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Windows Vista SP2 release candidate coming next week


Microsoft has officially announced the Release Candidate for Windows Vista Service Pack 2. Microsoft's TechNet will have the second Vista Service Pack (Vista SP2) available to the public next week, though the exact date has not yet been released. The update will deliver support for newer hardware and emerging standards, as well as consolidating several bug fixes and patches issued between Vista SP1 and now.

Consumers have been waiting for the release of the Windows Vista Service Pack 2, as it will improve non-Microsoft application compatibility, support for new hardware, and system performance.

Vista Service Pack 2 was designed mainly for the improvement of performance. The update offers new contents such as a Service Pack clean up tool capable of recovering hard disk space utilized by previous Vista updates and 691 hotfixes.

Consumers will also be happy to find the new Service Pack 2 equipped with:

1) Improved content protection for television programs recorded utilizing Windows Media Center
2) Bluetooth 2.1 to support emerging Bluetooth technology
3) The ability to record onto Blu-Ray media via Vista directly
4) Wi-Fi configuration simplified
5) Improvements to DirectX multimedia, boasting better graphics for gamers
6) Greater streaming capabilities
7) Support for new 64-bit CPUs from VIA technologies
8) Improved file syncing across different time zones
9) Improved Windows Search, version 4.0 which offers quicker searching and more relevant results

The final version of Vista Service Pack 2 is expected in the second quarter 2009, between sometime between April 1 and June 30.

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11:02 PM

Confess anonymously online via Twitter


"Bless me, Twitter, for I have sinned. It has been 18 seconds since my last confession." Do you have something you want to confess? Do you feel the need to get a dangerous, dirty, heartfelt, or even disgusting secret off your chest. Well, have no fear, SecretTweet is here. Much like PostSecret, the website which encourages individuals to write their secrets on cards which will be posted online, this site gives you an opportunity to avoid the post office and the cost of postage by simply heading to your keyboard and typing out your dirty little secrets.

Coders have developed an anonymous interface which allows you to post to twitter as SecretTweet. Users follow SecretTweet are then able to read the secrets of individuals from all over the world. A few examples of that include:

1) I know that my husband spent over $400 that we don't have at a strip club this weekend.
2) I just got [pleasured myself--edited] in the public restrooms at work. It felt liberating.
3) My ultimate fear is no one going to my funeral when I die.
4) Today was the third unsuccessful interview for internship.... i have lost hopes of finding a job when i graduate....
5) I wish i could make my mum as happy as the wine she can't survive a single evening without.

SecretTweet could potentially be the next PostSecret. With 12,000 followers on Twitter it is already proof that individuals have a strong desire to view and follow the secrets of others. I wonder how quickly someone gets a book deal based on this concept.

It may be worth mentioning that Twitter's new anonymous confession utility runs quite the contrary to traditional Bible teachings which, in James 5:16, read: "Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective."

The spirit in which that book was written is not in anonymous confession, but instead urges individuals to stand up boldly in front of colleagues and peers and confess your sins publicly, admitting that you were wrong in what you did and to even ask forgiveness. How many of us have been moved when someone stood up and did that before us, telling us that they were wrong? Our heart goes out to them so quickly. And yet, in a case like this with Twitter's SecretTweet, it's more likely we'll find humor in the postings rather than a heart-reach extension toward that person.

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10:56 PM

Google Translate now understands 41 languages


Google’s translation engine that is used daily by millions has now been updated to support 41 languages, which comprise 1640 language pairs in Google's translation matrix. Google claims it can now translate text for 98% of the world's Internet users. What do you want to translate today?

Turkish, Thai, Hungarian, Estonian, Albanian, Maltese and Galician have joined the already comprehensive mix of supported languages in Google Translate. While Internet-based translation services have been available for some, most notably Babelfish, which originated from Digital Equipment’s (acquired by Compaq, which was purchased by Hewlett-Packard) Altavista team and is now part of Yahoo, Google Translate supports more languages than any other translation engine on the web.

The quality of these services remains impressive, at least if you intend to just understand the meaning of what has been printed in another language and do not intend to use to reprint it in its translated version. Google said that “there's always room for improvement, and [they]'re working hard to improve translation quality. [Their] statistical models are built from vast quantities of monolingual and translated texts using automated machine learning techniques.”

In taking Google's translate utility out for a little spin around the world, I discovered that the phrase "Good morning, how are you?" when translated from English to Spanish to French to Russian to German and back to English yielded the phrase: "Hello, how are you?" At some point it lost the connotation of "Good morning," but is more than sufficient for communication, especially across so many diverse languages. When taking the same phrase from English to Chinese Traditional to Japanese and back to English, we got this: "Morning, what better way?". You know what, I like that. I may start using that phrase. Thank you, Google Translate.

You can access Google Translate here.

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10:49 PM

CBS launches iPhone television application


TV.com has been released by CBS Mobile, the new free mobile application will allow iPhone and iPod touch users to view full episodes of select CBS television shows and other programs via a Wi-Fi or 3G mobile network.

No iPhone application has yet to provide free television content directly form a television studio based in the United States. However, iPhone users can receive free content streams from the British-based BBC using its iPlayer app.

Currently, TV.com offers a selection of CBS shows, such as CBS News, episodes of “Late Show with David Letterman”, CBS Sports, “The Young and the Restless”, and many others. The mobile application also delivers shows from the CW including “90210” and even six shows from Showtime, including “The Tudors”. Users can also head over to TV.com to view CNet and GameSpot podcasts.

Although the selection is currently limited, the application will be capable of accommodating new content delivered from CBS when available. CBS is also working to make available more of its content. The application also delivers decent video quality utilizing the standard iPhone QuickTime player.

While iPhone lacks camera with video-recording capability, it doesn't stop it from reproducing a high-quality video. In fact, many users swear the iPhone is the best media player around despite being an average phone. But for an “ultimate media player,” the iPhone lacks what many think is the Holy Grail of television - live TV on the go. In an ironic twist, rival devices manage live TV as part of broader media playing features far better than the iPhone does. Many cellphones sold by AT&T, and especially Verizon, for example, feature an additional live TV service for viewing select TV programming on the handset over the cellular network. Samsung Instinct offered by Verizon is one such example, and these devices are often seen in use at airport terminals as passengers wait for their flight.

With the iPhone, AT&T wouldn't allow even simpler applications over its network like radio streaming or song purchases. However, both Apple and its carrier partners have been working to gradually remove limitations as to what applications are allowed over their network. In past few months, carriers have allowed the handset to stream radio stations, iTunes song purchases and live video over their cellular networks. Free VoIP calls, however, are still not allowed. With video streaming over cellular allowed, several iPhone applications have appeared to take advantage of this, but most of them fail to deliver the quality content iPhone users expect.

With offerings ranging from video podcasting to dedicated applications which stream short clips from local TV stations, to the Joost application, they all lack premium content that would really put TV in your pocket on the go. The arrival of TV.com from CBS Mobile marks a turning point and gives hope that rival TV stations will follow the move, bringing iPhone users more high-quality programming, TV shows and news.

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10:43 PM

Four Free Sites to Share Your Music On Twitter


Twitter has grown to become an extremely large and heavily used microblogging service that has really allowed anyone and everyone to communicate over the internet much easier. Besides Twitter’s multiple uses, one thing it can really be used well for is sharing music.


Today, we will talk about some of the best sites to use for telling your friends what you’re listening to and get that extra use out of the service.


Twisten is by far my most favorite method of sharing music on Twitter. Created by the people who made Grooveshark, Twisten is just as easy to use and since it uses the same database as Grooveshark, holds quite a large library of music.


Besides being able to update your status messages with links and info about the song you are listening to, Twisten also allows you to save favorites for further access on your profile.

Song.ly is another simple and easy-to-use service that certainly contains many of the best features of Twisten. The hompage consists only of a search box that allows you to enter a link to an audio file on the web, or search for a song. Songly then allows you to listen to the song for free, with the option of posting to Twitter.


Songly also features a Firefox add-on for quick tweeting if you like.


Twiturm is unlike Twisten or Songly in that it allows users to upload a song(s) and then share it on Twitter.

This feature is great if you happen to have a large music collection of songs/artists that for some reason are not able to be found on Twisten or Songly, but otherwise Twiturm is not the easiest way to quickly share songs on Twitter.



TwittyTunes is a Firefox extension that utilizes FoxyTunes (a popular Firefox extension for playing music) to post updates on what you are listening to on Twitter. Obviously if you do not use FoxyTunes, TwittyTunes would not be very useful, but for those that do use FoxyTunes, TwittyTunes may be just what you are looking for.

Something to note, though, TwittyTunes does not post a status message every time you listen to a song, it just gives you the option to post songs to Twitter, so if you were scared that you would be posting hundreds of status messages a day and scaring your Twitter followers, I am sure that is not the case.


All in all, it seems Twitter is continually growing and with the help of a growing online music industry, web apps like these may be the way to go.

What do you use for sharing music on Twitter? Tell us in the comments.

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8:44 PM

An iPhone App developer Who Made $600,000 in a Month


Ethan Nicholas, the developer of a game called iShoot struck gold when his game hit the #1 spot on Appstore.


It’s a simple and easy to follow success story. Ethan started working on this game in his spare time; he released a free version of the game which at a point suggests the player to buy the full version of the game for $2.99. Out of 2.4 million users who downloaded the free version, 320,000 users bought the full version of the game.

This put the App on the #1 spot for about 3 weeks and helped Ethan make about $37,000 in one day. This not only highlights that the iPhone App success stories are here to stay and we will see many more of these in the time to come.

Ethan who worked with Yahoo! Publishing Tools team as a lead engineer was the original author of the Swing-based Yahoo! SiteBuilder web design application he also worked on developing JAXX, and XML-based user interface for creating Java desktop applications, even this was done during his spare time at Yahoo!. Ethan quit this job at Sun Microsystems after his App made a fortune for him.

These days Ethan is busy answering and tipping his followers on Twitter on how to be better at iShoot and replying to e-mails he receives from other iPhone game developers asking for his suggestions.

The original paid version of the App “iShoot” was released in Oct 2008 but only witnessed a limited number of downloaded before it faded away, this is when Ethan decided to release a free version hoping it will revive the original app. That’s what happened exactly!

What Ethan tried as an experiment is turning out to be a guide for the individual App developers as they are all set to release a free version of their paid apps.

Click here to Buy iShoot or here to iShoot-Lite (free version)

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8:32 PM

5 Tips For Faster Browsing In Mozilla Firefox



If you’ve ever used Firefox you’ll appreciate the fact that it’s incredibly easy to use and intuitive right out of the box. This is perhaps one of the key reasons why it now owns 21.5% of the worldwide browser market share, and Internet Explorer is having its worst month yet.

Frankly speaking, as Internet speeds continue to increase, the loading times of webpages are becoming increasingly less of an issue. The time saved simply by having a better, more user friendly and clear interface outweighs most gains garnered from a browser which simply loads faster.

Here are 5 excellent tips to make browsing even smoother and faster on Firefox.

1. How to save time by automatically loading the next page


Autopager is a Firefox extension which automatically loads up the next page of a series of web pages and displays it at the bottom of the screen, when you scroll to the end of the page.

For example, if you were to load up a Google Search, and you were unhappy with the page one results, you previously had to click on a link to take you to page 2 of the results. With Autopager, all you do is scroll down – saving you the extra click. Google’s page 2 results would now be appended at the bottom of the page 1 results. Keep scrolling downwards and you’d see page 3, 4 and so on.

By default AutoPager works with a ton of sites, including the New York Times, Digg, and, of course, Google. If you want to add your own custom autopaging to unsupported sites, the site wizard feature makes it easy to so. This extension is a true time saver.

2. How to use keyboard shortcuts to get instant results

Firefox comes with a whole range of keyboard shortcuts so you can really speed things up if you’re a power user. Mozilla lots of different shortcuts on their support page, and here are 5 cool keyboard tricks which would come in handy for all Firefox keyboard newbies:

* Back/Forward Navigation: Alt Left Arrow / Alt Right Arrow
* Complete .com Address : Ctrl+Enter (When you’re in the URL bar)
* Zoom In / Out: Ctrl + / Ctrl -
* Bookmark all tabs: Ctrl Shift D
* Undo closed tab: Ctrl Shift T

3. How to NOT get bogged down by 404s


Your favorite website down? Rather than visiting it later, or hitting the refresh button incessantly, you can try installing ErrorZilla, a firefox extension which will add Try Again, Google Cache, Coralize, Wayback, Ping, Trace, and Whois buttons, when a website isn’t found or a web server is down.

Think of it as a much more useful 404 error page where rather than just telling you the page doesn’t exist – it allows you to search and visit cached versions of the page.

4. How to load up web pages faster


Fasterfox is an extension which dips under the hood to tweak many network and rendering settings such as simultaneous connections, pipelining, cache, DNS cache, and initial paint delay.

Previously, these were tweaks which you had to manually adjust – but now they work right out of the box once you use this handy extension.

5. How to download files faster


Originally skeptical when I first tried this out, I have been completely blown away by how effective this software is. DownloadThemAll is a free extension which acts as a download manager (meaning you can pause and resume downloads), and download files faster by having them simultaneously download. This is quite possibly my favorite extension out of all five.

So there you have it, 5 speedy tips which will helpfully make your browsing on Firefox an even faster, more powerful experience.

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8:12 PM

Twitter: Could operate for years without making any new money


Twitter has indicated to Wired.com that a business plan and more investors just aren't something the company needs right now. In the interview, Todd Chaffee, General Partner at Institutional Venture Partners, or IVP stated, "We've got a ton of cash. We have far more cash than we need, so I'm not in any hurry." According to Chafee, even the funding his company most recently received, which totaled $35 million, wasn't even necessary.

Chaffee claims that the microblogging portal, which seems to be in the forefront of the social media venues these days, is worth $50 million on paper and the company, which utilizes no on site ads and charges no membership fees, can continue on into the future with no problem. The company operates behind the concept that "if you build it they will eventually pay" method, and claims the site is well on its way.


"You essentially have this company which has these assets that's turning into a very large media property," he told Wired. "When you have tens of millions or hundreds of millions of people actively engaged every day, you've got all sorts of monetization opportunities."

The company is adamant that at this point they do not need a business plan, and that the opportunity for advertisement is different and very much there on the site.

Twitter is also gaining popularity in the business world as many companies are turning to it to sell their products and services and even promote blogs, brands, and bands. However, the company is concerned that it's hard to tell what products and services are legitimate, and there is currently no method in place to determine whether or not users are who they claim to be.

Thus far Twitter has seen cases of accounts being created falsely for companies like Burger King, and even individuals such as the Dalai Lama. The individuals creating these accounts, once discovered, were allowed to maintain their Twitter accounts with the "unofficial" label attached.

The company believes Twitter will grow quickly and continuously. Investors believe the site has the potential to one day be the way individuals keep in contact, before they use e-mail or IM they'll simply Tweet.

Chaffee told Wired, "Part of where this thing may go, it may supersede other communication channels."

With major news venues and celebrities utilizing the site, it will most definitely gain in popularity. The question remains: How much? And how will they utilize the site to make a buck?

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8:22 PM

Yahoo Mobile Internet


Yahoo has announced the launch of Yahoo! Mobile, a mobile web destination as well as a mobile application designed to be the starting point of your online mobile experience.

It’ll be available for the iPhone, Windows Mobile-based handsets, as well as smartphones from Nokia, RIM, Samsung, Sony Ericsson and Motorola. It launches today as a beta, with the full version coming out somewhere in the second quarter of 2009. The (closed) beta is available at mobile.yahoo.com.

In practice, the application is an iPhone-style grid of applications such as Messenger, Mail, Maps, Browser, oneSearch and onePlace. However, it’s more than just a collection of links. As you can see in this (quite detailed) presentation, Yahoo integrates its services into existing iPhone features; for example, the standard iPhone stock market graphs will get a “Y!” icon; click on it and you will get additional information on how this particular company has been performing on the stock market.

At the center of this new offering is Yahoo oneConnect, a service that integrates email, access to various social networks, Yahoo Messenger, address book and calendar.

Yahoo is well aware of the fact that not everyone relies solely on their services, such as Flickr or Yahoo Mail for various online needs; therefore, Yahoo Mobile also supports other services such as Gmail, Windows Live, Hotmail, Twitter and YouTube.


Yahoo seems to have thought this through; they believe that their online services must become an integral part of your mobile life, and they’ve made it as easy as possible to get to them. They also seem to believe that all these services must be connected at one central place, or portal if you will. Strangely enough, Google has avoided such initiatives in the past, both on the web and on mobiles; we’ll see if Yahoo knows something they don’t.

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8:06 PM

Vodafone and HTC Team Up on New Google Phone


Five months after T-Mobile introduced the first phone powered by Google’s Android operating system, cellphone giant Vodafone is unveiling the second. Like its predecessor, the new device is made by Taiwanese manufacturer HTC. It is called the HTC Magic and has a touchscreen, but not the slide-out keyboard that the T-Mobile G1 has.

Starting this spring, the HTC Magic will be available exclusively to Vodafone customers in Great Britain, Germany, Spain and France and non-exclusively in Italy. Pricing was not disclosed. HTC executives, speaking at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, said they were working on making the device available in the United States.


The T-Mobile G1 received generally good reviews, but its appeal was limited by its exclusive availability on T-Mobile, the fourth-largest carrier in the United States. The size of Vodafone, the largest mobile carrier in the world by revenue, should help Android gain broad distribution in Europe.

Google, however, is not pinning hopes for Android’s success on any one phone, but rather on a multitude of phones from different manufacturers. Several others are expected to unveil Android based phones in 2009.

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8:04 PM

LinkedIn’s Popularity Grows amidst Global Recession


As layoffs continued to pound the economy in January, one beneficiary was job networking site LinkedIn. According to the latest January data from comScore, the LinkedIn’s U.S. unique visitors shot up 22 percent to 7.7 million, up from 6.3 million in December. Total minutes spent on the site doubled in January to 96.8 million, from 47.6 million in December.

Part of what is driving all the activity is people looking for job, and helping friends who are out of work. Recommendations are up 65 percent since December, says spokesperson Kay Luo. LinkedIn’s improved people search, which it launched at the end of November, is also driving a lot of activity on the site. The company is seeing a 50 percent increase in activity on the new search platform.


When times are tough, networking is a survival skill.

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8:36 PM

10 Beautiful Apple iPhone Concept designs


Here I am presenting some beautiful Apple iPhone new designs which are proposed ones..


iPhone Concept from Japan



Apple iPhone Nano Concept



iPhone Slider Qwerty Concept


iPhone with iChat Concept


iPhone ELITE Concept



iPhone Pro Concept


Titanium iPhone Concept





iPhone Air Concept


iPhone Nano Concept



Futuristic iPhone Concept


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8:12 PM

Inside Google Earth 5.0


Now you can dive into oceans, view images of Mars and watch regions of the Earth change over time, all through the new version of Google Earth.

The Internet search giant Google has launched Google Earth 5.0 that will allow users to swim through undersea canyons as deep as the Mariana Trench and encounter creatures like endangered prehistoric fishes. The new version marks a significant upgrade to Google Earth, a popular software programme that provides access to the world's geographical information through digital maps, satellite imagery and the company's search tools.

Google Earth 5.0 takes data from over 80 organisations, including the US Navy, the National Geographic Society and the Marine Conservation society to provide maps of the underwater sections of the earth, including undersea mountains, shipwrecks and the deepest part of the planet.


Here’s a peek into all the all-new Google Earth 5.0.

What is Google Earth

Launched in 2005, Google Earth is a free Internet application that combines satellite images and users content about the planet.


Available in 41 languages, Google Earth has been downloaded more than 500 million times since its launch. Google Inc has updated its online map of the world to add the more than two- thirds of the planet that lies underwater and provide a way to view changes to glaciers and other geography over time.

Its latest version, Google Earth 5.0, offers users a virtual dive beneath the waves, allowing them to explore ocean beds, marine life and even shipwrecks.

Explore oceans


Google Earth 5.0 lets users plunge beneath the ocean's surface, explore three-dimensional images of the underwater terrain and view articles and videos about marine science contributed by scientists and organisations such as the National Geographic Society.

Users can explore the ocean with marine experts, including National Geographic. Learn about ocean observations, climate change, and endangered species. Also, discover new places including surf, dive, and travel hotspots and shipwrecks.



Another new feature in Google Earth is Touring. Touring allows users to record and share narrated fly-through tours of Google Earth using imagery from the application.

Google 5.0 takes placemarks a step further and records a free-form tour. Users can simply turn on the touring feature, press record, and see the world. They can also add a soundtrack or narration to personalise the journey.

Historical imagery


The Historical Imagery feature lets users see archive satellite images of individual locations to see how the region has evolved over time as a result of climate change and other forces. For example, viewers can observe how the largest glacier in Glacier National Park has melted over the past decade.

The new "timeline" feature allows a user to view a succession of satellite images of the same location over the years, tracking changes to the environment. Users can see the impact of recent trends like suburban sprawl or global warming. They can also set the length of time and the exact location that they want to see.

3D Mars


Google also unveiled a three-dimensional map of Mars based on satellite images, as well as panoramic photos taken from the Mars Rovers.

With Google Mars 3D, users can view three-dimensional, satellite imagery of the Red Planet taken during NASA space expeditions.

By selecting "Mars" from the toolbar in Google Earth, users have access to what amounts to Google Mars Street View -- a way to tour the portions of the Martian surface mapped by NASA's rovers.

The Mars mode provides high-resolution views of the planet and enables users to virtually fly through canyons and scale mountains on Mars, according to NASA. Users can also explore the planet through the eyes of the Mars rovers. The new version also allows users to create narrated tours of places using the software's content and images.

Record your trip


Users can also record their trip from point A to point Z. Capture their navigation through Google Earth in real-time, without using placemarks. They can narrate their virtual journey and share it with friends. Saved tours and trips can be reused and revisited in the future.

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2:12 AM

Apple iPhone hot tips and tricks


OK, so might already know one or two of these tips and shortcuts to improving your iPhone experience, but hopefully a few of these following pointers will be news to you. Print out the list and give 'em a try, and feel free to post your own to the comments section.

Some of these iPhone tricks were revealed in a recent sit-down chat with Bob Borchers, senior product executive at Apple.

1. Two ways to save images
You're surfing the Internet in Safari and stumble upon a photo you'd like to save. Simply press and hold on a photo when on a website and you'll be prompted with a menu asked if you'd like to "Save Image." Once the photo is saved, you can view it offline, email it or set it as wallpaper.

On a related note, if you want to take a screenshot of a website or application, press down on the Home button and tap the Sleep button. You'll hear the camera click, see a white flash and the screenshot will be saved.


2. Oh those magic headphones
Those trendy white earbuds do more than you might realize. The iPhone's headphones have a small button on the microphone and it performs multiple functions. For example, press once to start the iPod and begin playing a song. Press again to pause the track or double-tap to skip to the next song.

If a call comes in, press the button once to answer or double-tap to send the call right to voicemail. During a call, press once to hang up.

3. Browser tricks
Want to know an easy way to scroll to the top of a website in Safari? Simply tap at the top of the phone screen, where the time, battery and signal bars are. Doing this works in most applications, but in Safari it also brings up the URL to type in a new website.

If your preferred search engine is set to Google in Safari you don't need type in the "www" and ".com" for many websites. For example, simply type "usatoday" (without the quotes) in the URL window. If you need to type a domain suffix (e.g. ".net"), press and hold the ".com" button for ".net," ".edu," ".org" shortcut keys and use your finger to slide between them.

4. No place like Home
There are many uses for that circular Home button, located in the center and bottom of your iPhone. If you've got ten pages of applications to peruse through, you can quickly go back to the first page by pressing the Home button once (here's where you should drag and drop your most used apps). By the way, you can also tap the bottom left or right corners of the screen to switch between pages instead of swiping your finger across.

Double-tapping the Home button brings up your phone's Favorites screen, where you can list the people you call the most. If you prefer, edit the Home button's function in Settings so when you double-tap the Home button it takes you right to your music playlists.

5. Little-known email tips
You can delete unwanted emails en masse rather than deleting one at a time. In your Inbox, simply click the Edit button and check off the emails you want to delete with your finger and then choose Delete. Otherwise, to delete a single email, simply swipe the email sideways and you'll see the red "Delete" button option.

One of the biggest issues iPhone users have is typing an email on the "soft keyboard" with the email's vertical screen layout. But there are a handful of free App Store downloads, such as EasyWriter, that can resolve this by letting you hold the phone horizontally (landscape view) and thus offering a wider keyboard with bigger buttons.

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8:01 PM

Gmail gives users 'Multiple Inboxes'


Google late Thursday unveiled a new Gmail Labs feature that allows users to have more than one inbox in their default Gmail view.

The new feature--called Multiple Inboxes--allows users to have multiple viewing panes open simultaneously without having to open another browser window. The upgrade gives users a quick view at important labels as well as saved searches.

Google software engineer Octavian "Vivi" Costache explained in a company blog post why he used his "20 percent time" to develop the feature:

I'm seriously into filters and labels. All the email I get related to Flash goes under my "flash" label, everything about paragliding goes under "flying," and they all skip my inbox because that's how I like to stay organized. But when new email arrives I have to switch to the "flash" label first, then click on "paragliding," etc. I wanted a way to see it all at once.

For those who use their Gmail accounts for multiple personal e-mail lists, as well as for work, this is a huge step up.


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7:57 PM

Apple to begin allowing background tasks on the iPhone


Apple used to be famous for their background push data feature, yet they made the decision to abandon it in the iPhone. Now they are reportedly considering an option that would allow iPhone applications to run in the background, thus giving iPhone the ability to truly multitask.

Rumor has it that Apple is considering allowing programs to operate as "user selectable background processes."

When Apple initially unveiled background push notification at the Worldwide Developers Conference in 2008, the company made fun of companies such as Microsoft and other smartphone developers for not providing users with simple solutions to switch between applications. During the June event, Apple claimed that they felt push notification was a compromise that would close applications but keep them running pulling information in via an Internet channel. For instance, an instant messaging application would signal when it received new messages without remaining open, killing battery life.

Since then the company hasn't had a lot to say in regards to the issue.

With its first release including background notifications, the fourth developer test version removed the feature, and it has not been added back.

With no real reason for Apple to remove the feature, Apple fans have stated that the delay is so that the company can unveil the addition with its next major revision. The current iPhone would struggle to support multiple applications as it only has a 412MHz ARM processor and 128MB of temporary memory.

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8:27 PM

Google Latitude allows to track movements of others


The engineers at Google have developed a new way people can find one another using Google Maps. It's a little feature they call Google Latitude and you can install it for free on a variety of platforms.

Google Latitude is initially available for use on Blackberry, S60, and Windows Mobile with plans for availability on Android and iPhone coming shortly. It lets one see the approximate location of others who have have decided to share their location information. Google says, for example, one could see if his or her spouse is actually stuck in traffic.

This new Google Map function will also let you get in touch directly with those people via SMS, Google Talk, Gmail or by updating your status message. Fr those concerned about privacy, several options have been built in. Each user can control who sees their location as well as being able to set where they're at. A user could, for example, set their location to be showing one place while actually being at another.


Latitude is initially available in 27 countries, with more planned over time. It can also be used via a desktop or laptop by installing the corresponding iGoogle gadget.

You can visit Google Latitude.

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8:22 PM