Monday, August 31, 2009

Shopping for affordable logo designs.

For a lot of people, this recession offers an opportunity to test the waters of self-employment by staring their own business. And one of the first order of business for any new business so to speak, is to create a brand distinctive enough as to stand out in a crowd. But for most aspiring businessmen, resources can be scarce, forcing to do with less. With that in mind, the Wall Street Journal tested four different design companies to see which one would come with the best logo design for an imaginary company for less than $15o.
The companies involved in the test were LogoDesign, The Logo, and
According to the test, the "Superior Logo Package" from LogoDesign priced at $67, was the the best value. Though one potential source of problems could arise from the fact that the company is based in Malaysia and does not have a customer-service number even though its founder is quoted as saying that customer-service is available via Skype.
Both and offer $99 packages that allow only one design or concept and one revision .
The fourth and last company tested, TheLogo Co has the most expensive package, at $149. It include six different initial concepts with six different designers responsible for each one of them. For that reason and many others, the WSJ deemed that option well worth it.

Friday, August 28, 2009

How to restart an Apple laptop with a sealed battery?

As a last resort, people wanting to restart a frozen laptop usually need to remove the battery for a while and then put it back in place. But that solution may not work with the new Apple's models whose batteries come sealed and therefore can't be removed. In such situations, there is two ways to go about the problem.
One consist of holding the power button continuously for 5 to 10 seconds, wait a few seconds and then press the power button again; doing so, should restart the laptop.
The second way to restart a frozen Mac laptop with a sealed battery, is to press Control and Command keys simultaneously with the power Button.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Solution for retrieving a particular file among a hundred contained in different folders.

For PC with Windows XP as operating system, there are various ready desktop search add-on products available on the market that can help solve the problem of quickly retrieving a file among hundreds located in many different folders. One of the best known are from Microsoft itself and Google with Windows search available for download at .
On the other hand, Google product, called Google Desktop Search, is available at
For Windows Vista PCs, the desktop search tool comes as a built-in, but you still can use Google application for that. If you are interested in learning how to use Vista desktop search, here is a link to the tutorial section at Microsoft .com.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Cannon new voice-guided portable photo printer.

As if most of us did not have enough people to talk to, the newest invention from Canon is a talking color photo printer. The portable photo priter named Selphy ES40, use dye-sublimation technology instead of ink and that was one of the reasons the voice feature which is called Voice Guidance was added to walk people around the printing process which is different than what they are used to. Dye-sublimation printers use three separate colors and a clear protective coat and the paper passes through the printer that many times with each color printed separately. One of the goals of the Voice Guidance is to walk people through the process and hopefully keep them from snatching the paper from the printer after just the first pass.
According to the New York Times, "the ES40 printer has an intuitive interface and an easy to use scroll wheel that serves it well for viewing and editing photos on its 3.5-inch LCD displsy screen."
The printer uses a special kind of paper called the Easy Photo Pack which comes with the dye-sublimation material needed to print embeded in it and is offered in different sizes selling for various prices.
For instance, for the most common photo print size, the 4 by 6-inch, the pack of 100 costs $31.99
The Selphy ES40 Compact Photo Printer, will be available in October and will sell for $150.

For more, see

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Laplink Software allows automated upgrade from Windows XP to Windows 7

With the so much anticipated release of Windows 7 on October 22nd, users of PCs running on the old and reliable Windows XP operating system who may feel overwhelmed at the prospect of the cumbersome steps required to accomplish the move, may be wishing there were an automated way to do so. Well, according to the Wall Street Journal, such solution is offered by a Seattle based software company named Laplink Software. The company usually offers a software utility called PCmover for transferring data from an old PC to a new one. The automated upgrade package will be a new version of the PCmover which according to the company, will be able to do the upgrade itself and all the files and programs preservation needed.
It has not been tested by the Wall Street Journal or anyone that we are aware of, but more details can be found at the company Web site at

Monday, August 24, 2009

PC Decrapifier is a software solution for removing trial/craplet programs.

For average computer users, an easy solution for removing trial or craplet programs that come loaded on a new PC or laptop, can be found in a software product called "The PC Decrapifier."
According to the Wall Street Journal, this free software is good at removing those programs on PCs running on Windows XP or Vista.
It can be downloaded free at where a list of what exactly will be removed, can be found.

Friday, August 21, 2009

CourseSmart LLC offers e-texbooks free for subscribers, on iPod.

The Wall Street Journal is reporting that CourseSmart LLC , an e-textbooks provider for college students with more than 7,ooo titles, is making its collection available on Apple's iPhone and iPod Touch, free for its subscribers.
Typically, students rent an e-book for 180 days and during that period, they will have full access to their textbooks, can consult their digital notes and do researches for a specific word or phrases right from their iPod or iPhone.
At the end of the subscription period, students will lose access to the titles. But at nearly 5o% savings per tittle for 18o days which is typically the length of a semester, that is not a bad trade off considered the short shelf life of a physical book and the hassle of figuring out what to do with it at the end of a term.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Texbook publishers to offer book rental option to students.

With college textbooks averaging $100 a piece, it is no secret that they represent one of the biggest expenses for college students who spend between $700 and $1,100 a year in that category.
This is not new considered the fact that a 2004 federal study found that textbooks prices nearly tripled from 1986 to 2004, rising an average of 6 percent a year or twice the inflation rate, according to the New York Times.
And as private companies have moved in to offer textbook rentals as an alternative to buying textbooks straight up, the nation leading textbook publishers have taken notice.
Just last week, one of them, Cengage Learning announced that it would start renting books to college students this year at 40 percent to 70 percent of the retail price the New York Times said.
With Cengage’s rental option, students will get immediate access to the first chapter of the book in e-book format, and can choose from a menu of shipping options for the printed book. At the end of the rental period, usually 60, 90 or 130 days, students can either return the textbook or buy it.
Other power houses in the textbooks business have jumped into the trend with Follett Higher Education Group, which manages more than 850 college bookstores, starting a pilot rental program this fall at about a dozen stores, including those at the State University at Buffalo, Grand Rapids Community College in Michigan, and California State University at Sacramento. The stores will offer about 20 percent of their titles for rent, charging 42.5 percent of the purchase price.

For more, see

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Sony to offer digital books in open format.

Sony announced last week that starting next year, it will offer digital books only in the ePub format which is an open standard created by a group of publishers like Random House and HarperCollins. What that means is any digital book sold by Sony will be readable not only on its own e-reader known under the Reader brand, but on any other e-reader. In another move, Sony plan to eliminate its proprietary anti copying software in favor of a new technology from Adobe that restricts how often an e-book can be copied or shared.
Sony is also planing to introduce later this year, a third Reader that will let users download e-books wirelessly just like the Amazon Kindle.

For more, see

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Business advices offered by new srart-up Bizmore.

In these tough economic times, business everywhere, specially small and mid sizes, could use any help they can get., a new start-up which went live about two weeks ago, plans to be a place for executives at small and medium-size companies to ask business related questions to other business executives. The answers are voted on and the most popular will rise to the top.
Think about Bizmore as an Online network for business advices using the wisdom of industry experts and peers; registration is free right now while it is in beta stage.

For more, see

Monday, August 17, 2009

Sound BlasterWireless allows music streamed from laptops to play on speakers.

With more and more people cutting the cord on a lot of devices and getting most of their entertainment online, it was just a matter of time before someone comes up with a solution for playing music from the Internet on regular speakers. A company called Creative have developed a new device called Sound Blaster Wireless that allow users to stream music from a PC or laptop to a stereo's amplifier and speakers almost anywhere in the house. The $15o device comes with a starter kit that includes a U.S.B. dongle for a Mac or PC and a single receiver with RCA stereo otput jacks . The reference to iTunes in the device's name can lead someone to think that it only work with files originating from that source, but that it is not the case. The system will work with Windows Media Player, Napster and other software installed on a PC, as well as streams from Internet radio.
According to the manufacturer, users in homes with wireless or Bluetooh networks may experience some troubles with the music stream when transferring huge amount of files over the network.
Also, to avoid some drops in the music stream, the distance between the laptop or PC and the speakers, has to be within a defined length.
To stream the music in more speakers in different rooms, Creative sells separate receivers at $70 a unit.

For more, see

Friday, August 14, 2009

New Blackberry Curve 8520 offered at a discount.

On August 5th, Research inMotion, the maker of the popular Blackberrys released its newest addition to the Curves series with the Curve 8520. In releasing this newest version, something very interesting happened as far as pricing, which can be very attactive at the right place.
Speaking of price, the Curve 8520 is offered at prices never seen for any Blackberry at launch. To get right to it, the Curve 8520 is offered for $129 by T.Mobile which is the service provider for the device, and even better, Wal-Mart is selling it for $49.99. Both those prices, require a two year service plan with T-Mobile which starts at $55 a month for voice and data only.
The new device has all the features someone comes to expect from a Blackberry device including a a full QWERTY keyboard. On top of tools like right and left shortcuts buttons, the Curve 8520 also sports a new feature not seen on any Blackberry model before, a trackpad instead of a trackball or scroll.
The Curve 8520 come equipped with a 2 megapixels camera and a 1-gigabyte microSD memory card.
To connect to the Internet, the Curve 8520 uses WI-FI instead of the fast 3G network, but will automatically connect you to trusted networks within range.

For more, see

Thursday, August 13, 2009

USAA bank to let customers deposit checks via iPhone.

USAA Bank, a privately held financial institution who serves primarily military personnel and their families, announced last week that it will start offering a free iPhone application that will allow its members to make check deposits through the phone.
To use the feature, a costumer will have to take a picture of both sides of the check with the phone camera and then send the image to the bank check processing center. From there, the deposit will be processed electronically without the customer having to mail in the physical check, which can just be discarded. But for now, the service will be limited to customers with some type of credit and insured through USAA.

For more, see

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Dashboard mounted iLane reads aloud your e-mails while you are at the wheel.

With the nation focus being brought recently onto the dangers of texting while driving, drivers all over the country have to deal with another source of distraction in the form of reading e-mails. As more and more people get hoolked on the so called smart phones that are virtually a computer in a pocket and the need to be in constant contact with the office rises, reading e-mails can be added to the growing list of distractions on the road. Fortunately, drivers have now at their disposition a device that can come in handy in that area. The device in question is called the iLane and requires in fact three separates pieces for it to function.
The first piece is the device itself which is a nicely designed plastic box that plugs in a cigarette lighter and can be moounted on a dashboard, visor, or anywhere in the car, even thrown on the floor. Beside the connection to the electric outlet, the iLane does not require to be physically connected to anything else and all your emails stay in your mobile device that received them in the first place.
But it will need to communicate with a second piece which has to be a BlackBerry smart phone and a BlackBerry only because no other smart phone is supported by the iLane. The two devices communicate wirelessly through a bluetooth connection. The last piece needed is a bluetooth earpiece that comes in the package.
With these three pieces in place, the setup can begin and the first step is to register at, then download a software called iLane Gateway onto your BlackBerry and wirelessly connect the iLane to the BlackBerry and last, you connect the iLane via Bluetooh to the earpiece.
Right after the setup is done successfully, the user will hear a computerized voice giving instructions on how to manage your e-mails; a video demonstration is available at
The iLane is quite pricey, selling for $600 at the company online store and requires a $8 a month subscription.

For more,

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Job sites double as match-making for a perfect fit.

As more and more people are using Internet job sites to look for jobs, it was just a matter of time before those sites start acting more like match-making sites. Just finding someone a job doesn't seems enough, it got to be a perfect fit. Several job sites now offer free of charge, the match-making feature just like dating sites match-up singles looking for love by digging deeper into the candidates personal lifestyles using proprietary algorithms. Four sites that offer the new service were used by the Wall Street Journal in a comparison study; they are:,, which are all built around this new feature, and
The way these sites work is quite similar with all of them requiring users to register and fill out a questionnaire to determine a match with some differences in the length and the ease to answer the questions contained in the questionnaires. But one of them, Bintro goes a little further by offering free lance opportunities to entrepreneurs who like the freedom and flexibility that working on specific projects provide.
Almost all of these sites scan their own database for a match while one, Trovix, scrolls the entire web to find one.

For more, see

Monday, August 10, 2009

Seagate Replica is an easy back up solution.

The so-called no touch disk drives designed to back up your computer's data and files are not new but one new device called Replica from Seagate, promises to do more with absolutely no touching needed.
The Replica is compact and nicely designed and comes in two sizes: a 250-gigabyte model selling for $130 and a 500- gigabyte version going for $2oo, both are compatible with Vista or Windows XP run machines.
Talking about PC with Windows XP operating system, it is noteworthy to mention that for some reason, the Seagate Replica back up device is not compatible with PCs equiped with a FAT32 -formatted C: drive.
Beside that little inconvenience, whichever version of the Replica you end up with, they both work seemingly and don't almost require any intervention ; just connect it to a PC or laptop via a USB cord and click twice to OK the initial installation and to agree to the terms of service. From there, the software loads onto your machine and begins backing up your entire entire hard drive to the Replica unit. If left plugged in, it will continuously back up all the changes made to your hard drive. Another nice thing about the Replica is that it comes with a recovery disc that allow you to boot up a crashed PC or laptop in no time.
The reviews for the Replica are generally good and put it right in the company of other external back up device like the Clickfree HD325 whch sells for $180 for 320GB hard drive.

For more, see

Friday, August 7, 2009

Nike + iPod Sport Kit is a running buddy in your shoes.

Runners needing a personal trainer but can't afford one, have a new convenient option thanks to two giant corporates, Nike and Apple. The two companies have combined two of their most popular products in creating the talking Nike + iPod Sport Kit. It's a regular iPod equipped with a Nike Sensor that can be fitted in a slot on a Nike + ready running shoe or in a pod holder instead. The sensor then collects and beams the data about your run, like distance covered, duration, calories burn, etc to an iPod Nano or Touch.
An interesting feature of the Nike + iPod is its ability to talk to you during your run to communicate to you all the above mentioned data or more, like the distance left to cover, a countdown till the end of the run etc. After the run, you can connect the iPod to a computer and upload your stats to iTunes or to where they are stored under your account. The Nikeplus site even let you create a running plan that you can share with friends or other runners in your area.

For more,

Thursday, August 6, 2009

How to migrate from old Windows operating systems to Windows 7.

The long awaited Microsoft new operating system, Windows 7 will be finally released on October 22 and the reviews have been generally good. Now remains the question of how easy will it be for users to make the transition? The answer to that question is two fold : one for the owners of computers with Vista as operating system, and one for the many more owners of computers running with Windows XP, Microsoft previous operating system.
For Vista run PCs, the transition should be an easy one because the new operating system shares most of Vista's underlying components ; Windows 7 should almost installs itself on Vista run PCs, preserving all files, folders, folders, settings and programs.
For Windows XP users, the transition poses more challenges as they have to start from scratch by wiping out everything on their old machine before any installation can take place. The disk wipe out process can be done automatically or manually. But there is a catch: the process will cause the loss of any current file or folder organization and any program. Personal files can be preserved by transferring them to an external hard drive or to another PC via a network or a cable.
Those files would need to be transferred back to the old PC and all other programs and software have to be reinstalled as well.
To help with the transfer of your personal files, Microsoft has set up a site that will automate the process for people who prefer not to do it themselves.
But even before step can be taken, people should be sure that their old machines has enough memory, hard disk space or graphics power to handle Windows 7.

For more, see

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Scaled down Microsoft Office to be offered free Online.

The ever going battle between Microsoft and Google has reached a new phase with the software giant planning to offer a free Online version of its most prized possession, Office software. Even though the version being considered is a scaled-down of the original one, it is still a significant development in the evolution of Microsoft who until now has resisted the latest fade known as "Cloud Computing" which consits of offering entire applications via the net instead of having them hosted in users' PC.
But with the search giant Google entering the office productivity field with its free Online application called Google Docs, Microsoft recognized the potential for further erosion in its core business as more people become more comfortable with Web-based applications.
According to an article in the Wall Street Journal, Office's free Online version is expected to be available to the general public, in the first half of 2010.

For more , see

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Yahoo voice recognition is expanding via an iPhone app.

According to the New York T imes, Yahoo popular voice-enabled search function also known as OneSearch, has been added to its its iPhone application where it will be available through an update though some people wishing to get it earlier can do so by downloading it from the iTunes app store.
The application is already available for BlackBerry, Nokia and Windows Mobile phones with less features than the one slated for the iPhone. On the other hand, Google's iPhone application has voice recognition also.
In wake of the development of its voice recognition app, Yahoo has abandoned its Yahoo Mobile for smartphones that was intented to be a one place stop to aggregate your mail to from several other sites as well as access all your social network sites.The individual widgeets that were developed for those different functions, would be gradually released to different phones.

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