A Blog for Cool Gadgets, Smart Things and New Products…
Visual Task Tips is a free lightweight shell enhancement utility that provides thumbnail preview image for each task that is currently running in the Windows Taskbar (just as you’ve probably seen in the upcoming Microsoft Windows Vista). Why not install this useful application while waiting for the upcoming Vista operating system, that is supposed to be officially released somewhere in 2007… 😉
By using Visual Task Tips you can quickly find the needed application window, especially if you are constantly working with lots of applications running all at once and your Taskbar is always overcrowded.
Launchy is the most efficient way to open files, folders, and programs on your computer. Nobody likes to hunt through the start menu to find an application, just to find that the application is hidden under some obscure folder named after a company you have never heard of! Instead, Launchy is a smart search program which tries to guess which program or file you are looking for and will launch it when you hit the enter key. It is only visible when you hit the ALT + SPACE key combination; otherwise it hides in the background. Once you have used it for a few days, it becomes an indispensable utility for your computer. And it’s free!
How to use Launchy
Launchy installs itself into your Startup folder (it’s buried in your start menu) and will automatically run every time you log into your computer. Yet, where is it? Launchy hides in the background until you need it. To bring it to the foreground type ALT + SPACE (hold down the alt key and tap the space bar). At this point simply begin typing the name of the program you are looking for. Do not worry about capitalization, punctuation, or even spelling in general.
Adding Directories and Types
If you would like Launchy to index more than the programs in your start menu, such as folders, mp3s, docs, pdfs, avis, etc… then this option is for you. Right click on Launchy, select directories, and then add the file types to search for on the right and the directories to search for them in on the left. Note that the types should be of the form .mp3 and .exe and not *.exe or anything else. If you would like to open folder windows directly from Launchy, check the Index Directory Names box.
It is also possible to change the default skin of Launchy, you have a choice of 12 other skins by default and you can even create your own. To create a skin, look in the Skins directory under your installation directory and one into a new directory. Edit the skin.ini file to your liking and replace the images. The ini files have helpful (though limited) documentation.
Launchy is a free and open source application.
Miranda IM is a smaller, faster and easier free instant messenger with support for multiple protocols. Miranda IM is designed to be resource efficient and easy to use while still providing many features including support for AIM, Jabber, ICQ, IRC, MSN, Yahoo, and more. Supplemented by hundreds of plugins and other content, Miranda IM is very flexible and provides many avenues for customisation.
With the 0.5 release, Miranda IM introduces Unicode support, to further improve integration into multi-language systems. Available now are 2 separate download options. The Unicode version is available for Windows NT, 2000, and XP users and a non-Unicode version is available for Windows 9x and ME users. Another new feature of this release is the introduction of AIM Oscar. This provides users with the ability to transfer files and receive away messages that previous versions did not support. This release also increases the support for avatars among many of the protocols along with plenty of bug fixes and new features.