Sunday, February 28, 2010

INCREDIBLE how the voice search from Google App works (iPhone).

Google has its own App for iPhone, which offers a large number of features (they are not included into the App, they are only listed there, and launched in Safari when tapped):
  • Gmail
  • Calendar
  • Docs
  • Talk
  • Tasks
  • Reader
  • News
  • Notebook
  • Photos
  • Translate
  • Maps
  • and YouTube
The App has its own browser, which has Voice Search option. And this is an amazing feature. It's so far the best App of this type I've ever seen. It recognizes perfectly everything that I say to it. I know, it's not a big thing for an English native speaker, but for me (I'm from Romania), it's the first application I've ever seen that is able to "understand" any word I say to it.

I've also tested Microsoft's App, named Bing, but it really sucks here. From 10 words I say to it, it understands only 2 of them, while Google understands at least 9, most of the time all of them.

So, search it in the App Store: "Google" or download via your PC/Mac from here. (remember to activate voice search from settings)

Download Colin McRae Rally for Mac (Demo).

Do you remember Colin McRae Rally for Windows? Did you spent hours for playing it? You can now play it on Mac. Mac OS X is a great OS (maybe even better than Windows), and this game shows you that when you think about computers, you shouldn't think only of Windows. There are many other better operating systems.

Unfortunately, it's only a demo version. It says that it's 70% of the final product, but I think that it's only about 35-40% of the final product. The game is very limited, only a few options being available. Anyway, the game moves perfectly of my MacBook White (2.0 GHz, 2GB of RAM and nVIDIA 9400M).

But, avoid playing continuously for hours. The game pushes the fan to high speeds from the first minutes of playing, so it will put a real stress on cooling system if you play it for hours.

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Opera 10.50 Beta for Mac OS X is here.

Opera 10.50 Beta has been launched yesterday, and I must say that there is a big difference between this version and that one that was launched earlier, Alpha. You can read more about the Alpha here.

This last version (10.50 Beta) is very fast and most of the problems which were present on Alpha are now gone. Flash is displayed correctly, and posting from Blogger works perfectly(I'm blogging right now from Opera) NO. Posting from blogger is not working. The "Publish Post" button is not working at all. It runs very stable (compared to the previous version), and all the scripts are working correctly.

However, it is a Beta version, so use it on non-important purposes.

Download from here (Mac only):

iPhone/iPod Touch works out of the box on Ubuntu 10.04 (confirmed).

Yesterday came the first announce which said that Ubuntu 10.04 supports iPhone/iPod Touch out of the box. Now, more and more people (including me) are confirming that this is true (including unjailbroken devices). The method works even if Ubuntu is ran via VirtualBox (tested by me).

For additional details about running Ubuntu 10.04 in VirtualBox, follow this link.

Friday, February 26, 2010

Installing Ubuntu on MacBook (via VirtualBox).

Today I have installed Ubuntu (under VirtualBox) on my 13,3" MacBook White. Ahead, I'm going to describe everything you should know, in order to get Ubuntu and Mac OS X on the same MacBook. I want you to know clearly. Ubuntu will run inside Mac OS X, it won't be installed separately. In order to boot Ubuntu, Mac OS X needs to be already booted. They're going to run at the same time.

So, let's get started. First, you need to get VirtualBox from here, and a image of Ubuntu from here (please choose your country). Install VirtualBox like any other application for Mac OS X, and start it. Let the image of Ubuntu like it is.

Now, on VirtualBox, do the following:
  • click "New"
  • click "Next"
  • give it a name and at operating system select "Linux", and at version select "Ubuntu"
  • select an amount of memory to allocate to Ubuntu (do not give it more than your current free RAM memory; 512 MB are really enough if you don't have more) and click "Next"
  • be sure that "Create new hard disk" is selected, and click "Next"
  • click "Next"
  • check "Dynamically expended storage" and click "Next"
  • here just select the size for Ubuntu, and click "Next"
  • now click "Finish"
As you can see, on the left column of VirtualBox, your new Ubuntu appeared. Now do these:
  • click "Start"
  • select "OK"
  • when the window appears, click "Next"
  • now, at the Media Type select "CD/DVD-ROM Device", and at Media Source click on the folder from the right, click "Add", and select the recently downloaded image of Ubuntu. Select it and click "Select"
  • click "Next"
  • click "Finish"
Now the image of Ubuntu is going to be booted automatically. Install it like usually. Don't worry about the partitions, let it install itself on the entire hard drive, because it's a virtual one, made by VirtualBox. None of you data will be affected.

After the installation of Ubuntu is completed, give it the requested reboot. Don't worry if Ubuntu moves hard, it is normal at this moment. Now, on the window of Ubuntu, click on "Devices" (the button is up, on the silver bar), and select "Install Guest Additions". On the window that appeared, select just to open the folder. Now, drag the file named "" on the desktop of Ubuntu. Continue by doing the following:
  • on Ubuntu, go to "Applications" --> "Accessories" --> "Terminal"
  • here, on Terminal type: "cd Desktop" (without quotes)
  • type in Terminal: "sudo sh"
  • now you have to enter your password (that one you have entered when you installed Ubuntu; type it, and even you don't see anything, it is there; tap enter when done, or if you haven't entered a password, just tap enter)
  • wait for a few minutes
  • when installation is completed (last line is like the line you saw at the start), close the Terminal
If any reboot is requested, accept it. When you are ready, open the Terminal again and:
  • type "sudo gedit /etc/X11/xorg.conf"
  • enter again the password you have entered during installation, and tap enter
  • on the window that has appeared, modify where it says "Modes" with the resolution of your monitor (on my MacBook White 13,3" it is 1280x800)
  • save that file and close it
  • restart the operating system
After restart, Ubuntu should already be running on the selected resolution, on full screen.

Now you can change many settings in VirtualBox (while Ubuntu is shut down), as the video memory allocated to Ubuntu. Be sure not to give it too much, as the operating systems are sharing their resources. For Desktop Effects, 3D acceleration should be enabled, but on my Ubuntu (10.04 Alpha 3), the mouse disappears when the 3D acceleration is on.

So, that's all. Congratulations if you succeed. Your new Ubuntu installation is completed. Enjoy!

P.S: This works also for the installation of Ubuntu under Windows, because all you need to to is 100% the same.

Many Twitter accounts were compromised. Again!

After the problem that Twitter had the latest weekend with that phishing attack, Twitter faces now with another one. It consists into sending people DM's with the following content: "hey, i've been having better sex and longer with this here" or "Get bigger and have sex longer", followed by a link that changes continuously. It is not certain on which website you will be redirected to by clicking that link.

This attack is important because anyone can be affected and if you receive one of that DM's from someone you know and trust, your first intention will be to open it. It is not sure, but this attack may have connection to the earlier one.

If you think that your account has been compromised, change your password immediately.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Setting up WDS (wireless distribution system) between Asus routers.

Asus made a great job with their routers, being a popular company in this domain. Their routers assure a pretty good range of signal, excellent speed, and high stability for network connections. But in a large building a normal router from Asus won't be enough. It won't be able deliver signal and will loose speed if thick walls and other wireless/bluetooth/infrared devices are between. Here comes the WDS, or Wireless Distribution System.

This system consists of two routers of the same type or not (at least both from Asus), which will be connected together resulting a larger area of signal, and higher speeds on devices which had lower signals on a single router.

You need one of the routers to be connected to the internet via a ethernet cable, and the other will communicate (together with his clients) through the first one. Please be sure which one is connected "outside" on the internet (the main router, we'll name it "first router"), and the other one, which will communicate through the "first router" (this is going to be named the "second router")

Here is a guide that will let you know everything that you need to do (with pictures):

The main things are:
  • both routers must be set to operate into "Hybrid" mode
  • both routers must operate on the same Channel
  • both routers must have the same security method and the same password
  • their LAN ip's must NOT be the same!
  • first router must have DHCP server enabled, while the other (second one) doesn't
  • first router must have normal internet settings (depending on how you connect to the internet), while the other must have "automated IP" settings.
  • after you are sure that you know their LAN ip addresses, give them the same SSID (name)
By doing the last point, any wireless device will allow you to connect to the router corresponding to that name. But, in fact, there are two routers working together under the same name.

Now you should be able to get on the internet on wireless or via any LAN port from both routers.

Method implemented for Asus WL-520GC <--> Asus WL-520GU by me and works perfectly. Good luck!

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Take pictures or record with your webcam on Ubuntu.

Taking pictures or recording from webcam on Ubuntu is not hard at all, because Ubuntu has all drivers needed. You just need a software which is able to do "the job". "Cheese" is the application that can help you here. It's so far the most compatible software of this type for Ubuntu, and it can let you take pictures or record directly from your webcam. And you have an additional option, named "Burst". Using this, you can take multiple pictures automatically (by default it takes 4 photos with a delay of 1 seconds, but you can change this in preferences).

Search in Ubuntu Software Center for "Cheese".

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Meebo is on iPhone.

Meebo is the well known multi-platform internet messenger, and now, it is available for free on the iPhone. It runs on the browser on desktops, but, on the iPhone, it is a stand-alone application. I don't know why, but I was expecting for it to work and move very fast. And I was not disappointed. It really does both things. And it's probably compatible with any network on this planet, without Twitter.

It has a pretty cool interface, and allows push notifications on your iPhone (all new messages can be delivered automatically to your phone and you will be notified of this). The main disadvantage is that an account at Meebo must be made, but this task takes no more that one minute. And this has, of course, to be made only once.

So, give it a try. Search for "Meebo" in the App Store or download via your PC/Mac by clicking here.

Update: Here's a video (sorry for low resolution):

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Twitter is under a phishing attack.

In this period an attack is developing on Twitter. It consists into receiving direct messages containing "lol, is that you" or "lol, this is funny, followed by a link. When you enter the link, you will be asked to enter your user and password, and, after this procedure, your account will start sending the same messages. If you got the message, you shouldn't worry, but if your account starts sending these types of messages by its own, change your password immediately.

The messages will take you to a page from, which links after to Anything you're doing, do NOT click on these links.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Microsoft-branded phone, ready to come now?

Windows Mobile 7 has just been announced at MWC (Mobile World Congress) and the rumors about a Microsoft-branded phone are the most discussed things these days. It is expected to come through Microsoft's "Pink Project", which is probably just a code name, for the mentioned purpose, says But Microsoft has refused to comment on this officially, yet.

The phone is expected to be made together with Asus (Asustek, on their full name), and to be like an iPhone killer or Android annihilator (or, more precisely, Nexus One annihilator). But I don't believe that Microsoft can represent a real problem for Apple or Google, considering that Windows Mobile 7 is not something....incredible. To be honest, I'm totally disappointed of Microsoft, considering both their mobile OS and their desktop OS (Windows 7). We'll see what follows...

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Opera 10.50 Alpha for Mac is here.

The Alpha version of Opera 10.50 is available for Mac, and Opera promised that they're working for the Beta version (which is already available for Windows). Their motto for 10.50, "The fastest browser on Earth", seems to be completely real. I've downloaded the Alpha version for my Mac, and it loads any webpage definitely faster than any other browser (Chrome 5.0.322.2, Firefox 3.6 and Safari 4.0.4).

Being a Alpha version, it is nothing special about the large number of bugs present. So, some of the known bugs are here:
  • No video support (?! I don't know what is Opera referring at by this)
  • Impossible to post on Blogspot (not found, error 404 - this is weird)
  • No SilverLight plugins
  • No printing of forms and frames
  • No Java
  • Incorrect window behavior for some pop-ups
  • Flash is incorrect displayed (videos are still playing)
  • HTML 5 (from YouTube) loads forever (can't be started)
But that's not all. It might have many other (severe) bugs, which even may cause crashes or data loss.Consider using Opera 10.50 Alpha at your own risk.

Download link:

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Download anything from YouTube.

YouDDL is probably the best YouTube downloader on internet, because you can download videos in any resolution available. You can even download them in HD ( either in .flv format or in MP4). But you need a video player capable of playing these formats, or a video converter, in order to get them in a playable format. It's free:

And, I am NOT responsible for anything you download by using this method, including copyrighted content. Use it at your own risk !

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

HTC Desire - an updated Nexus One?

HTC launched a kind of update to the Nexus One, named Desire. It's a very similar device, having the same capacitive touch-screen (3.7 inch), the same processor (Qualcomm Snapdragon at 1 GHz) and the same battery (1400 mAh). But what's weird is the difference between battery life on devices which is quite big.

HTC Desire also includes a 5 megapixel camera, which has face detection capability (I don't know if the 5 megapixel camera from Nexus has this option). Anyway, both devices have G-sensor, digital compass, proximity sensor and ambient light sensor. Desire has 576 MB RAM, while Nexus has 512 MB RAM (the difference is probably felt only on intensive tasks). Both devices runs Android 2.1 OS, but Desire also includes the Sense UI, which is not present at Nexus.

Nexus costs 529 $, but it is not available worldwide yet. Desire has been launched today, 16th February, and I didn't get an official price yet. If I found out a price, I will let you know.

Monday, February 15, 2010

Which DNS's are you using?

I wrote some time ago an article about DNS (domain name system), what it does and why you should choose a good one, article that can be viewed by clicking here. So, I'm interested about your preferences about DNS's. Below is a poll where I invite you to vote into.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Transform your iPhone into a flash drive.

Managing files between iPhone and PC/Mac has never been easy, since these tasks need iTunes, which we all know that is not an expert. However, there are available some applications for iPhone that can transform it into a wireless flash drive.

The application I'm going to talk about is named "Discovery". This works only if the computer and the iPhone are connected on the same Wi-Fi. You can download and upload various content between your computer and your iPhone, without need the use of any cable. You can view documents, video, music, pictures and more.

It has a function named "Nearby", which will detect any iPhone that is around and has Discovery service running, allowing you to share files with them. After launch, the application will tell you what address to type into your browser in order to access the iPhone. It's compatible with any OS. And the best part, it's FREE. (commercial version also available, but the only difference is that it removes advertisement)

Search it in App Store: "Discovery".

Saturday, February 13, 2010

What OS are you using on your phone?

With so many mobile OS's available, I'm really interested to see what are my readers using on their phones. So, please vote! :)

p.s: I'm using iPhone OS.

Friday, February 12, 2010

Why Yahoo! has never created a messenger version for Linux?

Yahoo! has created different versions of their messenger for both Windows and Mac operating systems, and for mobiles (iPhone, Blackberry, etc), but they have never launched an official version for Linux. And I can't understand why. If they worked for so many versions (for all operating systems), how hard would it be for them to crate one more, for Linux?

There are available many applications capable of connecting with Yahoo! (such as Pidgin or Empathy internet messengers, and a very complex dedicated application, named GYachE), but a proprietary messenger application would be well-welcomed. This can avoid from repeating the problem that millions of Linux users occurred just after Yahoo! updated the way users were authenticated on their servers (for Yahoo! Messenger 10). That made their servers to refuse almost any trial to connect from Linux operating systems. The problem was fixed, but that took some time.... And, on an official version, any functionality that Yahoo! can offer should work normally.

I really can't understand why they didn't made any version for Linux. Probably, they don't really care about users.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

ATI HD 3xxx + Realtek HD problems on Windows XP.

I have a computer with an ATI HD 3850 graphic card which has, practically, included a sound card. The problem is that on the motherboard I have a Realtek HD sound card, which enters in conflict with the graphic card. From what I have observed, ATI starts the conflict and forces Windows to keep the sound played via their drivers (which is done through a HDMI connected to graphic card). This will make any try to play sound through motherboard's sound card to fail.

The solution is to go on device manager, and there to disable ATI HD sound card (under sound devices). Windows won't have any option, and will automatically playback sound via Realtek HD sound card.

This should apply to any ATI graphic card from series HD 3xxx.

A completely useless button from YouTube.

I have observed on the left corner of a video from YouTube (played in HTML 5) a little button, just near the play button. I wanted to see what it does, so I moved the mouse over it, and a bar with a tortoise on left and a rabbit on right appeared. So, I slid left and right, and the video slowed down and accelerated. A really useless button, in my opinion. Who wants to do something like that? It only makes the video...uninteresting.

You can try it while viewing this video: (make sure you have HTML 5 activated; verify or activate here:

Buzz on...Google!

Google has now its own Twitter-like client, named Buzz. I've tried it, it's pretty interesting, but I found it more complicated than Twitter (that's probably because I'm not familiar with Buzz yet), and it doesn't have any restriction related to number of characters that can be posted once. It has more functionalities compared to Twitter, but I don't think that it's better... It has a very simple interface, but for me, it seems to be hard to follow what the others say. This, if you find who other to follow. I haven't found almost anybody to follow. The secret of Buzz is that it runs directly from Gmail, with your Google account. But, for the moment, I'll remain on Twitter. Sorry Google.

What do you think about Google Buzz?

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

OpenArena (Quake III) game for Linux.

Most people refuse to use Linux because they say that there are no games. This is completely false. Linux is a great operating system, capable of running games (if they are designed for it), just like Windows. OpenArena (Quake III) is a good example. It runs exactly like on Windows, but on Ubuntu Linux.

There are even possibilities for running Windows designed games on Linux, by emulation, with a program called Wine. But I'll detail this into a future article. So, go on Ubuntu Software Center and search for OpenArena. It installs in minutes, and no additional configuration needed.

Please note that 3D accelerated graphic drivers are needed. If your computer doesn't run natively a 3D accelerated driver, go to System -> Administration -> Hardware Drivers and select the driver (if available).

Monday, February 8, 2010

A must-have iPhone application for any student (very useful).

What you would say about an application on your iPhone that can tell you everything you need to know for mathematics? It can help you with algebra (has table of prime numbers, divisibility rules, propositions and properties, factorization, quadratic equation, logarithms, etc), geometry (both plane and in space) and analysis (where the trigonometry and other things like functions are included). It has even scientific calculator, temperature, quadratic and percentage calculators, and an extremely, for you.

I've been warned by somebody from WolframAlpha that iMathematics is violating terms of use, by using the functionality that is going to be described. So, for WolframAlpha on iPhone, please take a look at their official application at:, rather than using the following functionality of iMathematics.
{----But to take its advantage, you need to have internet (Wi-Fi, 3G or EDGE). You probably guessed, it's Wolfram Alpha. A powerful online tool that can make everything for you at mathematics (resolve your exercises). It helped me many times when I wanted to verify if my homework at maths was correct, or if I didn't know how to resolve an exercise, and it told me all the formulas that must be used, and even made the whole exercise for me.----}

Available for free in App Store. Get it: "iMathematics".

Sunday, February 7, 2010

How many do you know about your battery ? (Mac only)

The batteries found on the MacBook computers are extremely good, I would say that are the best batteries for laptops. But Mac OS X won't tell many things about it. Here you can use a little application, called coconutBattery, which will tell you the current battery charge, maximum battery charge, its current and original capacities, and other informations.

For example, I've got a 13.3 inch MacBook (white). It's the old model, so it has a battery that keeps about 4 hours and a half. coconutBattery says the following for my battery:
  • Current Battery Charge: 5137 mAh
  • Maximum Battery Charge: 5137 mAh
  • Current Battery Capacity: 5137 mAh
  • Original Battery Capacity 5020 mAh (it results that my battery is 100% health)
Additionally, it will tell how many battery-loadcycles your battery has, age of your Mac (since it was made, not purchased), if the charger is connected, and if the battery is currently charging.

Newer models of MacBook White have better batteries, which keep up to 7 hours, and support up to 1000 charges.

And, if the Current Battery Charge is lower than Maximum Battery Charge and your Mac says that battery is charged, do NOT panic! It is something normal. Current battery charge usually fluctuates between 100% and maximum 92% of its current capacity. It is something known.

Problems with drag-and-drop gadgets on Blogger.

The problem is simple. You just can't move the gadgets from your blog. I've had this problem in the past, but now, no one of my browsers from my MacBook is capable of moving gadgets. I've tried with Chrome (5.0.307.5 dev), Safari 4.0.4 (5531.21.10) and Firefox 3.6, and the moving of gadgets is impossible. I've never expected something like this from Google...which "has" both Chrome and Blogger services.

Are you experiencing similar problems? How does drag-and-drop functionality work on Internet Explorer? I'm pretty disappointed of Google...