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Review: Launch8

Pros:

Appeal: Launch8 brings a fresh take on the modern Start screen by giving you access through a familiar user path to your apps, now more commonly found on mobile devices.

Tweakable: In addition to its clean look, the app dock's effects can be customized by color and transparency. Icon sizes also scale accordingly to size, should you opt for a larger dock. You can also add both desktop and modern apps.

Accessibility: Recent apps and files pop up in a drawer-like fashion, similar to the drawer found on OS X's application dock.

Cons:

Constrained: The placement is … Read more

Review: WindowBlinds 8 goes modern with style

WindowBlinds version 8 brings a couple new features that include a brand new interface, better support for Windows 8, and SkinStudio, a theme designer that lets users create their own customizations.

There are four main aspects of your windows that you can modify: style, color, texture, and background. Styles are preset schemes to make your windows look new. Version 8 includes a couple new styles (including Win8, which mimics the flat style of Modern UI). Each style contains a substyle that'll modify a graphic or tailor your windows and taskbars to be more in line with your current version … Read more

Three application launcher alternatives for Windows

Not sure what an application launcher does? It's basically a tool to organize shortcuts to applications, and some can even disable the appearance of your Start menu and Taskbar. 

Below are three launcher programs, each providing a different experience and list of functions but all acting as alternatives to what Windows has to offer.

Appetizer

The first alternative on the list is a small, open-source launcher. Some degree of customization is built into the program in the form of skins and icon packs. While only two skins are available with the installation, several more are available for download … Read more

More fun for your Windows taskbar

If you like the interface of the Mac OS but are stuck using a Windows machine, this little app from Stardock can help--if only very slightly. The premise behind ObjectDock is very simple: it adds an animated, Mac-inspired dock to your desktop that provides easy access to useful shortcuts and serves to replace your taskbar (if you so choose).

The ObjectDock install is quick and light, and the program is extremely easy to set up. A simple settings menu lets you choose how many items you want on the dock, where it is positioned, and whether you want zoom enabled. … Read more

Care to cure your dock envy?

One of the best features in Windows 7 is its revamped taskbar and its program-pinning. Combining the utility of customization, big and legible icons, and stylish preview windows, it radically changes the Windows interface. Until it's released, Windows XP users will have to get by with third-party docking programs.

One of the most popular Windows dock replacements, ObjectDock, replaces the taskbar with a colorful, animated dock similar to the taskbar in Mac OS X. It displays icons for currently running programs and hosts quick-launch icons for your favorite programs. As you pass the cursor over each icon, ObjectDock magnifies … Read more

Featured Freeware: ObjectDock

Are you jealous of that slick Mac interface? Check out ObjectDock, a free utility that replaces the Windows Taskbar with a colorful, animated dock similar to the taskbar in Mac OS X.

ObjectDock displays icons for currently running applications and can hold quick-launch icons for your favorite programs. As you pass the cursor over each icon, ObjectDock magnifies it and displays relevant information, helping you find what you need even when you're running several programs at once. An attractive but optional clock rounds out the toolbar. The tiny utility comes with a dozen attractive skins, and users with slow … Read more

ObjectDock rocks

Power Downloader and I have talked about how useful RocketDock can be, and it is still is. But another excellent program dock to check out is ObjectDock, from Stardock. Besides providing a skinable and extensively customizable Mac-style dock, the free ObjectDock lets users replace the Windows taskbar completely.

Colorful and animated, ObjectDock is so customizable it's impressive. Not only can you choose your own icons to represent programs and documents, set the dock size and location, and configure icon behavior, but you can also set the dock to run faster and take up more RAM, or sacrifice the gloss … Read more