features 110mb is without doubt the best free web host on the internet.
Don't let the name deceive you; this service actually provides 5 GB of storage, plenty for any casual or small business web page. But this is only the start of its long list of features. One of these is, its support of the standard HTML as well as PHP and SSI, two excellent computer codes. And even if you don't feel for coding, 110mb features an easy-to-use web editor that provides over one hundred great-looking templates and is virtually flawless, comparing with the best of them. To add, there are no forced ads and you have access to over 300,000 MB of bandwidth per month. Also, users can easily install their favorite blog platforms such as Wordpress right onto their site for simple utilisation.
Here is a list of some other impressive parts:

- An astonishing 99.8% uptime
- Unbeatable customer service
- No spam, pop-ups or any other irritations
- Flexible restrictions

So if you need a superior web host that is totally free, sign up with 110mb.

The Best Free Photo Editor: Paint.NET

As the popularity of online photo-sharing rises, so too does that of photo-editing. After all, people want their images to be in top shape when they are posted onto the web.
The feature-rich Adobe Photoshop series is without doubt the #1 software but it comes at quite a price. The $500 that some pay, drives others crazy. However, even without this application, photographers and artists can make extremely high-quality pictures with Paint.NET.
Paint.NET all the tools needed for everyday jobs and is perfect for any non-professional photographer. Its intuitive and simplistic interface make powerful touch-ups a breeze. In fact, I really could not find any real holes in Paint.NET.
I was most impressed by the layers aspect that permits users to put images on top of each other for a polished, professional appearance.
Of course, this is all free for download at their website. You merely need a Windows XP, .NET Framework 2.0 or newer, a 500 MHz processor, 256 MB of RAM, and 200 MB of hard drive space.