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A few new and wonderful tools…

March 17, 2006

A found a few new gadgets I am totally loving. 

Every now and then I start running out of space on my hard drive. But finding where the space hogs are can be difficult. There are some interesting tools that will show a picture of your drive, but that switches context. I want to use file explorer to figure it out. So Folder Size came to my rescue. Its a small install that adds a column to your Explorer window showing the size of the contents of the folder. Sweet!!!

Sometimes I visit websites with “Post” forms that result in some sort of customized page. The downside to a Post Form is that the arguments do not show up on the URL so you can’t bookmark them. This is the case with the US Postal Service Tracking. I am expecting an Empire Builder bag from Tom Bihn near Seattle and having to re-find the tracking number, entering it and clicking submit kinda sucks. So FrmGet and the other bookmarklets at SquareFree came to my rescue. I find a page with a Post form, then click my FrmGet bookmarklet to get “Get” versions of the form. Now the resulting page is bookmark-able. Sweet!!! Unfortunately, the bag has been sitting in Customs for nearly a week.

Whenever I have to think about what day a particular date is, I instantly double-click on the clock in the Windows taskbar. Sometimes I move forward to the following month, then accidently click OK. All of a sudden my PC has timewarped to next month and I have to go back. I do this even if I am in Outlook because switching to the calendar view means switching contexts in my head. Yeah, I could right click on the calendar to open it in a new window, but then I have another Outlook window. I wanted a quick popup calendar that was easy and small. So Rainlendar came to my rescue. This is a tiny executable that takes minimal resources. I have it set up to pop up when I press F11. If I hover over any date, I see what is currently scheduled. I also can see what tasks I have and a list of appointments for the next few days. All of this is synched from Outlook. It is pretty sweet. Unfortunately its only a one way sync so I cannot make changes in Rainlendar, but I have Outlook for that.

Last week I signed up for a free email subscription to a wonderful little site: Daily Candy. Every day I get a single well-designed and well-written blurb about something interesting. One recent item was a pointer to the online games at Orisinal. This has nothing to do with work, but it makes the day a little more fun.

Almost every other ‘subscription’ I have is via RSS. But some blogs don’t really support it. FeedYesmakes it easy to convert the site to an RSS version I can subscribe to. It seems to do a pretty decent job of it too.

Finally last night I visited MediaMarkt and picked up a new Double Layer DVD burner. Last I looked (a year or two ago), DVD burners were quite pricey. I paid 100 Euros for a Philips external drive that is amazing. Yeah, its 20 euros more than if I bought online and 20 more than I would pay in the US due to the 20% tax here, but I have it now and it works.

Anyway, just finished a three day Workflow class yesterday and I am off to Zagreb on Sunday to teach another one next week. Got a busy schedule coming up, with a week in Croatia, 2 at home, 1 in Portugal, 2 at home, 1 in Dubai, 1 in Paris, 2 at home, 1 in Australia, 1 in Singapore, then another in Australia. I am booked solid till June. Whew…

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