Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Marriot Hotels offer discounted awads nights.

To lure more business travelers, Marriot Hotels is offering discounted awards nights to members of its Marriot Rewards loyalty program through January 15, 2010.
Called "Points Savers Plus", the promotion will award members who stay at participating hotel brands using the Points Savers rate, a point rebate of 10% for Sandard and Silver Elite members , and 15% for Gold and Platinum Elite members.
To take advantage of the program, a registration is required by January 15, 2010 and members can do so by visiting or call 1 801 468 4000.

Monday, September 28, 2009

UPS offers convenient new online printing service.

Following Fedex's footsteps, UPS, the shipping company has introduced a new online printing service last week. With the new service, customers can from the comfort of their homes or offices, send documents such as business presentations or marketing materials to be printed via the Internet to any UPS store in the country.
To use the service, customers will have to sign up at, where they will choose an user name and a password to create an account that will serve as a personal folder. Once they have created an account, customers can then use it as a personal fling cabinet to upload or create their document from scratch and save it or send it for print at the store of their choice. The printed document can then be picked up or delivered locally which should cut on the delivery charges and time.

For more, see

Friday, September 25, 2009

Pandora Online music radio application for Android phones is now available.

Already available for mobile phones like the iPhone, Blackberry, Palm Pre, , the Internet radio streaming Web site is now available for download on phones running the Android operating system by Google.
In an article in the New York Times, it turns out that most people who download the Pandora mobile application, listen to the music by plugging their phones to speakers, either at home or in their cars.
The application shows ads that pops up at the bottom of the screen that listeners can choose to click on and watch while the music still play in the background, and when they decide to watch video or make a phone call, the music will stop.

For more, see

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Vark is a free app that provides answers to those nagging questions.

Ever been engaged in a ragging trivia battle with a bunch of your buddies but could not agree on any of the answers provided by anyone and wished that you have some sort of a referee at hand to provide the final answers? Well, like the ads said, there is an app for that, and it is called Vark available at
According to the New York Times, Vark is available free for the iPhone and works this way: You will need to go register at and list your areas of expertise and your Facebook page because it will use your social network as well your friends' networks to assemble the widest circle possible. But still quoting the New Y0rk Times, it will work without a link to Facebook by sending your question to selected volunteers, experts in the field of your question. If you have signed up using your Facebook page, when you ask a question , only a handful of people in your network or your friends network would be asked to provide an answer
which usually arrives within five minutes via instant-message, e-mail or through the iPhone itself.

For more, see

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Simplea files backup and sharing solutions.

If you live or work with someone and you both use a different laptop or PC accessing and creating different files but use the same external hard drive to back up your data without any synchronization, there are some simple and affordable solutions availble to help.
They come in the form of networked hard drives that can back up two machines wirelesly and allow them to share data. Among them is a new device from called My Book World Edition which works with both Windows PCs and Macs and is a breeze to set up and use.
It comes in two different versions selling respectively for $230 for one terabyte or 1,000 gigabytes and $450 for two terabytes. Either one of the two, does performs the same tasks like stream music to Apple's iTunes program installed on either machine, or stream music , photos and videos to a TV with an Xbox 360 or Playstation 3. Also any content backed in the My Book World Edition can be viewed from any other computer connected to the Internet.
Another way to synchronize files is to use a Web-based service and that kind of services is available from several companies like
Sharpcast offers a service called SugarSync which can automatically synchronize the files in folders that you have selected among multiple computers. Those files are baked and accessible at an online account accessible via a password.
The start up price for the service is $5 a month or $50 a year for 30 gigabytes storage files and it goes from there depending on the amount of space needed. To allow people to try out the service, offers a free two-gigabyte thirty days trial.

For more, see

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

TuneWiki is a free fun music app that gives a peak at what is popular around.

TuneWiki’s chief charm is the ability to scroll lyrics karaoke-style as a song plays, whether the music is coming from your phone’s built-in payer or from an internet radio station. No more excuse for singing “’Scuse me while I kiss this guy,” during “Purple Haze.” The lyrics are added wiki-style by users, so you might spot some howlers.
Beyond that, the app lets you look at what other users are listening to around the world, or to see what the most popular songs are with Tunewiki listeners. You can see what people near you are listening to, or, on the Android version, you can see where other people in the world are listening to the same song you are at that moment. Songs can be purchased through the site, forwarded to friends, and (except on the Blackberry) you can post what you are listening to on Twitter and Facebook.
There are still bugs to work out and developers are still adding features. They promise that within weeks you will be able to set up a network to see what your friends are listening .

For more, see

Monday, September 21, 2009

Plastic Jungle helps sell, donate or exchange unsused gift cards.

Nowadays gift cards have become very popular with people who use them as an easy option when the need to buy someone a gift, arises. But as popular as they are for the givers, that may not be the same for the recipients with 10% of them who do not redeem their cards or do it only partially. That makes the merchants that issue those cards the real winners in this exchange. If gift cards recipients have all kind of reasons not to use them in the past, now they have an option to take advantage of them by trading them for cash or for another card that they really want to use. A nascent trading market of second hand gift cards has sprung up in recent years, allowing owners of unwanted cards to unload them.
Plastic a California start up is one the companies that buys, sells or exchange unused gift cards for cash or a credit with Plastic Jungle buys those cards at a discount ( about 8o percent of the original price) and resells them at a slightly higher price.
Beside, Plastic Jungle has partnered with Donors, an non profit organization that match donors with schools around the country in need of supplies. In that partnership, gift cards owners can choose to do good with their cards by donating the full face value of the cards to needy schools through Donors
According to the New York Times, "the non profit organization will match the difference between the original balance on the gift card and what Plastic Jungle pays the donor “so that donors don’t lose a single penny when donating a gift card.”

For more, see

Friday, September 18, 2009

Using Skype mobile on your cellphone.

As it continues to grow, Skype, which offers telephone services for free or nearly free to users via VoIP or voice-over-Internet protocol through their computers, has expanded its service into the mobile phone arena. Even before Skype made the move, other companies were already offering software that allowed certain phones to work with Skype.
The Skype software for mobile is available free for smartphone like the iPhone, Samsung, Nokia, Windows and Android phones etc, and other devices like the iPod Touch, Sony PSP etc.
With these various devices, Skype offers different levels of services and connectivity. But in general, Skype mobile works under the same principle as the one on computers by allowing users to make calls and send instant messages to other Skype users free, and pay lower rates than the ones from the phone companies when calling landlines or other mobile phones.
There are other restrictions like the one imposed by Apple to only allow Skype mobile calls to be made through WI-FI connection and not over the network of its carrier partners like AT&T.

For more, see

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Evernote is a new way to keep different files synched and searchable.

Have you ever dreamed of the possibility of one day being able to have all the important information from all kind of different sources accumulated as you go by your day, located in one place and accessible from any device you happen to be using at any given time? Well, that time is here with a new free web application called Evernote from a Montainview California start up by the same name.
According to the New York Times," the company offers a Web application that saves data you accumulate. You can use it to keep a wide range of information: meeting notes and voice memos, for example, or even photographs of wines consumed or recipes found in magazines. The information is stored on the company’s computers so all the data can be synchronized on every computer the customer uses — and on smartphones as well."
You can for instance "snap a picture of a business card with a smartphone like a Palm Pre or an iPhone and it shows up on the phone’s Evernote app — as well as on the Dell back at the office. It is searchable, right down to words in photographs." That way, if you type in “Samsung,” for example, every business card that you own coming from someone working for that company, will pop up.
To put it like the company CEO, it is like an universal memory drawer.
For the basic features, the service is free and can be downloaded at
For people who find the service so useful and need more storage space or s0me extra features, they can ugrade to the premium level at a cost of $5 a month or $45 a year.

For more, see

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Parental control solutions for Firefox browser.

For all the good things that it is known for ( speed, security and other handy features), the Firefox browser is lacking a built-in parental control feature like the one found in other browsers. One may wonder why that is ? Maybe, and I am only speculating here, because of the profile of the average user of the browser as a young tech savvy, probably single person with no worry about kids surfing the Internet. Despite the absence of a dedicated parental control feature, users of the Firefox 3.0 version or newer who own a PC with Vista, can take advantage of the parental-control features that come with the Windows operating system.
If you don't have Vista or want something else, some Firefox add-ons are available. Among them, Mozilla, the maker of the Firefox browser recommend a few, like Glubble for Families and ProCon Latte.
More information on the subject can be found at

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Android HTTC Hero to debut October 11 on the Sprint network.

It has been announced that the third Android run smart phone called HTTC Hero, would arrive on October the 11th on the Sprint's network.
Beside the fact that the new phone is not not supported by T.Mobile which has been the only carrier offering the previous two Android versions, the G1 and the myTouch3G, the real surprise may be the decision by Sprint to offer the new phone at $180 ( with a rebate and a two years contract.)
According to PCmagazine, the HTTC Hero is an noticeable improvement to the first two models with a 3.2- inch multitouch screen, a 5-megapixel camera, WI-FI capability and a speedy 528- MHz Qualcomm processor among others things.
On top of all that, the new phone is eligible for Sprint's popular Everything plan and will have access to all of Android apps like ShopSavvy, Pandora and Flixter.
The HTTC Hero will be available at Best Buy and Sprint stores when it goes on sale October 11.

For more, see

Monday, September 14, 2009

New services offer books rental by mail.

What Netflix has done with online movies rental sent through the mail, is now being applied to books.
Quoting the Wall Street Journal, new services from companies like offer the option of renting classics or new releases for a monthly fee starting at $14.95 for up to three books at a time shipped free to and from you with no late fees.
Paperspine is said to have stocked more than 200, 000 fiction and non fiction titles searchable by genre or categories like "bestsellers" or "at the movies." etc.
With their membership, users have over 400,000 unused titles that they can buy at discounts of up to 50%. That option is also available to non members for a $19.95 a year fee.
Another rental service is which focuses more on newly released best-selling paperbacks and hardcovers. With their monthly starter plan of $19.98, users, can rent three books at a time shipped free both ways and without late fees. is not for casual readers only; students can use it to rent books by the semester and have them delivered through third parties like
For digital book versions, rents paperbacks and audiobooks in CD or MP3 formats, with plans starting at $10.99 a month., owned by, has more than 60,000 audiobooks, podcasts and audible magazines, which can be downloaded to most digital players or streamed to a computer.

Friday, September 11, 2009

IConcertCal is an iPhone app that can help concertgoers keep up with their favorite acts.

Music lovers with money and time to spare following their favorite bands, may appreciate a new iPhone app that does all the hard work of tracking down all the dates and stops of those bands. The New York Times reviewed the $2.99 app called IConcertCal, and found that it does even more. The IConcertCal app is a sophisticated piece of work that scans the bands or artists names in your music files then checks it against the database of concert promoters like Live Nation or ticket reselers like,, and others. From there , it can tell you when your favorite act is coming to your town or if you are traveling, you can have it to canvass for the hapenings in another city.
Other cool features of the app are the one that let you e-mail any finding to another person, to map the venue's location, to listen to your favorite acts on the iTunes site with the option to buy tracks.
And above all that, you can also buy tickets to the venue, through the app in many cases. Or, if you still need more information, you can head to a site thanks to a "Web info" button and while staying withing the site.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

TwitVid, a free app for tweeting videos.

Smartphone owners wanting to use their mobile device to post a video to go with their tweets, now have options in the form of apps.
For instance, Blackberry users now can post short videos on Twitter from their phones using an app called TwitVid which is one of several such apps that are available on the iTunes App Store for a while.
According to the New York Times, TwitVid is easy to use. After downloading the free app, users will look for the "record" function then record their video, enter their tweet and hit send. From there, the tweet will appear as usual on users' Twitter page with a link to the video which stays st0red in TwitVid servers with no limit on the length.
Anyone with a camera phone can use the service without downloading the app by simply visiting the company Web site at . Once there, users will be assigned to be used to send videos as an MMS or an e-mail with the video as an attachment with the tweet in the subject line. After that, it will post just like a normal tweet.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

New models hit the pocket size projectors or microprojectors market.

Since last year, a wave of microprojectors also known as pico projectors, have the market place. They are pocket size gadgets that can play a video on an iPhone or some handful other smartphones and transform almost any surface to a 60-inch screen.
The first one to hit the market was the Optoma Pico PK 101 by a company called Optoma USA.
One year after its introduction, the Optoma now retails at most places for $229 except at Best Buy who has it listed at $299.
After all the buzz garnered following its introduction, now there are two new entrants in this niche market.
One of them is the Cinemin Swivel by WowWee Technologies and the other is the 3MPro1020 by 3M.
Both these two new devices are a significant improvement from the Optoma Pico and they are both hitting the market this month and strikingly enough, they both retail for $350.

For more, see

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Solution for moving an e-mail account when switching Internet provider.

With all the competition among Internet service providers and Online based e-mail services, the hardest part may not be the switch but to be convinced that there is an easy way to move all your e-mail files band contacts from your old account to the new one. Most people dreaded that prospect and until recently, just the thought of it, may have made them think twice before making the move.
But nowadays, thanks to the offerings of e-mail switching services like, moving all your files from old e-mail accounts, has become a lot easier. TrueSwitch e-mail switching services is so proven that it is used by most of the major e-mail service providers included Google's Gmail. So lets say you want to move some digital files in an old e-mail account from AOL to Google's Gmail, the process could not have been easier.
Simply, sign up and create a Gmail account and go to your new mailbox. Once there, click the Settings link at the top of the Gmail window and next click on the Accounts and Import tab and then click on the “Import mail and contacts” button. A new window opens, asking you to type in the e-mail address you want to bring into your new Gmail account. Once you type in your AOL e-mail address and password, you are presented with check boxes you can mark off to import the contacts and old mail from AOL.
And according to the New York Times, "you can also have Gmail import new incoming mail from the old AOL account for 30 days — and even slap a label on the messages from the old address so you can keep them separate from mail coming directly to the Gmail address. Click on the Start Import button to kick things off. It may take anywhere from a few minutes to two days to move everything."
For more tips and information on from what other services can you make the switch, you can link to the the Gmail blog at gmail .

Monday, September 7, 2009

How to unscribe from unwanted e-newsletters in Gmail.

With its popularity growing, Google's free online based e-mail service Gmail is attracting also another kind of crowd: e-marketers. While how your e-mail address winded up in the hands of those companies can be the subject of another debate, one thing is clear, it is never a pleasant experience to be on the receiving end of those unsolicited emails or e-newsletters.
Now, Google seems to have recognized the magnitude of the problem and is doing something about it by introducing a new Gmail feature that let you automatically unsubscribe from unwanted mailings with the help of one click. As of now, it is not effective in stopping every source of unwanted e-newsletters, but Google is working its way to get more companies known to be in the business of sending those pieces of unwanted mails, to, get on board with the program.
To use the feature, simply log into your Gmail account and select a newsletter or mailing-list message and click the Report Spam link. For companies that support the feature, a box should pop up asking if you want to unsubscribe from the newsletter. If you choose to unsubscribe, Google sends a request asking the sender to take you off its mailing list.
For more information, the Gmail blog has more details on how auto-unsubscribe works and what kinds of messages it works with at

Friday, September 4, 2009

Simple and easy to create parental control over the Internet.

Nowadays, parents with under age children can feel more and more hopeless when faced with the omnipresence of the Internet in the lives of their young ones. Cyberspace can be a wonderful place for youngsters to learn and be entertained. But it can be a very frightening and dangerous place too. For that matter, all you can surf menu is certainly not an option. Parents need to set boundaries and limits on when and where kids may go online. But in most situations, that may be easier said than done, for the obvious reasons that parents may not have the time or be tech-savvy enough to work around the problem.
Thankfully, parents using a wireless home -network do not have to look very far than their network router. Many of the newest models like the ones from Neatgear , Cisco or Linksys include parental control features in the router's settings. Simply check with the router manual for its different features and instructions on how to change the settings.
From there, you can set up limits on how much surfing is allowed, but when and where to surf. With the settings, not only can you block the obvious adult-oriented Web sites, but also any given social networking or video sites.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Choosing the best phone when traveling to Europe.

For most Americans traveling to Europe, being able to make phone calls using a cell phone can be very challenging and frustrating. There are many reasons behind that fact, starting with the compatibility factor between the cell phones' technologies used in the U.S. and the one used in Europe. With the exception of AT&T and T-Mobile, the technology used by most U.S. major phone carriers is not compatible with the one used in Europe. So, if you are traveling to Europe, your best bet would be to pick a phone from one of those two companies that can operate on all the frequencies in usage in both sides of the Atlantic. Usually, those phones are referred to as "quad band" or "world phones." Once such phone is picked, the next step will be to find a plan with minimum roaming fees which can be very steep.
Another way to deal with the issue, is to look for what is called an "unlocked" phone which can accept different SIM cards. The advantage of such possibility is that you will be able to use a different SIM card for whatever country you are in, and have your phone calls treated as local.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Bigwords is a free iPhone app that helps find deals on texbooks.

On the eve of a new school year, college students everywhere are gearing up to face a dreadful ritual: where to find and how to pay for those ever costly textbooks. 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. With that in mind, it was just a matter of time before the ubiquitous iPhone and the ever growing Apple's apps store appears in the picture with a solution. It comes in the form of a free app called Bigwords from a company by the same name.
The the app works by taking the burden of searching for availability and price comparisons off the shoulders of users. Whether you are looking to buy a new, used, digital books or just renting, all you have to do is enter the books' titles, authors or ISBN codes into the app vast database and hit the price-comparison button.
From there, the app goes to work searching about 30 different sources like,, and figures out the best deal by taking in consideration, factors like shipping costs and any discounts you may be entitled to.
Searches can be customized so to look for books by their condition, exclude books from third-party sellers like the ones on eBay, or from specific stores.
To complete your transaction, you have the choice to stay within the app and do it right there or you can have your "shopping bag" transferred to a PC via e-mail for finalization at your convenience.
To make its point, Bigwords claims that the average saving is 66% for new books and more than 35% over online purchases made without using it.

For more, see

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

DriveSharp software can train older drivers improve their skills.

As we get older, our brain ability to process visual information declin, which can translate to less capability to quickly analyse and act on what the eyes see. In our daily lives, one of the activities mostly affected by aging, is driving, which requires the tracking of multitude moving objects and not all of them located in our vision periferic.To help those older drivers deal with that fact of life, one of the ideas advanced today is to train the brain to think and react faster on the road by putting a user through brief, repetitive exercises aimed at bolstering his or her visual -processing abilities.A new software program called DriveSharp by a company named Posit Science, aims to do just that.
According to the Wall Street Journal, DriveSharp "is a pair of simple-looking visual memory games accompanied with some assessments tests." The company claims that its techniques have been deemed effective by researchers at improving visual processing.
Convinced of the effectiveness of its product, Posit Science claims that people who follow the program's instructions and use it for twenty minutes, at least three times a week , can cut their "crash-risk" by a whooping 50% and be able to stop their cars at least 22 feet sooner while going 55 miles per hour.
Maybe the fact that the AAA's Foundation for Traffic Safety has endorsed the product is a telling sign that there has to be some true to the claims.
Anyway, the Wall Street Journal which has tested the product, said that it is easy to use, work for both PC and MAC and is reasonably priced at $139 from the company Web site and offered at a discount at $99 by participating AAA clubs.

For more, see

Business - Google News


World Bloggers United