Archived entries for Internet

Twitter Doorstop

Doorstop + @sugru = Twitter Bird! #sugru #HackThingsBetter


So i manged to get my #instragram pics to automagically be set as my desktop backgrounds and this is how.

Its pretty simple and uses 3 web services (Instagram, IFTTT and Dropbox) that with their powers combined have The Awesome Power of a Fully Operational Mothership.

So, first you need an Instagram account of course, that's  a given.

Second, sign up for a Dropbox account and download the Dropbox application that allows you to have a virtual Dropbox folder on your local machine.

Once everything is all synced up and working with your Dropbox account you should see a Dropbox folder under your User profile folder or in your Favorites in your explored sidebar.

And yes, all my drives are named after pubs.

After you have your Dropbox sorted head on over to IFTTT. You will need to add Instagram and Dropbox as Channels but that's pretty easy to do so on to the next step.

Once you've authorized IFTTT to access your Instagram and Dropbox accounts go to this nice little recipe, recipe 25679, and activate. Recipe 25679 will automatically save any photos you take with Instagram to your a folder in your Dropbox (Dropbox/ifttt/instagram).

So that's the easy bit done. You can now access all your lovely instagrams from your desktop just like any other images folder on your desktop.

Now, for WIn7 to use this folder as a library for Desktop Background images is again pretty easy.

Right click on your desktop and go to Personalize. In there click on Desktop Background which should be down in the bottom left of the window. That should open up the Desktop Background window which allows you to select what folder to use for background images and how often you want the background updated etc.

Click on Browse and select the Dropbox folder (already available on your machine under User or Favorites). IFTTT will have added an IFTTT folder in your Dropbox root and in there will be the Instagram folder. Make sure and Select All for newly added images to get dropped in to rotation. I have Picture Position set to 'Fill' with the picture on shuffle and set  to change every day. Save changes and you're done...Insta-desktop-background!

Just try not right clicking on your desktop and selecting 'Next Desktop Background', over and over again, once you have this setup!

Some examples of my Insta-desktop-background's. Have a 2 screen setup hence the repeat and black bar on the right.

Social Media At A Glance

The idea of polite or incidental media is something i find pretty interesting. Got turned on to DEXTR after reading this blog post by Russell Davies and have been playing around with since. Love the interface and its handy to have on the desk or second screen for at a glance updates from my Twitter stream.

A similar webapp i came across, Arrivals by Dan W. Williams, brings the same at a glance experience to Foursquare. Arrivals turns your Foursquare notifications in to a airport arrivals board...hence the name.

And finally, though I'd mention Glowdart which is similar to TwitterFall but also allows you to turn on and off news feeds who's headlines appear mixed in with your Twitter and Facebook streams....again allows you to keep up to date with news as well as your social circle at a glance.


Get the new Gmail theme early

First, sign in to Gmail and head to Mail Settings. Next, go to the “Themes” tab and you’ll see a two new themes, “Preview” and “Preview (dense).” Select one and you're away in a hack.

Thanks to SwissMiss

The Bord Gáis EnergyBots are coming an internets near you!!

Star Wars via Sartre

Existential how are ya.

The World Park QR Campaign NYC

Hadn't seen this brilliant use of QR codes at various NYC park locations, creating a virtual and engaging experience allowing people to not only have fun but learn more about each location.

The Big Eye Track

We were down visiting the guys in the @NCIRL to check out their computer labs and to have a look at some of the interesting stuff they are doing around website usability and accessibility testing. I have to say we were really impressed with the setup there and for anyone looking at accessibility & usability vs. bells & whistles i would advise you give these guys a shout.

One of the tests they perform on sites is an eye tracking test; tracking where the users eye is focused on and where and how it moves around the page to interpret and read your content. The heat maps below show how The Big Switch site, as it was in 2009 and as it was (and still is) in 2010, fared and what drew the eye....interesting!




Found a cool little site where you can make your own tiltshift stills on the fly for free.

More here


Google Ireland

Endless fun was had with this week playing around with its auto-complete feature. Google auto-completes search phrases for you based on the most popular terms being searched for in your region, in this case Ireland.

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