Thursday, September 6, 2007

Digitally Imported Radio

Ever get tired of hunting for new music to listen to while you get into the daily grind? If so, you may want to check out Digitally Imported Radio. DI is an Internet Radio Service with a focus on Electronic Dance Music genres. There are multiple channels available from the main page, including streaming content for Trance, Ambient, Lounge, and Chillout music. Many of the stations are available for free in multiple formats, including mp3, Windows Media, and aacPlus. The free version is of slightly lower quality and contains commercials, but the DI Premium service doesn't have these nuances.

Why I like it

I confess I generally have terrible taste in music. Well, maybe not terrible but sub-par I'd imagine. The thing is, I can never find new music I enjoy easily because I don't really watch TV anymore and generally steer clear of conventional radio-not a great start for music discovery I know :) Thankfully, DI has done a fantastic job in providing a wide range of music that is varied enough that anyone should be able to tune into a station they can enjoy. I personally enjoy the Ambient and Chillout channels. I work in an office all day and find this type of music to be very relaxing.

Where can I get it?

You can hit the website at The free stations are readily availabe from the home page, but to get the best experience you can sign up for the Premium service for $4.95 a month.

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

Portable Apps

Portable Apps is really a collection of handy utilities that were designed with the geek who's always on the go in mind. If you're like me, you probably have a work computer and a home computer, and tend to struggle with how to keep all of that data in sync and still maintain your sanity. I'm not a big fan of clutter, be it on my desktop or in my home and Portable Apps does a great job of managing all of that data you accrue throughout your day. At it's core, this suite of applications is designed to reside on a thumb drive(they even have a light version for those with limited space) and leaves no footprint on the pc you're using. Aside from the advantage of keeping your important data(and junk for that matter) on one, removable drive, it's also handy if you find yourself at a computer you're unfamiliar with but want to ensure you still have access to your favorite applications like Firefox.

More than just coming pre-bundled with a lot of useful applications, it's upgradeable to suit your tastes through the Portable Apps website which is regularly updated with new versions and software offerings for you to haul around in your pocket. Some of the applications available include:
  • Firefox Portable
  • Thunderbird Portable
  • Gaim Portable
  • OpenOffice Portable
  • KeePass Portable
So right there you know that whatever computer you login to you'll have access to a browser, email, your encrypted database of passwords, and word processing functionality.

Why I like it

It's nice keeping your daily data in one place and this way I don't have to worry about re-download multiple files on my home and work computer. Also, if you do end up using a public access machine at a library for example, all of your documents and the applications you might need to make changes to them are all running right there on your flash drive. It's easy to install and a breeze to use.

Who's it for?
  • College Students
  • Road Warriors
  • Anyone who shuffles data between multiple PCs
Where can I get it?

Portable Apps is available as a free download for all. Head on over to to download the installer and peruse the list of software offerings that take advantage of this remarkably simple and effective solution.