How to Improve the Readability of a Web Page for Free


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Boomarklets are awesome. I remember the first time I saw them – I was amazed! You find them on web pages, and you press the button linked to them. They’ll do a variety of things, depending on what they were designed to do. I used to use Internet Explorer, and have now switched to Safari. So, some of the bookmarklets I’ve made over the years no longer work. Certain bookmarklets will only work in certain browsers. The reason I’m bringing this up is that one: they’re actually just awesome. And two, you should always install them when you can, since they do a variety of great things. One I’ve recently found will help improve the readability of web pages.

The Readability Experiment by the folks at the arc90 lab is a browser bookmarklet. Reading anything on the Internet has become a full-on nightmare. As media outlets attempt to eke out as much advertising revenue as possible, we’re left trying to put blinders on to mask away all the insanity that surrounds the content we’re trying to read.

First you configure it: choose your style, including text size and page margin size. Make it look the way you would like, so that you’re more tempted to read it. If you’re on any web page that is annoying you because it wasn’t designed well, you can use it to ‘clean up’ the page. It will remove the unnecessary things you don’t want to see. I went to a post in my blog and clicked the Readability bookmarklet. It removed the video, the comments, and even the ads. It removed everything other than the actual content.

Readability is a very cool project. You can use it anywhere. My recommendation is to use it on MySpace, since they aren’t the best-designed pages on the planet. If you want to read any page easier without fighting through nonsense, install Readability.

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How to Edit PDFs for Free Online


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Editing PDFs is a PITA. You have to find a program that allows you to scan them in, attempt to edit them, save them to your documents, and hopefully turn out the way you need them to. Luckily, there’s a free online service that does the work for you!

PDFVue allows you to upload (or link to) your PDF, and you can easily edit it… and even add annotations. When you load the site, it will throw in a sample PDF for you to play around with. Practice using each of the various tools, so that you are ready to edit your own document when you’re ready. With PDFVue you can upload any document from any computer without having to have expensive client software. Once you’ve made your changes you can simply download the updated PDF or share the secure PDFVue link.

There are tons of options. You can add annotations, as I mentioned. You can also add links and dates, change the font and color, or add a sticky note! Save your PDF, or email it to coworkers! It’s exceedingly simple to use, and there’s nothing to sign up for or download. Heck, it’s even free!

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How to Backup a Web Page


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Web pages change all the time. For you to view an earlier revision of a page, you’ll need to view a cached version. There’s no easy way of taking a snapshot of a web page at a given point in time. At least, there wasn’t until now! A community member who goes by the handle of Nishi has created something that will make this infinitely easier!

With BackupUrl, you can create instant cached copies of web pages. This is helpful if you need the content of a web page to stay the same while you share the link we provide. The cached page can also be used for referencing or even mirroring data. The cached page will always be online even if the original site is down.

People who use this service simply copy and paste a URL and press the “backup” button. A truncated link is then created. People can then visit the cache as many times as they wish. The cached page will be a mirror image of the original, and will stay that way – even if/when the content of the site itself is changed or moved!

So why would you need to use this service? Web sites are updated, changed and even moved quite often… especially data on a research site, or news site. In the past, you had to save a web page as a file on your computer in order to access it exactly how it is at any given time, even once changed. By using BackupUrl, this is no longer the case. Create the cached page, and save the links in your bookmarks. If you have reading to catch up on, or research to finish, you can easily go back to find exactly where you were, without digging through archives. We all know what a pain that can be!

You never know when you’ll need a backup or a cache of any web page, make sure you use BackupUrl. This is a very unique service, and something I’ve never seen. Very cool… kudos to you, Nishi!

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More Network Tools for Professionals: PacketTrap pt360


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In some cases, you may be connected to the Intranet – meaning you need a set of tools to help you troubleshoot problems, or see a problem before you know it exists. PacketTrap’s pt360 allows you to flow results between tools, save network settings and favorites. The powerful, yet easy to use pt360 helps you tame your network.

You’ve pinged a server before to see how it responds. Instead of just getting numbers back, pt360 will give you a graphical presentation of how your website looks. There are a total of 14 extra tools that come with pt360 Pro, including things like Cisco config backup and a NetFlow analyzer. The free version is more limited, but still very useful. They are consolidating a bunch of open-source tools into one dashboard. It’s hard to build your own interface, and PacketTrap has taken that difficulty away for you.

The suite of tools is all wrapped up into one graphical user interface, and is tabbed for ease of use. You can use the Enhanced Ping tool to list your DNS, as well. There’s also a DNS search tool, which allows you to check to see what sites are owned by whom.

Offered at just $99, the PacketTrap pt360 Tool Suite PRO consolidates dozens of network management and monitoring tools into a single, integrated interface. When ordering, you can receive a free tshirt, simply by entering the coupon code CHRISPIRILLO.

This tool is great for small business owners, and even IT techs who have to go out into the field to troubleshoot networks. The tab feature is very easy and convenient to use. We use tabs in our web browsers, so it makes sense to use them in our network tools.

Many of the similar tools you’ll find will cost you well over $1000.00. This one, however, is only $99.00. This makes it super-affordable for the smaller businesses who simply cannot afford those high-end tools. And best of all – this program works just as well – if not better than many of those others!

Download PacketTrap pt360 today and try it free for seven days. I guarantee that at the end of the trial, you’ll be ready to buy the suite for yourself.

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Is DSL Really Broadband?

troy_w_banther: Not all of are fortunate enough to have anything better than DSL. 😛

about 54 minutes ago

Paradigms: the Linux distro or the communications technology?

about 4 hours ago

BenjaminPrice: I wasn&#39t either until I got fed up with Comcast metering broadband, so DSL is it now

about 13 hours ago

Foxxchasser1: i had cable internet and loved the fast upload speed but the company kept blocking ports on my service so i had to go to DSL

about 13 hours ago

identityTBA: Same here

about 15 hours ago

wwejason: Don&#39t like DSL, huh? 50,000 times better that cable. Don&#39t believe me? Listen to Leo: www.twit.tv/ttg539

about 16 hours ago

kpslover007: I have DSL at the moment. Do you recommend getting broadband/cable internet back?

about 16 hours ago

CodyMcGrew: why not beats dial up

about 16 hours ago

gmaendel: How about truck stop WiFi?

about 17 hours ago

htnguyen: what!?!?!? DSL > Cable!

about 17 hours ago

adamfield: some of us have no options. It&#39s not unbearable.

about 17 hours ago

tadrow: It&#39d be nice if all the fiber that was supposed to be carrying our calls actually was here. “We don&#39t care. We don&#39t have to.”

about 17 hours ago

jptacek: Can you explain Microsoft&#39s M for us?

about 17 hours ago

TreyRust: dialup FTW!

about 17 hours ago

tadrow: I wish we had options. My mom can&#39t even *get* DSL yet, and my aunt can barely get phone service, much less dialup.

about 17 hours ago

Joshrath: Found the link for the CNN video, Check your email.

about 17 hours ago

morontown: who is? No srously

about 17 hours ago

drmacpro: Damn slow Linux?

about 17 hours ago

lemasney: how are you on Fiber to the Home? I&#39m a fan.

about 17 hours ago

garrigus: Why not? What do you use… cable? Do you think that&#39s better? Much more expensive though, right?

about 17 hours ago

ktoddstorch: understatement of the year?

about 17 hours ago

Tofur: DSL as in the broadband connection or DSL as in broad&#39s d sucking lips?

about 17 hours ago

Darkfalz01: I loved my DSL (beat Charter Cable) but they just couldnt compete (speed or price) and we have only those 2 choices here :{

about 17 hours ago

millettepc: Dryloop DSL is awsome.. no silly phone company to deal with!

about 17 hours ago

thattalldude: I might be, but I&#39d have to experience it with more than 3Mbps theoretical top speed. Only choice here though, no competition.

about 17 hours ago

1only: I don&#39t think there are a lot of DSL fans anymore, I could be wrong.

about 17 hours ago

StephenCraig: me neither, but we get it for free, my mom works from home 🙂

about 17 hours ago

Memoriestolast: you&#39re kidding- seriously? Film?

about 17 hours ago

KerwinStewart: What about Fios?

about 17 hours ago

AnoxiA425: No one is ever a fan of DSL

about 17 hours ago

MikeKukielka: U-Verse by AT&T is better.

about 17 hours ago

chrispirillo: I&#39m just not a huge fan of DSL.

about 17 hours ago