Aug 102012
 

PNotes (Version: 9.0.110) is a sticky notes program, while cluttering the desktop with notes is not always the optimal method of keeping reminders and other text PNotes does it well and allows the user to easily hide the sticky notes and maintain a clear the desktop.

PNotes

PNotes’ features are accessible via a right click on its tray icon. To begin one can create a note, loads saved notes, create a note from the contents of the system clipboard or create a diary note. The latter features a configurable date format as its title. All note configuration options are accessible by right clicking inside a note or on its top or bottom section (title and toolbar sections respectively.)

Notes can be favorited and assigned to groups so that they can be managed in batches, for example different colors or different visibility added to a more than one sticky note at a time. Notes can be rolled, unrolled, tagged and linked together as well. They can also include images.

PNotes has extensive preferences, hotkey support and a control panel. The latter is like a central repository to manage the sticky notes. The preferences includes settings for transparency, font and the visibility of the toolbar – which include controls for text color, bullet lists and others – on the sticky note itself. Skin support is complete with width, height, color, padding settings just to name a few. Ready made skins can be downloaded as well.

Sound or note centering (to bring a note to one’s attention) is part of PNotes’ scheduling or reminder feature, a reminder can be added by right clicking on the bottom or top section of the note. Docking is a useful feature to move notes into different sides of the screen and adjust their distance.

PNotes offers extensive number of options in how notes behave and how to interact with the program. Forcing new notes on top, double clicking on the tray icon to create new note, using notes contents as its default name and many more. Protection is another important part of PNotes. Notes can be password protected either individually or as a group, they can be encrypted and automatically backed up. PNotes can also synchronize notes between a USB key and a local machine automatically. Notes can be pushed and pulled to and from a FTP server to be synchronized with local versions. The Misc tab in the preferences has option to launch a web search with a note’s text as the query or to open external programs.

PNotes

PNotes’ control panel shows or previews notes that are in the program’s database. Here one can create notes, change note group icons, launch the built-in back up or synchronization feature, export chosen notes as text files or search inside notes.

Hotkeys can be applied to almost any action. The most important one for this user is the ability to quickly hide or show all notes. Of the many hotkey choices available the show/hide section is probably most useful.

PNotes is available with or without an installer and should work on all Windows versions. Spell checking using the Hunspell library can be downloaded and used, the program as a whole can be password protected as well.

Please follow and like us:
Jul 262012
 

NoteClip (Version: 2.50 tested) has recently become freeware. It tries to be a clipboard monitor and note keeper in one. Using it requires a bit of getting used to because it may take time to feel comfortable with how, where and within which group (post, data, essay, etc.) a note or clipboard item is kept.

NoteClip

The clipboard function of NoteClip is not exactly emphasized as by default the clipboard monitoring is off (toggle it on by clicking¬† the ‘more’ dropdown near the top right of the program). However the program does have a secondary way of capturing text. The Ctrl+1 keys create a new note from highlighted text and Ctrl+2 appends highlighted text to the last note.

Initially notes – captured via hot keys or created using the quick notes (Ctrl+Q) window – are sent to the draft group. New groups can be created by right clicking one of the existing groups and notes can be dragged from the draft or any other group to another.

Various options are available when a note title is right clicked (see image). Notes can be edited by clicking on the Edit column beside them and either editing them within NoteClip or using an external editor. The program also has a search function which works across all notes and groups.

NoteClip can read text files and create new notes using file names as their title,¬† this is done by choosing ‘Create from text files’ from the aforementioned ‘more’ dropdown menu. Additionally there is a built-in back up and restore tool (Accessed via the small arrow near the top right of the program.) NoteClip requires Windows XP and newer and does not write anything to the registry.

Please follow and like us:
Jun 202012
 

EasyTournament aims to automate and organize sports tournaments. It is free software made to make it easier to set up and calculate games and points.

Using EasyTournament, the user chooses a sport – soccer, football, basketball, hockey, floorball and handball are available – then defines tournament rules based on the presets made available depending on the sport chosen.

Tournament details is first and it is where general information such as name, description, picture or logo are added. Based on the sport being played duration, rules and events can be edited or left as they are. For example changing a soccer win from 3 points to 2 or forcing away goals as the first rule to calculate group position. Teams are then entered, including players and staff. Referees details as well. The Designer tab allows the user to create a visual of the tournament and use lines and arrows to determine the structure of the tournament. Schedule can be added manually or generated automatically based on the groups and teams, here somehow one feels this step should be later in the list since next up is Group assignment where teams can be dragged and dropped into their respective groups. The Games tab does the explicit work of the earlier Schedule tab as it generates the actual schedule and shows the team names. Tables is up next and standings are generated based on the results entered in the Games tab. Finally Statistics works both automatically and manually to create stats for goals scored, penalties, assists and other combinations which can then be sorted by team or player.

EasyTournament is both simple and complete, the tournament diagram can be exported into an image and tables and results into html and xml. It is java based and works on Windows XP and higher (available in both portable and installer) and on Linux. The download page includes a sample tournament using Euro 2008 stats. Online help is at http://easy-tournament.com/help/en/index.html

 

Please follow and like us:
Feb 032011
 

Snap DB is one of the 2011 entries in Donationcoder’s N.A.N.Y. (New Apps For The New Year) challenge. It is a simple database program that holds and organizes lists and information in a text like or flat structure. It is minimalist by design.

The uses for Snap DB are pretty much infinite. Keep a list of albums, software or books or anything else all with many a column to hold information about them. Open the program right click on the columns to rename them and to add additional columns as necessary. Then double click on a row and start entering the information. Import a Comma Separated Values (CSV) or tab delimited file to use with Snap DB or export the data to a CSV file. Activate the Filter mode (View—>Filter Mode) to search the data and get results as you type.

Snap DB has a few built in shortcuts to make entering information easier. For example use F2 to edit a record or F5 to duplicate a record. The usual Ctrl-C Windows copy key combination will copy whole row(s) of data in SnapDB ready to be pasted anywhere with each column separated by a tab. Conversely copying some tab delimited text and using Ctrl-V in SnapDB pastes them into columns. Also notice that when adding or inserting data there is Run button, that button will execute if the corresponding field has a URL, mailto or path to a file or folder in it.

Snap DB is freeware, portable, no install and is less than 700KB unzipped. Watch the screencast on the program’s site to see it in action and follow the thread and suggest other features in its DonactionCoder forums thread (linked above).

Please follow and like us:
Sep 042010
 


FileSieve 3 is a small program which organizes files and folders into highly configurable destination folders. As with software of its kind it is best used for organizing large amounts of files that accumulate on a system over many download and similar sessions.

The process or work flow of FileSieve 3 is well defined in a five numbered step process (see image). A profile and/or a list of directories can be created, saved and loaded for future sessions. These source folder(s) would contain all the files that will be sorted using FileSieve. Then a destination folder is chosen where the sifted and sorted files will be placed in. The third step is to choose method(s) and if applicable modifiers.

A method, one of 13 that FileSieve 3 supports, defines how the chosen files are sorted and processed. These methods are themselves very configurable and it is very easy to come up with complex criteria to operate on the chosen files. Methods include:

Sorting by attribute: Subfolders in the destination directory will distinguish files that are Read Only, Hidden, Temporary, Offline, Compressed, Normal and more.

Biggest: The biggest file from the source directory is placed in the destination directory.

Consolidate: All Files from the source directory are placed into the root directory of the destination folder.

Date Stamp: Files separated into dated destination folders.

Delimiter: Files sorted based on delimiter characters in their names, for example “-” in the file name.

Extension: Files are separated and sorted based on their extension. Likely the most used feature of the program.

MP3 Tag: MP3 files are sorted based on their tags such as album and song name.

Owner: Files are sorted based on the Windows account or domain they belong to.

Parent Rename: First or biggest file in the source directory is renamed after it’s parent directory name and placed in the destination folder.

Smallest: Opposite of Biggest!

A-Z: 27 directories are created (for file names starting with numbers and those starting with A to Z) and files are placed into them based on their names.

Substring: The user chooses which position of a file name is the ‘StartIndex’ and how many characters to read from there, files are then sorted based on ‘substring’ matches.

Word: Files are sorted based on words contained with their names.

Once method(s) are chosen modifiers can be added to change the way the path, file name or extension of files are written in the destination. These include all lower case, word capitalization and others. Step 4 is where the user chooses to move or copy the source files. Here one can also create a simulation and preview the results in the simulation window. Step 5, the final step, lets the user limit the sorting to files within the ‘root’ of the source directory, to all files or just folders residing in the source directory.

FileSieve 3 should run on all Windows systems, even Windows 95, but requires the .NET Framework 2.0.

Please follow and like us:
Aug 252010
 

Digital Janitor helps you organize and specifically sort files and folders. The main purpose or usefulness of Digital Janitor is that when many files are downloaded from the, say, internet they tend to sit in one folder with differing files lost in the maze of documents, images, music and the like.

Enter Digital Janitor and its rules based organizer.

The main interface of the program, seen in the image, is the place where a source (perhaps the aforementioned download folder) is chosen. Then based on any combination of file formats, keywords or sizes files are moved into a destination folder. A ‘rule’ is first added via the add rule button and then also saved – and given a name. For example a rule can exist to move *.jpg files into an images folder and another rule to move *.wmv files greater than 100MB into a movies folder. Rules are saved for repeated and future use and pressing the sort button runs the chosen or highlighted rule.

From here on Digital Janitor gets confusing. It has a sort of pre-defined rule set for working with music files in its ‘Sort Music’ menu. This is where mp3 files can be sorted by artist or album. This feature is somewhat confusing because at first look it is not clear if any destination folders are automatically created or not and if they are indeed not it is not a very productive way of sorting the mp3 files anyway.

Another confusing aspect of the program is the ‘Schedule’. It resides in a separate window from the program’s initial rules yet it uses the same rules. Therefore it is not clear why the Schedule window not only requires one of the named and saved rules but requires a source folder too. If a rule is already created in the main window then a source folder should already be part of the rule that was created there.

To yet further confuse the user the ‘Automate’ window asks for a source and destination folder to sort files by similar name, similar extension or same type. It is again not very clear what the differentiation is between the three options and if this adds anything new to the main window rules.

Digital Janitor is useful without looking at the additional windows. Just choose a source and destination folder in the main window and create and run rules there. Digital Janitor runs Windows XP, Vista or 7 and requires .NET Framework 2.0.

Please follow and like us:
Aug 072010
 

File Bucket is one the many excellent programs and coding snacks from DonationCoder. File Bucket’s main purpose is to copy or move scattered files into one central or organized location. It was created because a user on the DonationCoder forums asked for a program to ease disc creation. The user wanted to automatically copy media files to one single folder and then burn them to a disc. In my opinion the same concept can be applied to backing up files. Working on my system I am using File Bucket and moving files that have been created in various My Documents and other folders into one location so subsequent system backups are easier and cleaner.

File Bucket is divided into four panes or areas, the top left hand side shows all systems drives and below it the folder tree. Highlighting a folder in the tree will show its files in the upper right hand pane. The lower right hand pane is the bucket or list of files and folders that will be moved or copied.

The three buttons on lower left side of the interface act as aids or shortcuts for adding files or folders to the bucket. “Add folder’s file to list” will add only files – from the folder selected in tree – to the bucket, ignoring any subfolders. “Add folder & subfolder’s files to list” will add all files including those in subfolders. “Add to list as a folder” will add the selected folder as is to the bucket thereby moving or copying it as a folder and not only the individual files that are within it. The “Add selected to list” and “Add all to list” buttons work on the folder(s) and file(s) visible just above them. After the bucket is populated the destination folder can be configured and the option to move or copy – or “Delete items to Recycle Bin”, “Save list with absolute paths” and other – chosen.

One other feature that adds another degree of usefulness to File Bucket is the filter (middle right of the program interface). Using the filter one can specify the file formats that will end up in the bucket. For example one can only move *.mp3 or *.jpg files. Any number of formats can be defined in the filter list which pops up when clicking the filter button. The filter(s) must be defined before any files are added to the bucket and in that sense the location of the filter button – and its associated dropdown – is perhaps not the best as one can mistakenly add files to the bucket before ‘reaching’ or getting to the filtering part on the right hand side of the program.

Once used it becomes clear that File Bucket is more difficult to describe than to use and it joins a long list of very useful utilities coded at DonationCoder.

Please follow and like us:
Jun 302010
 

KeepNote is described by its author simply as

KeepNote is a note taking application that works on Windows, Linux, and MacOS X

KeepNote is started by creating a new notebook and then new page(s) within it. Each page can contain text of course, but images can be inserted (Edit—>Insert Image…) as well as screenshots (Edit—>Insert Screenshot…) and files (Edit—>Attach File…). For screenshots KeepNote Minimizes itself and in dragging the mouse one can choose a rectangular area for capture. Note that the aforementioned insertions work when in a page or when a page is visible or highlighted in the tree structure.

The notebooks are saved in a tree structure or hierarchy with a notebook as the root and page and sub pages within it. Search and replace is available across all notes or for the open/visible page. The usual text formatting and aligning options are present as well.

The View menu’s ‘View Note In File Explorer’ opens the highlighted or open notebook’s folder in an instance of Windows Explorer (or other alternative). ‘View Note In Text Editor’ opens up a page in Wordpad. In both ‘View Note In Web Browser’ and ‘Open File’ options the page is shown in Internet Explorer (and not in system’s default browser).

The Go menu adds navigation options to move between tree nodes (notebooks), individual pages, to expand or collapse notes and more.

The Tools menu is where the python prompt (KeepNote is implemented or written using PyGTK) and optional Spell Check features reside but the required GtkSpell is not cross platform (it is Linux only).

The help menu includes a link to the program’s preferences file, here one can play around and change settings such as ‘new_notebook_path’, the aforementioned browser used to open notes (by changing ‘Web Browser’ from ‘C:\Program Files\Internet Explorer\iexplore.exe’ to the path for Firefox, Google Chrome or other browser) and even change Windows Explorer to an alternative such Ac Browser Plus, FreeCommander or other (by changing ‘File Launcher’ from ‘explorer.exe’ to the (full) path of the chosen executable).

Notebooks or pages can be exported in HTML format and can be backed up and tarred as well.

KeepNote deserves top marks for ease of use and the convenient and many editable options it provides.

Please follow and like us:
Jun 072010
 

Late last year Paulo Brabo commented in response to the post on Pigeonhole here on RGdot and recommended I take a look at Notebox Disorganizer. This is a much belated review on the somewhat unusual freeware.

Notebox Disorganizer uses spreadsheet type cells or note areas to help organize and jot down notes and text. The author explains all the features in a very refreshing and entertaining manner and is the first to admit that the disorganizer part of the program may turn off users who prefer tree type note keepers for example. He also points out that the interface has ended up not following the best of design practices. In short Notebox Disorganizer will probably only work for you after getting used to using it.

The main portion of the program interface is divided into a note grid and an editor, group of notes are visible in the grid and clicking or highlighting one shows the full note in the editor below it, the editor has few keyboard and mouse controls, for text manipulation for example. These controls like every other feature is explained in detail in the accompanying documentation or on the program’s site. The two drop downs to the right of the grid and editor provide additional tools and navigation options which will be populated depending on the note in use or the feature being accessed. For example in the image above ‘categories’ (from the drop down menu) would be the months of year of the journal on the left. Note that the journal is part of 7 ‘NBTemplates’ that come with the program and provide starting points for its use, other templates (available via File —>Open Notebox and in the NBTemplates folder) include the likes of Companygoals and NonfictionPlanner.

There are many aspects to this program but a few words on some of it tools and features should prove useful:

  • Outbox (Outbox menu) lets you save notes from different grids together for use on their own as a kind of quick view or move a note into another or elsewhere, as ‘semi-formatted’ text files.
  • Exploded notes provide a similar function as Outbox as in providing a way to use notes to exist outside of Notebox Disorganizer perhaps to be used in another instance of the program, these notes will be tagged with their name and be placed in a folder of the same name.
  • Keywords – in the lower right drop down area – let the user assign keywords to notes.
  • Bookmarks – in the upper right drop down area – allows certain notes to be marked and therefore be easier to find later.

Notebox Disorganizer needs to be used to discover all of its features and nuances, I confess that I haven’t really discovered or understood the program fully. Once grasped it can prove very usable. It weighs at less than 1MB and is portable.

Please follow and like us:
Jun 052010
 

Nimi Places is described by its author as

Simple way to organize and keep important folders on desktop

Nimi Places does things a bit differently, in practice or in theory an empty desktop devoid of any icons would use Nimi Places to assign movable or drag-able regions of it to important or often used folders. In other words Nimi Places creates opaque or transparent areas or windows where the contents of a folder will remain or become visible when needed. Nimi Places is, in a way, creating visual and somewhat workable shortcuts to folders while at the same time keeping the desktop clean.
After running the program and left clicking the tray icon one can add places by clicking the + sign and choosing folders to create places for. Nimi Places allows most normal file operation inside these ‘places’. Copy and pasting and renaming file to name two. However it seems none of moving or dragging and dropping work or are buggy, indeed a few of the other operations listed on the Nimi Places page are not available or unworkable in the version I downloaded.
Nimi Places is lightweight and very interesting. At its most basic it does a good job creating a new desktop experience. It is, however missing help or a clear explanation (perhaps there is a pro-version?) and even its “HD streamed video clip” – available on the home page linked at the beginning of this post – shows features that are not available or not possible to do on an XP machine.

Please follow and like us:
Facebook IconTwitter IconGoogle+Google+