Mac: Widgets? Old and busted. Filling your Notification Center full of apps and services? The more stuffed it gets, the less useful it is. At least, I don't like having to scroll up and down through pages' worth of items if I need a quick glance at my most meaningful data.
Tagged With information
It's easier than ever for someone to create a website and post completely made up stories that become international headlines. This makes it harder to tell truth from fiction or share news with others who may not be able to tell the difference either. Luckily, fake news isn't too difficult to spot. Here's how, and how to filter it out of your feeds.
When the news constantly bombards you with statements and claims that you can't verify, fact checkers become extremely important. To that end, Google will now surface fact check stories in Google News results.
Whether you're the person others always turn to for tech support or you'd like to learn how to really use sites like Facebook, Netflix, Spotify, and YouTube but don't just want to fumble around, Techboomers is a new service that has well-paced, guided lessons to each of those sites and their best features. Plus, it's all free.
Blogger Steve Rubel discusses his methods for mitigating the Attention Crash caused by modern information overload while remaining well-informed. In the midst of all the demands new technology and information place on our lives, Steve keeps up by making unusable time usable. I read a ton. However, I have mastered how to stuff it into pockets of time that are normally "unusable." I get through about one business book a week by listening to them when I commute, travel and run errands. In addition, I use Instapaper.com (more) to bookmark articles I want to read.I doubt Rubel is the only one to listen to a book on his commute, so let's hear how you take advantage of unusable time in the comments. Three Ways to Mitigate the Attention Crash, Yet Still Feel Informed
View the relationships between words using webapp Visual Thesaurus which displays synonyms, antonyms, adverbs, and adjectives for any particular search word. Enter a phrase in the search box. Your search term will appear in the center of the screen and additional nodes will crop up to indicate related terms. Click on any of these nodes to dig deeper and get more word associations. Mouseover any node to get a quick definition. Visual Thesaurus is a powerful tool that quickly builds vocabulary. The only downside is that the application runs for a limited amount of queries and then you're prompted to pay the $2.95/month fee. (Tip: Reopen the Java application and you can run additional searches.) Previously mentioned VisuWords does nearly the same thing (albeit slower) and is completely free. Visual Thesaurus
Translate words and phrases easily with online dictionary Definr. The dictionary attempts to autocomplete your word as you type and pumps out results quickly with synonyms and antonyms (if applicable). While Definr is missing some translations, it performs very well (and fast, as promised) and has potential to become a handy alternative for the Google define search operator.
Web site Visuwords defines and displays relationships between words in a fast and effective graphical map of meaning. When you first search for a word with Visuwords, you'll see the word pop up in the centre and nodes pop out from there for each meaning of the word. Each of those nodes will spawn their own relational nodes, connected by lines that indicate meaning (for example, a red diamond indicates an antonym), and double-clicking any of those nodes will expand your tree of meaning from that point. Visuwords is a quick visual dictionary-and-thesaurus-in-one tool that offers a fresh and useful way to look at words, understand meanings, and find new ways of saying what you're looking to say.
Look up words, phrases, idioms, and acronyms with MetaGlossary, a dictionary that harvests data from all over the internet to provide users with rich, detailed results for particular search terms. MetaGlossary provides information about everything from song titles and phrases used in pop culture to standard dictionary words. It's a decent alternative to Google's dictionary, though it couldn't find any results for some search terms that I tried. However, it was able to determine what "lifehacker" was, so it gets a thumbs-up.
If you're researching medical terms, you might want to check out Curehunter, a medical dictionary that allows you to search for disease, drug, or therapy information. Type in any term that fits in these parameters, and you'll get in-depth explanations as well as a visual "tree" of related terms. Click on any of these terms to explore relationships; not all of them are necessarily absolutely relevant to your original query, but they do provide good fodder for further research.