Use driveshortcut to mount your usb drives on the windows desktop.

Jan 31

One of the challenges of a slider is being able to navigate between different operating systems without being hindered by small details that differ from OS to OS. So why not ‘port over’ the best of each OS to the other ones. What I like a lot when working both in Ubuntu and Osx is when you insert a removable drive. On both Osx and Linux this brings up an icon for the removable device on your desktop. This makes it easy to see if the device is mounted and to access whatever files you have on it. On windows however you need to open up the explorer and look for the right driveletter … Or Do you ? Tweaknow’s “driveshortcut” runs in the taskbar and brings the familiar icons to your windows 7 or 8 desktop. The app is free and brings that usb disk full of Care bear cartoons, one click closer.

Links : DriveIcon.

How do you make the transition between different operating systems smoother ? Tell us in the comments section.

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Blackberry 10 in 600 seconds.

Jan 30

Oh how the might have fallen. There used to be a time when RIM was the mighty king of the smartphone land , gazing out over the rolling hills filled with scores of wild yuppies and wandering herds of lone businessmen. From the savannah of wallstreet to the deserts of the White House …Blackberries where everywhere.

Skulking at the fringes of this mighty kingdom the vultures were patiently biding their time. Picking off the occasional nerd with a budget, Palm, Compaq and Nokia tried to sell of their barely functional expensive gizmo’s without ever making a dent in Blackberries market.

Just a couple of years later the times have changed. Nokia is crawling out of its very own mid-life crisis, Microsoft is building its marketshare and Apple wades deep into denial as the stockprice says that its downhill from here. Samsung and Htc ride the green android across the wasteland as, far off in the distance .. The lion roars one last time.

In a desperate attempt to stay relevant Rim reveals Blackberry 10. But the question is : is it still relevant ? Check out this ten minute review on whats coming down for the Crackberry junkies.

So what do you think of RIM’s future ? Is Blackberry making the great comeback or not ? Tell us in the comments section.

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Six essential Windows 8 keyboard shortcuts.

Jan 30

Windows 8,  Its here, its revolutionary, its the biggest thing since .. since .. Oh forget it 🙂 Marketing talk always makes me sleepy so by the time the silly adds come to an end I’m always fast asleep. What I do know however is that the entire new Windows interface (Which is pretty daring to say the least ) only works if you can TOUCH it. However, not all OEM machines that get shipped today HAVE that touchscreen .. so you go have to look for your charms using your little mouse pointer. This is about as unproductive as trying to run a mouse centred interface (like for example a Citrix connection) on an iPad. So time to beef up your Windows 8 Ninja skills with some keyboard bindings you cannot afford to miss.

  • Windows key – X  : Brings up some advanced functions like the run menu, the control panel and the command line. Ninja Style !
  • Windows key – D :  Warps you to “Desktop mode”
  • Windows key – E : Opens up the explorer. This one has been around for a loooong time and still saves my bacon everyday.
  • Windows key – H : Whether its kitty’s, a word file, a letter to your grandma or hardcore porn : This key combo lets you Share it.
  • Windows key – M : Minimise everything and shoot towards desktop mode.
  • Windows key – Q : Just like spotlight on OSX , this combo brings up the search interface to search for apps and data.

By not having to slide your hands of the keyboard, the Windows 8 interface becomes more and more productive as you are working on a system that does NOT have a touch interface (and to be quite honest, it also speeds up things if your screen DOES have a touch interface). It proves that both mouse faced and touch based interfaces just cant keep up with a superfast key combo punching ninja … The only touch-enable ninja I know slices fruit.

So what do YOU think of the ‘We can no longer call this Metro” interface of Windows 8 and what are your favourite keyboard combo’s ?


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Wordgrinder takes you back to the (productive) days of Wordperfect.

Jan 29

I mentioned a couple of interesting command line suggestions for a good Wordprocessor a while ago in a previous post. But thanks for the research I did for the “Return of the netbook” podcast, I came across Wordgrinder. Unlike most word processing applications from Redmont, Wordgrinder is not infested by a talking paper clip, and its menu bar has not been designed like a hidden Chinese puzzle that only Savants can solve.

Wordgrinder is also a different league from the  text editors like VIM or Emacs, and is not geared towards code manipulation like Nano. Wordgrinder reminds me of .. Wordperfect. Remember the little paper strip secretaries had taped to their keyboards in order to remind them what function key did what ? Wordgrinder is more like that. Hitting the escape key brings you into the menu bar where you can select all the functions you expect from a real Wordprocessor… from the early Nineties.

But in a world swamped with widgets, buttons and distractions, in a universe where every application at least has one dingdong to tweet whenever you even THOUGHT about farting in the elevator .. Wordgrinder is safe haven of simplicity and focus. Run it natively on any Linux system or access it via an SSH connection to your Linux system from your Mac or your Pc.  Sure it isn’t high tech, but it does the job pretty well. For all those times you need to knuckle down .. Wordgrinder is your friend.

Links : Wordgrinder. 

Install it from the command line (On Ubuntu)

sudo apt-get install wordgrinder

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@mcvries uses your phone or tablet as a remote for YouTube.

Jan 28

It’s time for a Quicky! This works on any OS, but using Chrome as a browser sure helps on the PC side.

Would you like YouTube to look like XBMC, FrontRow or any other spiced up mediaplayer?  Go to: and enjoy its very slick interface. Wouldn’t it be very nice if you had a remote control to go with that? Let’s  make it so!  On the left tick the settings button (the little gear) and first of all log in. The second option you see there is Pairing. This allows you to connect your tablet or phone to your YoutubeTV. It presents you with a link and a code. Key in the link on your browsers tablet and punch in the code. After connecting you are able to search on your tablet, queue up a bunch of clips and play the content fullscreen on your big computer screen or television set behind your mac mini, Linuxbox or Raspberry Pi. Sweet!



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