7HELP SIZ­ZLING FREE­BIES YOU WORK SM THAT MARTER

EASY WAYS TO CUT DOWN ON THE HAS­SLES OF DAILY WORK IN THE ERA OF A NET­WORKED WORLD.

Gadgets and Gizmos (India) - - COMPUTING - BY ASHISH BHA­TIA

DIFFPDF | WIN­DOWS/OS X

www.qtrac.eu/diffpdf.html When it comes to com­par­ing dif­fer­ent ver­sion of PDF files, haven’t you so wished for a mag­i­cal util­ity that can au­to­mate the process in­stead mak­ing you strain your eyes over a rather me­chan­i­cal but time­con­sum­ing task? Well, DiffPDF does ex­actly that. Fur­ther, not only does it finds anom­alies in the text but also in the ap­pear­ance of two doc­u­ments. In fact, it of­fers three com­par­i­son modes: Words, Characters, and Ap­pear­ance. All you need to do is give it the names of the two PDFs to be com­pared. The re­sul­tant win­dow with the docs side-by-side will dis­play to you the dis­sim­i­lar­i­ties high­lighted in red. Word for word dif­fer­ences apart, text for­mat­ting changes, font al­ter­ations, mnemon­ics and graphic amend­ments can all be be se­lec­tively pointed up. And oh, it is also pos­si­ble to com­pare spe­cific pages or page ranges.

TERACOPY | WIN­DOWS

http://code­sec­tor.com/teracopy With file sizes and data trans­fers mush­room­ing ex­po­nen­tially, copy­ing stuff be­tween machines and de­vices can be both ba­nal and both­er­some. More so if some­thing goes wrong in the mid­dle of the copy­ing and you have to start all over again. Teracopy is a su­perb free so­lu­tion to han­dle all your file copy­ing and mov­ing tasks. It’s fast and fu­ri­ous—asyn­chro­nous copy­ing abil­i­ties al­low it to speed up the file trans­fer even be­tween two phys­i­cal hard drives. It doesn’t halt the copy­ing process if it comes across an er­ro­neous file; it skips the rogue and dis­plays the names of failed trans­fers at the end for your at­ten­tion. Teracopy also lets you pause and re­sume a file trans­fer, if re­quired. In ad­di­tion, it can au­to­mat­i­cally check copied files for er­rors by cal­cu­lat­ing their CRC (cyclic re­dun­dancy check) check­sum val­ues.

BOXCRYPTOR | WIN­DOWS, OS X, IOS, AN­DROID

https://www.boxcryptor.com/ While the ad­van­tages of the Cloud are be­yond doubt, lit­tle thought has been given to the se­cu­rity as­pect of stor­ing files on­line. De­spite lay­ers of built-in SSL data en­cryp­tion and se­cure trans­fers, cloud stor­age space providers have not been able to pro­vide an in­fil­tra­tion free shel­ter to data. Rather than fol­low an os­trich-like upload and for­get pol­icy, it is wise, there­fore, to de­ploy an en­cryp­tion pro­gram like BoxCryptor. This un­com­pli­cated of­fer­ing (with a slightly off-putting in­stal­la­tion) works like a vir­tual hard disk that en­crypts each in­di­vid­ual file on the fly us­ing 256-bit AES en­cryp­tion and then up­loads it to your cloud stor­age ser­vice. Yes, it works with most pop­u­lar ser­vices, in­clud­ing Drop­box, iCloud, Google Drive and Mi­crosoft Sky­Drive. Why is it safe? Be­cause the en­cryp­tion and de­cryp­tion is done lo­cally, on your ma­chine, not on­line.

SPARKLESHARE | WIN­DOWS/OS X/LINUX

http://sparkleshare.org/ Have you ever felt the need to sync the files and data across your PCs? No, we don’t mean via the cloud. We mean over the lo­cal net­work so that noth­ing is con­stantly nib­bling at your In­ter­net band­width—and, there­fore, your monthly FUP quota. SparkleShare is a nifty new tool out there is does this with equa­nim­ity. It lets you set up a lo­cal Drop­box—or Box.net—like folder that acts like a repos­i­tory of synced files for the net­work. But all this is done with­out any on­line links to the cloud. So this tool is more a col­lab­o­ra­tion and shar­ing pro­gram. It cre­ates a folder on each com­puter in which var­i­ous PCs’ “projects” are stored. All th­ese are au­to­mat­i­cally synced to their re­spec­tive hosts (mul­ti­ple projects con­nected to dif­fer­ent hosts can also be cre­ated) and to your team’s SparkleShare fold­ers when some­one adds, re­moves or ed­its a file.

AUTOHOTKEY | WIN­DOWS

http://www.autohotkey.com/ AutoHotkey is a free, open-source util­ity that lets you au­to­mate your work­ing by trig­ger­ing by pre­de­fined key­strokes and mouse clicks. Since any vir­tu­ally any key, but­ton or com­bi­na­tion can be­come a hotkey, you can cre­ate hotkeys for your key­board, mouse and also a joy­stick. Plus, you can also use it to trig­ger very short phrases within a doc­u­ment or mail and save time on typ­ing—quite like PhraseEx­press. But the pre­dom­i­nant em­pha­sis here is remap­ping your sys­tem’s key­board keys and mouse but­tons. Not ev­ery­one may want some­thing like this. But yeah, trust us, it does take the te­dium out of a lot of mun­dane tasks.

PHRASEEX­PRESS | WIN­DOWS

http://www.phraseex­press.com/ Many a time and oft, a lot of what we type out on our key­boards—words, phrases, even com­plete sen­tences—are rep­e­ti­tions. Right from some­thing as sim­ple as a sign off like “with best re­gards” to some­thing as com­mon place as “how have you been”. And then there is data like busi­ness/home ad­dress, phone num­bers, or con­tact info that are te­dious to key in again and again. One of the best tools to au­to­mate such tasks is a free util­ity called PhraseEx­press. This al­lows you to type in a short se­quence or snip­pet which then ex­pands to al­most full length. For ex­am­ple, typ­ing ‘addr’ could ex­pand into your com­plete ad­dress. Or a pre­de­fined ab­bre­va­tion like ‘abbtt’ could zap out a full in­tro­duc­tory para about you or your busi­ness in a busi­ness doc or mail. Au­to­com­plete and au­to­cor­rect apart, it also of­fers spell­ing correction right across your PC in sev­eral lan­guages.

RESOPHNOTES | WIN­DOWS

http://re­soph.com/ResophNotes/Welcom e.html Flighty name, first-class util­ity. Es­pe­cially, if many of you are mi­grat­ing be­tween your Win­dows PC and iPad on a daily ba­sis. This light­weight tool al­lows you to jot notes down on your Win­dows de­vice and have them au­tosync with the Sim­plenote app (also free) on your iPad with­out any fuss, or even with No­ta­tional Ve­loc­ity on Macs (again, free). Won­der­fully sim­ple to use, this no-fuss, text-only ap­pli­ca­tion al­lows note tag­ging as well as search and comes with sev­eral key­board short­cuts. Not only does it au­tosync (and make a copy of your notes avail­able to you on the web at http://sim­plenoteapp.com), but it also au­to­mat­i­cally saves your notes. A por­ta­ble ver­sion of the ute can be car­ried on a USB drive and used right off it. How­ever, Re­soph can’t han­dle for­mat­ted or rich text. It’s a plain vanilla note­taker.

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