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Mouser's Zone / Re: Any new ideas for small utilities?
« on: March 29, 2005, 01:28 PM »
ah i see, these put stuff on the desktop background, rather than dock.

well.. i can try to whip up a demo pretty quickly next week if no one finds anything by then..

This saturday's award will be for best Website Change Monitoring tool.
There are several of these such programs available, and some free ones as well.

here's a good page of some:
shareware ->
freeware ->
(now you know why SnapFiles is on our links page as one of the best software search sites)

ok so, keeping with the plans for ASRT, what would be nice is some replies in the next week on the following kinds of subjects:
1) if you found a program that falls into this category that looks especially good, post a link to it
2) post features you think are important for this category
3) post information about how you think a particular app stacks up against others, and how it stacks up using the features suggested by you or others
what features are lacking, which are good, etc.

[ edited - i've edited this post and removed my current expected winner  until we decide whether announcing the candidate winner selected by reviewer should be public ]

i know this category quite well and prior to our collective decision here to get group participation in the reviews, i made a preliminary choice of the winner of this category and contacted the author about offering a discount to our members, under the same conditions as our other discounts (ie absolutely no commission or payment to this site, all discount goes to users).  this decision is not final, but i thought it was worth mentioning.  however, your views and opinions and feature lists would still be incredibly helpful in writing a comprehensive review, and there is always the issue of awarding a freeware alternative, etc.  and the discussion about best program will, as we discussed earlier, be a useful record for others to read along with the award.

General Review Discussion / Re: About this section
« on: March 29, 2005, 12:07 PM »
well let's just start with this weeks upcoming award.
i will post in separate thread.

General Review Discussion / Re: About this section
« on: March 29, 2005, 11:31 AM »
i'm a little reluctant to put choosing a winner to a vote.
i can certainly see the merits in it, however i see a few problems.  first, we i don't think i'm yet comfortable with having the decision be decided by the board - when we get more people and i get to know people's views a little more, that may change.  right now i feel like there is some value in having a consistent flavor to the decisions.  it's very subjective some of the time deciding on these best-of awards.  i realize that, and i realize that my choices are not going to be other people's choices.  but at least when you read a review at this site you will know about my biases and tendencies; it also might be difficult for me (or any reviewer) to talk about a winning program that he/she didn't believe should be the winner(!).  if you read the guidelines i put up on the review page about UI design you may find that some people disagree with some of these, and i'm keen to have the reviews continue to reflect this consistent set of guidelines, even if majority opinion here might not always agree.

so at the moment what i would prefer to do is have me continue to make the final decision about a winner, but rather than the way i've been doing it, which is to evaluate all these apps can come to a decision in private, let me put it out there before hand, let people make their case about why they prefer another app, etc.  and let this all be part of the official record that anyone reading the review can see, just by one click on the "forum" button at the bottom of the review.  we can change it to "discuss this review and read dissenting opinions".

in this way, reviews would still have my biases and final judgement, and a consistent "feel" but it will be easy for people to read how other people might disagree or (agree).

i'm not against also having a vote in that thread where we could get a collective sense of what the board thinks is the best program, which could go against the reviewers final choice.

does that make sense?

Mouser's Zone / Re: Any new ideas for small utilities?
« on: March 29, 2005, 11:19 AM »
this should not be too hard to do if there isnt already an app for this.

windows already has a system in place whereby you can "dock" a bar on the side of your screen, and all other apps will obey it, so that if you click "maximize" they will stop at the boundry of this dock.

i use one mysefl for a launcher, it is a bar that docks to side of the screen and the destop is reduced in size so that nothing every intrudes on top of it.  it is extremely reliable and ive never seen it fail.

it seems to me that one way to solve your problem, other than samuraize modifying their code to act like a dock, would be to design a "transparent" docking bar type thing, whose only job was to be a transparent thing that docked to the side of your screen and reserved the space.

kind of a fun idea - and i *believe* that it sould not be hard to make it so you can "click-through" this transparent bar - thats the only thing i'm not 100% sure of.  obviously if you cant, then there are problems with this idea, but i believe i've seen skinned shaped windows that do this so i don't think it would be a problem.

keep looking for a tool to do this - if you still can't find one in a week or so remind me again, could be something that might be whipped up in a couple of days.

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