Stories by Howard Wen

10 ways to enhance Google+

Here are 10 extensions that provide useful, interesting improvements to the search giant’s social-networking site.

How to turn Chrome into gold

Though Google is pitching it as an operating system for netbooks and lightweight notebooks, Chrome OS is essentially the Chrome Web browser bolted on top of a bare minimum version of Linux. The following extensions can improve the user experience of Chrome (OS or browser) to give you some of the functionality found in a traditional operating system.

In depth: Google's Cr-48 Chrome notebook

My holiday gift giving season started early Thursday morning when the UPS guy pounded on my door and handed me a package. Inside was a notebook -- Google's much-discussed cloud-based Cr-48 Chrome OS laptop, which was announced by the company on Tuesday.

Acrobat and its alternatives: 4 ways to edit PDFs

There is certainly no lack of tools -- ones that are good and free -- to help you create PDF documents. But what if you have a job where you need to make new PDFs and your sources are already-created PDF documents? Or if you need to update your company's finished PDFs? The choice of applications that actually allow you to change a PDF after it was created is more limited.

11 things you need to know about Google Chrome variations

Google recently released a version of its Chrome Web browser code named the Canary Build. It uses an all-yellow variant of the regular Chrome icon, but there may be confusion as to what actually distinguishes it from the other, official releases of Google's browser.

Web multimedia: 6 reasons why Flash isn't going away

Apple's well-publicized refusal to allow Adobe's Flash technology to be installed on its iOS mobile devices, including the iPhone and iPad, has led to speculation that Flash's days may be numbered as the king of online multimedia delivery. "Flash is no longer necessary to watch video or consume any kind of Web content," Apple CEO Steve Jobs famously stated in an open letter titled "Thoughts on Flash."

Nine real iPad alternatives

Even since Apple released its "magical and revolutionary" iPad, other vendors have been scrambling to deliver products that go Apple one better.

10 most useful Google Chrome experiments

When it comes to presenting graphically oriented programs through a browser, the usual go-to development platforms have been Adobe Flash and -- to a lesser extent -- Microsoft Silverlight. But other, more open technologies are starting to show promise.

Open-source hardware takes steps toward gadget mainstream

Open-source software is one of the great success stories of the past few decades. The Apache HTTP Server is the world's most popular Web server, Linux has more than held its own against Unix and other proprietary operating systems, and Mozilla's Firefox browser has given Microsoft's Internet Explorer strong competition over the years.

Four free video editors to bring out your inner filmmaker

Shooting footage with a video camera is easy. Assembling the random footage into something watchable can be a whole other matter. Working with professional-level video editing software such as Adobe Premiere Pro can cost a good deal and also means a very steep learning curve.

Augmented reality: pure hype or next big thing in mobile?

Augmented reality technology is getting a lot of attention these days -- particularly the use of AR with smartphones. The idea is that by using certain software, you can turn your iPhone, Droid or other smartphone into a virtual heads-up display. Aim your phone's camera at a shop, restaurant or landmark, and information about the place, such as hours of operation, reviews or directions, appears on the device's screen as graphics floating over the image of the place.

5 free project management applications you must try

Project management applications are usually centered around Gantt charts, where each step in a project is represented as a bar in the chart. These visuals are linked to lists of the resources tied to each task

Free tools for teleconferencing with a 'virtual presence'

Using teleconferencing technology has lately become an obvious and financially practical choice to offset rising business travel expenses. Yet sometimes simple chatting doesn't cut it. There has been growing interest in the notion of online conferencing with a "virtual presence" emphasis, which enables people to share information and their very selves with one another with a stronger sense of near-tangible "face time."

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