Category Archives: Software

Which software is right for you?

Stellarium – Your Own Planetarium

Stellarium is a stellar sky simulator.

It puts the shifting and changing beautiful night sky on a star watcher’s computer screen deplete of city lights. Users can fast forward or rewind time to see how stars shift position over time. Otherwise, you can just watch the moon, sun, and stars go by at your location in real time without braving the great outdoors.

Curious what the other hemisphere looks like at night? Just remove the ground and see the big picture. Or watch the zodiac go by when the constellation options are checked. Visit stellarium.org and figure out where the north star (Polaris) was 4,000 years ago for the same price as going outside. Free.

Get Wise Cleaner

I was finding that over a period of time, the computer becomes slow and sluggish.

I realized that at times we tend to delete a program which is not working properly or which we are not able to uninstall properly. As a result, the registry gathers a lot of junk over time. The greater the amount of junk in your registry, the more sluggish and slow your computer becomes. I was looking for ways to clean up my registry, but I did not want to tamper with it with half knowledge, least I delete the wrong files an my computer stops working.

I searched the internet for some software to clean up my registry and came across Wise Registry Cleaner. Wise Registry cleaner is a free software which can be downloaded and installed. After carrying out a scan, it flags orphaned or bad registry entries. It indicates which entries are safe to delete. It also identifies registry entries which are not needed but may be dangerous for you to delete unless you have sufficient knowledge. You can select the entries you want to delete and delete them at the press of a button. If you want to be able to undo the deletion, you can also take a back up of your registry before you do the scan.

Kar2ouche Composer

Kar2ouche Composer is the core application for the Kar2ouche range of educational software titles. Each title addresses a particular school curriculum area and may even address a particular focus within a broader curriculum subject.

Within the general category of “History” titles, therefore, there are specific titles for “The Romans”, “The Greeks”, “The Vikings” and “The First World War”. However, there are also titles appropriate to religious education, Science, Math and so on. The individual titles provide a rich set of characters backgrounds and props and come with a dossier of teacher’s notes and other resources such as sound clips appropriate to the theme. The composer application provides the basic interface and all the tools that the user deploys in order to organize these resources on or across a series of “scenes”. These scenes are very loosely comparable to the slides in a PowerPoint presentation and, as in PowerPoint presentations, the transitions between the slides can be programmed to create simple animations that can be ultimately exported as QuickTime presentations. The real power of this application lies in its usability, however, for it is extremely well designed and benefits from an extremely accessible interface that owes little to windows oriented principle that characterizes many software applications. Children as young as six or seven years of age can quickly learn to import elements into scenes, manipulate and compose these elements in a variety of ways and even create soundtracks from the files provided by the titles or that they have recorded themselves.

Bueno Bento

The new Bento program from Filemaker makes it easy for Mac users to create and manage personal databases.

Simply select one of the pre-formatted templates and begin entering data for projects, contacts, events, home inventory, items for sale, and more. Bento templates are already designed and include the fields the programmers think you’re likely to use. Some fields link to iCal so that you can enter events and tasks in Bento and later see them in iCal. The templates are also easy to customize. You can change the “theme” to pick a new color and/or type style, add data fields, select number of columns, or completely rearrange your layout. By adding fields and customizing your layout, you can get much of the power of a more traditional (and expensive) database program for a fraction of the time and cost. Bento is just $49.

OpenCanvas

OpenCanvas – A diamond in the rough? Artists looking for a simple, yet powerful illustration program need to look no further!

OpenCanvas is an amazing program that, though doesn’t have the artillery of Photoshop or Painter, does what it’s supposed to and does it well — drawing. It has very smooth, precise lines that will get as small as .1 while still retaining an elegant line. It gives amazing support for tablet users, allowing them to work as if they were using real media. Its simple user interface is inviting to even fairly beginning users, beckoning for anyone to come in and play around with the variety of options available.

It has very simple filters, so if you’re looking for the “big guns” that Photoshop has to offer, this isn’t your program. However, if you’re looking for a simple way to create beautiful, smooth pieces, OpenCanvas will deliver. However, the program isn’t quite as readily available as Photoshop or Painter. It’s originated from Japan, and though the website has English support, it can sometimes be poorly translated and hard to understand. However, if you can get your hands on this little powerhouse, I assure you that you will not be disappointed.

Adium

Adium is a free IM client for Mac OS X. It supports AIM, MSN, Jabber, ICQ and Yahoo protocols and has a very Mac friendly interface.

So far everything has worked well for me with the exception of a ICQ password hiccup from Keychain. After having tried Fire, Adium is simply easier to understand and get started with. Since Adium is based on LibGaim, don’t expect any video / audio chat features to be implemented soon. This is the problem with all “unofficial” clients. Why can’t MSN just make an iSight compatible Messenger client already? Final word: good stuff, easy to use, free!