Wed Mar 17 16:21:54 +0000 2010
With so many networks, blogs and social sites to follow it can be a nightmare keeping track of who is saying what and where. Gist (currently in beta) takes all of your various online networks, like LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook, as well as your own email address book, in order to give you a comprehensive overview of what your contacts are doing. A bit like xobni for Outlook but far broader in scope, Gist pulls each contact's online activities together and gives you a unified dossier covering what they've blogged or commented on, their tweets, emails with you, Facebook comments and quite a bit more. In a business context it all adds up to a very useful bit of intelligence on what people in your address book are up to. Just be careful to ensure you use a strong password if you decide to give it a go.
Wed Mar 10 15:37:44 +0000 2010
With so many social messages flying to-and-fro, you're most likely hard pushed to manage your personal message overload as bite-sized 140 character sentences come at you from Twitter, Facebook or Linkedin. What you need is something to manage all your mini-me messages in one handy application. Well you'll struggle to find a better option than HootSuite. Web-based, you can use it to manage multiple twitter, facebook or linkedin accounts and it's also available via free apps for the iPhone and Android smartphones. If you decide to, you can also use the built-in short url service which can then track who clicked on what and how often. Another prime example of freemium in action... we liked the service so much we upgraded to the pro (Android) version on the smartphone. Worthy mentions also go to CoTweet and TweetDeck.
Wed Mar 03 16:45:29 +0000 2010
If you were a fan of Google's no longer supported Notebook service and the handy way you could use it to effortlessly clip bits of web pages for future reference, you'll find something familiar in Evernote. It provides the same basic functions you'll be used to, plus a whole lot more. Best of all, it also offers a wide array of platform support, across PC, phone and web with just one click to add to your notes for a future date. Its mobile phone support is particularly impressive with apps for the iPhone, Android, Blackberry, Palm and Windows Mobile platforms. And the best bit is it's free. There's also a premium service for people who need to upload lots more stuff than the rest of us.
Wed Feb 24 12:52:02 +0000 2010
With the growth of smartphones and mobile data plans, life gets more and more noisy as connected devices variously beep, click, ring and generally make a whole bunch of noise day and night. It takes quite a bit of effort to remember all the things to switch on or off, depending on where you are and what time of the day it is. The latest phones have GPS, data connections, live feeds, all sorts of various reminders. It's endless. One company has the answer in the shape of an App for Android OS phones. It's called Sweet Dreams and was developed by Spanish company Inizziativa Networks. Free on the Android Market, it allows you to decide when your alerts, tweets, reminders, WiFi, or just about anything else should be set to on or off. It'll certainly make for less noisy nights, each time the phone wakes you up with an ominous rattle in the dark!
Electronic Frontier Foundation
Wed Feb 17 17:11:12 +0000 2010
Founded in 1990, the Electronic Frontier Foundation's website and blog are a great source of information on all issues relating to internet freedom and rights. In an age when the net is becoming more and more pervasive in our daily lives, whether at a PC or on the move with our mobiles, the EFF helps to remind us that we cannot always assume the intentions of business or governments are benign. For anyone who wonders what happens to their data trail and online activity this is one site that's well worth following.
Wed Feb 10 21:37:27 +0000 2010
With a confusion of bite size apps now out there for a growing army of smartphone owners, it's great to find a website which makes it easy to find what you're looking for. With a clean and easy to use interface, AppShopper makes it child's play to quickly discover the app you're after. Unfortunately, at the time of writing it seems to only cater to iPhone users. This aside it's a very good way to browse the vast range of apps for the platform.
Wed Feb 03 18:11:51 +0000 2010
If you're in business you may well have encountered any number of breakfast meetings where everyone sits around a table attempting to sell each other their company's services and pass on potential leads. Irish start-up SmartLeads is doing the same thing. It's just that it's online. Still in beta, you join, add your company details and you can then offer and receive lead ideas from other members. It's such a simple concept that it's hard to believe that no-one has cooked up something quite like this before. Whilst services like LinkedIn indirectly offer members the chance to give and get leads, SmartLeads is explicitly about the business of giving and gaining new business opportunities. If you're in business it's well worth a visit to a very new but very polished service.
Enterprise Ireland eBusiness Unit on Twitter
Thu Jan 28 11:55:48 +0000 2010
Like so many aspects of the web, Twitter only becomes valuable once you're shown how useful it can be in practice. It's not that Twitter itself is particularly technologically impressive, but what individuals and organisations can do with it certainly is. Take Enterprise Ireland. It has begun leveraging the platform to promote all sorts of specialist services, providing a convenient way to keep on top of a wealth of information coming out of the organisation. Enterprise Ireland recently used Twitter's API to allow people to keep updated when new queries or answers to the eBusiness Unit's discussion forum are posted. A simple idea simply executed, providing a convenient way to keep on top of information. (Disclosure: ENN Corporate moderates the discussion forum on behalf of Enterprise Ireland.)
Wed Jan 20 15:43:08 +0000 2010
With the rapid growth in mobile usage it's likely you have at least one or two old handsets kicking about your drawer and gathering dust. Well here's a site that provides the chance to realise a little of the residual value that might be tied up in that handset. Go to Mobile Recycle and you can enter your make and model and quickly decide if you want to turn it into some cash. The company behind the site is Green Republic Ltd. It grades and processes the phones and then sends them on to a recycling centre, where they are reconditioned and sold on to developing countries or recycled for their raw materials. Better than it going into landfill. So it's good for both your cash flow and your conscience.
Tue Jan 12 18:59:36 +0000 2010
There's so much free software and online apps out there but sometimes it needs someone to come along and find an innovative way to mesh (or mash up) services to make the outcome more than the sum of its parts. Here's a classic. Take all your lovingly geocoded pictures sitting on Flickr and a free download of Google Earth. Now add a pinch of Geo Flickr. What Geo Flickr does is take your photos from your Flickr account and place them over Google Earth's world map, essentially taking a cool Flickr feature and really bringing it to life. It's a superb way to show friends and family your snaps. Just make sure you quit whilst you're ahead. It may bring your pictures to life but it's not guaranteed to maintain feigned interest in your 100th picture of your MacDonald's Happy Meal deal taken in Moscow (or anywhere else!)