Howtos, Rants, and Reviews
August 2010 - Posts
Gmail's New Priority Inbox - Pretty Cool
Tuesday, August 31, 2010 11:53 AM
Everyone knows that Gmail is one of the best email providers around. Their spam filter is one of the best in the business and they have features that are bigger and better than all the rest. Google has just rolled out a new feature called Priority Inbox, which automatically learns what messages are important to you and separates them from all the rest.
This is a very interesting feature and is sure to make Gmail a lot easier to use. Everyone gets garbage in their inbox that's not necessarily spam, but isn't something you need to read or respond to right away. Gmail's Priority Inbox is designed to learn what messages are important by looking at what messages you read and respond to. The more messages from a sender you read and respond to the higher the priority the messages from that user becomes. You can even promote or demote a message with special plus and minus buttons to help Gmail know what's important.
The longer you use the new Priority Inbox the smarter it becomes, and the better it will be at separating your important messages from the unimportant ones. This new feature, is like most of Gmail's new features it, will be rolling out gradually. So if you don't have it yet don't worry, just wait a day or two and it's sure to come your way.
Gmail Blog Priority Inbox
Pantalaine - America's finest Plural Clothing
Monday, August 30, 2010 2:26 PM
A friend of mine sent me this site pantalaine.com and i had to write a post about it. Pantalaine is a clothing store that sells plural clothing, meaning clothing for more than one person. At first glance you think might think conjoined twins right? No, some of their clothing could be worn by conjoined twins but the majority is simply clothing that can be worn with more than one person.
I have to say my favorite is the couch dress. According to the site you can have them customize the dress for any size loveseat or sofa in your home. It also comes with to flower broaches which you can choose from several different designs. Apparently they have new dress styles on the floor every season!
I also have to give a shout out to the "Baby on Board" pant. This is a pretty Awesome pant except you would probably give your baby brain damage if you ever tried to walk around with he or she in there. It's a funny idea other than the possible baby damage.
You might be asking yourself is this site real and do they really sell these products? Well I don't know. The location on Google maps looks like it's in the woods which doesn't make sense, and the address is in a residential neighborhood which according to Google Street View has no signs for the business. So it's not looking good. I sent an email to the managment of Pantalaine store, but I'm not holding my breath for a response. They also don't have a phone number on their website which they most likely would have if it was a real store. So I am going to go with it's fake, but it's funny all the same.
Xbox Live Gold Membership Price Increase Set for November
Monday, August 30, 2010 1:33 PM
For the last 8 years a Xbox Live membership has been $50 for 12 months. All that is going to change on November 1st when Xbox live gets it's first price hike. Microsoft has decided to increase the Xbox gold membership to $59.99 instead of the $49.99, according to a blog post by Major Nelson. A one month membership will jump to $7.99 to $9.99 and a 3 month membership will jump from $19.99 to $24.99.
However Microsoft is currently running a deal right now where you can get $20 off your membership for the next year. For more information
I still think that $60 a year for xbox live is still a great value. I think over the years the value added to Xbox live has been sufficient to warrant a price increase. You can do so much more with Xbox Live now than you could when it started and they continue to add great features.
If you are upset about the price increase you can always purchase a Xbox Live membership online and from places like
and get it cheaper than just renewing online. You can usually find a 12 month membership for $10 less than the traditional renewal fee.
Find Royalty Free Music to Prevent YouTube Filters from Removing your Videos
Friday, August 27, 2010 12:58 PM
One of the most annoying things about uploading videos to YouTube and even Facebook is that their content filters can find copyrighted songs and will then remove your video video because of them. Yes of course they have the right to do that, because you're not supposed to use then in the first place. It's not like your making money off the video by posting it to YouTube, but I guess they don't care.
Well if you want music in your YouTube videos without running the risk of it being pulled try adding music from incompetech, a site that provides great Royalty-free Music. There are a lot of sites that offer royalty free music but must of them only have a limited amount and try and sell you the majority of their stock.
Incompetech has a pretty good selection and you can preview the songs before downloading. The website does not make you create an account to access the music which allows you to simply browse and download.
If you don't find anything you like at Incompetech try
Free Music Archive
. They have some really interesting stuff and have thousands of songs to choose from.
YouTube Releases 400 Free Full Length Movies
Friday, August 27, 2010 11:52 AM
YouTube has just added over 400 full length movies to their website. YouTube has already offered movies for rent and sporting events and now they are offering a section of free full length movies kind of like Netflix instant watch. They are of course not newer movies and most of them are kind of crappy, but hey they are free right. They are also interrupted every 10 - 15 minute by commercials that are twice as loud as the movie.
There are some great older movies including the three stooges, old horror movies, Jackie Chan, Bruce Lee, Hitchcock, and a nice selection of Bollywood titles and documentaries. It's not anywhere near as may titles as Netflix Instant Watch, but YouTube is free.
Checkout YouTube's Movies
Get Free Craigslist Email Alerts
Thursday, August 26, 2010 11:40 AM
Have you ever wondered why 9 times out of 10 someone beats you to the punch on a Craigslist listing. This happens most likely because people are addicted to the site and check it several times a day. Do you want the advantage of knowing about a listing before other people without having to checking it 20 times a day? Well perhaps you should use notifinder.com.
notifinder lets you setup email alerts for Craigslist listing. It's simple to setup and doesn't require an account. All you have to do is select your city and state, fill in what your looking for, what section of Craigslist it would be under, and how often you want to get the notification. Enter your email address and hit the Add button. Notifinder sends you a confirmation email that also lets you cancel the notifications at any time. I would suggest selecting a lower frequency if several items are posted every day under your search to prevent your email from exploding.
It's a pretty handy why of staying on top of cool listing and getting to the free ones first. I can't tell you how many times I have been beaten in a listing and it drives me mad. I hope that with the help of notifinder I'll be the one beating everyone to the punch.
Netflix comes to iPhone Finally
Thursday, August 26, 2010 10:52 AM
It's about time that a Netflix instant watch app makes its way to the iPhone. I have been waiting and waiting for Netflix to add their app to the iPhone App Store and now it's here. It has been availible for the iPad since it's launch, but for some reason they waited till now to release an iPhone version.
As far as the functionality of the app it kind of sucks. It doesn't do much other than let you add movies to your instant watch queue and watch them. You can't add movies to your disk queue or even view it. You can't change the order in your instant queue and categories like new releases and Popular Movies are no where to be found.
It does however do one thing well, and that's let you watch your instant watch movies. You can watch your movies over WiFi and 3G networks which is nice. If you want an application that has a more well rounded set of features, other than actually watching movies, I would try Phoneflicks which is free.
Make Free Phone Calls From Gmail
Wednesday, August 25, 2010 2:32 PM
Gmail has added the capability to make free phone calls right from Gmail. Over the next couple of days Google will start to roll out this feature that allows you to place free outgoing calls to the US and Canada. According to Google this service will remain free at least until the end of the year.
The service is a lot like Google Voice but doesn't require a Google Voice account to use. You can place free outgoing calls, but if you want to receive calls to Gmail you will of course have to obtain a Google Voice account and it requires a little setup to make it work.
It's basically like a free version of Skype when you pair your Google Voice with Gmail. If you left your Gmail window open all the time you could make and receive calls for free using your computer and your own phone number. Since there isn't an Google Voice Application yet you could use Fluid or Prism to make your Own SSB, Site Specific Browser, for gmail turning it into a Google Voice Application.
It's a pretty cool feature login to your Gmail account and give it a try.
Lady Caught Putting a Cat in a Trash Can Now in Protective Custody
Wednesday, August 25, 2010 12:26 PM
You may or may not be aware that a recent YouTube video that is causing quite a stir. The video comes from a closed circuit surveillance camera in England that shows a lady throwing the owner of the camera's cat into a close by garbage can. The cat was trapped in the garbage can for over 15 hours and luckily the owners found it and the cat seems to be just fine.
The owners were, understandably, very upset and posted the video of the incident on YouTube. They then started a Facebook page entitled "Help Find the Woman Who Put My Cat in the Bin." After hundreds of thousands of views on the Youtube video and the Facebook page receiving over ten thousand likes someone identified the lady in the video.
Turns out her name is Mary Bale, and fearing for her safety the police have put her in protective custody. The RSPCA is doing an investigating the incident, but it seems there is any crime to convict Mary Bale of.
I wonder what possesses someone to do something like this? I could understand is it was a child or a teenager because they do stupid things all the time, but an older woman who acts like this is just unacceptable. The fact that the owners of the cat didn't recognize her means that she isn't a neighbor and would have no reason to hate the cat. She must just hate the cats and gets joy out of torturing them. I don't care how much you hate cats you simply can't so that to someone's pet.
Sad Steve – Simple Music Search Engine
Friday, August 20, 2010 12:10 PM
Looking to listen or download a single song but don't want to just through all the hoops to get it for free. Sad Steve is a simple music search engine that lets you search of an artist or song and spits out a simple list of songs that you can play and download for free. It's that simple.
There are no ads flashing about and no popups. As far as I can tell the people running the site don't make any money off it at all. The goal of the site according to Joe Huttner, the creator, is to “prove that building a popular music distribution network need not be difficult. The popularity of this site is a testament to its simplicity. If I can do it, why can't the labels? There is no need for Apple, Amazon, or any third party to create a successful music distribution channel; just connect with fans directly.” Joe is fighting the system created by Apple, Amazon, and others that have begun to effecting marketing decisions of music labels based on their rankings in the popular music stores.
This explains the name of the site “Sad Steve” as in lets make a music distribution network that makes their's less important, which would make Steve Jobs very sad and maybe even angry. I think its a great idea and you can't beat the simple idea and layout. It works well, it's simple and it's a great tool so go and check it out.
Why Foursquare has nothing to worry about concerning Facebook Places
Friday, August 20, 2010 10:05 AM
Facebook announced and rolled out a new feature on Wednesday called Facebook Places. It's a location based check-in system that works just like foursquare, google buzz, Yelp, and others. People are of course freaking out about this for several reasons.
First of all people are freaking out because once again it's a default feature and forces you to opt out rather than opt in. People are also freaking out because Facebook places lets you checkin your friends as well, which seems a bit odd and an invasion of their privacy.
On the complete other side you have the people who are so excited they can hardly contain themselves. They are claiming it's a Foursquare killer already and that Facebook Places is going to destroy Foursquare. I don't think this is going to be the case at all and I'll tell you why.
I have never really gotten into location based check-ins, but I have used Foursquare a little. The best part about Foursquare, and what got me excited about it, was the reasons to check-in. Why is it fun to check-in? Not because your friends can see the places you like or potentially meet up with you but because with Foursquare is a game.
Foursquare allows you to unlock badges for accomplishing certain tasks and you can be crowned mayor if you check-in at a particular place the most. In fact local restaurants have began to offer special deals and discounts to mayors of their establishments to get people to patron their establishment more often. You get points for checking in and it keeps track of your of stats. You can use it to find great places and events in your local area as well as leave tips for other people to read when they are close by.
It's so much more than just a message that says “Will is Here at some Bar!” For people who love games and competition Facebook's Places will never be as fun as Foursquare. The only thing that Facebook has on Foursquare is that it already has all your friends. I don't play Foursquare that much because I don't have friends on Foursquare. It's seems kind of pointless to check-in if no one is there to comment or say anything. I don't think Foursquare is going anywhere, unless Facebook adds fun features to Places like a point system and something similar to badges and Mayorship.
Oh and just a little tip for using the Bing map on Facebook Places, if you want to view the map in Aerial, Birds Eye, or go back to Road view, just hit A , B , or R and the Map will switch views. They disabled the menu but the shortcuts still work.
Make your Own Stretched Ambient Music Track
Thursday, August 19, 2010 2:10 PM
It's been all over the internet for the last couple of days. A Justin Beiber track U Smile stretched by 800X, which then sounds awesome and could be a part of the Gladiator soundtrack. At first I thought it was fake and was simply an ambient track someone claimed was a slowed down version of a Justin Bieber song. I them stumbled upon someone who had taken the track and speed it back up and sure enough it was the Justin Bieber song U smile.
As far as I know Gawker was one of the first major blogs to pick it up and then of course Lifehacker today. You can make your own super ambient stretched song by using the simple tool
Paul's Extreme Sound Stretch.
It's only for Windows but if you want to give it a try on a Mac just put it through
and it should work just fine.
Once installed just select a track you want to stretch and import it. You can them move the sliders to make the track slower or faster. In the Process tab you can do several things like change frequency or pitch of the track. When you all done click the write to file tab, click the render selection button, name it, and save it.
I found that songs with less bass and woman voices sound better. Base and drums comes out sounding really distorted and not pleasant to listen to. This track is of Renee Arozqueta's "Music People". It's just her and the Piano which makes for a great stretch.
Give it a try!
Use Dirpy to Extract Audio from Youtube Videos
Wednesday, August 18, 2010 2:22 PM
There are tons of ways to rip youtube video and audio from the popular site. Everything from websites to downloader apps they are everywhere. I thought however I would let you know about a new one that perhaps you are not familiar with. It's called dirpy.com and it allows you to download the audio from any youtube video.
Dirpy doesn't stop there however it also allows you to change some things before doing so. You can change the start and stop times to cut out any unwanted audio. You can also add the ID3 tags to it before you download it. You can also choose the filename. Dirpy also has a booklet that allows you to have a one click dirpy forwarding from youtube. You can search for a video right on dirpy, paste in the URL from Youtube, or use the booklet.
It's that simple, you make your selection and put the times and information in and hit download. This is great for downloading songs from their music videos as well as lectures or sermons. The only downside is youtube doesn't always have the highest quality audio in their videos which could be a downer, but give it a try you might be surprised.
Instant Jam – Facebook Game like Guitar Hero But you Can Play Your Own Music
Tuesday, August 17, 2010 2:18 PM
Instant Jam is a new Facebook game by the people over at InstantAction. It's a Guitar Hero like game but it lets you play your own music right out of your collection. The game allows you to play the game like a full PC game using a Java Applet. You can even use USB controllers from your Guitar Hero and Rock Band sets, as well as Wiimotes, PS2 controller, Xbox game pad, and of course your Keyboard. The controllers are automatically recognized for use in the game, which makes things a lot easier.
The game is only playable on Facebook and features all the same social hooks that you would expect from a game built for Facebook. You can give gifts, make wall posts, and post challenges to friends. The game creators have a library of songs that they have mapped for play. You can search or browse for songs and if you have that song on your computer then you can select it and play it. If you don't you can always buy the song in the iTunes or Amazon music store.
After you finish playing a song you get a score that helps you gain fans and money to purchase items in the store. Just like Guitar Hero you can purchase guitars and other items from the online store to be used in the game. This game is sure to be an online hit and be loved by many.
Right now it's still in beta and the beta is full, so all you can do right now is
install it on Facebook
to get in line for the beta. Once they start letting more people in you will get an email letting you know you can join. It's also only for PC users right now, but a Mac version is coming soon according to their website.
Instant Jam Website
Wiccan Witch Selling Spells on Ebay
Tuesday, August 17, 2010 12:27 PM
Ebay has been host to many weird and interesting actions since it opened up its doors in 1994. You had the Apple Store broken glass step, Pope John Paul and Mother Teresa Chicken Nuggets, Fossilized Boobs, Alien Implant, and the list goes on and on. Well what about spells? Why not sell spells cast by an actual witch?
Well if you are in need of a spell cast via the internet Ebay and the Ebay user moonstruck9000 has you covered. Moonstruck9000's real name is Amelia and she is a Wiccan witch who claims to be very powerful. Most of the spells Amelia offers are for improved physical appearance or are relationship related. Things like booty enhancement, penis enlargement, weight loss, lottery money, breakup spells, and more. Each of the spells cost between $9 and $13 depending on the spell.
I know what you are thinking it's just for fun right? Well I would assume so, but the crazy thing is that moonstruck9000 has over 2778 transactions on ebay with a 99.8% positive feedback. Now you could say that it was faked to give the impression that the spells really work, but 2778 of them? Whether the spells work or not 99.8% of people are happy with their $9 - $13 dollar spell.
So if your in need a little enhancement without going under the needle or need something done for your relationship why not give the ebay Wiccan witch a try?
Moonstruck9000 Ebay Offerings
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