I discovered something interesting the other day while playing around in Photoshop. Under the Edit menu there’s a “Menus” option. Under that you can turn off the display of any menu item in Photoshop. The menu options will still be there just hidden down at the bottom under “Show All Menu Items” selection. This is extremely useful for getting rid of menu items you don’t use like “Open in Bridge” or anything that you always seem to miss-click on when working on in Photoshop.
Today Zootool released their Pro service. I have blogged about Zootool before and how I find it as an incredibly useful service. I know they had been working on a Pro service and today they released it. The new features they released are:
- Emailing Clippings
- Social Networking-Sync
- Unlimited Packs
- Public Packs
- Ad Free
The coolest thing about their new pro service is that you set the price for it. Where as most pro level services online cost around $25/year. With Zootool you set what you pay for a year of service. From $1 a year to $100 a year. I think this is an amazing way to go about it. It opens up Zootool Pro to people who can’t really afford to pay much but it lets them support Zootool. While leaving it open to people who can afford to spend a little more. I like this approach because it takes the pressure off of people and allow them to pay what they feel comfortable with and not forced to pay a certain amount. I think that this approach is going to make it easier for people to pay for their service when people realize that they set the price. This is the first online service other than the Humble Bundle. I think that more online services should take this approach and they will quickly gain new members, I know there are a few services that I would pay for if they took this approach. If your not a member I encourage you to sign up and if you are a member I encourage you to support Zootool as much as you can afford.
UPDATE: Digsby gave a complete review on their blog here. Go there for a more in depth review.
Back in May I wrote a review on Digsby, recently I have heard talk about it being spyware and stealing your information. I decided to do some research on it and see if there was any truth to these claims. I started out going to the Digsby blog and seeing if they had addressed anything on their blog. I found nothing so I went to the forums in hope of clarification. Here’s what I found out, the “spam” that is included is some tool bar offers that are from freeze.com. Typical things that are included in a lot of free programs, something that is very common now a days so nothing to bad. The company needs to generate revenue in someway to keep it free. The other problem people were having was when you go to download the program it redirects you to download.freeze.com so that can cause some people to worry that it sets of malware and spyware warnings, however you can download Digsby from their own servers right here.
The other issue is that there is a Java program running that’s associated with Digsby. That interested me because I don’t like things running on my computer that I don’t know what they are. This program takes advantage of your processer while your computer is idle to do research for mathematics and medical research. This can easily be turned of by going to:
Help Menu -> Support Digsby -> Next To "Help Digsby conduct research" click "Disable"
Now when this is running Digsby gets some money for helping with the research. The thing that bothered me the most about this is that the developers didn’t make it widely known that they were including this in an update and it was enabled by default. I have no problem letting it run since I’ve let it run since it was pushed in an update and have seen no performance decreases on my computer or any problems. I just wish that it had been told that this was included when updated and asked whether or not I wanted it enabled.
Overall I still think that Digsby is still the best IM client out there and I don’t think that these above issues are “spam” or “they are stealing your information.” I think that like every company Digsby needs revenue to keep going and they are trying to do it in the least visually intrusive way. I do hope however that the developers are more upfront about what is included in the updates. I would still recommend Digsby because nothing total negative is happening and you don’t have to install anything that you don’t want to.
Today was the release of the Zune 3.0 software and they finally added a clock. That whole update was worth it just for the clock. But 3.0 also brings a lot of nice features and improvements. After the release of Apples Genius feature where it picks songs that match your taste, the new Zune software comes with Mixview which is:
Dynamic representations of your collection, as well as artist and song recommendations based on what you and other members of the Social are listening to.
Its quite interesting to play around with, Jesus Diaz gives a good review over at Gizmodo. Some of the other more notable features added are games (Hexic and Texas Hold’Em), browse Zune marketplace by WiFi, buy from FM, which when your listening to a song on the radio you can add it to your cart and buy the song next time you sync it with your computer. Another notable feature is Zune Channels, which if you have a Zune Pass you can subscribe to the channel and it will add songs to a play list based on your listening habits. You can get a complete rundown of what’s new here.
Overall I think this new software is a step in the right direction for Microsoft and for the Zune team. I am glad that when I had the chance I chose the Zune over the iPod. Hit the jump for a couple of screen shots of the new software. I also scored a free episode of The Office off of the Zune Marketplace!!! So that along with the clock addition made it worth it.
Yesterday I mentioned that I began using Digsby instead of pidgin for my IM needs. So now that I’ve had a little time to play around with it I figured I would give it a full review. First off the bat it takes some getting used to, its not as straight forward as aim or pidgin. One thing I have to mention is that they just added Facebook chat. Which adding it is amazing but how quickly they added it was quick, less then a week I think. I already mentioned the email yesterday so I won’t mention that again. But go ahead and hit the jump for the full review.