Build your own iPhone! It’s simple and quick. Everyone can do it!

January 21st, 2007

Yeah, you can also build your own iPhone. No IT genius required, just some ingenuity, …and perhaps some scissors, transparent duct tape and a cool printer. Yeah, a printer, because this isn’t the real iPhone, but rather a cardboard mockup. Here’s some photos of mine, in different stages of progress:
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Keyboard that glows in the dark

January 21st, 2007
glowinthedark

Now you can light up your Quake sessions between friends. I’m going to review the Zippy EL-610 USB keyboard. In its essence, it’s a notebook style keyboard, with a low keystroke and with a special feature. The buttons will glow in the dark, lightening up your keyboard when it’s dark in the room. As you can see in the picture, the light has a blue nuance.

Behind the 88-translucent keys is a flat sheet of electro-luminescent material – the same stuff that puts the glow in “Indiglo” which lights up watch faces around the world.

Like I mentioned, the keyboard should be connected to your USB plug, to receive power, and its main purpose is usage in environments where there is insufficient light. Being only 18mm thick and weighting less than 500g, it would be a great asset to any travel bag. No software is required for this keyboard to work on Windows 2000 or WindowsXP platforms which have at least one USB port free.

The electro-luminescent light generates no heat, but it creates a little imperceptible buzz sound that you hear when you’re a first time users. By using it everyday on a regular basis you finally get to automatically ignore the sound.

Despite my thinking, they’re not expensive. The cheapest I’ve found goes up to ~$45 and the most expensive retails around $60.


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Cool trick to rename your Start button

January 20th, 2007

I remember the first book I read about Windows ’95. They were beginning proudly to present the differences between it and it’s predecessor, Windows 3.11, and the first thing they mentioned was the Start button.
Now here’s an interesting trick if you’re tired of that green little button in the lower left corner of your screen. It’s quite simple and it doesn’t take more than 2-3 minutes.

If you wonder how come you missed it so far, I’ll tell you. It’s actually hidden, as in not available, and we’re going to have to tweak your computer up a bit.

The process consists in a single step and that would be editing explorer.exe. For this, we will need a simple tool, that I provided for you for a quick download here. It’s called Resource Hack and it’s just about everything we need. So, download the ZIP archive, extract it and run “ResHacker.exe” from inside the archive. Click File, then OPEN, then point out your ‘explorer.exe’ in your Windows directory.

A browsing tree should open with the menus on the left. Click on String Table and you will see some numbers. Expand 37 (or 38) and click on “1033”. You should see a quoted line in the right window, that says: 578,”start”. You can make the desired change for 37 and 38 as well. So, replace the “start” between the quotes with whatever you want it to display, then click “Compile script”.

Now, all you have to do is restart your computer, or simply log off and back on. The start button will display the chosen text. Here are sample results below. Enjoy the trick.

startbuttonbefore startbuttonafter
BEFORE AFTER

UPDATE: Due user comments, I’ve considered the following trick. If you can’t overwrite explorer.exe, save the file to “explorer2.exe” for example, in C:\Windows (or whatever your Windows directory is), then you’ll have to tweak up the Registry to accept the settings.

Go to Start, click Run and enter “regedit” in the text box. Push Enter, then browse through the tree up to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE -> SOFTWARE -> Microsoft -> Windows NT -> CurrentVersion ->Winlogon. Check out the list, and you’ll have a “Shell” entry mentioning “explorer.exe”. Change it to “explorer2.exe” and reboot/logoff.

This should be it for good ;)


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9 funny versions of Google’s front page

January 20th, 2007

Long live the Photoshop talented users. I have gathered from all over the internet 9 funny Google mock-ups I liked. I’ll say nothing more, and I’ll let you enjoy the images and their description. Click the thumbnails to enlarge the photos.

Google Despair – The search engine for the irretrievably lost. Search for your youth, innocence, brain cells or for general sanity. Any search is hopeless in despair. gdespair
Google Ex-Girlfriends – Hookup search engine. Google is not responsible for divorces, separations, unplanned children or murders that result from using the service ghookup
Google Media Finder – RIAA edition. Do you dare searching for copyrighted materials? Sue me now. gmedia

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Funniest PC Pranks you can play on your friends ( explained )

January 19th, 2007

Have you ever found yourself wanting to play a prank on somebody, but the traditional methods just aren’t available, or aren’t enough? If you’re the kind of guy I am, I bet you did. But again, if you’re anything like I am, you won’t give up so easy. So here’s some of the funniest pranks you can play on your friends, colleagues, even parents or neighbours. Read the rest of this entry »


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The 7 hidden pages within your Firefox browser

January 18th, 2007
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I found myself staring at the “about:blank” parameter for an IE installation today, and that got me thinking if it works in other browsers too. It did. I’m using Firefox, and that cleared the address bar to a blank. And then I figured the developers HAD to include some more address bar commands and started looking them up. Here’s what I found:

about: A simple prompt without any parameter will display the Mozilla “about” information. Since it’s accessible from the top menus as well, it’s not quite a hidden feature.

about:buildconfig Obviously, it will show the build platform configuration and parameters

about:cache Will display info and statistics regarding your disk’s cache, including the name of your cache’s directory and a list of the entries you can find there. By default, Firefox doesn’t allow you to view the cached webpages, so this can be an useful option.

about:config Oh look, many many info. Indeed, it’s the most complex and meaningful of them all. Careful on what you plan to change here, your browser won’t run properly after if you play with the wrong things.

about:plugins Of course, what is Firefox without it’s powerful extensions? This option will display detailed information about all the plugins installed for Mozilla Firefox.

about:credits It’s time to give the credit to whoever deserves it. There’s an alphabetically sorted list of all the people that gave their contribution to the development of Firefox.

about:Mozilla This is a weird thing. It will display the so-called “Book of Mozilla”. Something similar was present in Netscape too. There’s actually no real book although the quotations might give you that impression.

Have fun browsing through your browser’s internal features.


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The first Apple computer – 30 years ago (photo)

January 17th, 2007

thefirstapple

This is Apple I. The first Apple computer. Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak, the most famous members of the Homebrew Computer Club, designed it over 30 years ago, in 1976. It was mostly a kit computer. Users bought the workings and built their own case.

Many leaders in mainline computer companies like IBM and Digitial did not believe at that time that personal computers were powerful enough to have a market. Sales of the Apple I and other PC’s that followed it, proved them wrong.


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