Category Archives: Internet Tools / Useful Websites / Web2.0

All the latest web2.0 services, cool websites, useful websites, internet tools and more. Find information about websites that are useful and provide cloud computing through a web browser.

GeoSurf Offers Premium Proxy Servers In 80+ Locations Around The World

geosurf logoGeoSurf is a powerful and unique service which allows you to visit any website virtually from more than 89 locations. This service is specially useful for online marketers who usually geo-target their campaigns. Today, most of the websites display geo-targeted ads on desktop as well as on mobile devices. In simple words, visitors from Spain, Germany and China will be able to see ads related to products and services available in their respective countries.

geosurf

There are many websites which allow us to browse the web with different geographical location. However, most of them do not work as advertised and the rest are full of pop-ups and crappy ads. On the other hand, GeoSurf offers quick and easy access to a network of fast, secure and premium proxy servers in more than 89 locations around the world, including Australia, Japan, Russia, Germany, India, Italy, Spain, South Africa, Korea, Poland, UK, US, etc. Check out the complete list below.

geosurf locations

You can easily use GeoSurf right inside your browser, with the help of a simple toolbar. The GeoSurf toolbar is currently available only for Firefox and Internet Explorer and can be installed within seconds. After installing the toolbar, you will need to click on the settings icon and type your username and password to access its features.

Once you have logged into the toolbar you can surf any website as a local user of the country or DMA (Designated Market Areas) you select. Once you have done that, you will be able to view the ads that are geo-targeted to those locations. The toolbar is fast and easy-to-use and allows you to switch between countries in seconds.

geosurf toolbar

The mobile emulator feature in the toolbar is worth mentioning. The mobile emulator allows you to view how a site looks when it is viewed from smartphones and tablets such as iPhone, iPad, Samsung Galaxy S, BlackBerry Torch, etc. This feature is extremely useful for online marketers who want to check whether their website or ads looks perfect on different mobile platforms or browsers. To test this feature, I selected Samsung Galaxy S from the options and tried to visit Techie Buzz. I was quite happy to see that, it greeted me with the mobile version of the website.

The GeoSurf toolbar also allows you to view how a website or ad campaign looks from different browsers such as Firefox 3.6, Firefox 4, Google Chrome 10, Google Chrome 11, MSIE 8, MSIE 9, Opera 11, Safari 5, etc. Additionally, the GeoSurf VPN offers solution for changing the entire machine’s IP address to gateways on their global network of premium proxy servers.

GeoSurf Plus is a new and unique feature which helps you to checkout the complete eco-system of any website with a single click. To view the report of any website, you will need to click the graph icon on the toolbar. It will display the number of mediators, advertisers, campaigns and unique creative. To get the complete report, you will need to click on the "More Insight" button and it will open a new window with a interactive report of the given site. Currently, the reports are available only for the last 7 days.

Geosurf Plans and Pricing

geosurf plans

GeoSurf currently offers 4 different price plans – Silver, Gold, Platinum and Diamond. The basic Silver plan starts at $29 per month and it goes up to $199 per month for the Diamond plan. Silver, Gold, Platinum and Diamond plans offers 1 location + 100MB usage, 5 locations + 500MB usage, 9 locations + 700MB usage and 12 locations + 1GB usage respectively. GeoSurf also offers an Enterprise plan, which lets you to select 89 locations from the available locations. If you want to try their services, then you can also sign up for a 5-day trial account.

GeoSurf is definitely the best service which allows to to visit any website from more than 60+ countries and 20+ US locations. Most of the proxy servers offers slow and pathetic service, however, GeoSurf offers super-fast and premium proxy servers. If you are an online marketer dealing with geo-targeting, then you should definitely go ahead and sign up for a GeoSurf account.

You can view a demo of GeoSurf in action in the embedded video above and sign up for a free trial account to start using their features.

Disclaimer: The following is a sponsored review of GeoSurf. All opinions presented in this post are unbiased and true to our knowledge.

Codecademy – A Fun Way to Learn Programming

Learning programming through books has never been an easy task and it’s quite frustrating to learn it when you don’t tend to understand the logic. At least for a beginner it’s a heck of a job. Although having gone through several resources like, video tutorials, bookmarking online tutorials, and so on, but for some reason, you still don’t get a hang of it.

It was the same case with Zach and Ryan who were frustrated with learning how to program, and ultimately came up with an interactive way to learn programming by actually coding. They teamed up to create Codecademy, a web-based interactive programming tutorial that enables you to learn, and walks you through the basics of JavaScript.

Codecademy launched back in August 2011 and drew a whopping 250,000 visitors in its first four days and a total number of 2.1 million exercises were completed. The site teaches coding from the very basics, like declaring variables, and go as far as ‘While’ loops.

When you visit Codecademy.com you will be prompted to complete the first lesson, which involves printing your name and finding the length (number of letters) of your name. However, as you progress, you will have to set up an account in order to save your progress and continue with the tutorials.

Codecademy - A Fun Way to Learn How to Program

The lessons are pretty straightforward and can be easily understood. It has a sidebar on the left hand of the screen, which will instruct you to perform a task. On the right, you will have a terminal where you need to enter the code and execute the same. The site interactively responds to whatever you code, be it correct or incorrect, or may prompt you to reuse something you have learned in a previous lesson, thus making you feel interested in learning and accomplishing the task.

Another interesting catch is that as you progress through the lessons, you will start to earn some points, badges and trophies. This is something which will motivate you to perform more operations and mostly without any mistakes.

Codecademy - Achievements

Go ahead, give it a try. I’m sure you’ll love it!

I just gave it a try and completed a few lessons in no time. It’s that easy –

Course Progress

Codecademy does have some pretty good investors, including Union Square Ventures, O’Reilly, SV Angel, Yuri Milner, Social+Capital Partnership, Thrive Capital, Crunch Fund, Collaborative Fund, Founder Collective, Joshua Schacter, Vivi Nevo, Naval Ravikant, and several others. Few days back, the company announced that it has managed to raise $2.5 million in funds, led by Union Square Ventures, which has allowed Codecademy to expand its operations to more countries with more manpower.

They have also launched ¬†their ¬†first user generated course, created by – Albert Wenger, a partner at Union Square Ventures, who is the author of “Functions in JavaScript,”.

Winzip Debuts ZipSend And ZipShare: Sharing Large Files Made Simple Via Email And Facebook

You know what’s the biggest frustration of sharing large files with an online friend?

It’s not the technology you use but the technology used by the other person who needs your files and has never heard of services like DropBox, Windows Live Skydrive, YouSendIt and so on. There have been times when this friend of mine calls up in the middle of night saying Hey I need all those project files right this instant.

I asked him whether he has a DropBox or a Skydrive account, and he replies What’s that? I mean why don’t you email me all those files(he is not aware of the 25 MB email attachment limit and wants me to upload all files one by one, while I am dying to sleep).

Winzip is trying to solve this situation with its brand new social file sharing feature ZipSend and ZipShare (nice names).

WinZip’s ZipSend Send Files Up to 2GB Via Email

winzip-zipsend

Here is how it works.

ZipSend lets you compress multiple files and folders into a single archive, which you can email to anyone. It is basically an email plugin that marries your desktop or online email client (Gmail, Hotmail, Yahoo). When your files have finished uploading, ZipSend will email the recipient a download link of all the files as a new email message.

You will need a ZipSend account (Free) and have to install the WinZip Courier application on your system. The free plan of ZipSend lets you upload up to 50 MB of archived files for free, while the Pro option allows 2GB of file uploads via your ZipSend account.

So what makes ZipSend stand out from DropBox and other competing file sharing products? Nothing, except the fact that some people are over obsessed with email attachments and they are really skeptical on using third party sites for file downloads.

Send them a thousand email attachments and they feel secured and happy.

That’s where ZipSend fits in, when your target users are really basic and they want those files right in their email inbox. Otherwise, the features of ZipSend are still in its developing stages. For example; the free account of ZipSend gives you only 50 MB per file upload while the maximum number of files sent per month is restricted to 100. The Pro account sounds a little liberal at 2GB per file but then it costs $9.99 a month. Compared to Dropbox, which allows file uploads of up to 300 MB in size for free accounts, ZipSend is simply a waste of time.

ZipShare: A File Upload Container For Your Facebook Profile

Unlike ZipSend, ZipShare is completely free and lets you quickly share files with Facebook friends and groups. Not more than 20MB per file though.

Go to Zipshare.com, login with your Facebook account, upload all the files and share the download link on your wall or a Facebook group. The maximum disk space of your ZipShare account is 100 MB while the maximum file size per upload is 20 MB. Not bad!

zipshare

A word of caution here. Once the download link is posted on your Facebook wall, any of your Facebook friends can click through to see what you have just shared. ZipShare does not support Facebook friend lists yet, so there is no way to share files with only specific Facebook friends. A little awkward but if that’s fine on your half, ZipShare is the ideal choice for sharing random files with Facebook friends. Pretty quick actually!

For the curious, I don’t use Winzip. $29.95 > 7Zip

Google Docs Can Open Password Protected PDF

Since Google started out with , they have been adding a lot of new interesting features to the service to compete with the likes of Microsoft Office. Of late, the competition is really steaming up and Microsoft is battling to win back the online documents supremacy. However, Google’s integration of Google Docs with and their other services offers users an option to open and view documents, images and PSD files in their email without having to download them locally.

Open Password Protected PDF Files with Google Docs

I have been using the option to open documents and PDF files in Google Docs for quite sometime now. However, one feature I found missing was the ability to open password protected PDF files in Google Docs.

Also Read: Remove Password from PDF Files | Unlock Password Protected PDF Files

It looks like that the Google Docs viewer just got smarter (or that it was already but I noticed it now) and allows you to open password protected PDF files without having to download them to your local computer.

The new feature is currently available for PDF files only and I wasn’t able to test it with a regular word document which was password protected. Hopefully, Google should add a feature for other password documents soon.

Find Useful and Amazing Stock Photos at Depositphotos

Most of you might be already familiar with the term "Stock Photography". But, if you are one of those, who have no idea regarding this term, then let me explain you briefly. Stock Photography, also known as Stock Photos, are professional photographs of common people, events, nature, landmark, etc. These photos can be bought and sold on a royalty-free basis. The royalty free images are not actually "free". You will need to pay a one-time fee to use the image multiple times.

Stock photos are used in newspapers, magazines, textbooks, T-shirts, consumer advertisements, trade advertisements, greeting cards, calendars, websites, etc. You might also need some stock photos in the near future, but finding a great stock photography site with a large amount of useful photos as well as reasonable pricing is a difficult job. After browsing a number of stock photography sites, I finally found a collection of great photos at Depositphotos.com.

deposit photos

Depositphotos was founded in 2009 and it is the fastest growing free stock images agency in the world. You can find more than 4 million stock photos and vector images at Depositphotos. The design of the site is quite simple and easy to use. I was looking for a couple of royalty-free photos related to nature. I did a simple search with the keyword "nature". And within few seconds, I was able to find thousands of amazing nature photos. You can see the live example here.

You can easily purchase the required images using credits. For every dollar, you will get one credit. The images are available in various sizes, resolutions and dimensions. You can purchase the XSmall image for just 0.50 credits, while the value of XXLarge photo goes up to 6 credits. You can also purchase the vector image for 9 credits. Depositphotos offers 4 different payment options – Credit Card (Visa, Master Card and Visa Electron), PayPal, MoneyBookers and WebMoney. It also offers an unique "Pay-by-SMS" option, where you can purchase credits just by sending a simple text to the given number.

deposit photos

You can not only purchase stock photos but also stock illustrations on an individual basis along with purchasing them with a subscription. As soon as you join this site, you will get a free 7 days subscription with an option to download up to five photos of any size per day. It means that you can get up to 35 photos, without spending any money. The only catch is that you will need to link your credit card or PayPal account. After 7 days, you will be automatically charged $59 for the monthly subscription. But, you can cancel the order within first 7 days and easily get the required photos for free.

If you are a photographer, then you call also sell some of your great photos to potential buyers via Depositphotos. There is no limit on uploading and selling your photos. But, you will need to go through Application process. The expert staff at Depositphotos will ask you to submit five images that represent your best work. You application will be reviewed and accepted, if the images are of good quality and composition. Once accepted, you can sell your images and earn money based on commission. You can earn a commission of anywhere between 40% to 60% of the selling cost of the image.

deposit photos

There are number of sites offering stock photos. But, some of the stock photo agency offer good quality photos at a very high cost, while the others offer low cost images, which are not even worth buying. Depositphotos is one of the best site where you can get high quality stock photos, without burning a hole in your pocket.

Depositphotos also have also launched some special programs for bloggers and photographers which can be viewed at http://depositphotos.com/for-bloggers.html or http://depositphotos.com/for-photographers.html.

Disclaimer: The following post is a sponsored review of Depositphotos. All views provided in this post are unbiased and have not been influenced by the sponsor.

Google Dictionary Shutdown – I Hate You For the First Time

In 2009, Google added it’s own dictionary, called Google Dictionary. Many people used it and loved some of the features, such as the ability to “star” some entries and recall them later.

Old Google Dictionary logo

On August 5th, Google suddenly declared that it had shut down Google Dictionary. This prompted a flurry of questions in the Google support forums. One person in particular voiced their concern in a big way:

You shut down “Google Dictionary”. I HATE you for the first time.

If you go to the Dictionary site now, you’ll see Google’s sweet little message telling you that “Google Dictionary is no longer available.”

google dictionary not available

In response to a few furious users, Google employees responded with the following explanations.

Hi everyone,

As many of you know, we’ve recently introduced a dictionary tool into Google Web Search to help you quickly look up the definition of a word,. Because the dictionary tool offers the same functionality as Google Dictionary, we’ve decided to discontinue dictionary.google.com.

For your definition needs, you can type your query right into the search box and use the dictionary tool located in the left-hand panel on the results page, or you can type [define (your word)] right into the search box.

I want to thank those of who who’ve been loyal users of dictionary.google.com and welcome you to share your feedback on how the dictionary tool can be improved.

Cheers,

Kelly

Google is right about that. You can still access most of the same functions from the normal search box at Google.com, by typing the word “define” in front of the word you want to search for, as shown in the following image.

 

Google definition search

If you click on the word “More >>” at the end of the first result, you’ll be tossed over to what’s left of the now defunct Google Dictionary page. So, all is not lost, except for the “star” feature.

There are some nice alternatives if you still want quick access to dictionary definitions. The first one is the Google Dictionary extension for Google Chrome web browser. This extension allows you to double click on any word in a web page and get a quick pop-up definition. It’s very nice, and once again, clicking on the “More >>” link sends you over to the old Google Dictionary page.

image of google dictionary extension at work

If you are using the Firefox web browser, I recommend the Answer.com addon. After installing it, point at any word, hold the Alt key (Ctrl in Linux) and click. A pop-up will appear on the screen, explaining the term.

Firefox Addon for Answer.com definitions

Now you can comfortably keep on HATING Google, while looking up every crazy word in the world.

 

[Rant] Picsquare.com Needs To Learn Email Etiquette

Picsquare.com is one of the earliest photo-printing sites in India, and was acquired by Infibeam, an ecommerce major in India some time ago. I explored the site around the time it launched, and ordered a few photo prints. Yesterday, I received an email from Picsquare.com which had, to use the pop-culture term, FAIL written all over it.

Picsquare.com

Email header

An email from root’ and with Notification’ in the subject line could easily be identified as spam by most email services. Even I was about to miss this critical message assuming it to be some random email.

Facts

Several web services delete user data or close accounts if they are not used/accessed for a specified long period of time. Fair enough. The mail however mentions that I’ve not used the printing service in the last one year. Well, that is incorrect. I have not been using the service for even longer, and if this was some programmatically implemented policy my account should have been flagged a long time back.

Courtesy

Most emails announcing deletion of user data are sensitive and polite. It’s not a pleasant action even if it makes business sense. The announcement usually inform of the policy in a considerate and soft tone, and then suggest ways to prevent the deletion. As a protocol, the first email mentions a particular date when the drastic step would be taken and till which the user has the option to act upon in some manner like logging in or backing up his data from the site.

The email from Picsquare.com intends to bring to my notice the deletion in a matter-of-fact rhetoric. There is no mention if this action is immediate or at a certain date. Neither does the email suggest ways in which I can prevent the deletion of my data, and perhaps continue to use the photo printing service.

 

So yes, so long, Picsquare.com. You’ve lost me as a customer with this poorly executed communication. Is it just me, or do you find this lame as well?

Apptivo: Business Management At Zero Cost

apptivo-logoBusiness of all volumes has a necessity in common. A platform to better relate, collaborate and to manage the workflow. Be it employee monitoring or working on a task at hand, the job is to unite all the efforts to develop a more systematic and productive environment. Big enterprises have their custom build software to meet their specific demands. However budding entrepreneurs since being on a limited budget needs to rely on free tools available. Well in case you are looking for one, here is Apptivo, a web-based app, that can take care of almost all the business needs you can possibly think of.

apptivo-signature-image

After filing up the sign up form get started with the application. You will get to choose from the category of apps you want to have included. You can select them later on too. Here is a review of the app categories you can have within the service.

Collaboration:

This part is dedicated to sharing documents, storing contacts, putting up events and you also get a fax service (paid).

Sales:

The sales category lists tools to deal with customers, leads, probable options to create sale and orders.

Project Management:

This part is all about managing projects and maintaining a scheduled timeframe.

Employees:

Manage your employees in a better way. Keep records such as designation, department, pay scale, legal info and lots more related to a specific employee.

Product Management:

Listing items and customer requirements are dealt with using the apps included in this section.

Website Management:

If you want to market your business online, these tools will definitely help you manage your domains and blogs. If you do not have any domains as of now, you can create them here as well. You can even configure your online payment gateway with this tool. Listed services include Paypal, Google Checkout and many others too.

Invoices:

Apptivo comes with a standalone invoicing service which you can use to request payments from your customers.

Customer Services:

This being one of the key factors for any trusted business, Apptivo provides two basic tool to deal with it. One is designed to handle cases raised by customer complaints and suggestions. Another deals with RMA (Return Material Authorization) specifically.

Fund Raising:

If you are looking for tools that let you handle investors (present and probable) as well as funding rounds there are three tools that can let you do that efficiently.

Marketing:

This is perhaps the most important element for a growing business. Hence, you get a complete array of 5 tools included in this section. These take care of campaigns, loyalty management, message templates, pricing, promotions and targets.

Supply-Chain and Sourcing:

Finally these two sections handle the supply chain of your business. Managing relations with manufacturers and suppliers to logistics, all are being taken care of with the tools listed under these two sections.

These comprises the only free tools offered by Apptivo. You get to buy more apps if isn’t included among the free apps.

With the quick overview of the online tool or rather collection of tools it can be inferred that this definitely promises to be a powerful business companion to anyone who is looking for a free alternative. Provided the benefits of a web based alternative in many cases such as platform independence, installation overhead, portability etc this tool deserves to a worthy try. However, take a good look at them yourselves and let us know, if you liked it or not.

TIP: We have previously covered OpenPetra, an open source project that lets you achieve a part of the tasks mentioned above.

Watch Megavideo, VideoBB, VideoZer Videos Without Time Restrictions Using Sheepser

In the past, we have told you about several services to overcome the 72 minutes time restriction on Megavideo. If you are still unable to bypass Megavideo time limits, a new service is here to help you out.

Watch Megavideo Videos Without Time Restrictions

Sheepser streaming service provides users with an unrestricted video players which allows you to watch videos instantly without limitations. The service currently supports videos from Megavideo, VideoBB, VideoZer and more among others. In order to view a video from these services without time limits and restrictions, you will have to copy the video URL and paste it into in Sheepser.com.

Once you do that, Sheepser will start playing the video on their site in their own player. You can watch unrestricted videos on the site, which means that all the time limits on watching videos will be removed.

Sheepser also provides backup servers in case one of them is not working while allowing users to embed the videos on websites. Services such as Sheepser can come in pretty handy when you want to watch longer videos on sites like Megavideo.

Sheepser also provides users with a handy bookmarklet which can be used to directly open videos in Sheepser without having to copy the link. Go ahead and give it a try, it works pretty well.

Tired Of Third Party Download Sites? Fetch.io Brings All Of Them Together

Do you download a lot of movies, torrents and random stuff from the Internet and want a single place where you can manage all the downloads? How about an app which can fetch files from any download server and let you download it at your preferred time, without having to sit back and wait for the downloads to finish right at this moment?

Enter Fetch.io a simple yet useful service which lets you fetch files from any download location to your Fetch.io account. Fetch.io supports torrents, Rapidshare, Megaupload, Mediafire and all the major third party download servers, so instead of downloading files from random servers and losing track of them, you can consolidate all of them on your Fetch.io dashboard.

fetch-files

After adding a file to your Fetch.io account, hit Fetchand forget about it. Fetch.io will download the file on it’s remote server and will send you an email notification when they your file is parsed and ready. Next, you can either download the file directly from your Fetch.io account or grab the URL and share with anyone who might want to download the same file.

Fetch.io works just like a cloud download manager which downloads files to your Fetch.io account instead of the local computer you are using. Many download servers have limitations on file downloads and in some bizarre cases, you may find that the file you have bookmarked has either expired or has been removed from the server. So instead of bookmarking files, movies, videos or torrents which you want to download later, you can use Fetch.io and save them to a remote server which you control.

Once Fetch.io has downloaded that file to your remote server, it’s saved on your Fetch.io account. This service is a lifesaver for users who use multiple computers at work or need to download a really large file but have doubt whether the file will be available at a later point of time.

The service is in closed beta right now, so a desktop application and smartphone support is a work in progress. Currently, Fetch.io provides a hefty 20 GB of free storage to all users, so you can store a lot of files like movies, videos and so on. One downside is that files that are protected by Captchas can’t be added to your Fetch.io download queue. Otherwise, the service does a nice job aggregating files from different download servers at one place and lets you download them when it’s convenient to you.