The Download Blog

Mash Facebook, MySpace into one application

As Meebo, Pidgin, and Trillian are to instant messaging, Sociagami is to social networking.

Enter your passwords into the brand new Windows application to manage your Facebook and MySpace accounts from the single, nonskinnable interface. Friends are represented by thumbnail images in two columns by default, but a slider enlarges them to fit single file or reduces them to three or four abreast.

There's some nice functionality here--you can retrieve and submit comments and messages, manage friend requests, view buddies' buddies, and flip through photos in a separate slide show pane. You can add contacts too, if you encounter … Read more

Ben Benjamin, 'Selective Periphera': Free MP3 of the Day

Ben Mullins' new project might be a vision of bedroom pop's future. Built of choppy drum loops and shiny synth leads, it nonetheless feels soulful in spirit, showing how, with the right melodies and mixing, a "sterile" vocabulary can make music that's far from it.

Killer Download: Organize, tag music collections

I get my music from several places. Over time I've ripped most of the CDs in my collection and have also bought songs on iTunes. Though file sharing is tempting--and fairly popular judging by our Most Popular list--I've only used those applications a couple of times over the years for long lost remixes. I guess I try to stay legal out of respect for the musicians, but this article isn't about the legality of file sharing.

The problem is, when you get your music from a lot of different sources, you end up with strangely tagged tracks … Read more

Cell phone users: Get pitas, haircuts for less

I like Cellfire, a mobile coupons app that's optimized for BlackBerry, Symbian, and Windows Mobile, and has a WAP site for cell phones (www.cellfire.com from your phone's browser.) They've got a smart business plan, good partnerships, and wide accessibility to users through support for multiple carriers and platforms.

Too bad some of the national offerings are so pedestrian, such as Cellfire's partnerships with Supercuts and Extreme Pita, announced Wednesday. That's only mundane if you're a snob like me. If you're most people, Cellfire's deals with local, regional, and national retailers … Read more

Dwight Yoakam, "Just Passin' Time": Free MP3 of the Day

Mixing uptempo quasi-rockabilly songs with introspective ballads that are heartfelt but never saccharine, Yoakam's got a rare ability to move both Nashville stalwarts and alt-country scenesters alike. This song's from his his stellar 2005 album "Blame the Vain."

Spyware Horror Story: Extra painful XP recovery

Published by Aaron; Monroe, Mich.

Hooray for an event-filled Saturday afternoon with FailDows eXtraPainful edition (Windows XP)! I have been having a Trojan problem for the last week, but thought it was no big deal. Its name was something starting with "CC/." I forget the rest, but it didn't show up in either Symantec or McAfee's databases.

I updated my Avira AntiVir and started a full system scan. After about 40 minutes of scanning, it found one Trojan in three different parts of my hard drive. One was in the system restore files, one in my … Read more

Zumobi ditches beta, gets its act together

Surfing the Web on a cell phone screen can be the laggy, draggy pits, but companies like Zumobi want to make it a rush. The announcement of Zumobi's first full release (for Windows Mobile 5 and 6) brings the Microsoft-birthed, now Microsoft-partnered platform for delivering mobile content closer to the dream.

I've been following Zumobi's young career for some time and happily, its character is catching up to its glitz. Version 1.0 corrects many of the beta's more glaring errors, including major functionality potholes that are now mostly paved over.

For the uninitiated, Zumobi is a grid of 16 thumbnails that users access by zooming into a quadrant and then zooming in again to an often-customizable "tile," each of which is populated by the content partner and updated several times a day. For instance, Amazon's tile operates a portable-book store that also links to Amazon's mobile site. AP News, MTV, Epicurious, and Flickr are other well-known brands.… Read more

Customize your Windows right-click menu

Who doesn't love to right-click, especially when browsing the Web? Whether saving images we like to our local drives, copying HTML links to send to friends, or scanning downloaded files for viruses, the right-click has become an essential part of most users' computing lives.

Yet how many times have you right-clicked on a file in Windows and then painfully scoured a long list to find the only option you need; sometimes it's the only one you ever use. Wouldn't life be much simpler to have only the items you want in your right-click menu? Well, for Windows … Read more

Guilty Simpson, "Getting Riches": Free MP3 of the Day

It's high time the J Dilla protege, a Jaylib contributor, got a feature full-length, and Simpson proves a muscular and engaging voice on "Ode to the Ghetto." Pouring years of Detroit wisdom into every track, he manages, with his powerful baritone, to both intimidate and endear.

Insider Secrets: Don't get scammed by phishers

Responding to an urgent e-mail about your compromised bank account is tempting, almost involuntary. That's exactly what phishers are counting on when they link you to a false site and pump you for personal details. Learn how to skirt their tricks in this Insider Secrets video, and remind yourself of other ways to avoid suspicious Web sites that might not have your best intentions in mind.