Sunday, August 30, 2009

Everything You Wanted To Know About Firefox Tips & Tricks


Everything you wanted to know about tips & tricks for tweaking your Firefox:

(1) Firefox 4 and 5 Tips

(2) Tips & Tricks For All Users:


(3) Configuring your Firefox Address Bar

(4) Tips & Tricks For Windows Users:

(5) Firefox Add-Ons/Plugins

(6) For Web Developers

(7) For Power Users
  • Mozilla Lab's Prism: Prism is an application that lets users split web applications out of their browser and run them directly on their desktop

(8) Security/Privacy
  • Preventing attacks on a user's history through CSS: visited selectors

See my other blog postings in the "Everything You Want To Know" Series

We can check your plugins and stuff

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Everything You Wanted To Know About Watching, Playing & Transcoding Video

Everything you wanted to know about watching online video (Hulu, etc.), video formats, codecs, conversion, decrypting, ripping, burners and players:

(1) Guides & References:

(2) For Windows Users:

(3) For Linux Users

(4) Multiplatform Converters
  • DVD43 Decrypts DVDs on the fly to allow for the re-encoding into alternative formats for iPod, etc using Handbrake (see below).
  • Handbrake: An open-source GPL licensed multiplatform multithreaded DVD to mp4 converter. This is simply the best application out there to convert dvd movies to iPod videos. Most highly recommended.

(5) Web-Based Converters
  • Zamzar.com: Free online file conversion across different platforms without the hassle of extra software.

(8) RealPlayer

(9) Recommended Apps
  • Audacity: The best multiplatform (Windows, Linux, etc) open-source software to create podcasts, etc. for your lectures, presentations, etc. Most highly recommended.

(10) Tutorials

See my other blog postings in the "Everything You Want To Know" Series.
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Roundup: Wed Design, Programming & Publishing Resources #08

Today's roundup of useful web design, programming, and publishing resources:
  1. 20 of the Worst Designed Websites in the World (Avoid making these website designs gaffes)

  2. Essential Tips For Designing An Effective Homepage (Now that you know what website designs to avoid, here are tips for great website designs)

  3. A Showcase of Fantastic Web Footer Designs

  4. 10 Excellent Feedback Tools For Web Designers

  5. 14 Easy [Ways] to Implement Drop Down Menu Solutions

  6. How to Create Stunning & Bold 3D Text

  7. Key Elements to Blog Visibility

  8. 22 Photoshop Web Design Interface Tutorial Sites

  9. Mastering Photoshop with Paths

See also my other blog postings on the following topics:

Monday, August 24, 2009

Everything You Wanted to Know About Installing, Tweaking & Using Ubuntu

NEW ADDITIONS UPDATED: 8 May 2011
Everything you wanted to know about installing, tweaking & using Ubuntu:

(1) Getting Started

(2) Guides for Beginners

    (3) Ubuntu 11.04

    (4) Ubuntu 10.10

    (5) Older Versions of Ubuntu
    Running an older version of Ubuntu? Here are the links to resources that are specific to specific versions:
    (6) Configuring & Tweaking Ubuntu

    (7) Firefox

    (8) Security

    (9) E-Mail

    (10) Multimedia

    (11) How to configure Ubuntu desktop effects/eye candy

    (12) Working with PDFs & JPGs in Ubuntu

    (13) How to troubleshoot sound problems in Ubuntu

    (14) How to Configure Ubuntu to Run Microsoft Office and other Windows Software
    Need to run Microsoft Office or Windows software in Ubuntu? Here's how you can do it, either using Wine or within a virtual machine using Sun VirtualBox:

    (15) Antivirus for Ubuntu


    (16) Ubuntu, VirtualBox & Virtualization

    (17) For More Advanced Users:

    Now that you are comfortably settled into Ubuntu and want to try your hand at something more advanced:

    (18) Installing/Using Chinese Fonts in Ubuntu

    (19) Tips For Power Users/Experts

    (20) Downloads/Apps for Ubuntu

    Thursday, August 20, 2009

    Roundup: All About Video Conversion/Decrypting Apps & Players

    Roundup: All about video conversion, ripping, decrypting apps, codecs and players:
    1. Digital Video Formats and Video Conversion Explained (Confused by technical jargon such as containers, codecs, bitrate, etc., or by the various conversion techniques? Then this article is for you.)

    2. The Ultimate Guide to Manage Your Audio/Video Files in Linux

    3. 5 Easy-to-Use Freeware Video Converters (NB: My favorite in this list is Super, which, in my opinion, is simply the best converter for Windows platform out there. Can convert just about any format that I throw to it. Most highly recommended.)

    4. 10 Great Apps To Convert Audio & Video Files in Linux

    5. How To Convert Any Video File Format Under Linux

    6. Using KickYouTube to download YouTube videos An extremely simple and elegant way to download YouTube videos without the hassle of extra software.

    7. Recording/Capturing Real Video and Real Audio streams in Windows Very useful to download Real audio or Real video streams. You need to have the Real Player installed (see below).

    8. Ad-Free version of Real Player for Windows Available only on the BBC website. Very useful if you're tired of the ad-laden version on Real's website. This is ad-free version was specially customized for the BBC.

    9. Zamzar.com: Free online file conversion across different platforms without the hassle of extra software.

    10. DVD43 Decrypts DVDs on the fly to allow for the re-encoding into alternative formats for iPod, etc using Handbrake (see below).

    11. Handbrake: An open-source GPL licensed multiplatform multithreaded DVD to mp4 converter. This is simply the best application out there to convert dvd movies to iPod videos. Most highly recommended.

    12. Doom9.net: Comprehensive and definitive DVD-backup and video-editing resources site for Windows-based systems. Here you'll find audio and video editing apps, ripping tools, codecs, encoders, filters, media players, subtitle editors, VOB tools, etc. Most highly recommended.

    13. Audacity: The best multiplatform (Windows, Linux, etc) open-source software to create podcasts, etc. for your lectures, presentations, etc. Most highly recommended.

    14. Making Computer Videos (excellent tutorials and guides).

    15. Lifehacker's List of Five Best Video Players

    16. SMPlayer Media Player For Linux/Ubuntu/Windows

    Sunday, August 16, 2009

    My Take on Lifehacker's Five Best Video Players

    Lifehacker recently published their Five Best Video Players, highlighting:
    1. Media Player Classic for Windows
    2. MPlayer for Windows/Mac/Linux
    3. GOM Player for Windows
    4. VLC for Windows/Mac/Linux
    5. KM Player for Windows
    In general, I agree with Lifehacker for (1), (2) and (4). In addition to their list, I would also include SMPlayer Media Player For Linux/Ubuntu/Windows. I personally use (1), (2), (4) and SMPlayer extensively across my various Windows XP and Ubuntu systems.

    Personally, I find VLC to be the best for its advanced options. At the same time, I find myself often using SMPlayer for its intuitive GUI that is really easy to use.

    What about you? Do you have any favorites?

    Thursday, August 13, 2009

    How to configure Firefox 3.5's Awesome Bar to do a regular Google search

    Do you know that you can perform a standard Google search from Firefox's revamped URL Address bar (aka "Awesome Bar")? By default, Firefox's Awesome Bar does a "I'm Feeling Lucky" search on Google, which in my case, usually brings up irrelevant searches. Here's how you can force the Awesome Bar to do a standard Google Search:
    • Type the following in your Awesome Bar:
      about:config
    • Get past the "friendly" Warning ("This might void your warranty") Screen by clicking the "I'll be careful" button.

    • In the filter box, type:
      keyword.URL
    • Right click the keyword.URL value and select the "Modify" option

    • Replace the existing URL by copying and pasting the following URL:
      http://www.google.com/search?btnG=Google+Search&q=
    • Click OK and you're done.
    Now, each time you type a search term in your Firefox's Awesome Bar, it'll default to the standard Google Search.

    See also my other blog postings in the Firefox 3.5 Tips & Tricks series.

    Wednesday, August 12, 2009

    Useful Resources for Ubuntu/Linux Users #05

    Today's roundup of useful resources for Ubuntu/Linux users:
    1. Free E-Book (PDF Download): Ubuntu Pocket Guide & Reference, by Keir Thomas. (Highly recommended Guide for Newbie and Expert alike!)

    2. 10 Expert Ubuntu Tricks (by Keir Thomas)

    3. 15 Great Ubuntu Tips for Linux Power Users

    4. How to Install Google Gadgets in Ubuntu

    5. Top 24 Linux Apps

    6. Shutter: Powerful Screenshot Tool for Ubuntu/Linux (NB: I use it regularly in place of the basic Gnome Screenshot tool that is bundled with Ubuntu).

    7. How to mount Window Shares Like Normal Drives in Linux

    See my other blog postings on Ubuntu and Linux resources.

    Tuesday, August 11, 2009

    Installing and Running Woopra Desktop Client in Ubuntu

    Thanks to @tchachra of 2s2d.net, I signed up Woopra's closed beta trial over the weekend and my two websites (Techruminations and www.jonathantan.org) was approved late yesterday. If you have no idea what Woopra, stats junkies would tell you it is superior to Google Analytics in its real-time detailed stats about site visitors.

    With my two sites approved, I next added the html code from the members' section. There are two ways to monitor the live stats:
    • via the webclient on the members' section: click on "View Stats" in the Analytics column
    • via a desktop client.
    Woopra provides a Mac, Windows and Linux webclient.

    As I am running a 32-bit (x86) installation Ubuntu 9.04 Jaunty on my systems, I downloaded the shell script file (currently, woopra_unix_1_3_2.sh) from the download section. Here's what I did:
    • download woopra_unix_1_3_2.sh to my Desktop
    • open a terminal console
    • change directory to Desktop: cd ~/Desktop
    • run the shell script: sh woopra_unix_1_3_2.sh
    The shell script first checks for my java version, but I didn't face any problem since my Ubuntu is a 32-bit installation. After the initial check, the installation proceeded smoothly and before long I was running the desktop client and was instantly hooked to the stats!

    Woopra is what Google Analytics isn't. It gives you real time stats as visitors browse your sites. Without a doubt, Woopra runs rings around Google Analytics. I look forward to playing around with Woopra in the days ahead.

    Monday, August 10, 2009

    How to Build A Great Media Center For Your Home

    If you're looking for an easy-to-understand guide to designing and building your own media center, Stefan's Neagu's How to Build A Great Media Center For Your Home is written for you. It explores the various options and explains their pros and cons.

    Link: How to Build A Great Media Center For Your Home

    Tuesday, August 4, 2009

    Unofficial Guide to the iPhone

    If you're looking to find out what your iPhone is capable of and pushing it to its limit, then this is for you. Stefan Neagu's The Unofficial Guide to the iPhone is a free PDF download that you would want to consult.
    "Read about the basic user interface and a ton of incredible iPhone features you would’ve otherwise missed. Stefan explains in detail how to perform both the very simple and the most tedious tasks. Find out how to get your hands on fresh applications, how to keep your device synchronized and even how to jailbreak your iPhone!"
    Link: The Unofficial Guide to the iPhone