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Data Management

The world around us is filled with data. We live in the information age, and often, our greatest challenge is not that we don’t have the right data, but we don’t know what to do with it. Wolfram|Alpha is an innovative service that tries to take some of the complexity out of the data around us, sorting it into info we can really use.

Wolfram|Alpha is built on the power of Mathemetica, a popular mathematics and computational tool used in education and research alike. It can solve advanced math, but can also take that same power to help you do research into population, finance, health, and more. It’s even the power behind much of the iPhone 4S’ Siri, helping dig up facts for users in seconds.

The Wolfram|Alpha team has constantly released updates to the service to help it handle increasingly advanced queries, and today, they’ve launched the biggest change to the service yet with the new Pro offering. Now you can put it to work on your own data, not just public data they’ve amassed, and you can download data to continue your research elsewhere.

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Bookmarking apps are not exactly the rare breed they used to be. A lot has changed over a couple of years. In fact, there is too much supply than demand in the marketplace. On the other hand, the volume of bookmarks are going up exponentially and in nine out of ten cases users are locked into the service they first sign up with.

That probably explains the torrent of new wave bookmarking apps. Grazely is a next generation social bookmarking tool that helps you discover, save, organize and share exciting content on the web, privately or publicly. Is this web app as exceptional as it clams to be? Let us go find out!

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We’re coming to the end of a wonderful year and I’ve realized that I’ve read far more content online this year than any other. That being said, I’ve also accumulated long lists of articles that I haven’t gotten around to reading and I attribute this to two factors: constant distractions and trouble retrieving my articles. Between all the advertising and cluttered layouts, most websites aren’t conducive to painless reading experiences. Still, I’ve already made a New Year’s resolution to read more and broaden my horizons, and I’ve found just the thing to help me with this.

Kippt is a new bookmarking app that aims to solve the problems we face in trying to read, keep track of and share content online. While there is already a plethora of bookmarking services on the web, Kippt brings to the table a fresh approach and an up-to-date aesthetic that is easy to get used to and fall in love with for first-timers and veterans alike. But does it have enough for you to change your bookmarking and reading habits? Let’s see what it has to offer.

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As incredible as it may seem, this year is almost over. Many of use made New Year’s commitments last year, only to forget them on January 2nd. It’s so easy to pick up bad habits, but incredibly hard to discipline ourselves to do what’s good for us. If we’d make our New Year’s goal to, say, drink more coffee this year, it’d be easy to do, but if we decide to cut out coffee this year, we’d likely give up.

Sometimes, though, what you need is a proverbial kick to keep you going. Joining a fitness club might get you to exercise better than just saying you’ll run 5k a day on your own. You can’t get others to motivate you to do everything, though, so you’ll need to find better ways to keep yourself going on with your lofty personal goals.

That’s where RoutineTap comes in.

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You know that sinking feeling you get, when you realize something has just disappeared from your grasp forever? That stomach twisting pain at something that cost so much money, or so much time, something that’s practically irreplaceable just disappearing into thin air. I hate that feeling.

The proliferation of digital goods in our lives is a double edged sword. While on the one hand, their simplicity, portability, and in many cases increased fidelity are all benefits to digital items, the ease with which they can also disappear can be frightening. While it may be difficult to misplace a wall shelf full of vinyl records, an MP3 library can vanish with a couple of key strokes. And while I’m not prepared to debate the pros and cons of building an analog library versus a digital one, I am here to show that this apparent fragility of digital things can be overcome.

Backing up your digital life is actually a pretty large discussion. It can encompass virtually everything you do and use with regards to computers. We’re talking everything from digital assets like photos and videos, to potentially sensitive material like work-related documents or databases, to your online assets like social media postings and email documents. That’s a lot of important data. Today I’ll be highlighting a solution to backing up one niche out of all of those things: your website, all thanks to a service called Backup Machine.

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If there’s one thing that should be incredibly simple today, it should be making online forms and simple pages. There’s no dearth of survey and form apps: from Wufoo to Google’s free Docs Forms, there are form solutions for every design style and budget. And if you want to take payments, share rich info, or do almost anything else you want with a form, there’s likely an app for that.

And then there’s Lanbito. I’m always on the lookout for new high-quality web apps, and Lanbito caught my eye in our Quick Look post. It’s a simple solution to making mobile forms, and best of all, it’s a touch-ready web app. That’s something you don’t often see, and Lanbito’s implementation is simply brilliant. It’s worth taking a look at, even if you’ve already got a form solution you love.

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The rise and fall of Delicious is a well documented case. It’s a classic example of how a fan favorite Web 2.0 app fell from its grace after acquisition by a corporate giant. Delicious was a phenomenal product no doubt, but years of mismanagement and neglect let an entire crop of new age bookmarking apps take center stage.

The much publicised and criticized sunset of the app by Yahoo didn’t help matters either. Majority of users have since jumped ship using the free import tools offered by competing apps and many even paid up for similar services like Pinboard. Now, team Delicious has introduced a revamped look of the app sprinkled with a couple of new features. Is it good enough and can they make it in the over crowded market of bookmarking apps of today?

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Given the explosive rise in Internet usage over the past few years, businesses are now turning to the virtual world of the Internet to advertise their products and services. Sites such as Twitter and Facebook are now commonplace for advertising as they offer a number of advantages over traditional forms of advertising such as newspaper or magazine adverts. Internet-based advertising is often a whole lot cheaper than print advertising and it can reach a much larger catchment area, often outside the traditional catchment area of the business.

The key question for businesses now is: how can they harness this increase in internet-based advertising and, most importantly, can it create revenue for the business? The whole area can be a bit of a minefield to businesses who have never ventured into the world of online advertising before but luckily there are some helpful tools on the Net designed to guide businesses through this minefield.

Raven Tools is one of these. It has a wide range of tools depending on whether you use SEO (search engine optimisation), social media networks or Google products such as Analytics and AdWords. This could be a real advantage to any online business looking to broaden its horizons.

Let’s take a look at Raven Tools in a bit more detail.

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It’s no secret that I am a huge WordPress advocate. It’s full-featured, extendable, and super powerful. However, depending on the project it could be overkill. You need space and a database backend, and you’ll end up with a lot of features that some clients might not use. Especially if you’re making a site that won’t be updated often, most of WordPress’ features will go untouched.

Luckily, there are a bunch of lightweight CMSs. One of them is GetSimple CMS, a promising newer CMS that . Today, we’ll take a closer look at that.

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