Chrome Extension for Goo.gl URL Shortener

chromeEarlier today, Amit wrote about the new API for Goo.gI, Google’s URL shortening service. Google launched the goo.gl service in December of 2009. Since that time, many people have adopted it over other URL shortening services such as Bit.ly and tinyURL. The two main reasons for adoption are that goo.gl filters and warns people about bad web sites, and it’s also recently been recognized as the fasted URL shortener.

At first the goo.gl links were only offered in the Google Toolbar. A little later, bookmarklets and other browser add-ons, such as Goo.gl for Firefox,   were offered.

I recently tried the goo.gl URL shortener for Chrome.

The extension installs easily, just as most other Google Chrome extensions do. Once installed, you’ll see a little gray and green icon in the top right corner of the browser.

goo-gl-face

When you are at a website that you wish to create a short link for, click the goo.gl icon to create the short URL. It’s simple to use, but there are also many other features that are offered in this extension.

* short URLs are automatically copied to clipboard
* show goo.gl history and traffic
* add Keyboard shortcuts for posting to other services
* create short URL from right clicking on links
* create QR Codes

You can also create links and automatically post them to your favorite web services, such as Blogger, Delicious, Digg, EverNote, Facebook, FriendFeed, Gmail, Google bookmarks, Google Buzz, Google Reader, Hotmail, Instapaper, LinkedIn, Mail,   MySpace, Netlog, Orkut, Ping.fm, Posterous, Reddit, Read It Later, StumbleUpon, Technorati, Tumblr, Twitter, Yahoo! Bookmarks and Yahoo! Mail.

goo-gl-services

The only other URL browser extension that I’ve found as useful, is the Shareaholic extension, which has very similar features.

arrow-down-double-3Install the goo.gl URL shortener for Google Chrome browser


MiniBin Let’s You Manage Windows Recycle Bin From System Tray

Need to quickly empty the Recycle bin and can’t find the Recycle bin icon on Windows desktop ? MiniBin is a freeware utility which lets you manage Windows Recycle bin following a nifty little system tray icon.

Whenever you delete files and folders from Windows, the file or folder is moved to Windows “Recycle bin” folder, so that you can recover the same file at a later point of time. If you are the type of person who deletes a whole bunch of files every single hour and can’t find the “trash” folder among 52 icons on Windows desktop, MiniBin might just save the day.

There aren’t much options though, you can either empty the recycle bin folder by right clicking the system tray icon or choose to open the Recycle Bin folder, as shown below:


The application is useful when you are working with a lot of open applications and hate minimizing each of them, just to find the Recycle Bin icon on desktop, right click it and empty the trash. Then you have to maximize all the minimized applications to their previous state. Keyboard ninjas might make good use of   “Win key +D” but folks who never want to learn any keyboard shortcut will find Mini Bin useful. [via ]

Also read: iBin – a portable recycle bin for your USB drive

Techie Buzz Verdict

MiniBin is a portable app, thus will work on any computer from a removable drive without any installation. If you are a coder and always delete a lot of codes only to restore them at a later point of time, get MiniBin today. Useful !

Techie Buzz rating: 3 (Good).

Put the Newest Free Screensavers on Your Christmas List

[Windows Only]

Christmas is coming fast. I hope you’re ready for it. How about some free Christmas gifts for those geeky friends of yours? The folks at NewFreeScreensavers have just added 5 new Christmas screensavers, bringing the total to 35 Christmas and New Year items.

I’m sure you can find plenty of other screensavers out there, but be careful to visit only safe websites when you are looking for them. As many of you have learned, not all free screensavers are created equal. Many times, free means that you have to install stupid toolbars, adware and other unwanted junk along with the screensaver. That’s not true of the ones at NewFreeScreensavers.

nfs-35-christmas-newyears

Some these now have transparent backgrounds, showing your desktop with snow and decorations on top. Another nice feature is that they now have settings to mute the sounds. A few of the screensavers also have a setting to include a small analog clock on the screen.

arrow-down-double-3 Screensaver Download Page

W I n d o w s 7 t h e m e s ? holiday-lights

If you have Windows 7, be sure to check out the Holiday Lights theme from Microsoft. If you don’t have Windows 7, you can still snag the wallpapers by using this trick.

Techie Buzz Verdict: I’ve downloaded and installed several of the screensavers at this site and never had a problem with any of them. These screensavers are safe, totally free, and there are dozens more to check out once you visit.

Techie Buzz Rating: 3/5 (Good)

FLUX: Adjust Screen Color Temperature According To Room Lighting

Flux LogoComputers screens are designed to glow as brilliant as possible. A glowing display looks great with the daylight beaming  into your room you are working. While it is quite painful for eyes when you are working at night with the fluorescent lamp on. It is because our eyes adjust according to the room lighting.

It is really frustrating to adjust the screen color temperature every hour of the day just to keep your eyes healthy. Flux is a freeware that is meant to do this for you. All you need to do is download, install the tool and configure the tool settings once. Everything is automatically taken care of afterwards.

Flux Main Window

The tool detects the co-ordinates of your location automatically. In case it is not correct, you can change it by going to the Settings and then set your location. Press the Locate button and you will be taken to a page where you can search for your location and copy the co-ordinates for the same. Paste the copied location in the location window. Press OK.

Set Location for Flux

In the Settings window, you can adjust the day and night lighting settings by using the sliders.

Set Screen Color

Techie Buzz Verdict:

The tool definitely creates a soothing environment for your eyes. However, the app adjusts the screen  temperature  based on the co-ordinates of the location and your choice. This means if you are having a cloudy day, the app will still set the screen for a sunny day. It would have been great if it had an option to judge the room light based on web cam; that would have provided a more realistic solution. All said, I recommend users who work long time on computers to use Flux.

Techie Buzz Rating: 3.5/5 (Very Good)

[Download Flux]

USBFlashCopy Automatically Copies Data From Your USB Drive To a Custom Folder

If you are the person who performs a lot of copy paste operations, to and fro from your USB drive to your computer’s hard disk – you are going to love this free little tool called USBFlashCopy.

The program lets you automatically copy all the data from your USB drive or any other drive letter to a folder in your computer, whenever you insert a removable drive in your system.

For example: I have two computers at work which are not connected via a local area network connection. Hence, I use a 8GB USB drive to move files from my laptop to the desktop, several times a day. The process is painful – insert the USB drive, open “My Computer”, navigate to the USB drive, select all files, Control + C, navigate to the target folder and then paste them. Too much monotonous steps !

At the end of the day, I need a simple program which can automatically copy all the contents to a custom folder in my desktop, whenever I insert a USB drive to my computer. Following are the steps involved to use USB FlashCopy

1. After you have downloaded USBFlashCopy, run the executable and double click the system tray icon. The program needs no installation.

2. Choose “Run on windows startup” >”For all user” option.This is useful because you don’t have to search for the executable whenever you want to auto copy all the data from the removable drive.

3. Click the “media files” option to reveal the settings of USBFlashCopy.

4. Now you have to select the drive path or drive letter in which the automatic copy job will start. Select the desired drive letter and choose “skip” for the other drive letters that are assigned to your hard disk partitions.

5. Hit the “OK” button and you are done with the settings.

Now you need to save the current settings to a configuration file, insert the thumb drive and the program will throw in an options window as shown below:

Click the “New profile ” option and choose the correct destination path of the custom folder in the next window, as shown underneath:

All done, now all you have to do is insert the USB stick and wait for USBFlashCopy to do it’s job.   Whenever your system detects a removable storage, USBFlashCopy will automatically copy all the data to the custom folder defined earlier. You will see the following pop up window near windows system tray:

Techie Buzz Verdict

Awesome ! At least saves a lot of time when you do a lot of copy paste operations from one computer to another.

Techie Buzz rating: 4/5 (Excellent)

Inbox2 Beta: Access Facebook, Twitter and Gmail From The Same Window

Inbox2 is a desktop client that brings the social networks and email accounts under one roof. The social networks you can connect are Twitter, Facebook, Linkedin and email services like Gmail, AOL, Yahoo, Hotmail are also supported.  If you choose to use your custom mail server, go ahead and choose the option Other.

Download Inbox 2 and install it on your PC. You will need to provide your email address to download the tool. After installation is complete start the application. Choose the social network or email provider from the list and log into it. You can add as many services as you want.

Add Accounts

Once you have done that, press the button Next Step and proceed to the main window. You will be asked to enter your full name and the default account. Once selected, use the Get Started button to open the main window.

Add default account and full name

Here is how the main window looks like. All the emails as well as the updates from the social networks are shown in the right sidebar, while the content of the default account are shown in the middle section.

Inbox2 window

Techie Buzz Verdict:

The desktop app has a very impressive and nice looking interface which is easy-to-use and productive at the same time. Accessing all the social networks and email account is very easy. Although it lacks many features that other apps (read Digsby) of its kind offer. While using the tool (and  specially  after I added Facebook) it crashed several times which was quite frustrating. Although I loved the minimalist approach. The tool may not be a must-use tool now but its definitely a must-try one.

Techie-Buzz Rating: 3.5 / 5 (Very Good)

Freeware Fridays | Top Tools of the Week #27

freeware-sign2

In case you haven’t seen them, here are the most recent posts in our Freeware category. We hope you enjoy reading about these freebies, and maybe you’ll find a keeper in the mix.


5 Chrome Extensions to Try Today

Google Chrome

Here are just five examples of powerful extensions that you can use with your Chrome installation today to add new, compelling features to your browser.

10 New Screensavers Thanksgiving and Zodiac

thanksgiving-clock

Thanksgiving is close and you’ll find plenty of free screensavers and wallpapers on the net. Be careful to visit only safe websites when you are looking for them.

10 New Screensavers Animated Winter Themes

winter-waterfall-screensaver

Baby it’s cold out there! This week, our friends at NewFreeScreensavers have added some new Winter themed screensavers. Chill out and enjoy the view.

30 Free Screensavers Christmas for Mobile Phones

screensaver-ico

30 animated wallpapers for mobile devices are now available for download. Check ’em out.

Super Mario 3 Games for Windows Hours of Fun

mario

Mario first made an appearance in 1982. Since that makes Mario 28 years old, I think he’s just getting started jumping around. If you’d like some Mario games for the PC, check these out.

Replace Outlook Express with Postbox Express

postbox-express-icon

Outlook Express is old, insecure and no longer supported by Microsoft. Windows LiveMail and Mozilla Thunderbird are good replacements, but you should also take a look at Postbox Express.

10 New Screensavers Your Zodiac Signs

newfreescreensavers-lake

This week, our friends at NewFreeScreensavers have added 10 new free screensavers with mostly Zodiac themes. Also, be sure to check out some great Windows 7 themes for Christmas.

Autoruns for Controlling Windows Startup Programs

autoruns-files

Take control of those pesky programs that start automatically when Windows boots up.

7 Awesome Alternatives To Microsoft Word

clip_image002

Everyone knows what Microsoft Word is. Its an amazing word processor made by Microsoft. A downside to Microsoft Word is that it is very expensive and not everyone can afford it. Here are 7 free alternatives to Word.

Driver Magician Lite Backup Your Windows Drivers Now

driver-magician-0

Driver Magician Lite is a simple way to back up your critical system drivers. Although you may not need those backups, if you ever do, you’ll be glad you have them.

My Day with Opera 11 Beta

opera-11

I want a browser that’s fast … very fast and it must have a minimalistic design. Let’s see how well Opera 11 stands up to my requirements.

15 New Screensavers for Christmas and New Year

nfsNewYearCountdown2

Thanksgiving has just ended. Even though I don’t approve of putting up Christmas decorations this early, our friends at NewFreeScreensavers have just added 15 new free screensavers.


Be sure to let us know if you have a favorite freebie you’d like to see posted here. Our comments (below) are always open to you.

10 New Screensavers – Animated Winter Themes

[Windows Only]

Almost 3 weeks ago, I told you about the Christmas and New Year screensavers. This week, our friends at NewFreeScreensavers are doubling down on the chill with some awesome Winter themes.

winter-waterfall-screensavertree-reflection-screensavermountain-landscape-screensaverrime--screensavermountains-clock-screensaverin-the-forest-screensaverwinter-lake-screensaverrime-clock-screensaverwinter-sunrise-screensaverclouds-in-mountains-screensaver

I’m sure you can find plenty of other screensavers out there, but be careful to visit only safe websites when you are looking for them. As many of you have learned, not all free screensavers are created equal. Many times, free means that you have to install stupid toolbars, adware and other unwanted junk along with the screensaver. That’s not true of the ones at NewFreeScreensavers.

One of the nice features of these screensavers is that they now have settings to mute the sounds. Some of the screensavers also have a setting to include a small analog clock on the screen.

newfreescreensavers-mute

arrow-down-double-3 Screensaver Download Page

W I N D O W S 7 themes?

windows-7-theme-czech-winterIf you have Windows 7, be sure to check out this nice Czech Winter theme. If you don’t have Windows 7, you can still snag the wallpapers by using this trick.

Techie Buzz Verdict:

I’ve downloaded and installed several of the screensavers at this site and never had a problem with any of them. These screensavers are safe, totally free, and there are dozens more to check out once you visit.

Techie Buzz Rating: 3/5 (Good)

30 Free Screensavers – Christmas for Mobile Phones

screensaver-icoCheck out the newest batch of animated mobile phone screensavers below. The newest additions include some nice looking Christmas images. I hope you enjoy them.

As many of you have learned by now, not all free screensavers are created equal. Many times, free means that you have to install stupid toolbars, adware and other unwanted junk along with the screensaver. That’s not true of the ones at NewFreeScreensavers.

The following images are previews of the animated gifs that you’ll find. They have to be transferred from a PC to your phone via cable or bluetooth.

15 for Mobiles (240×320)

nfsTiger240x320nfsWaterfall240x320nfsWaves240x320nfsXmas1_240x320nfsAbstraction240x320nfsBeautifulWaterfall240x320nfsButterfly240x320nfsCat240x320nfsChristmasBalls240x320nfsFish240x320nfsPoint240x320nfsRainMob240x320nfsRose240x320nfsSnow240x320nfsSnowFlakes240x320

15 for Mobiles (480×640)

nfsBallsReflection640x480nfsBlueAbs640x480nfsChristmasTree1_640x480nfsChristmasTree640x480nfsFire480x640nfsFly640x480nfsGreenAbs640x480nfsLandscape640x480nfsNature640x480nfsShots640x480nfsSnow2_640x480nfsSnow3_640x480nfsSpot640x480nfsYellowCar480x640nfsYellowFlowers640x480

Example animated gif from the mobiles download page:

nfsTiger240x320

arrow-down-double-3 30 Screensavers for Mobiles

Techie Buzz Verdict:

I’ve downloaded and installed several of the screensavers at this site and never had a problem with any of them. These screensavers are safe, totally free, and there are more to check out once you visit.

Techie Buzz Rating: 3/5 (Good)

Super Mario 3 Games for Windows – Hours of Fun

marioHow old is Mario? Do you think he’s getting tired of jumping on Goombas?

Goomba2Mario first made an appearance in 1982. Since that makes Mario 28 years old, I think he’s just getting started jumping around. We’ll be seeing him for a long time.

The Wii and Xbox game systems brought back interest in the Super Mario series, but if you want to play some Mario games on your Windows systems, you’ll have no shortage of game choices.

Yesterday, Softendo released a simple version called Mario Play. Here’s a screen shot.

mario-play

This game can be played in a window or full screen. There are no levels, no power-ups, and nothing else to help Mario. The object is to collect coins while dodging enemies as they continue arriving on screen faster and faster. You’ll be trying to get the highest score possible.

If you want a game more like the old Super Mario 3, try one called Mario Forever 5. It has all kinds of levels and will help you waste hours and hours. Here’s a screen shot.

super-mario-5

In case you want to see it in action, here’s a video preview of Mario Forever.

white

There is one thing that you need to watch for when installing Softendo games. If you don’t want a special search toolbar in your web browser, be sure to uncheck it when you see it offered.

mario-toolbar

white

arrow-down-double-3 Download Mario Play

arrow-down-double-3 Download Mario Forever 5

arrow-down-double-3 More games at Softendo

white

If neither of these is enough to keep you busy, I found over 80 free Mario games at Download.com and a few dozen more Mario games at Caiman.

Techie Buzz Verdict:

The free Mario games at Softendo are great. The look and feel of them reminds me of the old Nintendo game systems. If you’d like some retro platform games, you should try these.

Techie Buzz Rating: 4/5 (Excellent)