Tag Archives: Chrome

Dark Reader is an open source browser extension that lets you apply dark theme to any website by using customizable dynamic filters, no setup required by https://ift.tt/2UzuvOA

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WordPress.com now lets you write and collaborate in Google Docs by Romain Dillet (@romaindillet) via null

typewriter.jpg

Image by techcrunch.com

First Impressions by me:

The first edition of this add-on is really basic but it works smoothly and I am sure that in the near future new features will be added and in few months we all use it very often. Not only to just write a simple “link” post as this one.

For example, I would like to have more features related to image managing, the possibility to insert Tags directly from Docs and other useful commands that I usually use (post format, excerpt, etc…). But… I know… it’s just the first version of the add-on…. And it is really better than the email publishing that I used till few months ago.

Online Speech to Text Recognition

radio64It’s fast, it’s immediate and it lets you to write an email or a text in a while, anywhere you are. When you use a mobile, you need to find the right app. For my experience the universal app for this doesn’t exist. It depends on the model of the mobile in general and in particular on the type of the installed microphone. This means you need to test different apps to fins a suitable solution for your specific needs. But usually it doesn’t keep much time.

When you are at home or for more complex works that need to be directly edited on a PC, you usually cannot use any Android app and so you need a similar tool. This is my case.

If you google it, you will find different solutions. Some of them are desktop software that can be installed and settled up in a reasonable time (usually few hours). These software are really accurate and have many tools that allow you to develop complex texts typing just few keys to refine some inaccuracies. The “problem” is represented by their cost that, for some products, is high (… certainly, we are talking about few bucks…). 

Instead, a good solution could be the online -speech to text- tools offered by different websites. They are usually free but you need to be obviously connected to the web if you want to use them. 

Furthermore the text results generated by these on line tools are connected with the particular model of microphone you installed into your PC. Also in this situation you can find enthusiastic reviews for an on line tool that is completely ineffective for you. And as for Android apps you need to spend some hours to discover what is the best online tool for your needs. Last but not least to use them you need to authorized Flash (sic! yes the nosey Flash…) for managing your audio hardware.

In my experience, after some tests, the best sites offering  -speech to text- tools are four:

  • Speechlogger that is really simple to use and the most versatile as for exporting the “written” text but it works just on the Chrome Browser (version 25 or later) and this is a big limitation when you are fond of Firefox:
  • TalkTyper that is also complete and it is supported by different browser (Firefox included);
  • Dictation that is very minimalist as web graphics but it really does what it promises in every browser…;
  • SpeechPad that  is very complete but it requires a free registration to use the -speech to text- feature. There are two big features offered by this website. The first is about that it has a good grade of recognition for speeches in Russian. The second feature is represented by the possibility of using an audio file or an url redirecting to audio files and/or video (but only for YouTube or HTML5audio/video).

Some of the above described websites have a large selection of different languages you can be interested to use. Others have a narrow choice of languages but for the accuracy of the -speech to text- work, could really be what you are looking for.

So, to conclude, if you need a -speech to text- online tool, you have just to invest some hours to find the right website for your needs. When you will start to use these kind of online tools you save a lot of time that before you spent for typing.

Pandora for “dummies”…. when you are outside the USA… – Firefox, Chrome and Opera add-on –

The last time I wrote a post about connecting to Pandora  when you are outside the USA was just (sic) three years ago. Meanwhile a lot of things changed and Anonymox, the Firefox add-on and proxy service I suggested in 2012, it is not free now.

It happens but when my nephew asked me something similar and really intuitive to connect to Pandora I was in trouble… more in trouble than I could imagine…. In fact when I started to search something alternative, I found a lot of very good proxy add-ons for Firefox. It was a pleasure to discover some of them because they are technically well done and offer a lot of flexible features for privacy purpose. But this is not the topic of my post… for today.

After many unlucky trials, where I tested different add-ons that were not able to guarantee a minimal rate of usable connection,  I found ProxMate .

ProxMate is an open-source, SSL proxy manager for real dummies. As Firefox add-on you can install it on your browser in just few clicks and then you practically don’t need to configure anything. The only requested thing after installation is to decide the websites and services you want to connect through ProxMate. The internet connection has a good speed rate and the music flows as silk through your Pandora account.

You can install ProxMate searching it through the add-on panel you find in Firefox or you can decide to directly open the link from the  ProxMate website. After the installation ( no restart required) you have to find the “shark fin” icon into your Firefox bar. If you don’t find it immediately, you have to manage your icons and manually personalize the bar.

Then, click on ProxMate “my button” icon and select: “Install New Packages”. You are redirect to the ProxMate website where you can select Pandora or others interesting websites (e.g. Netflix, iHeart Radio, etc..) with specific IP restriction policies. 

Now, you select your desired website/service and follow the instructions (click selection) that will appear on the screen to complete the installation.

Last but not least, don’t forget to click again on the ProxMate icon and enable the proxy service.

As usual, I recommend to NOT forget to disable  ProxMate (as every other proxy server) when you don’t need to use it.

Oops, I forgot to say that ProxMate is free of charge……. Enjoy it!!

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References:

https://addons.mozilla.org/it/firefox/addon/proxmate/?src=search

https://proxmate.me/

Don’t let them to track your internet behaviour! Use Ghostery for Firefox

We know that every time we visit a website we are caught by “invisible” robotized voyeurs which analyse our behaviour and share information to the site owner or to specialized data-collecting companies. These companies usually analyze the obtained information to improve the quality of their web service (in the most optimistic case) or to create a profile about the user with the specific goal to better sell services in the near future.

The real problem is that normally we are not able to realize what is happening. all this “ghost” activity happens in a silent mode without any tangible trace. To avoid this data collection and protect in a more efficient way our privacy we can use Ghostery, a specific add-on for Firefox and Chrome.

Ghostery defuses trackers, web bugs, pixels, and beacons placed on web pages by Facebook, Google Analytics, and more than 1,000 other ad networks, behavioral  data providers, web publishers and companies interested in your web activity. As for every Firefox add-on, Ghostery is simple to install and manage. After the installation you can choose if you want to share anonymous information with the Ghostery servers to improve the quality of its services or if you prefer not to collaborate with them. You also can decide if you want to automatically update your Ghostery library and choose the specific trackers you want to neutralize. You can also create a policy for your cookies or (recommended) define a Whitelist for the websites you trust.

During my tests, Ghostery has not slowed the navigation speed in a sensible way also because I spent a little of time on creating a personalized Whitelist during my first use of this add-on.

Last but not least, Ghostery provides a very powerful information section where you can learn about any tracker it has blocked for you.

To conclude I can say that Ghostery is an add-on you must have on your Firefox to better protect your privacy! Bookmark this page!