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Firefox extension Glue gets Facebook-connected

There is something about the Semantic Web that gets me all excited about the future of the Internet. Services like Glue are making sense of data all across the Web and allowing users to interact with it.

CNET News' Dan Farber has covered the basic functionality of Glue, but to recap, after installing the Glue Firefox extension, when you visit supported sites about movies, music, books, or other included categories, the Glue bar will slide down, giving you the opportunity to give your input on the product.

One of the things Glue is introducing today is the ability to interact … Read more

KidZui 4 looks the same, but has back-end changes

KidZui's closed-system browser for children upgrades to version 4, but fans of the program won't notice many changes initially. Available for Windows and Mac and as a Firefox extension, the update encompasses a range of changes, including optimization for Netbooks, client- and server-side caching, simplified animations, and a number of bug fixes. Most importantly, the program is supposed to run faster, although that was hard to judge from 10 minutes of use. It's not slower, though.

The big changes that kids and their parents will pick up on mainly involve smoother integration between the interface and the … Read more

Webware Radar: Mozilla gets cute with new skins

Mozilla announced a variety of new skins for its Firefox Web browser Tuesday. Many of the skins are from well-known brands and fashion designers. According to the company, All American Rejects-, Lady Gaga-, and No Doubt-themed music skins are currently available. Those looking for fashion designs can have a BCBG Max Azria skin, while those who want to support Lance Armstrong and the fight against cancer can download the Livestrong skin. Many more free skins are available on Mozilla's new "Personas" page.

The Weather Channel has launched the second version of its iPhone app, the company announced … Read more

Postbox continues to fill out features

The open-source and cross-platform e-mail client Postbox rolls out another beta and has been quickly adding muscle to its abilities.

Based on Mozilla Thunderbird and currently available for Windows and Mac, Postbox beta 10--the third update since I checked out the program for in the beginning of February--introduces several small changes worth noting.

Since then, Postbox has seen Hotmail support, Flickr integration in the Compose window, and a host of bug-fixes including two Firefox security updates. In the most recent version, users get the ability to create and edit HTML signatures from the Compose Sidebar's Signature panel and improved … Read more

Find the right Firefox add-ons

If you're a Firefox user, chances are you've been using add-ons to extend its functionality. But if you haven't, or if you're looking for new add-ons, I've found 20 for you to try. But since installing all 20 will probably slow your browser to a crawl, I've broken them into four categories. I have grouped the add-ons into "packs" for business professionals, shoppers, social-network fanatics, and students.

The business professional

Xmarks (download): If you're running a business and want everyone in the office to have the same resources available to them, Xmarks is the way to do it. Simply download it into your browser, create an account, and install it on all the browsers in the office. Once configured, every Xmarks instance connected to that account will be automatically updated whenever a user adds a bookmark. In other words, if one employee adds Webware to their bookmarks, every other person in the office who's running Xmarks will have it installed, as well.

Jigsaw Contact and Company Search: Most business professionals need to have easy access to a company's contact information. If you're one of those people, consider using the Jigsaw Contact and Company Search. Jigsaw, a global online business directory, features millions of contacts and company profiles that can be searched by title, geography, and business.

Stock Pilot (download): Sometimes going to Google Finance is too time consuming to get quick public company info. Try using Stock Pilot instead. The add-on allows you to switch between financial sites to research a particular stock. It also boasts RSS alerts to update you when news breaks about a company you're tracking. Ready access to SEC filings makes it a handy tool for anyone who wants to see a company's quarterly or annual financial data.

TripSync: Once you install the TripSync travel manager add-on, you'll be blown away by its functionality. You can book and hold reservations to places across the world, receive travel alerts, and place your itineraries on Outlook and Google Calendar. TripSync is designed specifically for the business professional, so it's a bit more useful than using a site like Expedia.

WOT (download): WOT, short for Web of Trust, is designed to ensure security and privacy are maintained while you're browsing. Once installed, the add-on warns you about risky Web sites. It also alerts you to sites that deliver malware or send spam. The add-on shows you safety ratings on over 21 million sites.

The shopper

1 Stop travel and retail shopping engine: If you want to find the best deals across the U.S., Europe, or Canada, the 1 Stop travel and retail shopping engine add-on is a good place to start. While you're browsing, it allows you to search for flights on more than 40 airlines. It also lets you search for deals on more than 20 sites, including Amazon, eBay, and Wal-Mart. Once you start searching in the add-on, it finds the desired page and automatically opens it in a separate tab.

Buy it online (download): If you've ever been on a Web site and found a product you'd like to buy, but were forced to go to Amazon.com to search for it, you'll be happy to know that there's an add-on designed specifically for you. Dubbed "Buy it online," the add-on adds another option when you right-click on a product title on any Web page. If you click the "Buy it online!" button, you'll be shown a listing of all the stores on the Web that are currently selling the product. All the retailers listed are well-known and trustworthy.

eBayBuddy (download): If you're obsessed with eBay, there's a great add-on you might want to consider. Dubbed eBayBuddy, the tool is available in the right-click menu in Firefox and allows you to have full access to eBay's site map, search, and more. It's a great way to quickly and easily find products on eBay without being forced to deal with the site itself.

KeepCash Coupon Notifier (download): As someone who frequents coupon sites and goes to a retailer's page with the discount ready to be used, I found KeepCash Coupon Notifier to be an extremely useful add-on. Whenever you go to a retail site, it automatically searches its database to find any coupons currently available for the site you're on. If there are, it will list them for you to be used while you're shopping.

PriceAdvance (download): When you run PriceAdvance and surf to a retail site to research a product, the add-on will tell you its price on a handful of other prominent sites across the Web. For instance, if you're on Amazon looking to buy an Xbox 360, the site will automatically search for other retailers selling the console and display their pricing, so you can be sure that you're getting the best price.… Read more

Two security holes patched in Firefox 3.0.8

Correction and update:This post was updated at 1:53 p.m. with a corrected headline (the word "patched" was missing) and additional and winnowed information on the security holes.)

Mozilla published a critical security upgrade for Firefox Friday evening. Version 3.0.8 for Windows, Mac, and Linux fixes two security holes listed as "critical."

One patched an arbitrary code execution hole through an XUL element, and the other corrected an XSL stylesheet exploit. Both fixes patch crash-based security holes in which remote codes could have been run.

The release notes for Firefox 3.0.… Read more

Conquer the world or conquer the universe: iPhone apps of the week

The Game Developers Conference (GDC) was in San Francisco's Moscone Center this week, and I got a chance to walk the show floor in search of new iPhone games and sample gaming technologies on the horizon for other platforms. As I walked the floor, I was lucky enough to be able to talk to a couple of iPhone game developers, including the guys from Subatomic Studios, developers of Field Runners ($2.99), as well as Phil Hassey who created Galcon, one of the games I mention below.

It's exciting to see the iPhone and iPod Touch on display … Read more

MacHeist 3 brings back the great software deals

For the past two years, several independent Mac software developers have teamed up to put together a bundle of award-winning Mac apps at a vastly reduced price--with 25 percent of the purchase price donated to the charity of your choice (chosen from a list). The whole thing takes place at a very well-designed site called MacHeist.com and over the past two years, thousands of Mac users have snapped up the limited time offer--it's really a great deal! The fun part about the MacHeist offer is the developers of MacHeist make it into a kind of scavenger hunt. They … Read more

Apple activates Genius feature for iTunes videos

Apple has switched on its Genius recommendation engine for videos, two weeks after releasing the latest version of iTunes (download for Windows and Mac) without the promised feature.

iLounge spotted the new Genius feature, which recommends movies or television shows you might be interested in purchasing from the iTunes Store based on your current video library. Apple unveiled a similar feature for music last year, but one notable difference with the video version is that it only seems to work with videos that have been purchased from Apple, according to iLounge's early testing.

When iTunes 8.1 shipped earlier … Read more

Pirate Bay to offer cheap, unlogged VPN

Back in July 2008, torrent tracker The Pirate Bay announced plans to encrypt the Internet. That hasn't happened yet, but they plan to offer a VPN tunneling service to the public starting April 1.

Dubbing the service IPREDator after the controversial Swedish Intellectual Property Rights Enforcement Directive (IPRED) that takes effect the same day. IPRED's main goal is to make it easier for copyright holders to acquire the personal data of suspected illegal file sharers.

By offering a VPN service that doesn't log its traffic, IPREDator is simultaneously setting itself apart from other Web-based VPN services and … Read more