Sunday, April 3, 2011 “Cool Websites and Tools [April 2nd]” plus 4 more “Cool Websites and Tools [April 2nd]” plus 4 more

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Cool Websites and Tools [April 2nd]

Posted: 02 Apr 2011 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. You can make use of them without spending a dime. If you want to have similar cool websites round-ups delivered to your email daily email subscribe here.

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Swappa – Buying used mobile phones is certainly cheaper but there are no guarantees whether or not the purchased phone is in good condition. If however, you are looking to buy or sell a used Android mobile phone that is in good condition, Swappa will surely help you. Swappa acts as a trading zone for buyers and sellers of gently used Android phones. Read more: Swappa: Buy & Sell Used Android Devices


Share Your Office – If you are about to go on vacation and leave available office space behind, you might as well make some money off it. Not only will you be benefiting from it, but you will be helping out people looking for available office space in that area. You can list your available office space online for others to find over at Share Your Office. Read more: Share Your Office: Office Space Rental Marketplace



Facebook Friend Exporter – Creating a backup of your Facebook contacts can be very helpful in case you delete your account someday. But backing up each contact individually will be time consuming. Here to offer a much more time-efficient solution is something called Facebook Friend Exporter, a browser extension for Google Chrome. Read more: Facebook Friend Exporter: Export Your Facebook Friends' Info To Google Contacts Or CSV file



Yomticket – While it is important to have in writing all of your financial transactions, it is not really practical when the transaction is among friends or of a very small amount. However, you still would like some kind of casual record and YomTicket provides you with a way to do just that. Read more: YomTicket: Create & Send You Owe Me Messages



Last Call – Drinking and driving is illegal for very valid reasons. Drunk driving is dangerous for the driver as well as for everybody else on the road. To help yourself not drive drunk, you can use an iPhone application called Last Call. It is a free iOS application which can be used on iPhones running iOS 2.1 or later. The app lets you specify the drinks you consume and then calculate blood alcohol content. Read more: Last Call: Calculate Blood Alcohol Content & Call A Taxi


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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How To Extract & Download Multiple Email Attachments In Bulk

Posted: 02 Apr 2011 06:31 PM PDT

download multiple attachments gmailAwesome free email services like Gmail have made it possible to exchange multiple emails with attachments (almost) without the fear of exceeding the storage space. As a result, we have lots of important files and documents saved online in our inboxes.

This post will show you how to extract and save some (or all) of those attachments without the need to open each individual email. The following two tools will let you manage your email attachments more efficiently, back-up your files stored online and save on your email storage space (if you have managed to exceed it).

1. Attachment Extractor (Thunderbird Plugin)

If you are using Thunderbird, you are lucky because there is a handy, flexible and easy-to-use addon called Attachment Extractor that lets you easily extract and save attachments from the selected messages. The addon has already made one of Make Use Of’s lists: 10 must-have Thunderbird Addons (+ 25 more).

  • The first step to take after installing the addon is to set the default folder (the tool won’t work without that!). Go to Tools -> Attachments Extractor Settings and select the default folder you want all the attachments to be extracted to.

Now whenever you want, just select the messages containing the attachments you need to extract, right-click and select one of the following options:

  • Extract from Selected Messages (to a default folder);
  • Extract from Selected Messages (to a custom folder);
  • Extract with a custom filename pattern (to automatically intelligently rename files to avoid replacing existing files)

download multiple attachments gmail

The same set of features is available for extracting all the attachments from any folder (just right click on any folder in the right-hand panel).

The addon offers you quite a few options to save on your Thunderbird and email space. For example, you can set it to:

  • Delete the message after the attachment is extracted;
  • Delete the attachment after downloading it (while keeping the message):

extract multiple attachments

The addon can also be configured to extract attachments automatically on email receipt. To configure this option, go to Tools -> Attachment Extractor Settings -> Auto-Extract and there:

  • Set when the attachments need to be extracted (the tool can be set to wait until all messages are downloaded before starting to extract);
  • Specify the default folder to save the attachments;
  • Set up the filter (Extract only messages tagged …);
  • Choose what to do if the file with the same name already exists:

download multiple attachments

2. Mail Attachment Downloader (Windows only)

Mail Attachment Downloader is a desktop client that connects to your email account, extracts all the attachments and saves them to the specified folder.

It works with popular email clients like Gmail, Hotmail/Live, AOL and Y!Mail – and it looks like it can be configured to work with other services as well. The tool keeps your mail untouched: the messages won’t be marked as read.

download multiple attachments

The “Basic” and “Advanced” Filters give you some flexibility over which type of attachments you want to download:

  • You can filter email attachments by size (“greater than”)
  • You can filter email attachments by file type (movies, pictures, music, documents)
  • You can choose to check all mail or selectively check new messages only.
  • You can filter emails by the sender of recipient, the keyword in subject or in the body;
  • You can also specify the time frame:

Basic Filters:

download multiple attachments

Advanced Filters:

download multiple attachments gmail

I am sure there are other great ways to download multiple email attachments (for Outlook, for example) I am not aware of. Please let me know which ones you have tested and had success with!

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Hot Tech Deals [Apr 2nd]

Posted: 02 Apr 2011 01:30 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.

  1. NEW RELEASE – Dell Vostro 3750 Intel Core i3-2310M 2.1GHz [Sandy Bridge] 17.3in Laptop (Aluminum) $599
  2. NEW RELEASE – Dell Vostro 3550 Intel Core i3-2310M 2.1GHz [Sandy Bridge] 15.6in Laptop (Aluminum) $559
  3. NEW RELEASE – Dell Vostro 3450 Intel Core i5-2410M 2.3GHz [Sandy Bridge] 14in Laptop (Aluminum) $609
  4. Dell Vostro 3300 Intel Core i3-370M 2.4GHz 13.3in Laptop (Aluminum, 2GB/250GB) $469
  5. Dell Inspiron 560 Intel Dual-Core E5800 3.2GHz Desktop (4GB/500GB) w/ 19in LCD $399 via codes T8TQ79WHVXCQMF and HLSKSR06S9ZG0F
  6. Dell Inspiron 570 AMD Sempron 140 2.7GHz Desktop (2GB/500GB) $299.99 via code HLSKSR06S9ZG0F (exp soon)
  7. Dell Inspiron 17R Intel Core i5-2410M Dual-Core Sandy Bridge 17.3in Laptop (4GB/500GB) $699.99 via code HLSKSR06S9ZG0F (Exp Soon)
  8. Dell Inspiron 15R Intel Core i3-2310M Dual-Core Sandy Bridge 15.6in Laptop (4GB/500GB) $599 via code HLSKSR06S9ZG0F (Exp Soon)
  9. Dell Inspiron 15R Intel Core i3-380M Dual-Core 2.53GHz 15.6in Laptop (2GB/250GB) $449.99 via code HLSKSR06S9ZG0F (Exp Soon)

Image credit: Modified from Svengraph’s icon set

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Kylo – The Web Browser Built For Televisions

Posted: 02 Apr 2011 12:31 PM PDT

web browser for televisionBrowse the entire Internet from your couch. Kylo is a browser built for living room surfing, with buttons easily seen from a distance and zooming functionality always at hand. Media centers like Boxee, XBMC and the Hulu Desktop all have their uses, but none of them give you access to the entire Internet. If you have working plugins for everything you’ve ever wanted, that’s great. But sometimes access to the entire web is useful, and Kylo can provide that.

Whether you want to watch sports not broadcast in your country or search for a specific video, Kylo has you covered and is free for Windows and Mac systems. Download Kylo here and keep reading to find out what it can do.

The Basics

Fire up Kylo and you’ll quickly discover that it’s not so different from other browsers. Built using the same Mozilla framework as Firefox, Kylo’s main innovation is its user interface. Similar in some ways to the Wii’s built-in browser, Kylo relies on the mouse for most of its functionality.

Unlike the Wii browser, however, video from around the web works well – even in HD. I was quickly able to find a hockey game on Yahoo Sports just by browsing:

web browser for television

Anything that works in Firefox works here, it seems, so Flash and Silverlight videos both work well.

Particularly nifty is the URL bar. You can type a URL or search terms. If your search term happens to be a TV show, you’ll see search results from Clicker as you type. It’s a great way to quickly find content:

browser for television

These links won’t work well outside the United States, sadly, so many people may want to turn this feature off.

You’ll also notice an on-screen keyboard, which makes it possible to search with only a mouse or remote. Not bad.

Tabs are handled pretty well. Click the bar above the address bar and you’ll see all the tabs you have open:

browser for television

I find this very functional, because a browser without tabs isn’t useful but a web browser for a TV doesn’t have a lot of space to spare.

Oh Wow, Content!

Did I mention the start page? There’s a pretty cool start page.

web browser for television

Here you’ll find most of the major video sources on the web, and the Kylo team is pretty cool about keeping it up to date. Every link, or “channel” if you will, is broken down into categories you can browse at the top. Hover over a channel and you’ll see which categories that channel is in.

You cannot add your own channels to this interface at present, which is sad. You can, however, manage your own bookmarks. Find the bookmarks by clicking the star in the bottom bar and you can build up your own collection of web videos.

Enable Your Remote

Kylo is built to be controlled via a mouse; specifically, a movement-based mouse designed by its parent company. While this gadget does seem nifty, many will want to make use of Kylo without making an investment. Happily this is possible. As explained on Kylo’s blog, you can easily enable WMC remotes. This basically maps the arrow keys and enter to function as a mouse, which is clunky but will give most remotes the ability to browse.

If you want to get really creative, try to use your Wii remote as a mouse. You’ll have the browsing experience Nintendo should have provided in the first place!


As much as I love Hulu, I really do hate its policies from time to time. This is one of those times. You see, Hulu doesn’t work from within Kylo. It’s blocked. This is insane, because Kylo is nothing more than a browser, but alas. So far as I can tell there’s no current workaround for this.

Happily most of the content is free on other channels, and the Clicker search functionality should guide you to those sources pretty well. Still, this is annoying. Kylo should really remove that Hulu shortcut from the starting page.


Kylo fills a web-shaped-hole found on many media center computers, so check it out. Being able to browse the web from your couch is a plus, with or without a fancy mouse.

Do you have anything to add? Leave it in the comments below. Also feel free to suggest other TV browsers, and potential Hulu workarounds.

Oh, and before you mention it: I know Boxee has a browser. I just don’t find it very functional. Feel free to try to correct me, but I find Kylo a lot easier to use.

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3 Unique & Creative Uses For Dropbox Accounts

Posted: 02 Apr 2011 10:31 AM PDT

creative uses for dropboxThere is no end to just how useful Dropbox is, and it’s no secret how much all of us here at MakeUseOf love the service they provide. You’d think it couldn’t get much better than keeping all of your files synced to several computers, backed up on the cloud, and working quietly in the background making sure that every new file you save to your Dropbox folder is synced in real time. But it does. Thanks to some interesting Dropbox settings, along with some great third party services that have been built on Dropbox, there are several creative and unique ways you can use Dropbox to do more than just sync your files.

Whether you want to take your favourite music with you on the go, listening to it no matter where you are, whether you want a quick and easy way to create a gallery of photos, or even if you want to build an entire website using Dropbox to host it, they’ve got you covered.

Listen To Music

While you can play audio files saved in your Dropbox folders, the native interface leaves a lot to be desired. You have to click one song at a time and play them individually, and the audio player displays little else than the a pause/play button and a volume button.

creative uses for dropbox

DropTunes turns folders of MP3s into playlists. Access DropTunes from any browser by granting the app access to your Dropbox folder, logging in directly through their web interface.

uses for dropbox

Once logged in,  you can then navigate through the folders, find your MP3 files, and enjoy listening to the music on your computer no matter where you are. Any given folder of audio files, when accessed from the DropTunes interface, will be displayed as a playlist with a built in music player.

uses for dropbox

Of course for those of you with free Dropbox accounts, you might not have much music saved in your online accounts, but it's a good way to at least take your absolute favourite tracks with you on the go. Chrome users can install the DropTunes extension, although in essence, all it does is act as a bookmark, without bringing anything extra to the service.

DropTunes has two modes – Flash and HTML5. In Flash mode, only mp3 files can be played, whereas in HTML5 mode, file support extends to m4a, ogg, and wav files. It is also worth mentioning that DropTunes asks you to enter your email and password directly into their service, so if you use Dropbox for personal or private files, you may want to think twice about using this service.

Create A Portfolio

Without the need for any third party sites or apps, you can use Dropbox as a way to display your photos in a portfolio or gallery. Simply right click the folder containing the photos and click Dropbox > Get shareable link.

uses for dropbox

The gallery of photos will be opened in the Dropbox web interface, displaying the images as a grid of thumbnails.

cool uses for dropbox

When opened, the photos are displayed in a lightbox, and viewers can play a slideshow of the photos.

cool uses for dropbox

Of course it is worth bearing in mind that by giving people access to photos in your Dropbox folder, they can also download the original JPG file.

If you’re not a fan of how Dropbox displays the images, offers an alternative design. After signing up for a f ree account, you can then grant the website access to your Dropbox folder, in order to share public or private links to your subfolders. When sharing a folder, you can enter one word that is added to the URL to identify it.

cool uses for dropbox

Images are displayed as a grid of thumbnails.

Opening individual images displays them in a white frame. As with Dropbox itself, images can easily be downloaded from the folder by anyone who has access to the folder.

Create A Website

With the unbelievable variety of things you can do with Dropbox, why not add creating a website to that list? With the free service DropPages you can do just that. There are two website themes to choose from on DropPages -Basic, a white minimalist theme, and Oceanmist, a tabbed blue theme.

After choosing your theme, extract the zipped theme into your Dropbox folder, and rename the folder to the address of your site.

With the free option, you can choose your sub-domain, but it has to end with Upgrading to a paid account means that for £5 a month you can use your own domain, and get an additional 1GB worth of space.

The next step is to share the folder with DropPages, using the standard Dropbox share feature, send the invite to the address, In a short while, if you visit your page you will find the demo site in place with DropPages' dummy text.

The great thing about DropPages is that it doesn't require any technical knowledge whatsoever to get it up and running. You can edit the text files in your Dropbox folder to add in your own information. As you make your changes, the files are automatically synced with Dropbox, and you always have a local backup of your site on your computer.

creative uses for dropbox

Can you think of any creative, unique uses for Dropbox? Let us know in the comments.

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