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Dear iDailyDiary

Rediscover the lost art of diary-keeping with this top-flight freeware.

Keeping a diary was once something that all educated people were expected to do, but these days diaries are most often seen as small, ornate books with locking covers that are solely the possession of tween girls (and, occasionally, their little brothers). That's a shame, because there are a lot of reasons to keep a diary, both personal and for posterity. Owning a PC makes keeping a diary too easy, especially with excellent free diary programs like iDailyDiary from Splinterware.

The program's main page bears a strong resemblance to a word processor or a full-featured e-mail client such as Outlook, with selectable toolbars for navigation, cutting and pasting, searching, fonts, bullets, and other text effects. A calendar bar runs along the bottom of the page; days with entries are highlighted in colors as a quick visual aid. You can browse through weeks, months, and years of entries, or use handy navigation arrows, and instantly return to today's entry. You can easily insert and remove pictures and hyperlinks from your diary pages. An especially handy feature is the ability to embed links to previous diary entries, so you can instantly go to the relevant page without having to search. You can change themes, too.

As we've noted, iDailyDiary is freeware, which means no excuses for the would-be diarist. There's an upgraded version, iDailyDiary Pro, that's $30; it adds features like a spell checker, thesaurus, sticky notes, and many more themes. If you like the freeware, you'll probably like the pro version's extra features too.

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