Great Free Software for Your Laptop

I recently got a new laptop, nothing fancy, but it needed some tools to be really useful. This is the list that I came up with and it’s just as useful for desktops:

  • PC Decrapifier – Get rid of the preloaded junk so we can make room for the good stuff

  • – You have to have Firefox right?
  • Notepad++ – Great replacement for Notepad, particularly good for programmers
  • Open Office – It’s not MS Office, but it’s amazingly close and amazingly free

  • GIMP – It’s not Photoshop, but still very powerful and useful, and again free
  • Picasa – Easy and free photo organization if you plan to store pictures on your laptop
  • Itunes – Even if you don’t have an Ipod it’s a good organizer and makes burning easy
  • Filezilla – Free and secure FTP program, if you like that kind of thing
  • UltraVNC – Computer Remote Control and Vista compatible
  • IZArc – Free zip/unzip program
  • AVG -Free antivirus
  • XAMPP – Free WAMP webserver. Easy to setup to build and test webpages locally.

Mark Your 2008 Calenders: Programmer Day – September 12th

Programmer Day Logo

This is a reminder to all you programmers and lovers of programmers, that Programmer Day falls on September 12th this year.   Go ahead and mark your calenders now so you don’t forget!  Programmer Day falls on the 256th day of the year, normally September 13th.  But since it’s a leap year, we get to celebrate on September 12th this year!

Since I’m in a new launch sort of mood this week, I also want to announce that the greatly improved design for has been completed. There will be some tweaks and I’ll add sponsors as they come on board, but overall I think this is a huge improvement over the hastily thrown together WordPress site from last year. Since it’s a standalone site with no database behind it, it should hold up to the traffic demands a little better than last year as well.  Please check it out and let me know what you think!

Geek Resolution #2

Resolution #1: Read a self-improvement book

As I mentioned yesterday, the Pragmatic Programming book inspired me for:
Resolution #2: Learn a new Skill

For me, this usually means I learn a new programming language. I’ve picked PHP for this year since WordPress is written in PHP, I’m pretty sure it’ll come in handy and I’ll be more likely to use it and not let the skill rust away. I always find learning a new language is easier if you have a project in mind and so I’ve decided to play around with Google‘s chart API and see what I can so with it. I also have been thinking about putting together a PHP/mySQL site to help with another resolution, the one I’ve gotten some much needed motivational help with which I’ll go over tomorrow.

Preparing for Programmer Day 2008

It’s 2008 and one of the things I’ve been working on is an updated website for I threw the last one together very quickly using WordPress. The need for a database connection meant the site went down and went down hard when it hit the front page of Fark. I’ve been looking into better hosting for next year and using plugins like wp-cache to help take the brunt for 2008, but having the main portion of the site not require a DB connection seemed wise and I wanted to learn more about running a site and web design anyway. I liked the Chic02 design on (Open Source Web Design) so I decided to run with it, It’s not live yet but I you can get a sneak peek at the 2008 Programmer Day Page and I would appreciate any feedback!

Voyager Service Menu

10K-1I’ll get some more Voyager hacking info up soon, but one thing that you’ll need to know for sure is how to access the service menu:

First, open the phone. Then type in ‘##PROGRAM10000′ and press Send. The code is ’000000′, all zeros.

One very interesting piece of news coming from HowardForums is that you can steam audio and video via Orb. That means if you have a tuner card in your computer and install orb, you can stream your TV to the Voyager!