Last Week's Best Posts

Kick off your Lifehacker Monday by making sure you didn't miss any of the biggest posts from last week:

  • Does Buying A House Make Sense?
    The rise in official interest rates from the Reserve Bank might be enough to give some aspiring home buyers pause. But is buying a house such an essential element of modern Australian financial planning anyway?
  • An Exhaustive Guide To Saving Your Smartphone's Battery Modern phones come loaded with bright screens, fun games and apps, and connections for 3G, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and GPS. Not coincidentally, they're constantly out of juice.
  • Google Wave 101 So you've snagged an invitation to Google Wave—or a pal is sending one your way—and you've already taken a look at what to expect. Let's dive deeper into Wave features, etiquette, and extensions.
  • Kindle To Be Sold To Australian Customers
    Amazon’s Kindle e-book reader has been the one certified success in the electronic books market, but unfortunately sales have always been restricted to US buyers. That will change on October 19, when the Kindle will become available to customers worldwide.
  • Floating Monitors And Hidden Peripherals Today's featured workspace is full of surprises like monitors that seem to float in the air on a cloud of ambient lighting, cords hidden behind faux walls, and peripherals hidden in hollowed out shelves.
  • NirLauncher Is The Ultimate Flash Drive Toolkit (Windows) Portable application NirLauncher bundles 100+ of the best NirSoft utilities into a single launcher window, and even allows you to add your own utilities to make a killer flash drive toolkit.
  • Accessing Twitter Cheaply On The Road
    You’re overseas and you want to keep everyone in touch with what you’re doing. What are the most cost-effective ways to keep accessing Twitter?
  • Google Experiments With A Single-Word, Fading Homepage Google is reportedly experimenting with a new fading homepage design in an effort to create a cleaner, simpler interface.The experimental design does away with every detail except for the Google logo and the search box, revealing the other navigation links only when a user mouses over the screen.
  • Fences Desktop Icon Organiser Updates to Version 1.0, Still Awesome (Windows) Remember Fences, the awesome desktop icon organiser we highlighted back in February? Fences just left beta and rolled out its 1.0 release, and it continues to keep your cluttered desktop icons in attractive, minimal, organized groups.
  • How To Win At A Property Auction
    As the housing market becomes more competitive, auctions are likely to become more common. Here’s some key tactics to make sure you win if your dream property is being sold at auction.
  • Crack A Master Combination Padlock Redux Two years ago we highlighted how to crack a Master combination padlock for those of you who may have lost the combination to your bulletproof lock; now designer Mark Campos has turned the tried-and-true instructions into an easier-to-follow visual guide.
  • DoubleTwist + Amazon MP3 Store = One More Reason To Ditch iTunes (Mac) Remember doubleTwist, the very cool iTunes alternative that aims to easily sync any content to any device? Well now the ambitious tool is taking one more step to make iTunes obsolete, incorporating an Amazon MP3-powered music store.
  • AVG 9 Antivirus Improves Performance, Adds Identity Theft Tool (Windows) One of our readers' favourite antivirus applications, AVG, has updated, claiming faster scan times (up to 50%), boot times (10-15%), and less memory usage. On top of that, it's added a new feature to assist with identity theft.
  • Disk2vhd Turns Your PC Into A Virtual Machine (Windows) Free Sysinternals application Disk2vhd takes a snapshot of your PC, and turns it into a Microsoft Virtual PC virtual hard drive-while your system is up and running.
  • Arora Is An Open-Source Browser With Out-Of-The-Box Ad Blocking (Windws/Mac/Linux) Arora is a free, cross-platform web browser built on WebKit (the engine that powers Safari and Chrome) that we've mentioned once before, but its latest release includes some interesting new features by default, including built-in support for ad blocking.
  • iPhone Releases OS 3.1.2 Update, Fixes A Few Bugs (iPhone) Apple has just pushed out an update for all iPhone generations in the form of iPhone OS 3.1.2. Don't expect any major feature updates in this 241MB download, but do expect a few fixes to some annoying problems.
  • CopyTrans Manager Is A Lightweight iTunes Alternative (Windows) If all you really want out of your iPod experience is the ability to load music, movies, and podcasts onto your iPod without any bulk or bloat, portable and free CopyTrans Manager is a speedy iTunes-alternative.
  • PhotoFilmStrip Creates Ken Burns-Style Video From Images (Windows/Linux) Free, open-source application PhotoFilmStrip creates video from photographs quickly and easily, complete with effects, a soundtrack, and smooth zoom in/out effects (commonly referred to as the Ken Burns effect).

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