Po' Smedley's Life And Brain Drippings
Po' Stands For 'Poor"
Published on March 11, 2007 By PoSmedley In Personal Computing
Recently I've learned of 'Giveaway of the Day'. It's been around a while and it seems strange I haven't learned of it before. You see, I spend quite a bit of time searching the web for 'freeware'. There is lots of it but as you may know, some of it really sucks or is just quite useless.

So, I thought I would offer up a few free apps that I have downloaded and actually used. These are app's I like and found to be relatively useful and or interesting. I just thought I'd share them with you. If this goes over, I may post more on a regular basis. You may have even come across some, but are afraid to try. Well, let me know. I have a couple of pathetic little computers I salvaged and would be willing to try it for you.

First up is SPYDERBAR from TGTSoft. I have investigated a few of the sidebar apps that are out there. For me, this is the easiest to use. You can't 'skin' it, but it has a plethora of it's own skin settings, most of which are very non-offensive when it comes to blending it in with your desktop. It has transparency settings if your video card supports them. It's easy to add and remove panels and has a wide assortment to chose from. Things like the basics...clock, weather, media player...to news feeds, system performance and even an ebay watch.


The next is a handy little phone app. It's the GIZMO PROJECT. I tried Skype and a few others. My thing was finding one that made PC to Phone calls for free. I have yet to find one. Yet, Gizmo has allowed me all my calls from PC to Phone for free on a temp basis as a new user. (I believe it was a limited offer) However, unlike the other apps, this is kind of the pre-pay cell phones of apps. You can buy the minutes as you want them or need them. Of course it's free to call other Gizmo user's and you can earn credits by inviting others to use it. It also supports chat. I have used it for work, mostly, to finalize my payroll and stuff. Unlike Skype and the other's I tried, this never crashed. The clarity of sound is great also.

It’s FREE!
FREE call's to any GizmoProject, Yahoo! Messenger, Google Talk, or Windows Live user
Free Voicemail and Conference calling.
Super clear call quality
Inexpensive add-ons that let you make and receive calls from any mobile phone or landline


Finally, I just came across Win Vista 1.2. This is a wallpaper manager that also allows you to play mpegs and avi files as your wallpaper!

Main Features:
- Thumbnail viewer for image chooser
- Change in list order or random order
- Image is best fitted to windows
- Filters are used for resizing
- Load and save Gallery lists (image file lists)
- Switch individual images on / off
- Previous and Next images
- Run on a Timer (minutes)
- Changes background colour to suit image

New Features
- Now Plays Video Wallpaper
- Use Mpeg and AVI
- Renders the video as your wallpaper
- Load and save Gallery lists (Video file lists)
- Switch individual Video on / off
- Previous and Next video

This sounded too good to be true so I checked it out. I played a music video as my wallpaper and dang if it didn't work. Very well, I might add. Downside? Well, when I checked my Taskmanager it was using 48% of my CPU and 16, 252 k of memory. I plan to experiment some more with it and see if the video size has anything to do with the size of the system drain. Sorry, I have no SS for this. I use SnagIt and it won't catch the video in a still frame.

Win Vista ~ WWW Link

That's it. They are all free and I felt worth sharing. You may or may not be familiar with these apps, but let me know what you think no matter what.
Comments (Page 1)
on Mar 11, 2007
Thanks for sharing, Po. As long as we're pimping freebies, I'd like to pimp my favorite utility.

It's called PC Wizard, and it's bailed my butt out a few times. It can be downloaded at www.cpuid.com and is a musthave for anyone who works on their own machine. I'm not sure if there's a Vista version yeat, but PC Wizard works on most versions of Windows.

It is a very handy utility when you don't want to have to crack a case to find out a motherboard manufacturer, or the model # of your NIC. In an instant you can have all the hardwae on your machine, which makes hunting for driver downloads incredibly easy (one of my favorite "stupid people tricks" is to pull up the screen on the computer I am servicing and save a screenshot to my thumb drive. Everything I need on the computer displayed in front of me and I never had to write it down!)

PC Wizard can also be used for benchmarking, and for finding lost passwords on your machine.

So long and thanks for letting me hijack your blog, Po.

I'll hop to those downloads once I have Internet at home again (the day is coming soon!)
on Mar 11, 2007
Thanks for the tip Gideon. I'll be checking it out.
on Mar 11, 2007
Thanks Po'.....what a great service.....

Skinned Alive put me onto this little program someone may find useful......WWW Link

Hope you keep this up......
on Mar 12, 2007
thanks Po'
on Mar 12, 2007
Who started this...huh...I dunno. Got the MS GIF Animator...yaaaay for me. I've been looking for something like forever. Thank you sydneysiders and thank you Po'Smedley. Although I don't have Vista...yet...but when I do, well that's another story. To Gideon MacLeish...have PC Wizard a long time now and it does the job very well. Got that after my machine crashed for the third time. I'll see what I got and list them for whoever may like 'em...soon as I find them
on Mar 12, 2007
Thanks sydneysiders, Quentin, and Uvah. I hope to do this again as long as the feedback is as good as this.
on Mar 12, 2007
Here's one I found on Majorgeeks that photographers may find useful....may also be useful in the creation of 'dream' files.....

"CinePaint is a collection of free, open source applications built for image processing and deep paint manipulation. CinePaint is used for motion picture frame-by-frame retouching, dirt removal, wire rig removal, render repair, background plates, and 3d model textures.

It's been used on many feature films, including The Last Samurai where it was used to add flying arrows. It's also being used by pro photographers who need greater color fidelity than is available in other tools."

WWW Link
on Mar 12, 2007
Thank you Po" great post
I hope to do this again as long as the feedback is as good as this
Please do...

It's My Secret
on Mar 13, 2007
Here's a look at some apps I use. Don't remember all the url's but I'm sure they're easy to find. You can google them...I think.
Image Uploaded by ImageShack Toolbar
Image Uploaded by ImageShack Toolbar
Image Uploaded by ImageShack Toolbar
Image Uploaded by ImageShack Toolbar
Image Uploaded by ImageShack Toolbar Check out TileBuilderArtPack, it has some interesting patterns. Hope you like.
on Mar 13, 2007
This sucks...How do I get the images big enough for people to see
on Mar 13, 2007
Had the same problem Uvah...do not checkmark thumbnail size..instead use hotlink for websites for medium sized pics.....use this thread to test your links..
post to test links to URL or Pictures by Quentin

It's My Secret
on Mar 13, 2007
How do I get the images big enough for people to see

The thumbnails show up fine when you click on them.

on Mar 14, 2007
Thanks...but can you see what's there...hope so.
on Mar 14, 2007
Thanks for the links/infos guys..
on Mar 14, 2007
Thanks...but can you see what's there...hope so.

I can see it just fine.