The Download Blog

Yahoo OneSearch finds a home on your Nokia

Updated on 8/21/08 at 3:54 pm to correct information about the models supported.

Starting Thursday, searching the Web with a Nokia series 60 phone will be a little faster.

Yahoo's mobile team has released a free shortcut for OneSearch, Yahoo's search engine, that will live on your phone's home screen. The OneSearch widget promises to cut your labor two ways; first, by giving you a place to begin a Web search as soon as you turn on the phone and second, by suggesting search terms as soon as you start typing.

The home screen … Read more

A much deeper Facebook experience coming to iPhone users

On Wednesday night, Facebook previewed the next version of its popular iPhone application, which has retained one of the top spots in Apple's App Store since its launch in early July.

The new mobile version is a complete overhaul that shares much in common with the redesign of Facebook's Web version--a move that could be paving the way for mobile advertising and applications later on down the road.

The biggest addition in version 2.0 is support for real-time status updates, including integration with the service's messaging and live chat. At the time of launch, users will … Read more

Yahoo launches iPhone-optimized search site

Earlier this week, Yahoo rolled out a new mobile search site designed specifically for use on Apple's iPhone and iPod Touch devices. Some background information was provided by Yahoo developer Ryan Grove on his blog.

Grove explained that he wanted to make as few concessions and compromises as possible when it came to bringing Yahoo search to the iPhone. So the new mobile site comes with some goodies, too: SearchAssist, to auto-complete inquiries; compatibility with Yahoo's SearchMonkey widgetized results (if you're logged in), and search shortcuts like weather, movie times, and local information.

Early reviews seem to … Read more

Zoho launches document sharing service

Today's addition to the rapidly-expanding suite of Zoho's productivity apps is Zoho Share, a straightforward utility for sharing word processing documents, spreadsheets, PDF files, and slide shows. The online app reads in several popular document formats (although not yet the .docx, .xlsx, and .pptx files from Office 2007), and of course Zoho's own documents. It creates embeddable viewers for all of them. Users can comment on files, just as they can on other sharing systems.

In the pre-release beta I looked at, uploading wasn't working and I didn't see a way to create a limited … Read more

Featured Freeware: Process Monitor

Imagine Regmon on steroids, and you'll have a glimpse of this home-run hitting process watchdog. Process Monitor's simple spreadsheet-like interface displays processes through a user-created filter. The interface lacks simple single-click column sorting, however, columns are easily shown or hidden.

Process Monitor displays an extensive amount of information that will appeal mainly to advanced users. Context-clicking a process offers a pop-up menu of options to display additional information or affect the process. The pop-up is also available as the toolbar Event menu. Other pull-down menus manipulate the great amount of information to highlight trends. A button bar offers … Read more

The best iPhone apps for foodies

In this day and age when every other person is a self-described foodie, finding the best mobile application to point you to a taste bud-bending experience requires as much discernment as finding the authentic voice from among throngs of folks who think they know good eats.

I'd be lying if I didn't claim snobby epicurean tendencies, myself.

This headstrong belief in one's own taste credentials is exactly what fuels the need for informative and well-designed food-finding applications. Too simple and a foodie will shun it. Too esoteric and it could alienate a growing segment of people who really care about the art and science of meal-making.

I've recently studied several restaurant-recommending applications for iPhone and other mobile platforms, including Yelp and Urbanspoon for iPhone and Zagat To Go for Windows Mobile, Palm, and BlackBerry, and wondered how relative newcomers Munch ($0.99) and LocalEats ($0.99) compare to these more established services.

There are, of course, things to laud and criticize with each app. Munch's interface has a great method for quick-launching searches for pizza, Mexican, and so on from icons in the screen navigation. You can select other cuisines from a scrolling list. Munch returns wonderfully accurate search results, but is devoid of context. There are no reviews, no Web site listings, and every restaurant we looked at was rated with five empty stars. That's doable if you want a listings app, but for anyone trying to make intelligent choices, it just won't work.

LocalEats fares much better. The app brings you the best 100 (or more) restaurants in 50 U.S. cities as determined by a team of foodie professionals, authors of the online dining guide Where the locals eat. The benefit is that unlike Urbanspoon, no national chain even thinks of making an appearance. You can search each city's highest-rated establishments by alphabetical order, cuisine type, or the best of each category. For larger cities you can also search by neighborhood.… Read more

Don't lose what you've found: WebMynd

WebMynd (download) is a Firefox extension its developers hope solves a common Web problem: finding again that which what you've already found. WebMynd adds two very useful functions to your browsing: site-by-site recording of where you've been, and integrating your history (plus Delicious bookmarks) into specific Google searches.

The site-by-site recording creates a timeline view of your browsing and a photo browser-like display. Want the site you found Friday after lunch? Rewind using the Reel view. Looking for the site with the purple logo thing? The Grid view is good for your visual memory. Since you might not … Read more

WikidPad wikifies your life

I'm more than a bit skeptical of many of the online fads for staying organized, like 43 Things. They all seem to emphasize learning their system as much as using it, which does not inspire much confidence. WikidPad doesn't work that much differently, so I was hesitant to give it more than a second thought. What it does benefit from is the incorporated note-taking aspect, which links your work to your To Do list, and by an intuitive filtering system intuitive that helps you stay on top of stuff through a wiki lens.

Open-source, free, and cross-platform WikidPadRead more

Pidgin speaks to MSN users

Despite the uncomplicated version number, open-source, multiclient chat app Pidgin 2.5 doesn't include any major improvements unless you're fascinated by bug-fixes or are a big MSN-messenger user.

Available for Windows, in a portable version, and for Linux, the update features support for Microsoft's Live Messenger offline messaging, and personal messages. The latter will show up as Status messages. Live Messenger's non-face Smileys should be updated, too.

Other improvements are much smaller in scale: Group and Chat buddy list entries now support custom buddy icons via the context menu, and there's the usual spate of … Read more

Microsoft planning IE privacy mode

For many, privacy on the Web is a concern. And for Microsoft's Internet Explorer team, privacy is a feature.

In a meeting with reporters this week, Satya Nadella, senior vice president of Microsoft's search, portal and advertising platform group, said the company's browser will come with a private browsing mode. And Long Zheng of the istartedsomething blog surfaced two telling Microsoft trademarks that appear related: Cleartracks and Inprivate.

Both trademarks are involved with Web browsers, according to the applications with a July 30 filing date. The Cleartracks trademark involves "computer programs for deleting search history after … Read more