Jigar Mehta’s WebBlog

June 30, 2008

Bye bye FullShot.. Welcome Evernote!!!

Filed under: Great Softwares,Random Rants — jigarme @ 1:49 am

Here is a secret!! I am a screenshot junkie! I take lot of snapshots of portion of computer screen for any of the following reasons..

  • I have to remember that stuff for future use.. (say I made some money transaction over internet, and bank website has provided me details about transaction confirmation.. I dont copy stuff and mail them or store them somewhere.. I just take a quick snapshot and save the JPG on the disk!)
  • I like some website or software interface and want to share stuff with somebody! (I share such stuff a lot! I send snapshots through email attachments a lot)
    • Though, this activity has been taken over by Mento now! And coolest stuff is, it posts the thumbnail and hyperlink on my WWW Activity Stream..
  • I need to refer to something later on.. for research purpose.. (If I am just surfing internet and found something on interesting which I dont have time right now to do research on! I just take snapshot and put reference to it on my ToDo widget on desktop!)

Till now, I had been using Inbit’s FullShot software (thanks to one of my friend who gifted it to me!) Its undoubtedly awesome piece of software for taking arbitrary screen snapshots! If you learn that software entirely, you increase significant percentage in productivity!

Main problems that I was facing with Fullshot was, snapshots taken on one machine were only on that machine.. Many a times, I had to remote into my office machine just to take a look at the damn snapshot that I took during office hours! I was looking for a solution that includes S+S model.. where I can integrate snapshots of all my machines (there are bunch of them that I work with regularly.. sometimes it becomes painful keeping things in synchronization!)

Before I got evernote into mainstream, I added my snapshot folder in Live Mesh profile so that all the snapshots on all the machines are synchronized! (Even before I got live mesh into mainstream, I had been using Windows Foldershare.. there is a lot of history associated with this dragon!)

But then, I got Evernote which is exactly what I wanted!! I moved all my snapshots into evernote (there are appx. 780 screenshots in my store increasing everyday!).. Here are advantages that I get using evernote over all my past systems!

  • Add it once and get it everywhere! (No more synchronization issues.. Take snapshot on any machine and with just one click snapshot gets saved to evernote, which all other machines get automatically – of course, through evernote system!)
  • Search within snapshot! (Would you believe it?? But, this is Evernote’s Mastery!)
    • Just imagine, I have taken snapshot of my bank confirming payment of my Mobile bill.. and after 15 days I have to refer to that confirmation again due to some issues.. now, I just search for my mobile number in evernote and that confirmation surfaces in matter of milliseconds!) It searches images like its a text stored in there!
  • No computer access, dont worry, access it from Web Interface!!
    • This is high relief for me.. Sometimes it happens, I am at somebody’s home and need to access these snapshots quickly.. Its just a login away.. I login on evernote website and get access to all my snapshots along with search features, on the web!!
    • I dont use Windows Mobile or iPhone right now, but evernote has mobile client as well!
  • Storage : I am using free account from evernote as of now! which gives me 40 MB of uploads every month! (appx 100 snapshots every month = ~3 everyday!) If I am running out of this limit, I think I would be happy to pay for it!
  • Screenshot Taking procedure is awesome!
    • Evernote has a small tool called Universal Clipper which takes snapshot like charm! Not just it can take plain screenshot, It can also add it to the Evernote collection with just one click OR copy the clipped area to clipboard (as bitmap for pasting it in outlook email!) OR save it as external JPG! OR Mark it with various color pen provided by the tool (to highlight or something!).. In short, love this tool!

So, after a long time, I have Good bye Fullshot and welcome’d Evernote to my always running tool! Like they say, One needs to welcome change.. and Softwares are no exceptions to it!!

Stay tuned.. Wave

June 18, 2008

How do I.. “Download new wallpapers from internet and change desktop look automatically”

Filed under: Great Softwares,How do I.. — jigarme @ 10:06 am

Whether you are a Mac user or PC user, desktop wallpapers are very important! I had been using Webshots desktop application to automatically change the wallpaper (on demand or automatically).. But problem with Webshots is, it changes wallpapers from my local library! And sometimes, I have to take care about proper resolution pictures!

To the rescue, here is a great tiny tool called Desktoptopia (thanks to Chris Pirillo)! Download this tool and it will automatically download new wallpapers from Internet (most importantly, it will download it according to your screen resolution!) and keep your desktop always fresh!!

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Stay tuned.. Wave

June 7, 2008

How do I.. "Keep my notes accessible everywhere"

Filed under: Great Softwares,How do I.. — jigarme @ 3:50 pm

The problem is:

  • How to keep my Notes accessible everywhere! Such that,
    • If I am at my desktop machine, I can access them with just one click! (without opening any website and logging in!)
    • If I am roaming with my own laptop, I should be able to access / add / work with my notes over there, with just one click!
    • If I am outside and dont have access to any of my machines, I should still be able to access my notes and work with them!

Introduction:
I have been facing this problem from a long time! I tried many solutions! but none of them could make me speak "Perfect! Thats what I want".. So, search continued.. And just before couple of months, I read a blog post saying "Evernote is designing WebService based client as a next version!"

I had used Evernote previous version v2.0 which was not-so-effective for me! But this new version, Evernote v3.0 seemed interesting! I wanted to hear more about it so, followed Evernote on Twitter, Subscribed to their RSS and registered for Private Beta access for their new system! I did study with all that was available at the moment and found Evernote 3.0 can become Perfect solution for what I was looking for!

And one good day, I got access to Private Beta.. (Its still in private beta, if you need access, let me know)

Solution:

  • Evernote 3.0 has Three main components..
    • Desktop Client
      • They have Clients compatible for both Windows as well as Mac.
    • Web Client (Access it here)
    • Mobile Client
      • They have Client compatible with Windows Mobile as well as iPhone. (Though, iPhone Client is still in Development.. having iPhone SDK still in beta.. I think they will release it once SDK is fully released).
  • How it helps for the problem in discussion..
    • Desktop client can be downloaded and installed on windows and mac. After installation, You give your unique account credentials where your notes/images/snapshots will be stored.
    • This data is stored both locally as well as on the cloud.
      • Evernote provides 200 MB of space to store this data in Free Account, but I have heard they have Premium model as well.
      • It will automatically synchronize the data on all all your devices (be it PC, Mac, Windows Mobile, iPhone, Web).
      • By default your notes are Private (only you can see), but if you want you can also make them Public so Everybody can see them!
    • You can also add a note by sending an email to your ‘special evernote email account!’ As simple as that!
    • Most important feature of Evernote is, It can search for Text within Images (which has proved to be a life saver for me!)
      • Say for example, you take snapshot (PrintScreen saved Snapshot) of your computer screen and add it to Evernote, it will be able to search for text from that snapshot!
      • If you have taken a snapshot from your mobile phone for a product which had description written, you can search text in that photo!
    • In case, if you dont have access to your computers and want to access your notes in emergency, you can enter secure area of Evernote Website, provide your credentials and Voila! You get access to all your notes, search them, edit them and remember, all your devices are automatically in sync..!
  • Usability in desktop software!
    • They have got one of the best designed Desktop Client (I have tried on Windows)
      • You can tag, annotate, write notes with Ink, Group by various attributes and search your notes from desktop software! UI is designed with great ease.
    • They have a tiny application called Universal Launcher which is small but powerful app.
      • If you are in any application (be it Outlook, Notepad, Word or Browser.. anywhere).. You select any text and press "Win + A".. That will automatically add selected text to your Notebook in evernote! Just one keystroke! (I love this feature!)
      • If you dont have text to be added, you want to take a snapshot of your screen and add it to your Notebook, you can press "Win + PrintScreen" which will allow you to select area of screen to be clipped and once you are done, that will silently be added to your notebook!
    • They also have an AddIn for Outlook. Which will help you add your email message to Notebook with just one click!

I can just say one word after using Evernote.. "Perfect!!" My search stops here! I have been using it from few months and have got dependent on it!! It has saved me a lot of painful hours looking for information.. My account summary on Evernote website says (I have appx. 675 notes stored in my evernote account with lots of them Snapshots/Images!),

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I think this is one of the S+S system which I dont have any suggestions for! Its truly Perfect! Infact, the icon they have chosen for Evernote is also cool!

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Happy Evernote’ing.. Happy

Stay tuned.. Wave

June 3, 2008

First post from Windows Live Writer 2008 Tech Preview..

Filed under: Great Softwares — jigarme @ 10:18 am

Windows live writer team just released “Windows Live Writer 2008 Technical Preview”.. Installed it and posting my first post using it..

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One feature that I liked is, now, we have “Edit”, “Preview” and “Source” tabs at the bottom of edit area..

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Another one I liked is option to automatically link words..

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Also, now windows live writer has got Auto Update functionality!! It rocks!

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Go, download your copy!!

download

Stay tuned..

May 3, 2008

Woopra rocks!!

Filed under: Great Softwares — jigarme @ 12:10 pm

Thanks to Woopra (still in beta), I am now able to exactly watch and analyze patterns for my blog visits!! Following is one of the statistics that Woopra provides,

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So, as you can see in the snapshot above, It allows me to see what are daily visits for my blog and how many page views were made by those visitors! I have started using it from last 5 days and now, I know what content is mostly liked by people out there and which blog post’s ranking is top most in search engines! And all these things I can see on a desktop application (they have a very good and efficient Java Desktop Client!), no need to go and watch things from Web Interface!

Woopra is really good, believe me!

Stay tuned.. Wave

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