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TechNewsWorld.com
Mailplane Gives Gmail a Nice Lift
December 03, 2013
Gmail may not be the prettiest email program in the world. Yahoo Mail is easier on the eye. Microsoft's Outlook online has a clean and modern appeal. Nevertheless, many of us use Gmail -- warts and all -- so any app that adds utility to the Google offering can be worthwhile. Mailplane has been around for six years, but its developers have given it a makeover in this latest edition.
Zamurai Whiteboard App Makes Brainstorming a Breeze
December 02, 2013
If you've spent a good portion of your life sitting around a table with colleagues who need to plan and strategize, then you've likely used old-school markers to jot notes on sheets of white paper -- or on dry-erase whiteboards. There is a better way. Enter Zamurai Mobile Whiteboard for iOS, a well-designed app that lets you drag and drop handy and commonly used icons onto your whiteboard.
MacBooster Can Help Keep Your Mac Humming
November 26, 2013
Surf over to the Mac App Store, and you'll find plenty of utilities for keeping your Apple personal computer in tip-top shape. There are tools for freeing up RAM and cleaning files from disks and thoroughly uninstalling apps. Have you ever wished, however, that you had a an app to perform all those tasks under the same hood? IObit is doing that with MacBooster.
Clumsy Ninja May Tug Your Heartstrings
November 25, 2013
NaturalMotion first wowed Apple fans at last year's September Apple event with a tantalizing demo of a new game, Clumsy Ninja, which was teased to hit iOS sometime during the 2012 holiday season. Santa came and went, and no little kids played Clumsy Ninja. And then boom, Apple reveals Clumsy Ninja as an Editor's Choice app in the iTunes App Store with, get this, a video trailer.
All Things Appy: Top 5 Language Tools for Firefox
November 22, 2013
In this week's All Things Appy, we take a look at the top five free tools for Firefox that will help you navigate the polyglot world. The PC-based browser is well-suited to languages, and in this week's piece we recommend the best pop-up dictionary along with a multilanguage search tool and highly efficient translator engines that are superior to hard-copy dictionaries.
GoToMyPC for Android Shines With Striking Simplicity
November 22, 2013
If you've had any technical support dealings recently, you may have experienced the wonders of a tech agent taking over your PC remotely -- with your permission -- and running ghostly commands and installs using remote-access software. I saw this first-hand recently when a Microsoft support engineer had to repair a failed Office installation on a machine of mine.
Baseball Simulation App Hits One Out of the Park
November 19, 2013
With the Major League Baseball season over, some fans of the American national pastime have started to suffer from withdrawal symptoms. Others are hashing over the past season and mulling the next in Hot Stove Leagues. Out Of The Park baseball should bring a smile to both these groups of diamond followers. The baseball simulation game lets a baseball fan experience the game from outside the lines.
Oceanhorn Taps Zelda's Goodness in All-New iOS Adventure
November 18, 2013
Oceanhorn is a delightfully odd adventure game for iOS, at once fresh and yet heavily inspired by The Legend of Zelda, a classic title from the days when Nintendo ruled video gaming. Beyond evoking fond memories of exploring a wide open land while trying to save a princess, Oceanhorn is interesting because it's on iOS. Success? Definitely. It's a fun diversion.
All Things Appy: 5 Best Windows 8 Apps for the Home
November 15, 2013
Here's a look at the top five free Windows 8 apps for the home. Among the offerings covered in this week's All Things Appy are apps for Windows 8-based home-tech hacking on the cheap -- or not so cheap -- plus cooking, home repair, gawking and some spiritual guidance. Remodelista, for example, includes some great ideas for repurposing, including door mats made from recycled fire hoses.
CamScanner Delivers Document Freedom on the Go
November 15, 2013
If you've been trying to keep an aging all-in-one printer out of the graveyard, forget it. Move on. I've been banging my head against the wall with a bunch of space-hogging Dell printers. I had an 8-year-old, office-grey laser printer for manuscripts and an equally old and grumpy faded-white scanner-fax-printer inkjet combo for which the cartridge nozzles kept drying out, still half full of ink.
Apple Sheds Maps Humiliation and Gets the Last Laugh
November 14, 2013
Apple angered millions of iPhone users -- and baffled millions more -- when it ditched the generally functional built-in Google-based Maps app in favor of its own. That was last year, when it introduced iOS 6. Howls of anger rocketed across the Web, and fanboys of other platforms -- including some Apple enthusiasts -- started tracking Apple Maps fails.
Thunderbird Lets You Fly Through Your Email
November 12, 2013
Mail clients have lost their luster in recent times. Between social media fulfilling the messaging needs of many people and webmail's growing popularity, desktop email apps are beginning to look passť. Still, email clients have their adherents. I count myself among them. I like the idea of having all my email on my computer, not in someone's cloud where someone I don't know might peruse it.
Duck Dynasty: Battle of the Beards: Redneckify Yourself
November 11, 2013
Duck Dynasty is an American reality television series on A&E featuring a band of redneck family men who sport ratty beards. They became wealthy by making the popular duck call, Duck Commander, and the reality show itself? It's a wild phenomenon -- the fourth season premiere snagged a whopping 11.8 million viewers. When I saw that the show had a No. 1 paid app game, I had to take a closer look.
All Things Appy: Top 5 iOS Apps for Musicians
November 08, 2013
Apple was one of the forerunners in bringing the power of music production to the masses. Recording and music-making gear that used to cost tens of thousands of dollars and occupy dedicated studios first shrank to home-studio-capable sizes when powered by Apple computers in the 80s, and now it can be found on a smartphone or an iPad. While much smartphone music-making isn't free, there are some free apps out there.
Silent Text: Basic Anonymity at a Hefty Price
November 08, 2013
The Tibetan government, law firms in Thailand and human rights groups in Sudan are all using a relatively new encrypted communications tool -- one that fits easily, if not cheaply, onto your smartphone. Silent Circle is an encrypted voice, video, text and file-transfer protocol that's available in app forms for Android devices, among others.
igHome Offers Cozy Abode for iGoogle Orphans
November 05, 2013
Google birthed its personal portal software, iGoogle, during simpler Internet times. Online applications were few. Clamshell handsets were all the rage. Combining "social" and "media" was an oxymoron. The portal wars began. Online titans like Yahoo, Microsoft and Google vied for eyeballs and the mantle of most visited Internet destination. Personal portals emerged from that competition.
Stop Motion Studio Brings Out the LEGO Moviemaking Geek in All of Us
November 04, 2013
Stop Motion Studio is an app that lets you take photos and string them together to create a stop-motion video. It's super easy, and the results are naturally sort of dorky in an undeniably fun way. The app is free, but before I pulled the trigger on the in-app extras, I saw Stop Motion Studio Pro for $4.99. I promptly deleted the free version and bought the paid Pro version.
Yuilop: Free-to-Mobile Calling and SMS - With a Catch
November 01, 2013
I know, from correspondence that I receive, that readers of this column are pretty global, spread all over the world and in some pretty distant places. That's why I was intrigued when I came across VoIP Android app Yuilop. Here's an app that promises to provide the hitherto unknown Holy Grail of international voice and text calling: free calls to overseas cellphones.
All Things Appy: 5 More Great Android Utilities
November 01, 2013
A few weeks back All Things Appy covered some of the best, must-have free utilities for the Android mobile environment. This time, we look at requisite keyboard, antivirus, backup and download management apps to supplement the battery management, task killer, storage analyzer and monitoring tools that we've looked at previously.
Mavericks Can Be Fountain of Youth for Old Macs
October 29, 2013
As someone with a reluctance to upgrade his hardware as often as Apple would appreciate, two aspects of OS X 10.9 Mavericks immediately caught my attention: its memory management and its battery-life enhancements. Mavericks makes a number of changes in power management that improve battery life substantially -- even on my old 2009 13-inch MacBook Air.
Making Short Spark Videos Is No Fuss, No Muss
October 28, 2013
Yet another video camera app? What gives? Can it really be that cool? To find out what Spark Camera brings to the world, I bought it -- and I was pleasantly surprised. First, the interface is super simple, clean and effective. To start recording, you just put any finger or thumb on the screen and hello, you're recording. Take your finger off the screen, and you stop recording.
Scanner Radio Pro Helps Keep You in the Know
October 25, 2013
Fire season is upon us here in Southern California, and due to the lack of rain earlier in the year, we're seeing critically low live fuel moisture. The amount of residual moisture in grasses and brush is at levels lower than we've seen in years. This means that those inhabiting the wildland-urban interface are on tenterhooks. That unease has many looking for tools to mitigate the danger.

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