Monday, May 5, 2008

Top 100 Tools and Resources for YouTube

YouTube is still the undisputed king of video sharing on the web, so it only makes sense that there would be a slew of tricks and tools for it. From Adobe AIR applications that let you download videos to Firefox extensions that protect you from RickRolls, and much more, here are over 100 tools and resources to help you enhance your video experience.

Adobe AIR Applications


Sometimes you just want to get out of the browser environment, and Adobe AIR apps offer a viable solution with many of the same features you enjoy in the browser. Apps such as the YouTube Video Widget even work online and off, allowing you to watch your downloaded videos any time you'd like from an app you already enjoy.

DeskTube – A social YouTube viewer that allows you to send links to friends to open their DeskTube, tweet what you are watching along with a link, and more.

MyYouTube – Play or download videos from YouTube, create playlists, manage your collection and more.

YouTube Video Widget works Online and Offline – An application designed with mobile devices in mind. It downloads the videos to the local drive and then detects when the device is offline and switches to playing the locally stored copies.

YouTube Widget – Browse through the top rated videos or search YouTube just as you would from the web interface.

Alternative Viewing Methods


It can get boring watching YouTube videos in the exact same way day after day. Why not change it up a bit and look into some alternative methods of viewing? You can even create your own comedy by running videos through things like The Benny Hillifier, which oddly turns out funnier than you might think it would.

AlarmTube – Set a time you want to wake up, choose a video you want to hear as you rise, and you're done.

ILoveMusicVideo.net - A YouTube viewer focused on music lists generated by Last.fm such as top songs and artists.

InfiniTube.net – Enter some keywords, and you'll get a constant stream of uninterrupted YouTube videos related to them.

Splicd.com – Select a point in a YouTube video, say starting at 53 seconds, and this site will build a link to that point so you can share it with others.

The Benny Hillifier – Enables you to add The Benny Hill Show theme song to any video.

VirtualVideoMap.com – Take a virtual tour of the Earth by clicking on the tags on the Google Maps globe, and seeing a video related to that location.

WiiToob.com – A customized YouTube browsing site built with the Nintendo Wii in mind.

You3b.com – Why watch only one YouTube video, or even two, when you can watch three at once? Make a triptych of YouTube videos you can watch singly or all at the same time.

YouTube Doubler – Once in a while you run into a video on YouTube where the uploader says it will make more sense if you watch another video with it; Well, with YouTube Doubler, you can do just that. Enter the URLs of both videos, and you're ready to go.


Firefox Extensions


Is there anything Firefox can't do? Thanks to its extension development community there are a number of great Firefox extensions for YouTube. For example, by collecting some of the most popular Greasemonkey scripts for YouTube, Better YouTube allows for greater user control and a cleaner interface.

Download YouTube Videos



Ant Toolbar – The official toolbar for Ant.com includes a YouTube video downloader as well as a built in FLV player so you can play the videos you've snagged right from there.

Embedded Objects – This add-on will download pretty much any type of embedded file, including your favorite YouTube videos.

Fast Video Download – Fast Video Download works with numerous video sites and will also add a download link under embedded YouTube videos you find on other sites.

Flash Video Downloader – Besides allowing you to download your favorite videos from YouTube, this add-on will download flash videos from other sites and even games.

Flash Video Resources Downloader – Will let you download videos from most flash-based video sharing sites. Also, enter a YouTube URL and be presented with the download information without needing to go to the page.

Magic's Video Downloader – Assists you with downloading FLV videos from around two dozen video sharing sites, including the market leader, YouTube.

Media Converter – This extension will allow you to not only download your desired videos, but it will also convert them right in the browser to the format you desire.

Sothink Web Video Downloader – Besides downloading videos from YouTube, Sothink will also let you capture videos in swf, wmv, asf, avi, mov, rm and rmvb formats.

Video DownloadHelper – Once installed, Video DownloadHelper's icon will animate when you come to a page that has a video you can download. Once you start the download process, you can also choose which format you want to save the file as.

Tools



Better YouTube – Collects some of the most popular Greasemonkey scripts for YouTube that do things like give you an alternate player, a cleaner theater interface and more.

GoogleTube – This extension adds a YouTube icon next to Google search results that have videos associated with them. Click on the button and you can watch the videos directly on the search results page.

Groowe Firefox Toolbar – Gives you a toolbar that lets you search YouTube, Digg, Delicious and more.

Now Playing X – Allows you to feed videos you are watching to the Now Playing feature on messengers like Live, Yahoo, AIM, Skype and GTalk.

RickRadar – If you really fear being RickRolled, install this and it will evaluate pages. If it feels there is a high probability of Rick Astley being there, it redirects you.

TubeStop – Only has one job and that is to stop YouTube videos from autoplaying.

VodPod – Allows you to grab the embed code for a video and store it at VodPod.com and then publish it to your blog with just a click.

You Old Enough? – Tired of signing in to verify your age? This add-on will let you bypass the whole process.

YouPlayer – YouPlayer allows you to drag videos to your playlist and form your own list from around the Web. If you find anything you like, right click on it and you can choose to download it.

YouTube – An improved search for YouTube that uses Google's auto suggest system to help you fill out what you are looking for.

YouTube Cinema – Allows you to play all YouTube videos in a default that shows them in cinema view.

YouTube Comment Snob – This add-on allows you to hide comments from people with numerous misspellings, excessive punctuation, all capital letters, no capital letters and so on.


Greasemonkey Scripts


Gresemonkey scripts give you greater flexibility on a number of sites, enhancing your visual enjoyment, which is important on YouTube. For example, YouTube Cleaner clears away the rubbish and allows you to enjoy what the site was built around: videos.

BetterTube – With support for over 50 sites, this script will allow you to see embed-disabled videos, download to various services, and more.

Coralized-YouTube – Uses the Coral Content Distribution Network to cache videos and speed up their loading on your system.

Download ANY Video from YouTube – This will add a link to any YouTube page allowing you to download the video as an MP4 file.

Loopy for YouTube – Adds a button below a video that lets you loop the video as many times as you like, so it's perfect for that infectious song you can't get out of your head.

Play YouTube videos in full screen auto – This script will automatically open YouTube videos into full screen mode, completely bypassing the stand alone page.

Thumbs2Links – Allows you to click on “Get direct links!” from any video index page and begin downloading all of those videos without having to go to individual pages.

VidzBigger – Automatically takes the video to its largest size, and places the comments to the side so you don't have to scroll down, along with a few other features.

Video Focus – Allows you to watch videos without the distraction of chats, comments, ads and so on, while also giving you the ability to resize videos, customize the background color, center the video on the page and more. Works with dozens of different video sites.

Videoembed – Videoembed works with over 40 video sharing sites so that if you are on a page with a link to their videos, it will automatically bring up the video on the page you are viewing as if it was embedded. Saves you the time and bother of going to YouTube just to get RickRolled.

Years Watching YouTube – Ever wondered how much time is lost to a given YouTube video? This script multiplies the length of the video times the number of views to tell you in years how much time the video has consumed from the world.

YousableTubeFix – A good all-in-one script that blocks ads from the sections you want, lets you download videos into several formats, automatically expands the “More” section, lets you see all comments at once and more.

YouKing – Adds the ability to download the video in various formats by adding links beneath the embed code area.

YouTube Alternate Video Player – Replaces the standard YouTube flash player with the FlowPlayer player.

YouTube Animated Thumbnails – Force the thumbnails to cycle through the three preview images.

YouTube better embed – Cleans up the embed code for YouTube videos to be used on other sites.

YouTube Cleaner – Helps you clean up the appearance of the YouTube video pages by removing the comments, related videos, promoted videos, sharing information and footer. Also allows you to restore them instantly if you should choose to do so.

YouTube Double the Vid – Opens the video you are currently viewing in YouTube Doubler (mentioned earlier in this list).

YouTube Enhancer – Assists with downloading videos you wish to keep, giving you the ability to buffer with autoplay turned off, rollover previews and several media controller options.

YouTube Googler – YouTube Googler allows you to have more control over how a YouTube page is presented to you. You can resize the video, prevent autoplay, and reorder items in the sidebar.

YouTube HD Suite – Adds icons to your YouTube searches to show you which videos are available as HD and MP4, and then provides you with links inside each for downloading in the quality you want.

YouTube HQ + 720p – This script will seek out the highest quality version of a video and load it via Ajax so that there is no need for the whole page to reload. Also adds in the ability to turn autoplay on and off, change the video player color and so on.

YouTube “Lights Out” – Gives you a light bulb icon so you can turn off the “lights” and darken the background for easier enjoyment of your video.

YouTube Lyrics – This handy little script can search up to 11 sites for the lyrics to the song you are watching a video of. Words are added in a box in the YouTube sidebar under the video information.

YouTube Playlist Search Remover – Remove playlists from the search results you see on YouTube so you can stick to just the individual videos.

YouTube Prevent Autoplay – While several other scripts have the ability to turn off the autoplay feature, if that is the only feature you want, this is the script for you.

YouTube Remove Video Ads – Remove all of those video ads from your selected videos.

YouTube Static Video Size – With all the different YouTube video sizes these days, this script will keep them a constant size for you.

YouTube Without Flash – Adds links below the videos to either download the videos or play them in an external player.

YouTube – Previews, click-to-play, download, no flash, 16:9 – Gives you previews for three different sections of the video, uses alternate video player for higher quality clips, adds a download button and more.

YouTubr – Allows you to watch a YouTube video associated with a Flickr image right on the Flickr page.

Search & Browsing Tools



YouTube's search is not the most powerful thing around, it's doubtful anyone would argue that. Luckily kindhearted souls out there have built numerous alternative methods such as 7ags.com to help you muddle your way through the millions of video clips.

7ags.com – Browse YouTube keywords in a tag cloud format.

iDesktop.tv – Allows you to search YouTube, see the most popular, featured, or recent in a large display on the front and download anything you like.

Loom.tv – Search multiple video sites including YouTube with this one easy to use interface.

Mappeo.net – A Google Maps and YouTube mashup that lets you browse by geographical location and narrow things down with keywords.

MetaTuber.com – Search by various analytics, browse the tag cloud, see the newest videos and download whichever ones you enjoy.

oSkope.com – A visual search engine for several sources, including YouTube that presents the results as thumbnails on a desktop and allows you to hover over them for information, and move them around to your satisfaction.

TimeTube – Enter a few keywords and this site will build a timeline of videos related to them.

Utrecht.cc – Restrict your searches only to music videos on the popular video sharing site.

VizBand.co.uk – Search either for just music videos or all of YouTube and get the results as a screen full of thumbnail images you merely have to hover over to get information about.


YouTube Download Sites


For a site that doesn't offer you the ability to download videos, there sure are plenty of alternatives out there. Some are very easy, like KissYouTube.com, which just requires a simple URL change, making it a breeze for you to grab any video you want for your own collection.

Anjo.to – Download videos from YouTube and save them in formats such as MP4, AVI, MOV and others.

Catch-Video.com – A straightforward YouTube downloading service that allows you to convert videos directly to another format of your choice.

CatchYouTube.com – Simply enter the URL of the video, select the format you want to save it in, and click the “Convert & Download” button.

ClipNabber.com – Enter the URL of videos from a multitude of different sites and then save them in the .flv format.

ConvertTube.com – Enter the URL and convert the videos to formats such as MP3, MP4, MPG and more.

DownThisVideo.com – Either paste in the URL of the video you wish to download, or use their bookmarklet to grab the ones you desire.

ExtractVideo.com – Enter the URL of the video you wish to download, see recent downloads from other users, most popular & random videos and more.

ExtractYouTube.com – Have your choice of entering the URL you wish to download, or use their search to find videos you want to save.

FLVTo.com – Enter the URL of the video you wish to save as a FLV, or upload a video if you wish to convert it to this format.

KeepVid.com – Enter the URL of the video you wish to save, or add their bookmarklet to your toolbar and simply click it as you watch the video.

KissYouTube.com – You can either enter the URL of the YouTube video on their site, or simply add “kiss” in front of “youtube.com” while on the site, and it will start downloading the video.

StreamYard.com – Enter URLs from various video streaming sites to download and save the videos.

TubeZoid.com – Download videos from just about any video sharing site out there.

vconvert.net – Allows you to download your videos and convert them. Will also allow you to use a one-click tool to do it even quicker.

Video Downloader – Allows you to enter the URL from more video sites than just YouTube, download them, and convert them to another format.

Vidconverter.com – Enter the URL of a video from YouTube or any other of the numerous video streaming sites they support, and then convert them to other formats.

VideoDL.org – A downloader and nothing else. Enter the URL, right click to save target as, make the extension .flv and you're done.

VideoRonk.com – Search multiple video sites, download the resulting videos, recommend them, embed them and more.

Vixy.net – Convert downloaded YouTube videos into formats such as AVI, 3GP, MP3 and others.

YouTubeCatcher.com – Enter the URL of the video you wish to download, see the latest videos people are grabbing, and check out the videos that have been downloaded the most.

YouTubia.com – A site just offering simple downloads of YouTube videos in their native .flv format.

YouTubeMovieSaver.com – Simply enter the URL of the YouTube video you wish to download, choose to download, name the file as .flv and you're done.


Miscellaneous YouTube Tools


There are numerous one-of-a-kind apps out there for YouTube that will help you do things like share and explore playlists (MixMasterTube.com), track videos that have been removed for copyright violations (YouTomb), and much more.

Graffiti.VIDAVEE.com – Enter the URL of a YouTube video, click the load button and you will see a copy of the video that you can add effects & text to. Once you're done adding you will get a fresh embed code so that you can show off your creation anywhere you like.

MixMasterTube.com – Allows you to share your YouTube playlists with others, explore other lists, use it for music at parties and more.

Review Tube – Allows users to create time-based subtitles for various YouTube videos, and then they are made publicly available.

SiteVolume.com – Enter words in their YouTube tab to see how often they appear on the site. A good way to get suggestions for what keywords to use in your video description.

Subyo.com – Locate existing subtitles or add your own for any video on YouTube.

TubePopper.com – Add word balloons, comments, or subtitles to a video and then embed it in your site with the new additions.

TubeSurf.com – Search multiple video sites with one interface and see the results from all of them.

TubeSpy – Take a look at a constantly updating view of what YouTube videos people are watching at that very moment. See one that catches your interest and you can click on it to stop it and watch it.

ViralVideoChart.com – Get a sense of what videos are going viral and how they are trending.

VTubeTools.com – Add the video ID number and build a new player to use on your site with features like loop, custom skin, play in HQ and more.

YouTomb – A project from MIT that follows what videos are removed from YouTube for copyright violations. Tells you how many days ago the video was removed and how long it had been on the site prior to removal. (via

Sunday, May 4, 2008

Top 50 iPhone Apps to Enhance Your Photo and Video Experience

We know you're obsessed with your iPhone, and chances are you've been taking a lot more photos – perhaps even recording videos – over the holidays. To satisfy aspiring iPhone photographers and videographers, we've assembled a collection of more than 50 iPhone and iPod Touch apps to enhance your photo and video experience.

We've included fan favorites, lesser known names, apps for photo editing, apps for video enjoyment, and many more.

Photo Sharing



PixelPipe – Media Gallery – (App Store Rating: 2.5 stars) PixelPipe is a free and fully loaded photo sharing app that lets users easily send and geotag their photos to any of 50 supported destination sites including Twitter, Flickr, YouTube, Seesmic, Facebook, FriendFeed, Tumblr, WordPress, and FTP sites. One downside to PixelPipe is that you do have to manually add each destination site, which could take hyper-socialites like myself a substantial amount of time.

AroundShare – (App Store Rating: 1.5 stars) AroundShare supports sharing your photos, with location and description, to Flickr, Twitter, Google Maps, and WordPress blogs. One nice bonus is that users can subscribe to any AroundShare RSS feed to import full resolution images into iPhoto. One flaw is that your photos are shared publicly to the AroundShare website.

Twitxr – (App Store Rating: 2 stars) Twitxr, a competitor to Twitpic, has a dead simple free iPhone app that, once configured online (you do have to create an account), will post your photos to Twitter, Facebook, Flickr, and Picasa.

Rotzy Photo Sharing – (App Store Rating: 3 stars) Rotzy is similar to Twitxr, but there's a little bit more baked into this free app. You do have to create an account, and should you use it like a photo-sharing social network instead of just a photo sharing utility, you can upload your photos, view your friends' photos in a Twitter-like timeline view, comment on photos with either text or photos, and auto-post to Facebook and Tumblr.


Photo Apps for Tweets



Twittelator – (App Store Rating: 3 stars) With both free and pro versions available, Twittelator has something for everyone. When it comes to photo-sharing, your photos are posted to Twitpic, and photo-viewing happens right inside the app.

Twinkle – (App Store Rating: 3 stars) With Twinkle, you can share and view photos via this location-aware iPhone app. Just note that uploaded photos are posted to a custom Twinkle URL that doesn't support comments.

Twitterific – (App Store Rating: 3 stars) Twitterific is a simple Twitter app with a mini-browser that supports photo uploads from the app.

Twitfire – (App Store Rating: 2.5 stars) Twitfire is a free Twitter app that's especially handy for web browsing and inserting links, it also supports photo uploads to TwitPic.

Tweetie – (App Store Rating: 4 stars) Quickly becoming the hottest Twitter app, Tweetie offers full features and an iChat-like UI for $2.99. Especially of note is the inline Twitpic image viewer.


One Site Wonders [Photos]



Kyte Producer – (App Store Rating 2.5 stars) Even though Kyte is video-centric, the iPhone app is a video workaround where users can create slide shows from the iPhone's photo gallery, add polls, and chat with their Kyte audience in real-time.

Facebook – (App Store Rating: 3.5 stars) – This social networking app supports photo uploads with captions, posts to Friends' walls, photo sharing, viewing, and tagging.

MySpace Mobile – (App Store Rating: 3.5 stars) – MySpace Mobile gives MySpace addicts the photo features they want including the ability to post comments on friends' photos, and the ability to share uploaded photos.

SmugShot – (App Store Rating: 2.5 stars) – SmugShot is a handy mobile app for the SmugMug aficionado. The app is free and adds geotagged photos, as you shoot them, to your SmugMug galleries.

Mobile Fotos - (App Store Rating: 3.5 stars) – Mobile Fotos is for Flickr users looking for a simple way to browse and upload photos. For 99 cents, users can swipe through their Flickr photos, contacts' photos, favorites, groups, sets, and interesting photos. There's also a nearby search option for finding photos taken near your location. If Flickr isn't enough, you can also opt to send notifications of photo uploads to Twitter.

Photobucket for iPhone – (App Store Rating: 2 stars) – Photobucket users will appreciate this free app, which originally cost $4.99 at launch, that lets you upload your photos to your Photobucket account, as well as browse other online photos. It's simple, effective, and just for Photobucket users.

Snaplog (App Store Rating: 2.5 stars) – If you're a Snaplog Photo Blogger then you'll like the free Snaplog app that automatically uploads photos to Snaplog.com. Users can crop photos, add effects, tags, captions, and post to Twitteriffic.

ImageShack – (App Store Rating: 2.5 stars) – ImageShack's free app has exactly the same feature set as the Photobucket app, but its audience is existing ImageShack users.

Frivolous Photos



Tattoo Shop – (App Store Rating: 3 stars) – Instead of branding yourself for life, why not just add digital tattoos to your photos with Tattoo Shop? The app offers a collection of real-life looking tattoos and text options that you can place on your photos and resize as desired.

Toy Camera – (App Store Rating: 3.5 stars) – For $1.99, Toy Camera automatically applies several random effects to the photos you take.

GothPix – (App Store Rating: 3 stars) – Make your photos look creepy with GothPix. The $1.99 app replaces your image with its darker cousin by randomly adding in splatter, sprays, texture, and high contrast black and white tones.

Shakin' Faces Morph123 Lite – (App Store Rating: 2 stars) – Blend together pictures of people, animals, or inanimate objects to see them morph into one strange photo. It's not the most intuitive app to use, but it might be just what the 12 year-old in you is looking for. The Lite version is free, but for a few bucks the fully featured version lets you export your creations in QuickTime movie format.

FAIL Maker – (App Store Rating: 2.5 stars) – FAIL Maker is a dead simple app that lets you take or select a photo, drag and drop a few common FAIL expressions, and save it for future mockery.


Photo Enhancement


Colorator – (App Store Rating: 2 stars) – For 99 cents, Colorator users can color cast their photos by either selecting spots in photos to cast them in black and white, or by changing the entire photo to black and white and then selecting single areas for color popping effects.

EdgePix – (App Store Rating: 3 stars) – This 99 cent app is perfect for the person looking to select from a variety of frames and edges to add to their photos. The app supports multiple borders and boasts 14 different borders and edges.

Photogene – (App Store Rating: 4 stars) – Photogene brings Photoshop-like image editing attributes to your photo library. This $2.99 app lets you rotate, mirror, crop, sharpen, adjust coloring and saturation, and add special effects. Your professional works of art can then be saved to your library for sharing or importing to iPhoto.

Magic Touch – (App Store Rating: 3 stars) – If you're looking for more photo retouching options and have $1.99 to spare, you might like Magic Touch. The app lets you use your finger to touch up photographs and adjust anything from cosmetic changes like teeth whitening to night vision enhancements.

Photo Lab 1600 – (App Store Rating: 3 stars) – Yet another photo enhancement app with 20+ image effect filters and cropping functionality. Photo Lab 1600 is normally priced at $2.99, but is available now for 99 cents.

Photonasis 2.0 Lite – (App Store Rating: 2.5 stars) – Photonasis 2.0 Lite is a free alternative to Photogenie, offering users 32 photo effects including histogram equalization, gray scale, sepia, dilate (light enhancing), erode (darkness enhancing), emboss, smoothing, motion blur, contour, and cartoon effects. The app, however, only supports adding one filter and is pretty prone to crashing depending your system memory. There is a 99 cent version available, but it's unclear what the added cost does to enhance the free version.

Pano – (App Store Rating: 4 stars) – Ever wished you could take panoramic photos on your iPhone? Pano, which is a bargain at $2.99, is a simple app with a huge effect. Pano guides users as they take up to six photos that are automatically merged into one panoramic shot. To check out some of the amazing shots that Pano has played a part in creating, make sure to visit the Flickr Pano for iPhone: Panoramas group.

SteadyCam – (App Store Rating: 2.5 stars) – SteadyCam attempts to tackle a common problem—blurry photos—making those photos you do share pretty and pristine. Once you press the shutter button the app waits until your hand is steady before snapping the photo. The premium version, with fullscreen shutter touch, is also available for an additional 99 cents.

Night Camera – (App Store Rating: 2 stars) – This 99 cent app aims to help you take better photos at night or in low light conditions. Like SteadyCam, the app uses the accelerometer to trigger the shutter when it detects that the camera is stable.

FLEX Photo Lab – (App Store Rating: 2.5 stars) - Another free option for photo enhancement is FLEX Photo Lab, brought to you by Ford as a tie-in with their Ford FLEX campaign. The app, which is incredibly easy to use, has 6 different touch-oriented filters that you can add to your photo.

Polarock – (App Store Rating: 3 stars) – Polarock is a simple app that applies the Polaroid effect to your photos. At 99 cents, this app also lets you add in additional styles and captions.

SodaSnap Postcards – (App Store Rating: 2.5 stars) – Make cute postcards from your photos that you can email to friends and family. With SodaSnap, just snap or select a photo, enter a message, and select from your contacts to share and send a postcard with your personalized message.

Seeframe and CEIVA Snap – (App Store Rating: NA (no reviews)) – These apps all have one simple purpose – to let you showcase your iPhone photos on digital picture frames. Seeframe enables users to send their photos to a connected Seeframe digital photo frame. You'll want to visit the Seeframe website for instructions on how to configure your frame and for information on how to pull in additional online photos via RSS. CEIVA Snap supports sending photos to CEIVA frames and online albums, organizational options, and geotagging.


One Site Wonders [Video]



Qik – To livestream your own video content, you'll need to jailbreak your iPhone, but it might be worth it to stream video via the Qik iPhone app, which also makes it easy for you to view comments from your viewers' reactions on the fly. I originally jailbroke my iPhone just for Qik, and although I loved the app, I've since restored my phone. I'll just keep hoping that Qik will show up in the App store in the near future.

Flixwagon – a Qik competitor, also supports a mobile livestreaming iPhone app for jailbroken phones.

12seconds.tv – (App Store Rating: 4 stars) – If you're not quite ready to jailbreak, you might consider 12seconds.tv. You can create and post 12second slide shows from your iPhone with this brand new app. Just take or select 3 photos, record 12 seconds of audio, and post your new video to the site. It's a nice video workaround that doesn't require jailbreaking your phone.

Animoto – (App Store Rating: 4 stars) – This brand new app adds music to your photo library. Just choose between 8 and 16 images, select from 9 different musical genres, preview different song selections, and the final result is a really nice musically-enhanced video that you can embed and share. Check out my little creation from the UCLA vs. Wynoming basketball game at Pauly Pavillion (UCLA won 113 – 62).


For Your Video Watching Pleasure


Television – (App Store Rating: 2 stars) – It is what it is. For $2.99 you can watch 61 television shows from 33 channels on demand on Television. Channels include CNN, CBS, VH1, MTV, and Digg.TV.

Movies – (App Store Rating: 3.5 stars) – Brought to you by Flixster, Movies is the perfect free app for viewing movie trailers, finding show times near your zip code, and browsing top rated and upcoming releases.

Joost – (App Store Rating: 2 stars) – With the Joost app you can choose from over 46,000 available titles to watch music videos, television, and movies on your iPhone or iPod touch. Although the viewing experience is great, the app would definitely benefit from a few additional features, like being able to save and view personal favorites. There's also still a few kinks that need to be worked out.

i.TV – (App Store Rating: 3 stars) – i.TV is a TV and movie guide with a selection of media to watch on your phone, the ability to browse television previews, movie trailers, and listings, and the option to add content to your Netflix queue. There's also integration with Tivo, making it possible to set your DVR recordings from your phone.

Truveo Video Search – (App Store Rating: 2.5 stars) – AOL's Truveo is a pretty nifty free app for searching and viewing videos from various sources. Users can search by category or keywords, check out featured content from sources like CNN, and watch what's hot.

Howcast How-To Videos – (App Store Rating: 3 stars) – Search and watch how-to videos on origami, recipes, cocktails, car repair, and a plethora of other subject matters. With Howcast, you can view your history, save your favorites, and send them to friends via email.

AppVee – (App Store Rating: 2.5 stars) – If you ever wanted to watch video reviews of iPhone apps, then you're in luck. AppVee is a free app that has in-depth reviews on hundreds of different apps.


Video Streaming Viewing for Work or Play


iRa Pro – (App Store Rating: 4 stars (1 rating)) – If you've got $899.99 to spare, IT know-how, and a predilection for surveillance, then you might want to check out iRa Pro. The app, inspired by the high-end security industry, enables users to view live video feeds from cameras or video management servers. Users can even control pan-tilt-zoom cameras right from their iPhone.

Air Cam Live Video – (App Store Rating: 3 stars) – What does $7.99 buy you in the App Store? Air Cam Live Video. The app utilizes the iSight webcam (or other compatible web cams) to bring a live video feed, with audio, to your iPhone. It's a neat idea that you can use for surveillance, as a baby monitor, or just for fun. Additional software download required.

iCam – (App Store Rating: 4 stars) – At $4.99, iCam might be a more affordable way to stream live web cam feeds to your phone. The iCam bonus is that you can view up to four feeds simultaneously. Additional software download required.

World Traffic Cameras – (App Store Rating: 2 Stars) – For practical purposes, World Traffic Cameras adds utility to publicly accessible camera feeds. The $4.99 app gives users the ability to search for cams on a map (there are over 4,000 across the globe), select a cam, and actually watch traffic as it happens.

WorldView Live – (App Store Rating: 3 stars) – Voyeristic types will get a kick out of WorldView Live, the $2.99 iPhone app that lets you watch live video streamed from web cams across the world. You can search for webcams using a map, watch live video streams for more than 40 webcams, view the distance from a web cam to your locale, or save and share your favorites with your friends via email. (via

Saturday, May 3, 2008

Top 15 Flickr Extensions for Firefox

No matter how good a service is it can always use a few tweaks, and Flickr is no different.

The 15 add-ons we've gathered below for Firefox will help with everything from navigation to uploading, accessing Flickr in countries that block the service, and much more. Take a look and you're bound to find an extension to enhance your Flickr experience.

Access Flickr! – A tool built specifically to help users bypass firewalls in countries that block Flickr such as Iran, the UAE, China and more.

Better Flickr – Better Flickr combines several Greasemonkey scripts such as photo magnifier, thumbnail enhancer, rich edit and more into one convenient extension. Simply check the boxes for the portions of the add-on you wish to use.

Fireflix – A sidebar extension that works with Flickr to upload images from local files, generate HTML for linking, search photostreams and more.

Flickr – A simple extension that adds the ability to search Flickr photos directly from your browser.

Flickr Auto Page – This extension removes the “Next” button from Flickr and will autoload the next picture so you can just scroll through them in a much easier fashion.

Flickr Buddy – Adds an icon to your status bar in Firefox that will pull Flickr RSS feeds and notify you when the people you are following have updated.

Flickr Gallery Plus! – Flickr Gallery Plus! allows you to see one large image next to the smaller thumbnails on the page. You can then move amongst the thumbnails to view all of the images as a larger version.

Flickr Original – Adds an option upon right clicking on a Flickr image to just directly download the original image at full size.

Flickr Themr – Tired of Flickr being white everywhere you look? Flickr Themr will add a blue & gray theme to the site as you browse it.

Flickrfox – With Flickrfox you get a sidebar for your browser that allows you to search Flickr photostreams while other web pages load.

FlickrSpaceBall – This extension removes the spaceball.gif that sits atop some images on Flickr.

FlickrTrans – Right click on any image on any site, and you can load it to your Flickr account and then use it

Fotofox – A photo upload manager that allows you to drag and drop images from your system into the extension, add tags, set privacy and more; then you can upload them to over 40 different photo sites including Flickr.

Lockr – Share content from Flickr with users on Facebook without them having to log into Flickr.

Uploadr for Flickr – Gives you the ability to upload images you find on various websites directly to your Flickr account. (via

Friday, May 2, 2008

Top 25 Great Blogger Widgets

Many people think that Blogger lacks in all of the extra goodies you can add to other platforms like WordPress, but it simply isn't true. By using widgets you can customize your blog as much as you like by just adding little snippets of code to the sidebars.

Allow users to talk to you via IM, see what your most popular posts are, or even read news from sites such as Mashable. With these 25 widgets, you can create an even more powerful way of communicating with your visitors, just make sure you don't overload them with too many!

Communications Widgets



Google Talk – Give visitors the ability to talk to you via Google Talk directly from your blog sidebar.

Jaxtr – Create a widget that allows people to call you on the phone without revealing the phone number to them.

Meebo Me – Meebo Me will allow you to create a chat box that you can install on your Blogger page, giving you the chance to converse with visitors to your site.

Skype – The official Skype widget allows you to create various buttons that can show your current status and also allows people to just click it and give you a call.

Tag-Board – Allows you to add a real-time chat board to your blog that your visitors and you can use to converse.


Social Widgets



Delicious Linkrolls – Share your Delicious bookmarks with the world with this easy to install linkroll widget.

FriendFeed Widget – Share all of your FriendFeed activity with the readers of your site.

Google Friend Connect – A makeshift social network that runs across any site that has installed Google Friend Connect. You can join a site, see the other members, play games and more.

LinkedInABox – LinkedInABox retrieves your LinkedIn profile to display on your blog, allowing people to look through things such as your specialties and experience.

MyBlogLog – If someone visits your blog that is also a member of MyBlogLog, their avatar and username will appear in the box. You can then click on any person to check out their profile on the service.

Twitter – Add your Twitter stream to your blog and display anywhere from your last tweet to the last twenty. Also gives a link for people to be able to follow you.

Share on Facebook – A simple widget that allows your readers to share items from your blog on Facebook.

SocialFeed – A miniature lifestreaming widget that broadcasts your activities on sites such as Twitter, StumbleUpon, Last.fm and so on. Has several different skins you can choose from.

Utility Widgets



Add This – The popular social bookmarking button is available for Blogger accounts.

Easy Comments – This widget allows you to add commenting to any page of your site by placing the widget at the bottom of a page. Allows people to say if they liked the comment, includes comment threading and more.

Google Search – Add an AJAX powered Google search box to your blog that you can allow to search the web and your blog, or even just restrict it to the contents of your site.

Popular Posts – This widget will take a look at your comments, up to the last 5,000, and generate a list of which posts had the most conversation around them.

Recent Comments – Display the most recent comments on your blog in this widget so that readers can join in the conversation.

Related Posts – Not so much a widget as a hack, this will give you the related post functionality that so many WordPress powered blogs use.

ShareThis – The highly customizable green button that ShareThis is known for can be added to your blog. Choose if you want it for social bookmarking, users emailing your posts and more.

Shout List Icons – Be the king (or queen) of social sharing with this widget that generates icons for over 30 social sites your blog can be added to.

Tag/Label Cloud – Gives you the ability to install a traditional tag cloud in your sidebar so people can see what you write about the most.


Miscellaneous Widgets



Flickr – You can generate an HTML or Flash based badge of your photo stream to share your images with your visitors.

Mashable – Yes, now you too can share the best web-related news on your blog with the Mashable widget.

Picasa Albums – Display your public Picasa albums in your blog sidebar with this handy widget. (via

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Top 100 Tools and Themes for Blogger

WordPress receives a lot of love from the blogging community, but Blogger.com is still a perfectly viable blogging platform for the majority of people.

In an effort to help those devoted Blogger users, we’ve gathered up the best of our lists about tools, themes and shortcuts for your preferred platform. Take a look through and you are sure to find something that will help you, even if you didn’t know you were looking for it!

Free Template Resources



5ColumnTemplate.Blogspot.com – This site only offers one template with five variations, but it isn’t every day you see a five column theme for any blogging platform, and it is actually pretty clean in presentation.

AllBlogTools.com – A collection of over 100 templates from an assortment of a lot of smaller designers. You can look them up by layout, color, subject matter and so on.

Blogger-Templates.Blogspot.com – Keeps a small selection of top-notch Blogger themes up and running.

Blogger-Templates.Deceblog.net – A small selection of unique themes for Blogger accounts.

Blogger-Templates-Directory.Blogspot.com – A large directory of Blogger templates, links to resources for further development and a whole lot more.

BloggerTemplates.org – Doesn’t seem to have been updated since it originally launched, but all of the templates still work, and have a lot of resemblance to WordPress themes.

BlogspotTemplates.Blogspot.com – Several pages of Blogger templates with tips on how to use them.

BlogspotTemplate.com – Right around 100 templates for Blogger of varying styles and colors.

BlogTemplates.Noipo.org – A small selection of graphical and text based templates for your blog.

BTemplates.com – Features a wide assortment of over 600 free Blogger templates that can be browsed by category, tag, number of downloads and so on.

Carl Galloway’s Blogger Templates – A small selection of some fairly unique templates that haven’t been updated in some time, but are still fully functional.

FinalSense.com – Offers over 300 templates for your Blogger account. Have just about every theme and color combination that you can think of.

FreeBlogger-Templates.Blogspot.com – Focuses heavily on simplified Blogger templates that make for the easiest reading possible.

FreeTemplates.Blogspot.coms – A blog dedicated to bringing you nothing but free Blogger templates. Nicely categorized, and easy to browse.

FreshBloggerTemplates.Blogspot.com – It has been a while since this site released any new templates, but their designs are very clean and still in working order.

Gecko & Fly Blogger Templates – Offers many Blogger templates, most of which are in a more “classic” style, as well as tutorials on how to tweak your blog even further.

GoSuBlogger.com – A large selection of free templates that mix original work with converted WordPress themes.

Isnaini.com – A large and varied collection of templates for use on Blogger, along with a detailed tutorial on how to properly insert them into your account.

JackBook.com – Besides offering a large selection of free templates, with a heavy saturation of video game inspired themes, JackBook also offers tips and pointers on better SEO for your blog.

OurBlogTemplates.com – An odd mix of nearly 200 free templates for you to use and with a dash of reviews of DSLR cameras.

PannaSmontana Templates – Numerous free templates for Blogger, but the site is entirely in Italian. Thankfully it is well designed and you can find your way around.

Public-Template.Blogspot.com – Features a mixture of free templates for you to download, tutorials on how to make your own, and admiration for templates they enjoy.

Simple-Blogskins.Blogspot.com – Offers a handful of free skins for your Blogger account.

Template-Godown.com – A site specializing in converting WordPress themes to the Blogger friendly XML format.

WP-Themes.us – Yes, the name points to them being all about WordPress themes, but they also provide a nice selection of free templates for Blogger.

Yanku-Template.Blogspot.com – Offers some very slick looking, free, Blogger templates of the 2 and 3-column varieties.

Premium Template Resources



ChicSassyDesigns.Blogspot.com – Offers up pre-built templates you can buy, will design unique themes and offers background images for sale that you can build your own template around.

PaperbackDesigns.Blogspot.com – Offers free themes and sidebar badges in addition to doing custom designed templates for a fee.

SuckMyLolly.com – A mixture of free and premium themes for your Blogger account. Very colorful in design and lacking the traditional Blogger look.

Tips & Tricks for Template Design



Firdamatic Template Generator – Allows you to generate 2 or 3-column templates by just filling in the blanks with your answers.

PhotoshopSupport.com – Tips for designing your own Blogger template, using Photoshop.

Fresh and Modern Blogger Templates




Aspire – A rustic look and calendar in the sidebar make this blog template perfect for history bloggers and traditional food bloggers.

Cat – Glossy, shiny; great for a web 2.0 centric blog.

Decorativo – Easy on the eyes, great for a literature-themed blog.

Erudite – I love the templates at this site. This particular one is very clean and can be easily customized.

Feminina 1 – Pink background and one for the girls. In fact, you will see a lot more pink in the Feminina series.

Flower Pink Border – If you’re up for something different, try this combination of black and pink.

Gemstone – Very nice use of the header area and a good color combination.

Genesis – A three-column dark color theme with nice header tabs and sidebar header buttons.

Glass – Another personal favorite of mine, creates that “wow” effect right from the start.

GossipCity – A three column template that will give your blog that metro look with stars and shines.

History channel – A template based on the History Channel.

Jeans – A template that looks like your faded jeans. Quite nice if you are a cowboy. Or like cowboys.

Leia – A popular template in three column. There are header tabs, and a big blog description space on the right-hand side.

Looter xp – A simple black and white design with some striking effects.

Mosaico – A template design in mosaic style.

Navideno – A eye appealing treat with a fruity flavor.

O2 – This is a popular WordPress template ported to Blogger. It is a three column template with a bigger sidebar on top of two mini bars on the right hand side.

Rainbow Garden - Would you like to have your post decorated nicely with the garden flowers? This is the template for you then.

Red Girl – Quite a nice theme with a red background and an unusual style. You can put your picture in the header.

Bloggerized AdSense – AdSense-ready template, not too shabby looking.

iPlantilla – Another Mac-themed template with a very clean look.

Secret – Nice hand drawings. And quite a unique design that is definitely striking.

Simplicity 2.0 – This pink color template looks classy and very feminine.

Styleicious – A nice color combination again with blue and black on this three column template.

Terra Firma – A nice Wordpress ported blog with space for Adsense in the header. Orange and green combination makes it looks fresh and bright.

1024px – A simple two column template on plain white background without much color, but with great readability.

Beautiful Blogger Templates



2-column templates


Andreas02 – Lots of tab links above the header. You can showcase the description of each active tab on the header.

Andreas08 – From the same author of the one above. The header is ready to be customized with your own picture.

Agua – A minimalistic, clean template giving a pure white look.

Cajas – A blog title in a header that looks like the Blogger navbar and five menu links with multi-color backgrounds that take the place of the traditional blog header.

Colibri – This reminds you of a garden, doesn’t it?

Dead – This one can be described as heavy metal/rock style – sinister and dark.

Eclipse – Another dark theme that brings werewolves to mind. An enchanting template for the dark souls.

Emire – Beautiful color combination but I wish there was more width for the post and the sidebar.

Hada-negra – A beautiful template – seductive and pleasing to the eyes.

Integral – The most striking visual details on this template are its rounded header and the green and sky-blue color combination.

K2 – A popular WordPress theme cloned for Blogger.

Minyx – A template that looks like an invitation card. Good use of space in the header.

Natural – If you are the artistic kind, this one will be a feast for your eyes.

Neoneon – This is another unique design – rectangular sidebar boxes and spiral main body.

S08 – A blue color body on a darker blue background – you might have thought it wouldn’t work, but here it is.

Vertical – As the name suggests, this is a vertically designed clean template. You might want to throw in some more code and utilize the space below the blog title better.

3-column templates


Andreas4 – Another popular Wordpress template by Andreas cloned for Blogger. The template can be used as a bare bone structure for customization.

Autumn Grass – I like the color combination and the vertical menu links in the header. There is also sufficient space there for ads and videos.

Butterfly Magic – Another beautiful color combination, or shall we call it just another butterfly effect

Columnas – This theme’s peculiar design stands out from the rest of the templates in this list. Nice and clean.


Cultivado
– Neat, floral, elegant – this one’s perfect for writing on life, philosophy, thoughts, poetry, love and the like.

Dark Ritual – A nice theme which somehow reminds us of the Adams Family.

Erudite – A neat three-column Blogger template with the black color header and the orange color RSS icon gelling well.

Green Marinee – A long time favorite of many bloggers ported to Blogger. Great use of space, and a nice color combination.

Hemingway – A beautiful dark template – one column for the post body and three column on the footer.

Illacrimo – A beautiful clone for Blogger from the WordPress theme Illacrimo, though I feel there should be a way to use more space currently taken by the date-display on the left of the screen.

Informativo – A similar template to the Columnas template above but with the header, for the less-unconventional bloggers who wants to stick with the proven.

Minimalista – Another great port from WordPress to Blogger.

Minyx 2.0 – A great template without pictures; good use of available space.

Pizza – Don’t be dissuaded by the pizza theme if you are thinking of using this for a different subject blog. The template is highly customizable. The unique element in this template is the header which has been divided into two parts. You can display your blog logo or title on the left-side header box while using the other box for whatever you like.

Pro – A different looking search box, menu links above the blog title, and the graduated blue header background in a unique design makes this template unique.

Puerto – Somehow this template makes the post body look grand and majestic.

The Hobbit – If you are a fan of Tolkien, this one is for you.

Neo – A 3 column template that reloads in parts allowing faster reading and surfing.

4-column templates


Neosapian – The contrast between black and red is striking. The second right-hand sidebar can be widened further and the red header can be used subtly for ads or to display more information. You decide whether to change the current header image or not

Qwilm – A simple looking great design that can be customized to a great extent.

Unique Blogger Templates



Digg – Do you have a burning desire to make your blog look like Digg? This theme turns the normal voting buttons into the dates of your entries and is just a bit of fun. The designer is Turkish, and the download is in his native tongue, but easily understandable.

Dream Light – Artistic and in your face, but maintains readability with ease.

Fly Net 02 – A very business-like template that gives you a 4-column header for information as well as a flash intro – if you want it.

iBlock – Versions of this template are available just for the iPhone/iPod Touch or you can keep the feel for a normal browser if you like.

Night Club – Made for actual nightclubs, but easily changed. Great for music enthusiasts, DJs, party promoters and more. It’s rare to see a black theme for any blogging platform that is actually readable, and this one handles it beautifully.

Nyoba – Nyoba gives you three columns as well as two Google AdSense units in prime locations, with an easy to change header image.

Retro Mac OS Theme – Are you ready to kick it old school style with your blog looking like it escaped from a 1980s Apple? This is your template!

The Girl – Available in multiple colors with different headers, it very much has a “WordPress feel” to it. If you prefer the convenience of Blogger, this would be a good theme for you to merge the two.

TotuliPink – Pink templates tend to be loud and hard on the retinas, but this one works quite well without making you want to run for the hills.

Miscellaneous Blogger Tools



AvantBlog – Post to your Blogger blog from your Palm or Windows CE device.

Back up your Blogger Blog – A comprehensive tutorial regarding the backup of your Blogger data.

Blogger Status – Stay up-to-date with the latest Blogger updates and so-on with the official Blogger blog.

Google Macintosh Dashboard Widgets – A quick way to post to your blog via the OS X dashboard.

HaloScan – Integrate trackbacks into Blogger.

w.bloggar – Windows application for integration with your blog, which includes several features web-based editors don’t offer. Manage various Blogger accounts efficiently. (via)