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3 Skype tips

The internet woudn't be the same without Skype. Why? Skype has some nice features and usages that are very interesting. In total I use 4 Skype accounts. Two of them are for when traveling. The other two are always logged in at the same time on the same computer using just one user. Yes, you can run two instances of Skype on the same Desktop! Mind you, this is a Mac OS X solution, i'm not sure what Windowz allows.

Here's tip 1: Multiple Skyping

To run a second, third, or fourth Skype app, you need to do the following:

1. Create a new OS X user. In this example we create a user with the name 'usertwo'.

2. After creating this user, log in to the account 'usertwo' and start Skype. You don't need to login to Skype itself, just start and quit it.

3. Logout of user 'usertwo' and go to your main Mac OS X account. Startup Skype and login to your first Skype account.

4. Open a Terminal (You will find the terminal app in your /Applications/Utilities/ folder). At the command prompt, type "su - usertwo"

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My Acer One's history...

...and I don't mean that it's broken, lost or sold. Actually, I quite like my Acer netbook, even though the 8GB SSD is slow and it's a hell of a job to upgrade the ram. I bought the Linux edition because I love Linux and it was way cheaper than the one with Windows XP. Initially, I didn't pay much attention to the pre-installed Linpus Linux, but installed Ubuntu 8.10 on it within 2 hours of buying the One, because... I don't know... just because.

After a few months, I decided to roll back to the originally shipped Linpus Linux, because Ubuntu these days can be a real resource hog on netbooks unless you tweak it really well.

After a clean install from the Acer Linpus DVD (a slimmed down version of Fedora 8), I opened a terminal window to do some commandline stuff. While going back in my bash history, pressing the UP key, I saw that there were more commands there than I had typed myself. When I typed the 'history' command, I saw that someone at Acer apparently forgot to delete his or her history while configuring Linpus. 822 lines of history, to be precise.


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Sure we knew for a while which shortens your large shared urls to a tiny url for easier use in Email, Twitter, etc. Now there is, a new url-shortener. A completely new url-shortener with a lot of great features, I'll mention some of them...

Statistics (click to enlarge)

Statistics of the last 15 urls are kept on the front page of A local cookie in your browser stores the last urls submitted. Now you can see how many of the people that you sent the url to, actually clicked on your link. The clicks are sorted by Email, Twitter, Facebook etc.

The Bitly bot tweets the most clicked bitly url every hour. You can add it to your followers list on Twitter.

The Browser Bookmarklet which you can drag into your browsers toolbar makes it very easy to generate the short bitly url. And, when signed in, immediately send it to Twitter.

Map Bookmarklet for Google Maps creates short links to google maps. A short demo:

The Preview Plugin for Firefox, whenever you hover over a URL on any web page, it displays a tooltip showing the Page Title, Long URL, and any Click Data there is about the page the URL links.

With regular newly added features to, I think it's a great new service to enrich our daily techies life! My first Bitly:



Screen capture and making movies

Greetings fellow cybersquatters!

Came across an annoying problem today that had me stumped for a while. I wanted to do two specific things:

1. I wanted to capture a portion of the screen but, since I wanted to capture the same area repeatedly so that I could make a sequence of pictures, I needed to find a way to capture that did *not* involve me selecting a region of the screen for each picture over and over again because that would have been too time consuming.
2. Once I had a sequence of screen captures, I wanted to turn them into a movie.

Do I hear someone say "Linux to the rescue?". If so, I couldn't agree more!

Linux tip alert......

To capture a portion of the screen - in my case, a browser window - I decided to use good old *ImageMagick*. ImageMagick's *import* command can be used to capture an area of the screen AND it can also be given command-line parameters. For those of you who go slightly queasy at the mere mention of the words "command" and "line", stick around, this really is not a difficult tip to implement at all....

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Boxee Remote

One of the coolest things I've installed lately is Boxee, the 'open connected, social mediacenter for OSX and Linux'. This Open source mediacenter has a very slick and polished interface and enables you to play your own media, but also all sorts of free internet audio and videostreams. Boxee is THE perfect partner for your Mac Mini or barebone Ubuntu PC that you have hooked up to your TV.

A very nice addition to all of this coolness is the Boxee Remote App for the iPhone or iTouch. It was already available in the jailbroken iPhone world, but has now been approved by Apple to be in the iTunes Appstore. And it's totally free.

Click to read more ...

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