Tech Tips

Space Is Big-See It All!

I have a huge collection of NASA photos taken from the Astronomy Pic of the Day Web site (http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/astropix.html) stored in a folder in my Dropbox. No matter what computer system I'm using, I rotate those images on my background, getting a virtual tour of the universe on every screen. more>>

Android Candy: Never Plug In Your Phone Again!

Last month, I showed you an awesome audiobook player app for Android, but I didn't share my frustration in getting the audio files on to my phone. When I plugged my phone in to the computer, I couldn't get the SD card to mount, no matter what settings I changed. more>>

Writebox

I've reviewed plenty of simple text editors designed for writers. For my writing, I really desire only a few features:

Support for plain text.

Spell Czech.

Running word count. more>>

Chromium for the Masses

Every time my paycheck is direct-deposited, I contemplate purchasing a Chromebook. Long gone are the days of the CR-48 laptops with the clunky interface and frustrating usability. Although I never quite seem to pull the trigger and buy a Chromebook, thanks to the developer Hexxeh, it's possible to run the Chromium OS on a wide variety of hardware combinations. more>>

There's an App for That

The concept of standalone Web apps isn't new. Anyone using Prism with Firefox or Fluid with OS X understands the concept: a browser that goes to a single Web site and acts like a standalone application—sorta. more>>

Linux-Native Task Management? Check.

Task management programs are commonplace in our busy lives, but it seems that every system lacks something. Google Tasks is nice, but it lacks the features of a more robust task management system. Remember the Milk is nice, but it charges for some of its features. Many standalone task management programs are great, but they don't sync between devices. more>>

Ubuntu's New DNS: Unknown Host

If you're the type of person who installs Ubuntu's server edition, you're also likely the sort of person who knows how to configure network settings. For most distributions, especially those based on Debian, the process is a bit strange, but familiar. more>>

Non-Linux FOSS: AutoCAD Alternatives

Although AutoCAD is the champion of the computer-aided design world, some alternatives are worth looking into. In fact, even a few open-source options manage to pack some decent features into an infinitely affordable solution. more>>

Stop Waiting For DNS!

I am an impulse domain buyer. I tend to purchase silly names for simple sites that only serve the purpose of an inside joke. The thing about impulse-buying a domain is that DNS propagation generally takes a day or so, and setting up a Web site with a virtual hostname can be delayed while you wait for your Web site address to go "live". more>>

Audiobooks as Easy as ABC

Whether you love Apple products or think they are abominations, it's hard to beat iPods when it comes to audiobooks. They remember your place, support chapters and even offer speed variations on playback. Thanks to programs like Banshee and Amarok, syncing most iPod devices (especially the older iPod Nanos, which are perfect audiobook players) is simple and works out of the box. more>>

Trine 2 from Frozenbyte

One of the great things about independent game companies is that they realize Linux gamers exist—and we're willing to spend money. Frozenbyte is the indie game developer that brought us Shadowgrounds, Shadowgrounds Survivor and Trine. Frozenbyte was kind enough to send me a review copy of its newest release, Trine 2. more>>

Build Your Own Flickr with Piwigo

In 2006, the family computer on which our digital photographs were stored had a hard drive failure. Because I'm obsessed with backups, it shouldn't have been a big deal, except that my backups had been silently failing for months. Although I certainly learned a lesson about verifying my backups, I also realized it would be nice to have an off-site storage location for our photos. more>>

Plex Media Server + Roku = Awesome

Plex always has been the Mac-friendly offshoot of XBMC. I've never considered using an Apple product for my home media center, so I've never really put much thought into it. Things have changed recently, however, and now the folks behind Plex have given the Linux community an awesome media server. more>>

Tikl Me, Elmo

Somewhere between the world of SMS messages and voice calling is the land of two-way push-to-talk technology. Some cell-phone providers have this feature as an option for select phones, which makes your 2012-era cell phone act like a CB radio from the 1970s. more>>

Getting Steamy with Desura

I remember the first time I tried to install Quake on Linux. I was so excited to have a native "real" game to play, that I couldn't grab my installation CD fast enough. Unfortunately, I didn't really take good care of my media, and the CD was too scratched to read. more>>

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