Productivity Sauce

Dmitri Popov
Herd Your Tasks with Nitro

May 10, 2012 GMT

Still haven't found a task manager that fits your needs? Perhaps you should take a look at Nitro. It doesn't offer any revolutionary functionality, and the current version doesn't even allow you to sync data across different platforms and devices (although this feature is in the works). But this no-frills task management tool offers all the basic features that can help you to keep tabs on your tasks and to-dos with a minimum of effort. For each task, you can specify priority and deadline, and color codes make it easier to identify the urgency of each task. Tasks in Nitro can be organized into lists, and the application features a few built-in date-based smart lists which can help you to...
KDE Plasma Netbook Revisited

May 09, 2012 GMT

With Unity, Cinnamon, and Gnome 3 getting all the buzz, it's easy to overlook other interesting projects that attempt to rethink the traditional desktop metaphor. Case in point, the KDE Plasma Netbook interface. Despite its moniker, the KDE's alternative interface is not limited to netbooks, although it's designed for devices with small screens. KDE's alternative interface has been around for a while, but I only recently started using it as a primary environment on my trusty ASUS Eee PC 1005HA netbook, and I grew fond of it for a number of reasons. For starters, KDE Plasma Netbook is surprisingly snappy. Even on my 3-year-old underpowered netbook, the interface is responsive enough...
Host Your Own Secure Pastebin with ZeroBin

May 08, 2012 GMT

A webapp for storing text fragments and code snippets can come in handy in many situations, and there are several third-party pastebins at your disposal. But if you prefer to host a pastebin on your own server, ZeroBin is right up your alley. For starters, ZeroBin is rather easy to install. Grab the latest version of the application, extract the download archive, move the resulting directory to the document root of your server, and ZeroBin is ready to go. Using the application is not particularly difficult either. Paste a text or code fragment, press the Send button, and use the generated URL to share the specific page. For each pasted snippet, you can specify an expiration period...
Display File System Space Usage with dfc

May 07, 2012 GMT

dfc is a nifty little tool that provides a more human-friendly overview of file system space usage using graphs and a dash of color. This utility can be used as a drop-in replacement for the df tool. Although dfc is available only as a source code distribution, compiling the software requires only a single make command. Install then the compiled binary and the accompanying help and man files using the make install command as root, and you are good to go. Run the dfc command in the terminal, and behold space usage displayed as pretty graphs. dfc supports a handful of parameters. The -t parameter, for example, lets you filter file system by type, so the following command displays info...
Two Simple .bashrc Tweaks

Apr 24, 2012 GMT

The ~/.bashrc configuration file contains dozens of options you can modify to customize the Bash shell to your liking. Here are two super-simple tweaks that can make your work with the shell more pleasant and efficient.Open the ~/.bashrc file in a text editor, locate the #force_color_prompt=yes line and uncomment it. This will add a dash of color to the Bash shell.To avoid typing long commands, you can define aliases. For example, to quickly establish an SSH connection to a server on my local network, I added the b3 alias to the .bashrc file: alias b3='ssh dmpop@'This way, I only need to type b3 and press Enter to connect to the server. Neither of these tweaks are new, but...
Create Instant Presentations with HTML Slideshow

Apr 16, 2012 GMT

Slidifier is a neat webapp for creating browser-based presentations, but it's not the only fish in the sea. Take HTML Slideshow, for example. This small tool can come in handy for creating no-frills presentations using HTML and CSS. Creating slides with HTML Slideshow is as easy as it gets. Each slide sits inside the <section> element: <section> <hgroup> <h1>Lorem Ipsum</h1> <h2>Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet</h2> </hgroup> <p>Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit.</p> </section>You can add as many slides as you want, and you can spice them up with lists and images. If you know your way around...
Pane Bonanza: 4Pane File Manager

Apr 09, 2012 GMT

There are three things that set 4Pane apart from other file browsers: speed, lack of bloat, and a four pane interface. Indeed, 4Pane is lightning fast, and this quality alone makes it a worthy alternative to whatever file manager you currently use. A complete lack of fancy trimmings means that 4Panes lets you focus on what's important (i.e., managing files), while the four-pane interface gives you a lot of room for juggling files and directories. At first sight, 4Pane looks like a rather bare-bones file manager, but beneath its unassuming appearance hides a wide array of genuinely useful features. For starters, the file manager supports tabs, so you can open as many panes as you...

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