Yes, we all learn more on the playground than anywhere else. Imagine a world where serious intent forgets to cloak itself in the garb of an ‘angry bird’, a ‘formula buddy’, a ‘word zapper’, or even a ‘sidekick’… imagine if there were no applications for your PC or laptop and you’ll agree with me.
Riots minus the stabbing!
Yes, the site where there can be a literal riot of applications minus the stabbing of sheer commercialization is the Intel AppUp(SM) center. These friendly folks here describe themselves as ‘a service that allows end consumers to browse a centralized catalog of applications for purchase or download to their netbook or other personal computing device.’ Simple enough. What is more important is to know that you have here on this website the lights of Diwali, the colours of Holi, the cracker display of a Guy Fawks Night, the excitement of a FIFA match, the awe of Armstrong stepping on the moon, the daring of Alice, the concern of Rakhi… and much more than all the similes and metaphors I can ever round up for you. We are indeed in the midst of riots minus the stabbing!
Focus on the personality
Apps or applications help us reach the real person within us. This is true as a well-designed application will help us discover the true potential of the power that we seek to harness through the computer. View some fascinating rgb cases for pc here. Let me quote here from what the greatest of all Poona cricketers Dinkar Balwant Deodhar wrote about the way the village formula of cricket (comparable to computer apps) helped him get to the heart of this game:
‘With such equipment we played, and quarrelled, and frisked and gambolled like calves let loose on a village green. And we became as active, agile and fighting fit.’
These applications help you become ‘active, agile and fighting fit’ and they are there for all sorts of intents, all aims, and all interests. You can browse through the categories on the website and choose from social, education, entertainment, communications, Finance, Games, Lifestyle, Music & Audio, Photo & Video, Productivity, Reference, Sports, Travel and so on. You are gently told that ‘the best way to see what is available in the Intel AppUp(SM) center is to install the client software and search the storefront.’
The FAQs here informs that ‘Information about a particular application can be found by clicking on the application in the store catalog, revealing the details page. Available details include: Category, Release Date, License, Publisher, Version, and Size.’ Well, what more do we need? The best part is that the download and installation of the catalog happens without any hiccups… and this done, you’re well on your way to the wonderful world of Intel Apps!
The condemned playground
Ah! But like every game, there are certain riders and areas of warnings for the players involved. The Intel AppUp client officially supports only the following operating systems:
Windows XP Home 32 bits SP 3 (with .net framework 3.5 SP1)
Windows XP Professional 32 bits (with .net framework 3.5 SP1)
Windows 7 Starter 32 bits
Windows 7 Home Premium 32 bits
Windows 7 Home Premium 64 bits
Windows 7 Professional 32 bits
Windows 7 Enterprise 64 bits
It is also specified in the FAQs section that ‘Microsoft Windows Vista* is NOT an Intel AppUp(SM) center supported Operating System’. So that’s it, you armed with this warning you are ready to jump on to the trampoline to reach out for your choicest application here… and there are plenty to choose from.
Unless… yes, unless you choose an application that isn’t FREE and there is a small payment to be made. In such a case where a payment is to be made, people from the listed countries only can move ahead. The FAQs again, quite helpfully, suggests that ‘at this time, we are only supporting addresses and payment information from these countries: USA, Canada, Argentina, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Brazil, Bulgaria, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malaysia, Malta, Mexico, Netherlands, New Zealand, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Africa, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Taiwan, Thailand, Turkey, United Kingdom and Vietnam.’
So if you’re from any of the countries not listed, you are, euphemistically speaking, on a condemned playground until things are set right. Same with the Operating Systems listed above.
The Mahatma for tweeple
This review also needs to include an application that can be downloaded from this website… and as I am rather fond of the sort of tweets that I send, what better than to talk about TweetDeck. I call it the Mahatma for tweeple! Yes,, as I said, I am a great fan of twitter and am always looking for ways that will help me tweet better, be more focused, and have an all-round advantage… all this is possible only on this application. By the way, my Klout score has just touched 67 and I have been listed as a ‘Pundit’. Anyone wanting to connect with me on twitter, please remember my twitter id: @arvindpassey
TweetDeck: 10 features that you must remember
Let me begin this review of TweetDeck with a listing of 10 features that you need to remember:
- This is a FREE application
- Distributed as an Adobe Air application
- Downloading and installation is simpler than you can imagine
- Multiple-user interface makes it useful for the whole family on a single desktop
- TweetDeck has all of the same options you can get in the web version of Twitter. You can Re-tweet, Direct Message, and Reply to anyone of your friends
- Organizes tweets and other social messages into groups and displays them as columns and thus, structures your twitter stream
- Allows you to create groups and display them as columns, again, helping you structure your network
- Makes it possible for you to reach out to your network that may include Facebook, Linkedin, Foursquare, Buzz and a few others
- Takes you into the heart of whatever is trending, suggesting the top keywords as well
- Helps you plan your tweets into desired time-slots so that you retain your twitter buzz even though you may be busy elsewhere
TweetDeck: No reason to complain
Obscureport, an online reviewer, says that TweetDeck is ‘fairly solid and responsive’ and that simply means that you have an ethereal tweeting experience.
The Default columns include:
All Tweets – All the friends and strangers that you are following
Replies – The @ messages sent to your username
Direct Messages – All personal d or D messages sent to your username
You are at liberty to add more columns by using ‘groups’ in Tweetdeck and these can be rearranged by moving them to the left or the right.
Some of the Integrated Features include ‘Search’, ‘Tweetscoop’, ‘Groups’, ‘Settings and Preferences’, ‘Refresh’, ‘Single Column View’, ‘Tweets/ Alerts’, ‘Colours/ Fonts’, ‘Twitter API’…
Most of the features mentioned are things that most of us can understand without wasting any time. I wasn’t very sure of what Twitter API really meant. Not being so good at some of the jargon that my techy friends use so effortlessly, I find it better to quote from how one of the online forums explains it: ‘This is an important setting. It allows you to set how much of the Twitter API is used for all messages, replies, and direct messages. If you are running Twitter into other programs, such as integrating your status with Facebook or displaying Tweets on your blog, you can easily exceed the rate limit and not get updates for some time. I had a problem with this because of a WordPress plugin I was using. I reduced my API usage to 30% total, uninstalled the plugin, and am slowly increasing my usage.’ Complex? Don’t worry… you’ll understand it if and when you start using this feature… and if you don’t, it doesn’t matter if the concept is clear to you or not.
Thus knowing TweetDeck completely is a pleasure… knowing it less completely is still a satisfying experience and you are able to execute small actions like adding your own expert comment while RT-ing a message… try doing it on the twitter website and you’ll know what I’m saying.
TweetDeck: Don’t make it walk out on you
Like most applications that are made by sensible brains, this one too is oozing with friendliness. However, this power-packed application does use a lot of memory and may use more than 1 GB of space if left open and running for all the time. It is thus a better idea to restart it periodically if you are one of those who need to be at the helm of the twitterverse all the time.
It is up to you, therefore, to not allow TweetDeck to walk out on you… take care of its needs and it will serve you with the wit and readiness of Jeeves, the great butler that P G Wodehouse created.
However, this Jeeves is not very particular about group columns or panes that you may accidently close… you’ll lose the group and will need to redo it. One blogger friend recommends that ‘it is best to wait 24 hours of actively running TweetDeck before creating a group. Why? Because people in your network will not show up in the list until they tweet. It generally takes 24 hours for everyone to say something at least once.’ It does imply that this application tests your common sense as well…
Another friend of mine who is an architect, uses Tweetdeck on two monitors… he is quite happy with this arrangement as he is able to view all his columns or panes at one go without having to scroll too often, too long.
However, I like the single column view of TweetDeck as it allows me to focus on my tweet writing without my attention flirting with all that’s going on in other columns. This way, I make sure that my creative instincts don’t walk out on me…
Loved the website. Loved the application. Loved writing this blog. And I know I am going to love being one of the winners.
This blog is an entry to the “My Favorite PC App” contest. Check out numerous apps for PC/Netbooks available at the Intel AppUp Center. If you are looking for an opportunity to build and monetize your applications, check out the Intel® Atom™ Developer Program.
01 September 2011