Shiny Software

Some things for you to play with!

Disk Inventory X

A tool for Mac users–helps you visualize all the junk that’s taking up space on your hard drive. Linux users don’t have as much of an issue with this because of the more widespread use of package managers. On Mac it’s more of a problem; Homebrew is great but can’t do everything. Mac programs mostly just get deleted by dragging the actual program icon into the Trash and emptying it, but what you don’t realize is that there can be masses of program support files hanging out in an obscure place on your hard drive. It also helps you find big duplicate files, like if you have the same collection of videos in more than one place.

Be sure to send him a little cash if his tool cleared a bunch of space for you. Guy needs his German Chipotle or whatever. 😛

Of course Windows has this problem x2. I’ve seen Windows tools to do the same thing but can’t recommend any in particular; I haven’t used a Windows system enough for it to get cluttered since my eeePC died a few years ago.

There’s probably a good Linux tool to help you with the duplicate file thing; I can’t imagine there isn’t. And of course I’d trust an open-source Linux tool way more readily than any Windows black box that probably got downloaded free off of CNet or something.

Hey, remember when Microsoft was trying to make a case out of the idea that their corporate structure lent them more credibility and trustworthiness than the open-source community? Hahahaha.

Hex to Decimal Converter

‘Cause ain’t nobody got time for that.

I realize this is an extremely nerdy thing to put on this list.

F.lux

This program makes it less painful to use the computer at night by reducing the color temperature from your computer screen. It makes things look more orangey, but it’s also a lot easier on your eyes late at night, and if you’re one of those people who’s most productive during the *other* 9:00-3:00, it can be really helpful.

There’s also a chemical brain thing about how light that’s too blue late at night keeps you up because your brain continues producing a stress hormone called cortisol when you see full-spectrum light; in other words, reducing the color temp with F.lux makes your computer screen ruin your sleep less.

You can reduce how orangey it gets up to a certain point, too. It’s got a nice customization menu. You can also turn it off for an hour, for the night (if you’re pulling an all-nighter), or for a certain application.

Just be really aware if you’re a graphic designer. You get used to it eventually, but you have to remember to turn it off for Photoshop or whatever you use. Stuff gets especially weird if you start working on something with F.lux off, and then keep working on it with F.lux on… yeah, just turn it off for Photoshop. You’ve been warned.

Hacker News

I’m not too active there, but if you want to wander around and find something interesting to read, it’s a really good place to look. Also very short on comments following the standard YouTube traditions, if you know what I mean, which is always pleasant.

Pocket

This is just here because I want your opinion on it, actually. I haven’t tried it yet, but I noticed Firefox has it in the toolbar. It looks cool; has anyone tried it yet?

Have fun!

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4 thoughts on “Shiny Software

  1. Most Linux packet managers I have worked with come with a way to list or clear orphaned packages (aww poor little orphans). I like the Linux way of handling it so much more than Mac and Windows. You have just as much potential to end up with bloat but the cleanup tool is built in to the manager; at least for pacman it is. I think the bigger issue with Linux can be things that are done manually without the use of a package manager as I dont believe their dependencies would be found by it if it wasnt used to install it in the first place.

    About pocket, I use it all the time. If you are anything like me you run across a hundred articles a day that are interesting enough to get a read. Most the time I am too busy to get to them all right away so they just sit in firefox tabs waiting to be noticed. Since I started using pocket and the related firefox extension I simply save it and can pull it uip on my tablet, computer, or phone no matter where I am and regardless of internet service. I love it!

    Like

    • Nope, the package managers can’t really find stuff they didn’t install. That’s where a lot of Windows users run into trouble: they try to install stuff from the Internet like they did on Windows, but that’s not the best way to install things. Sometimes they really get confused and mix installing with one method and trying to upgrade with the other. Trying to explain to my mom that she should use the package manager whenever possible, when she’s so used to grabbing stuff from the Internet–it’s less that she doesn’t understand and more that it’s unfamiliar and she goes through the web browser by habit.

      This can really accumulate cruft, of course.

      Like

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