Monday, June 15, 2009

Another Room Designer

Since the demise of "designmyroom" recently, there are many disappointed users looking for a new place to exercise their designer yearnings. has a similar free service for the budding interior artist (but not quite the same slick interface as DMR). The "Planner" module is a fun way to think about area, design, colour etc. Recreate the bedroom of a character from a novel, or imagine a brand new scene. The main website offers options to upload a photo and then "enhance it".

FYI, there is some advertising on the site.

Monday, June 8, 2009

Cut the clutter - Easy to Read

Some web pages are very attractive and interesting to look at. But sometimes, those same features can make it difficult to read, especially for a student who may be easily distracted. Along comes a great tool by arc90: the "readability" bookmarklet. Much like "Quietube", you drag the icon from arc90's page to your browser's button bar. Then, as you visit pages, you can "de-clutter" them by simply clicking on your "readability" button. Arc90 give you the option of selecting font sizes, page width and presentation style. You can even email or print the "clean" version!

Friday, June 5, 2009

Quietube - Youtube lite

Bookmarklets are "min-apps" you drag to your browser button bar, that allow you to automate certain tasks that you perform again and again. (Here's a site with some common examples:

At a Metro tech meeting this week, Sandra from Langley passed on a great bookmarklet for Youtube users. Quietube strips away all the distracting side-bar material, and shows just the video clip itself (much like it would appear embedded in its own page.) It supports Youtube, BBC iPlayer, Viddler and Vimeo.( with more to come...)

Another great feature, is that Quietube generates a new URL you can email or link to that points to the stripped down page. Very slick!