Monday, September 6, 2010 “Cool Websites and Tools [September 5th]” plus 6 more “Cool Websites and Tools [September 5th]” plus 6 more

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Cool Websites and Tools [September 5th]

Posted: 05 Sep 2010 08:31 PM PDT

Check out some of the latest MakeUseOf discoveries. All listed websites are FREE (or come with a decent free account option). No trials or buy-to-use craplets. For more cool websites and web app reviews subscribe to MakeUseOf Directory.

List Your Website Here!


OhLife – If you have been procrastinating on writing a daily journal, OhLife might just persuade you to get started. That's because it makes the process too easy to not do it. It sends you an email every night asking how your day was, and you need to reply to it. That is it. No going to the site, logging in and writing the journal. An email reply is all it takes. Read more: OhLife: Writing A Daily Journal Made Super Easy


Wikileaks – To expose the wrongdoings of an organization, the help of a whistleblower is essential. But the threat to one's own security and life prevents a whistleblower from revealing what his institution has been doing wrong. That is where WikiLeaks comes into play. Read more: WikiLeaks: Whistleblower Website That Exposes Wrongdoings Of Governments & Organizations



RGB Stock – Are you looking for free good quality pictures? If yes, then your search ends at RGB Stock. It is a free to use website where visitors can obtain free high quality images and photographers can submit their high quality images. Read more: RGBStock: Get Wonderful Good Quality Pictures For Free



Morphases – Creating your own realistic face avatar has just become easier with Morphases. Morphases is a realistic face maker that allows you to create realistic computer generated faces in real-time. This tool lets you create and modify human-like images from different realistic elements. Read more: Morphases: Create A Realistic Face Online



RentAFriend – Suppose you are about to visit a new place; knowing a local would be extremely helpful in exploring the sights. Similarly if you are trying your hand at a new activity, having an expert around would ensure you don't mess anything up. Through “Rent A Friend” you can hire someone friendly enough to help you with your task. Read more: RentAFriend: Hire Someone As Your Friend For An Activity


List Your Website Here!

These are just half of the websites that we discovered in the last couple of days. If you want us to send you daily round-ups of all cool websites we come across, leave your email here. Or follow us via RSS feed.

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Thank You To MakeUseOf Friends!

Posted: 05 Sep 2010 07:31 PM PDT

It's time to say thanks to MakeUseOf’s friends who, once in a while, tip us great story ideas, help out on different projects and in some cases offer their services at discounted prices. Thank you, guys!

ShrinkTheWeb – Website Screenshot Thumbnail Service
Ever wanted to add website screenshots to your website? In my professional opinion ShrinkTheWeb is one of the best services for that, both in terms of performance and pricing. The free account gets you a whopping 250,000 impressions with nearly no delay. See it in action in our daily Cool Websites and Tools series.


Walyou – Cool Gadgets for Geeks
new cool gadgets
Walyou is a fun blog covering all sorts of new cool gadgets and other stuff every geek is likely to find entertaining. Everything from world’s largest Gunny Bears to E-hookah gadgets. Make sure to check them out.

PXLEyes – Photoshop Contests and Tutorials
photoshop contests & tutorials
The place for graphical artists! An awesome community with one common interest: a big passion for computer graphics! There are contests, prizes, tutorials, forums and an active community!


rade | eccles – iPhone Application Development
The perfect iPhone development team, rade | eccles managed to put our iPhone app together in record time yet exude professionalism and dedication every step of the way. Our collaboration wasn’t happenstance. We would make the same decision all over again. Our only recommendation for an iPhone developer – rade | eccles.


TrueKolor – Affordable Quality Logo and Banner Design
If you’re looking for a cheap, original and quality logo or banner, check out TrueKolor. We often contact these guys when we need a logo or a banner made, some of the stuff they did for us listed on their portfolio page. Highly recommended.


Mobify – Making the Web a mobile place
More and more users access websites and read blogs using their mobile phone. Mobify lets you mobilize your blog or website by creating lightweight version of it, which loads much faster and looks great on a mobile screen. MakeUseOf’s mobile site was created by Mobify, and we’re proud of it!


Thank you, guys!

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Daniusoft Double Giveaway Winners

Posted: 05 Sep 2010 04:30 PM PDT

Today, over 60 people have been gifted with free licenses for commercial apps worth over $1500 in total (not including the mini-giveaways we have on Facebook. Isn’t MakeUseOf awesome?

Here are the winners for Daniusoft’s double giveaway:

  1. Stephen Knooren
  2. Reid Sigmundson
  3. Linu George
  4. Rigoberto Garcia
  5. Damien Thorn
  6. Tristan
  7. Jeff Brisbois
  8. Devin
  9. Ahmad
  10. Dani Yott

Click on for the DVD Creator for Mac winners.

  1. Vi Nguyen
  2. Daniel Rampelt
  3. Roderick Chu
  4. Gabriel Tam
  5. Donovan du Plessis
  6. John St.Clair
  7. Himanshu Dhaga
  8. Corin Grey
  9. Joshua Young
  10. Ari Arsyadi

Congratulations! Your licenses have been sent via email.

MakeUseOf would like to thank Daniusoft for their generosity while participating in this giveaway. Interesting in sponsoring? We’d love to hear from you. Get in touch with us via email.

NEW: Download MakeUseOf iPhone App. FREE!



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360Amigo System Speedup Giveaway Winner

Posted: 05 Sep 2010 03:30 PM PDT

Looking for an easy way to clean out and speed up your Windows system? Look no further. We’ll be dishing out 20 free 1-year licenses for 360Amigo System Speedup. Read our review here.

Now, here are the 20 lucky people who will be experiencing a leaner, meaner, faster system.

  1. Michael Lynton
  2. Scott Biggs
  3. Omer Vidavsky
  4. Joey Leus
  5. Randy Williams

  1. Ray Taaffe
  2. Jerril George
  3. Wayne Whitfield
  4. Eshwar Mano
  5. Terry Jensen
  6. Deborah Klich
  7. Ferdinand R. Datoc
  8. Rolly Nunez
  9. Laura Lupascu
  10. Paula Hersey
  11. Marc Puleo
  12. Henrik Johnson
  13. Travis Fredrich
  14. Daniel Stanczak
  15. Lee Rouse

Congratulations! Your licenses have been sent via email.

MakeUseOf would like to thank 360Amigo for their generosity while participating in this giveaway. Interesting in sponsoring? We’d love to hear from you. Get in touch with us via email.

Got Questions? Ask Them Now FREE on MakeUseOf Answers!



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Hot Tech Deals [Sep 5th]

Posted: 05 Sep 2010 01:15 PM PDT

If you’re in the market for a new computer, laptop, mobile phone, games and other accessories; don’t waste your time searching online. We’ve taken the liberty of locating the best tech deals and unifying them into a single post for your convenience.

For more fresh hot deals, visit our Hot Tech Deals page, which is constantly updated.

Keep reading to find out today’s Hot Tech Deals.

  1. TODAY ONLY Vizio E320VL 32 inch LCD HDTV (720p) $329.99 Free Shipping
  2. Sony SA-VS350H 5.1/7.1-Channel Home Theater Speaker System $399.99 ($500 off!) Free Shipping via code SONYSAVS350H
  3. Additional $75 off Dell PowerEdge T410 Servers List Price $1429+ via code 74PKGQD1FXQRF5
  4. 25% off ANY Dell Mobile or Fixed Precision Workstation $1999+ via code RNH5GKVC7SRS4?
  5. Buffalo Nfinity 802.11n Wireless N High Power Router (Gigabit, DD-WRT, Superior Range) $69.99 Free Shipping via code EMCYWPZ53
  6. Seagate Barracuda LP (Low Power) 2TB Internal SATA Hard Drive $99.99 Free Shipping via code EMCYXYN37


  1. 25% off All Dell Laptops & Desktops on this landing pagevia code ?$QNC1?HSKNR9F
  2. 20% off all Dell Desktops & Laptops in this link via code 5TK?LC9VJ5F$33
  3. STACKABLE $50 off HP Orders $1000+ via code TECHBAR50

Image credit: Modified from Svengraph’s icon set

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10 Free MP3 Albums To Download [Sound Sunday]

Posted: 05 Sep 2010 12:31 PM PDT

where can I download free mp3sThis edition of Sound Sunday features the music for a new season. September to me has always carried a serene atmosphere: the end of a busy summer, the final warm days of the year, and falling leafs as nature prepares for cold winter days. The perfect time for an ambient, instrumental, chillout, electronic music special.

Enjoy, relax, and share!

Shipwrek – Journal

Genre: ambient, experimental, downtempo, electronica, instrumental

where can I download free mp3sThe elements and melodies Shipwrek composes into perfect music is what will get you hooked on electronic music. Journal is an epic album. For a bit of extra chill, read the artist’s ‘about’ on TheSixtyOne.

The album is a name your price download from Bandcamp.

Shipwrek MySpace and Homepage.

Bart Nova – (Re)Collected Works

Genre: ambient, breakbeat, dance, electronica, trance

where can I download free mp3sBart Nova, a.k.a Bart Bakker, is a Dutch producer and composer of electronic music. His forte is writing trance and hard trance pieces. For the compilation album (Re)Collected Works Bart partly re-worked 12 previously released tracks.

This album is a free download from Bandcamp.

Bart Nova LastFM and Homepage.

Vanilla – Night Visions

Genre: electronic, experimental, instrumental, hip hop

where can I download free mp3sIn the artist’s own words: “Night Visions is a collection of 4 tracks that are my earliest attempt at a ‘wonky’ style of hip hop, with more of a focus on original arrangement and content than sampling.”

The Night Visions EP is a free download from Bandcamp.

Vanilla MySpace and Soundcloud.

Xerxes – Selected Works: Jørgen Bryde

Genre: ambient, chillout, electronic

where can I download free mp3sNorwegian artist Xerxes has released a series of  ’selected works’ albums. This volume is dedicated to his best friend Jørgen Bryde, who died of cancer earlier this year. All proceeds of the album go to a good cause.

This is a name your price download from Bandcamp.

Xerxes MySpace and Homepage.

Hunz – Thoughts that Move

Genre: electronic, indie, electronic pop

where can I download free mp3sHunz is an independent electronic musician from Brisbane, Australia. This entire album was written in one month for the RPM challenge 2009, which dares artists to record 10 songs or 35 minutes of music during the 28 days of February.

Thoughts that Move is a free download from Bandcamp.

Hunz MySpace and Homepage.

Tomáš Dvořák – Free Machinarium Bonus EP

Genre: electronic, game music, soundtrack, instrumental

where can I download free mp3sMachinarium is an adventure game from the Czech independent studio Amanita Design. And like any other game, Machinarium needs a soundtrack. The tracks for this bonus EP were writen by Czech composer, musician, and graphic artist Tomáš Dvořák.

You can download the album from the Machinarium Homepage.

Tomáš Dvořák MySpace and Homepage.

Whitness – Summer 2010

Genre: electronic, trance, house, progressive, instrumental

where can I download free mp3sWhitness, aka Whitney Tucker, is an artist from Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Previously working under the alter egos DJ Sota, Labyrinth of Sound, and Cellar Door, his latest, Whitness, is “a musical experiment made to bring about a freedom of movement and freedom of consciousness, provoking understanding of all music on all dimensions of reality.”

You can download the 9 track album one song at a time from Soundcloud.

Whitness MySpace and Soundcloud.

Miniature Airlines & Friends – the Arrivals & Departures Remixes

Genre: electronica, pop, new wave, IDM

where can I download free mp3sSeattle, Washington based producer Dylan Abbott, also known as Miniature Airlines, composes melodic electronic music incorporating a wide mix of musical styles. Arrivals & Departures was his first full-length album, following a series of EPs. His most recent album features 9 remixes of said album and one new track.

You can download the remix album as .zip archive from the online label d.iscontent.

Miniature Airlines MySpace and Homepage.

Makunouchi Bento – Swimé

Genre: ambient, electronic, experimental, electroacoustic, cinematic

where can I download free mp3sMakunouchi Bento is a traditional Japanese lunchbox. For Felix Petruscu, aka Waka X and Valentin Toma, aka Qewza, it was a metaphor and the name patron for their experimental / electronica project founded in 2001. At first, Swimé drowns you in sounds, but as you incorporate it all and immerse in the music forming in your head, you begin to float.

Swimé is a free download from Bandcamp.

Makunouchi Bento MySpace and Facebook.

Misk – Saturation

Genre: electronic, beats, instrumental, emo, hip hop

where can I download free mp3sA most fitting album review: “With dreamy, slung-out beats, Saturation trips fluidly towards the apocalypse, collecting sounds under ocean piers, behind locked doors and in neon daydreams for a sonic time capsule of the end of days that is unfortunately destined to eaten by the earth's wonk-loving zombie overlords for breakfast the morning of their arrival.”

The album is a free download from Bandcamp.

Misk MySpace and Soundcloud.

Past editions of Sound Sunday are available here. Would you like to see your free download featured in an upcoming edition? Please get in touch with me (tina at makeuseof dot com). Suggestions and feedback are welcome, please comment!

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What’s Your Favourite Tech Blog ? [MakeUseOf Poll]

Posted: 05 Sep 2010 11:30 AM PDT

In last week’s poll, we asked you what you thought of the new DIGG. Sadly for DIGG, it seems most people aren’t impressed.

Out of 312 votes in total, it seems only 8% actually like the new DIGG, while 29% voters were indifferent about it. Against the new DIGG, we have 17% screaming “WTF?” and a massive 46% who outright hate it.

As you can see, the new DIGG was not a hit.

This week's poll question is: What’s Your Favourite Tech Blog?

This week, we’d like to know which tech blogs you read. Obviously, we’d love to hear that MakeUseOf is one of your favourites, we’re going to let you pick three sites.

Please note, there’s a lot of awesome tech blogs out there and it was impossible to narrow down this list. I’ve tried to pick blogs similar to MakeUseOf and avoid mentioning subsets of broader-focused sites, like BoingBoing or Reddit.

If you have another favourite tech blog that didn’t get a mention then by all means give it some kudos in the comments!

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