Tuesday, September 27, 2016

25 Unique Chrome Apps That Are Unusually Useful

When looking for apps and extensions for Chrome, most normally go with those that are popular or recommended by others. However, there are unique, off-the-wall tools that many would not search for, but would actually find unusually useful. Here are just 25 of them.
Guy Thumbs Up on Laptop
Creativity and Inspiration

1. Story Wars

If you enjoy writing and seek your inspiration from collaboration with others like you, then take a peek at Story Wars. Pitch a story idea and once it’s published for the Story Wars community, others can add to it. This is a great way to enhance your writing, creativity, and even generate more ideas.5 Desktop Apps You Can Ditch If You Have Google Chrome 5 Desktop Apps You Can Ditch If You Have Google ChromeChromebook user or not, with Google Chrome you can turn any desktop,laptop, or tablet into a powerful machine for work and play.READ MORE

2. Pookatoo

Pookatoo is the tool for the fantasy, gothic, spooky text creators. There are over 40 different colored fonts, multiple sizes, background colors, and animations. So, whether you want a vampire-like font for your website or a creepy phrase for your Halloween image, Pookatoo comes through.

3. Kitchen Style Visualiser

Ready for some kitchen remodeling? Kitchen Style Visualiser is a Chrome app to assist you in finding just the right look. Select your wall units, flooring, worktops, and wall color. Each provides modern, traditional, and painted options so that you can pick out exactly the right components.
Chrome App Kitchen Style Visualizer

Utilities and Tools

4. Toast timer — Countdown timer

Are you in the market for a unique countdown timer? Toast timer is a simple, intuitive option. You will see fun quotes about time and hear a nifty pop sound when the timer is up.Need More Time? Try These 7 Remarkable Chrome Timer Extensions Need More Time? Try These 7 Remarkable Chrome Timer ExtensionsWhether you are timing a task, counting down to stop an activity, or you're just interested in how much time you are spending on a website, there is a Chrome timer extension for you.READ MORE

5. EdisonCloud

When it is time to learn about electricity and electronics, whether for school or simply general interest, EdisonCloud is your Chrome tool. With virtual instruments, sounds, and animations, you can create, test, and repair circuits. The 3D components available make it super easy and there are many useful features to check out.

6. Dog Age Calculator

For a simple way to calculate your dog’s age in human years, the Dog Age Calculator figures it out for you. Choose your dog’s breed and age in calendar years and months to get started. The app also displays life expectancy and a quick link to find out your cat’s age as well.
Chrome App Dog Age Calculator

7. WillItRunOut Retirement Simulator

Wondering how long your retirement savings will last? If so, then take a look at WillItRunOut Retirement Simulator. Just fill out the necessary information on the form, hit calculate, and make sure that you are on the right track financially for your retirement.

8. Shoe Size Conversion

Whether you are preparing to travel or have found a cool pair of kicks from another country, the Shoe Size Conversion app can help. Enter your gender, conversion to and from countries, and your size. And if you enjoy this app, there are others such as sockbra, and ring size conversion apps.
Chrome App Shoe Size Conversion

9. 30s Neck Stretch

We see Chrome apps and extensions for helping you relax and letting you know when to take a break. But it is not often that we see one dedicated to your neck health. 30s Neck Stretch is a handy tool for reminding you to do 30-second neck stretches every 45 minutes. For those who sit at a computer all day, this is a great extension to try.

10. Shove

Shove is a link-sharing tool with an unusual method. Basically, you can open a webpage in a new tab on your friend’s browser. This is quick and easy way to “shove” that news, video, or important research site over to your pal. Note that your friend will need to have a Shove username to send them pages.11 Fantastic Browser Tools for Making and Reading QR Codes 11 Fantastic Browser Tools for Making and Reading QR CodesQR codes are handy tools, providing a convenient way to share websites with friends or our own mobile devices. QR code makers are available for most browsers and for some, there are readers as well.READ MORE

Weather and the World

11. Space Station Finder

For those who have an interest in space, the Space Station Finder Chrome app is a neat tool. Enter or enable your current location to see where the space station is traveling per your spot. You can read brief details at the various points shown in the sky and check out the next passes with a click.

12. Motorcycle Weather

If you enjoy hopping on your motorcycle for a ride on a gorgeous day, then check out Motorcycle Weather. Created especially for those days where you want the wind in your hair, you can view current conditions, wind speed, and the day’s forecast. Plan your ride for the best time of the day with this cool tool.
Chrome App Motocycle Weather

13. Yesterday’s Weather

You really can go back in time. Yesterday’s Weather shows you how the weather compares from the previous day. Is it warmer or colder and by how much? That exactly what this app displays, but also includes a quick link to the current day’s forecast and temperature comparisons based on time of day.

14. Dress By Weather

Need a little help getting dressed in the morning? Dress By Weather will suggest outfits and accessories based on your current weather conditions. While most people know how to dress when it is hot, cold, or rainy, the extension just brings a bit of originality to your weather.

15. Bleak

For another interesting way to view your weather comes Bleak. With the premise of “the weather can always get worse,” this extension shows you a slightly under inspired message with your current weather conditions, location, and time it was last updated.
Chrome App Bleak

16. Batman News

If you are a fan of the awesome superhero, then Batman News is the app for you. The news and content come from Batman-News.com which was founded in 2010. The app will open right in a new tab for you to catch up on all things Batman. If Spider Man is more your style, then Spider-Man Newsfrom SpiderManNews.com is another super app.

17. Understanding Men & Relationship Insight

Understanding Men & Relationship Insight is a Chrome app intended for women. Whether your relationship is rock solid or on a rocky road, pop open this handy app for some helpful articles. While the content has not been updated recently, the articles and links are still useful.

Dictionaries and References

18. Art & Artists Dictionary

If you love art or are an artist yourself, Art & Artists Dictionary is a cool Chrome tool. You can review artist resources, look up art terms for definitions, and enjoy the daily photos. The app offers a simple search tool to find exactly what you want.5 Handy Dictionary Extensions for Quick Word Lookups 5 Handy Dictionary Extensions for Quick Word LookupsWhat do you do when you are reading an article and would like more information on a word? There's nothing more convenient than using a browser extension for quick word look-ups.READ MORE

19. Food Dictionary

For those who watch what they eat or are studying nutrition, Food Dictionary is a handy tool for getting nutrition information on foods from A to Z. Search for a food and then take a look at the fat, carbohydrate, and protein amounts.

20. Name Dictionary and Statistics

Have you ever wondered what your name really means? Or, perhaps you are searching for a unique name for a child. The Name Dictionary app lets you start your search, check the meaning, get statistics, and shows variations.
Chrome App Name Dictionary and Statistics

21. Car Dictionary

Dig cars? Car Dictionary is a neat app that provides specifications for tons of vehicles. Enter a keyword to search for a car model, make your selection from the results, and get the full specifications for that vehicle. Before you go car shopping or just want to do vehicle comparisons, this is a useful app.

22. Medical Dictionary & News

If you are a medical professional or studying to become one, the Medical Dictionary & News app is a useful app for Chrome. Review medical terms and information, get the latest news regarding a study, and see what’s new in general health or biomedical services.6 Chrome Extensions For Catching The Latest News Headlines 6 Chrome Extensions For Catching The Latest News HeadlinesChrome extensions or search enablers that help to serve news in the browser have one important purpose. They are shortcuts and save you the bother of looking up the news websites individually or searching through...READ MORE

23. Drug Medical Dictionary

Another terrific tool for those in the medical field is Drug Medical Dictionary. The app pops open in a new tab with a list of medications for you to browse. Select any one for further information such as description, uses, side effects, interactions, and more.

24. Urban Dictionary Search

If you ever wonder what those slang words mean that you hear your teen using or sing along to in a song, Urban Dictionary Search gives you a simple way to find out. Just tap the button in the toolbar, enter your word, and prepare for the definition — good or bad.

25. Rhymey

Do you write poetry or song lyrics? If so, then Rhymey is a handy extension for Chrome that helps you find words that rhyme with others. Just double-click to select a word on the page and Rhymey will pop open with suggestions for you. So, you can rhyme on a dime right on time.
Chrome App Rhymey

Do You Use an Unusual Chrome Tool?

It is not always about what is popular or recommended. Sometimes the most useful tools are the ones nobody even knows exist.

Asus Zenfone 5 review: A worthy mid-range smartphone contender

  • Asus has re-entered the smartphone market in India with their new Zenfone series announced at this year’s CES. The new series is available in four screen sizes – 4, 4.5, 5 and 6 inches. Today we’ll be taking a closer look at the Zenfone 5. With a starting price of just Rs 10,000 for the 8GB model, can it take the ‘budget-king’ crown away from the Moto G?
Design and Build
We’ve already talked about the design and aesthetics at great length in our unboxing and first impressions articles, so we’ll keep it short and sweet this time. The Zenfone 5, as with the rest of the family, has a simple candy bar design. It’s not too flashy and thanks to the changeable covers, it’s not boring either.
Good build and finish
Good build and finish
The phone is built mostly of plastic while retaining a premium look and feel. The Zenfone is also quite sturdy and durable and will easily handle a few knocks and bumps along the way. The placement of ports and buttons are pretty ergonomic and have good tactile feedback.
Overall, the Zenfone 5 is built well and although it might not be the flashiest phone on the block, many will appreciate its simple aesthetics.
The middle child of the family rocks a 5-inch IPS, HD display that’s also got a scratch resistant coating from Corning. The display is quite vivid and colours are fairly punchy. Viewing angles are pretty good as well. Asus also bundles an app which lets you adjust the colour temperature of the display to suite your needs.
The new Zen UI looks very nice
The new Zen UI looks very nice
The phone features Android 4.3 and the refreshed Zen UI, which is a big departure from Asus’s previous skins. The new theme follows a flat look for all the icons, which seems to be the trend these days. There’s a bunch of useful apps thrown in as well from Asus like Share Link and Remote Link. The heavily skinned version of Android doesn’t slow down a bit however, which is highly commendable. The app called ‘What’s Next’ throws up lockscreen notifications on the weather or any upcoming calendar appointments you might have.
The Zenfone 5 is powered by an Intel Atom Z2560 SoC which consists of a dual-core Clover Trial+ CPU running at 1.6GHz. The phone also features 2GB of RAM. Together, the chipset delivers better performance than MediaTek’s MT6582 and Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 400 SoC, which are commonly seen in phones in this price segment.
The Zenfone is available in 8GB and 16GB variants and both have expandable memory. The new look of the music player is very slick and easy to use. Audio is pretty loud as well through the loud speaker. The player lets you stream audio through DLNA as well and we have the standard EQ settings of Jelly Bean.
Media playback is good
Media playback is good
The Zenfone 5 supports dual-SIM functionality, 3G and 2G. We also get Wi-Fi ‘n’, Bluetooth v4.0, GPS and GLONASS. The phone comes with plenty of productivity apps like Tasks, Flashlight and an app called Omlet, which lets you share photos among friends.
Some of the bundled apps
Some of the bundled apps
The 8MP camera sensor features an aperture value of f/2.2 and manages to capture good low-light-shots. The camera interface is completely overhauled but is still easy to get around. The quality of pictures is pretty good as well for a budget offering.
The new interface for the camera
The new interface for the camera
HDR mode
HDR mode
Battery life
The 2110mAh battery manages to deliver a day-long battery life and you can squeeze out even more with the power saving modes turned on. It came out of our 8-hour battery test with quite some juice to spare. This is a great advantage for the Zenfone 5.
Verdict and Price in India
The Asus Zenfone 5 starts at Rs 12,999, although at the launch, Asus said you could find it for as low as Rs 10,000, for the 8GB model. In our books, that seems like unbeatable value when you consider its rich feature-set and good all-round performance. It’s really hard to fault the Zenfone 5 as it doesn’t really stumble much in any department. The Moto G seems to have met its match, finally!

Apple iPhone 7 now available in 30 more countries

Apple iPhone 7 now available in 30 more countries
After a stupendous response from 28 countries in the first phase beginning from September 16, Apple’s iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus will now be available in additional 30 countries, starting from Saturday.
Today’s launch includes the following countries: Andorra, Bahrain, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Estonia, Greece, Greenland, Guernsey, Hungary, Iceland, Isle of Man, Jersey, Kosovo, Kuwait, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Maldives, Malta, Monaco, Poland, Qatar, Romania, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Slovakia and Slovenia.
iPhone 7 and 7 Plus will be launched in India on October 7. Apple also launched its new “Apple Watch Series 2”, “Apple Watch Edition” and updated Series 1 models in 20 additional countries on Saturday. The new “Apple Watch Series 2 Hermes” was also launched for the first time in 18 countries on Saturday.
Apple enthusiasts are known to swarm company stores and form long queues in the hours before any big launch and the scene at its stores in 28 countries in the first phase was no different on September 16. Coming in silver, gold, rose gold and the new black finish (jet black), iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus will be available in 32GB, 128GB and 256GB models, starting at Rs 60,000, in India.
iPhone 7 features breakthrough new camera systems, the best battery life ever in an iPhone and water and dust resistance. “Apple Watch Series 2”, the ultimate device for a healthy life, offers water resistance at 50 metre, GPS, two-times-brighter display, dual-core processor and watchOS 3.
Starting at $369, the ‘Apple Watch Series 2’ will be water resistant to 50 metres and the speaker will literally repel the water like a piston.
The device will have a dual core processor with GPU that is up to two times faster. Since Navratri — an auspicious time for shopping — begins on October 1 and with Diwali falling on October 30, this is a strategic time for Apple to register super iPhone 7 sales in India.

Nvidia job listing hints at collaboration with Apple for future Macs

Nvidia job listing hints at collaboration with Apple for future Macs

Nvidia has been heavily focussing on its graphics card portfolio for both the consumer as well as professional segments. It has also gotten into automotive business and over the years its OEM business (where it makes integrated graphics solutions for PCs for non-gaming applications) has seen a decline.
But a recent job listing on Nvidia hints at a probable collaboration with Apple and its future Mac products. Currently Apple uses AMD graphics solutions on its Mac line of computers including MacBook Pros, iMacs and the Mac Pro which uses AMD FirePro graphics solution.
According to The Motley Fool, Nvidia posted this ad on its jobs listing page last week, which indicates that it is working on a software to allow its graphics processors to work with future Mac products. Another report on iTech Post hints at a job posting for a Mac graphics driver. All these are clear hints that Nvidia may most likely be having its own graphics solutions on future Mac products.
Nvidia job posting
Neither Apple, nor Nvidia have commented on the job listings that have been spotted. According to The Motley Fool, Nvidia has stated in the past that non-gaming graphics solutions that it has shipped in computers in the past haven’t really garnered much revenue for the company, specially when compared with its high end and discrete graphics solutions in the gaming, data centre and professional visualisation space.
Apple’s Mac lineup is up for a refresh, and it would not be surprising if it indeed goes with Nvidia graphics solutions in its future products. Whether it does go ahead with it, only time will tell.

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