Tech Thoughts Daily Net News – August 29, 2010

5 Freeware Apps for Searching Thy Desktop Awesomely – This week’s Freeware Files come courtesy of podcast aficionado R. Ellen Ferare. Or, rather, you can thank her for the idea. We got to talking this past weekend and she noted that she’s been having trouble finding a legitimate way to search through her desktop for this, that, and the other. Obviously, Windows’ built-in search functionality just isn’t cutting it—and I don’t blame her for thinking so. It’s slow, it’s bloated, and I’ve personally found that it just doesn’t quite get the job done compared to other applications out there.

Popular Windows 7 Themes – If your Windows 7 desktop looks a little too much like it did when you got it, maybe it’s time for a change. PCWorld’s readers and editors have enjoyed these free Windows 7 themes. Whether you’d prefer sports or flags, candy or flowers, or animals of land and sea, there’s something here for you.

Tech Thoughts Daily Tech News 2

How to make calls using Gmail (video) – Earlier this week, Google introduced a feature that lets you make VoIP phone calls to landlines and mobile phones from within your Gmail account (and iGoogle). The calling service, which is available to U.S. Gmail users, integrates with the Google Talk chat app that you can find on the left-hand sidebar in

Murder by Malware: Can a Computer Virus Kill? – Viruses and trojans may cause suffering and empty bank accounts, but let’s look at fatalities. Can malware kill? It can cause massive damages that on a dramatic day might lead you to say something like, “This %*^@# is killing me!” So malware, viruses, trojans, and such, may cause you pain and suffering; but now I’m wondering how many times malware has actually killed people?

Google working on Gmail spam issue – Google is trying to fix a “spamming” issue that has affected about 2.5 percent of its Gmail user base, the company reported on its help forum. Earlier this week, some Gmail users witnessed sent e-mails being automatically resent several times. Google first acknowledged the issue on its Gmail help forum on Wednesday.

Google launches realtime search: Will non-techies use it? – Google rolled out its full realtime search effort with its own page, but you have to wonder how popular the service will become.

Careful With That Third-Party Web Widget – Smaller businesses are more likely to use third-party Web applications on their websites — and they are less likely to scan such code.

‘Anti-Facebook’ project nears launch – The open-source social networking project Diaspora reported on its blog this week that the code for its much-hyped “anti-Facebook” software will be released September 15.

Company News:

Gartner: IT shops moving to Windows 7 need a 20 to 60 percent PC budget increase – The analysts at Gartner Inc. are warning that business migrations from Windows XP and Windows 2000 to Windows 7 in the next couple of years could create budgetary and resource burdens on IT shops.

Microsoft to add ActiveSync support for all Hotmail users – Microsoft officials are acknowledging that they are planning to add ActiveSync support to Hotmail on August 30. The new capability will let Hotmail users get push e-mail on cell phones and other devices (even if they aren’t trying to sync with an Exchange Server on the back-end).

Google: More than 1 million calls through Gmail in 24 hours – There was no official blog post to report the overnight success of the Google Voice integration into Gmail. But in the first 24 hours since the service launched, more than 1 million calls were placed. The message came via a Tweet on the official company Twitter feed and linked back to yesterday’s company blog post announcing the integration of the two products.

Intel cuts outlook; Consumer PC demand weak – Just weeks after an upbeat assessment about its prospects, chip giant Intel cut its revenue outlook for the third quarter based on weak demand for consumer PCs.

Off Topic (Sort of):

How To: Automatically Upload Pictures to the Internet As You Take Them – In this article, we’ll share out top secret industry secret method, which lets you use two cool gadgets together to automatically upload your photos as you take them, no matter where you are.

Hackers accidentally give Microsoft their code – When hackers crash their systems while developing viruses, the code is often sent directly to Microsoft, according to one of its senior security architects, Rocky Heckman. When the hacker’s system crashes in Windows, as with all typical Windows crashes, Heckman said the user would be prompted to send the error details — including the malicious code — to Microsoft. The funny thing is that many say yes, according to Heckman.

Power Your Small Business Website with WordPress – A lot of business owners look at managing a website as a chore. If you’ve tried to wrangle a site with Microsoft Frontpage or static HTML, it’s no surprise that it seems like a hassle. WordPress, on the other hand, is a lightweight, open source content management system (CMS) that makes it as easy to update a site as it is to write a letter in Microsoft Word.

Build a NAS Device With an Old PC and Free Software – If you have the time and are comfortable with basic network technology, one way to convert that spare PC into a NAS server is with a free utility called FreeNAS. Like many commercial NAS products, FreeNAS is built atop FreeBSD (a compact Unix-based operating system).

Today’s Quote:

“The real art of conversation is not only to say the right thing at the right place but to leave unsaid the wrong thing at the tempting moment.”

–    Dorothy Nevill

Today’s Free Downloads:

FotoMorph – Digital imaging and graphic design software is often the victim of one of two problems: either it’s too advanced for everyone but expert users, or it’s too basic to do anything very useful. FotoMorph is one of the rare programs that manage to deliver impressive results with very little know-how. This fun application lets users create animations that morph one photo into another, no experience required.

IrfanView – The program lets you open and edit images, as well as multiple media formats. You can cut and crop images, apply batch conversions, add, sharpen, or blur effects, create panoramas, and change color modes easily.

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