Great Add-Ons for Gmail: Rappaportive and Cloud Magic

If you use Gmail all the time like I do, then there are two great add-on products that you really need to install.

The first is Rappaportive. I’ve been using this software for awhile now and it is really cool.  What it does is try and pull the contact information from anyone who emails you from various social media sites (Facebook, MySpace, LinkedIn, etc.).  If it finds information, it will display it along the right-hand side of your Gmail window.  This includes things like their photo, location, and links to the various social networks they have profiles on. It’s really great to see a photo and information about the person you’re emailing, especially when you may have never met before.

The second is Cloud Magic. Cloud Magic is a plug-in for Firefox and Chrome that adds super fast searching to Gmail. Yes, Gmail does have Google’s search built in,but Cloud Magic improves on Google’s search by through a number of things. First, it uses a floating toolbar that allows you to search without having to open a new tab. This is extremely useful when composing an email and needing to find some relevant bit of information to include. It also allows you to link all your Google App accounts and search through the email in each of those accounts as well as the one you have open. (I have about 6 different Google Apps accounts, so this is extremely useful).

You can find out more about Cloud Magic in the video below:

Both tools are incredibly useful and add a lot to the Gmail experience.


New Version of Picasa Includes Photo Editing, Face Movies and more

I made the switch from Mac to PC just over a year ago, and I couldn’t be happier with my decision.  I love my MacBook Pro and most of the Apple software is amazing.

That being said, I’ve never really liked iPhoto.  I tried to use it, organize my photos with it – really get into it. Unfortunately, it just didn’t seem intuitive to me.  Luckily, Picasa for the Mac is available and in my opinion, it’s the best photo manager around.  In Picasa, things just seem more intuitive and straightforward. Folders are organized effectively. Using Collections is a breeze. Uploading to Picasa Web Albums is free and easy (1GB of space is free and 20GB only costs $5 for the year.)

Now, the latest version of Picasa adds online photo editing with Picnik, batch uploads to  Picasa Web Albums, some meta data improvements, and a very cool feature called “Face Movies” which allows you to create a video from anyone’s photos which will always display their face in the middle throughout the entire photo slide show.  You can check out the one I made here:

[vimeo 14269383]

I’d recommend dumping iPhoto and getting Picasa now.

– via Picasa 3.8: Face movies, Picnik integration, batch upload, and more [Google Photos Blog]


HDMI cable myths and places to buy all kinds of cheap cables

I saw this info-graphic awhile ago and thought it would be good to repost it.  Basically, since HDMI is all digital, the signal is either going to get there or it’s not, so it doesn’t matter whether the cable costs $5 or $500. You’re better off going with the $5 one though…

If you’re looking for cheap cables, be sure to check out MonoPrice as well as DeepSurplus.  Both have some great deals on cables that cost much more elsewhere.


Cool HTML5 Boilerplate Template

Looks like a cool HTML5 template to start any project with.  Here’s the description from their site:

HTML5 Boilerplate is the professional badass’s base HTML/CSS/JS template for a fast, robust and future-proof site.
After more than two years in iterative development, you get the best of the best practices baked in: cross-browser normalization, performance optimizations, even optional features like cross-domain ajax and flash. A starter apache .htaccess config file hooks you the eff up with caching rules and preps your site to serve HTML5 video, use @font-face, and get your gzip zipple on.
Boilerplate is not a framework, nor does it prescribe any philosophy of development, it’s just got some tricks to get your project off the ground quickly and right-footed.

iPhone News: iOS 4.02 and Ultrasn0w 1.1.1 Released

Apple has just released iOS 4.02 for the iPhone which fixes the PDF security flaw that allowed the web site to function. As most good jailbreakers now now, do NOT upgrade to this version of the software as it is currently un-jailbreakable.

In other news, Ultrasn0w 1.1.1 has been released (the tool you need to unlock your iPhone).  This new release has been tweaked and should improve standby battery performance.

I’m currently waiting on my new factory unlocked iPhone 4 which is coming from the UK.  My friend, who waited for about an hour at the new Covent Garden Apple Store to pick one up, tells me that the line for the unlocked iPhone was about 100 people when he got there and 300 people when he left. There was no line at all for iPhones with a service contract.

He also says that a lot of the people in the line were foreigners wanting to get one.  The Apple employee told him that they were moving around 3,000 iPhones a day from that location alone.  They had gotten a new shipment the previous night and expected to be sold out by that afternoon.

– via iPhone Hacks


Craigslist Updates Its Look

Wow. After years and years of keeping the same old design, Craigslist has actually started to tweak its look.  Yes, these design changes are minimal, but it has made the site look a lot “cleaner.”  They’ve even added some JavaScript menu navigation on the sides.

Like I said, nothing revolutionary, but a huge change for a site that has resisted making any changes over the years.