Cool Websites and Tools (#303)

web apps 213   Cool Websites and Tools (#303) 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 even more app reviews subscribe to makeuseof directory.

 

(1) [NO LONGER WORKS] Contails – Free mobile contacts sync tool which allows users to sync and share cellphone contacts. Furthermore, users can backup their contacts to web and import contacts from Outlook, Thunderbird, Gmail, Yahoo etc. Read more: Contails – Mobile Contacts Sync Tool.

(2) Docjax – Document search engine that searches for most common document formats (DOC, PDF, XLS and PPT) on Google and Yahoo. Includes the option to preview documents prior downloading. Read more: DocJax – Document Search Engine With Inline Viewer.

(3) OnlineCrosswords – Lots of free printable crossword puzzles for users of all levels of expertise. You can either print crosswords or solve them online. There is also variety of crossword layouts that can be downloaded and used to create your own crosswords. Read more: OnlineCrosswords – Free Printable Crossword Puzzles.

(4) [NO LONGER WORKS] TidyRead – Makes reading web pages easy and comfortable by removing all unnecessary clutter and leaving only essentials. Just visit the site, enter the URL of the webpage and click “TidyRead It”Âť. Read more: TidyRead – Reading Webpages Without The Clutter.

(5) WetFloorMaker – Generate a wet floor reflecting effect for your images. Upload the image, customize the angle, camera height, brightness, reflectivity, sky and floor colors and the size, and then press “Generate”Âť. Save generated image to your computers using a right-click “Save As” option. Read more: WetFloorMaker – Add Reflection To Image.

These are just half of the websites that we discovered in the last 3-4 days. If you want us to send you daily round-up of all cool websites we come across leave your email here. Or follow us via RSS feed.

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3 Comments -

kiran

Very useful post…Thank u.

Iain Barraclough

Thankyou very much. I just started using TidyRead. A real time-saver and an aid to reading enjoyment and comprehension.

I use Google Reader to filter all the blogs and news sites that I like to keep in touch with, scanning the headers for items that look like they will interest me. This has automated things to the extent that it saves me considerable time/effort in visiting these sites individually from RSS feeds/bookmarks – I now have it all “delivered” via Google Reader – which presents me with a neat and uncluttered list of the feed items, with headers.

However, when I go to read the items presented in Google Reader that interest me, I am faced with something I detest: all the distracting colour splashes, logos, and general advertising noise/garbage and bad ergonomics in web design that the authors/promoters of the destination sites have decided they will force-feed to me as part of my “user experience” (a euphemism for “you will see what I dictate” used by editorial/media fascists). It’s got as bad as – if not worse than – commercial TV advertising, which is something else I detest. The media are in control of the viewer.

I used to be in control. For some years, I used JunkBuster to filter most of this garbage out. JunkBuster was very effective: its features included the ability to tell the web server NOT to serve specific classes of data (thus conserving bandwidth), and the user could define those classes, right down to domains, sub-domains, filenames and data types, but the product ceased development and would not work properly through SSL technology, and nothing was able to replace it. I use AdBlockPlus and NoScript now, and they are very good – but they do not include the above JunkBuster feature, so most of the litter is still there and it still sucks up bandwidth.

But today, after following your link in MakeUseOf, at least the litter can be eliminated from presentation in the browser (though it still sucks up bandwidth).

The link is to TidyRead: http://www.tidyread.com/
I loaded the TidyRead bookmarklet for Firefox, and straightaway used it on a BBC news site. Whammo! Reader’s nirvana.

I just now googled the reference on TidyRead to “Arc90 Readability experiment” and found Arc90:
http://lab.arc90.com/2009/03/readability.php

I see the Arc90 page says a lot that is similar to what I have written above.

TidyRead is so good it could be threatening to the muscle advertising corporations, whom I predict will probably attempt to pull it out of operation and kill it, or they will devise some new technology to block its functionality.

By the way, the TidyRead site has a “See what people are TidyReading now” links. These are interesting. I could see what I had been reading as listed amongst those links. I’m a TidyReading link “voyeur” now!

Aibek

Hey Iain

Thank for sharing your experience!