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Pimp Up your PC

There are all sorts of things you can do to your computer, simple downloads etc, that make your whole experience just that little bit better. One good example, for those experienced users, who love keyboard shortcuts is autohotkeys. Download this little guy, make sure it's in the startup folder, and start scripting new shortcut keys to do anything you like! For me, the first thing I did was assign the right-control + right shift to do the same as alt-tab. Now I can cycle through my windows on both sides of my keyboard. You can do virtually anything, from opening specific webpages to letting every key shut down your computer.

The second pimpin' is for XP users, who want to get those gadgets that Vista users have by default. Check out widgets.yahoo.com for a download and extensive lists of clocks, timers, calendars and other little things you can add to your desktop. In my opinion, what I've just mentioned is enough, but there are so many more things available, which I can't find a good use for.

Thirdly, and lastly for this post, I would like to share this little nifty gadget which lets you see thumbnails on your desktop of all the windows that you've minimized. Here is where you can download this little guy. You can assign keyboard shortcuts to do things like minimize all, restore all, which I believe are quite useful.

A late edition (24 Jun 2008)

If you're bored of the taskbar that's standard on all windows computers, you can download a flashy dock similar to Apple computers. It is customizable, and you can clean up your entire desktop by moving all your short cuts onto it. Download the Stardock ObjectDock here; there is a free version, and a version you must pay for, but the free version has all the bits and pieces that you'll really ever need. You can even choose the option to hide your taskbar completely, and use the ObjectDock as your taskbar, you can place a clock and calendar in it, and you can make it show open windows just like your taskbar does now. Only it looks 50 times better.

You can also download hundreds of skins for this app, and you can get cool looking icons (or make your own) for the programs and shortcuts that are on your ObjectDock. For those who can afford to lose a bit of performance for the sake of great looks, this is the best recommendation I can give you.

Note

This is written for XP users. It may work on other systems too, but I haven't tried it. Concerning Vista users, you would probably be more interested in de-pimping or un-pimping your pc...

Make Text Look Better (12 Jul 2008)

If you've used Internet Explorer 7, you might have noticed that the text looks smoother than usual. If you like this (I do), you can set it so that your entire computer gets this good-looking effect on the text. It's called ClearType, and you can activate it by right-clicking on your desktop, and choosing "properties". In the "Appearance" tab, click on "Effects..." on the bottom right, and then you can set "use the following method to smooth edges of screen fonts:" to "ClearType". Click OK, and OK again on the general properties box, and notice the changes.

Faster Web Browsing (14 Jul 2008)

For faster web browsing, check out these Ramblings about Firefox:
Cutting Up a Dog on Fire, all about hacking Firefox to make it faster than it already is, and Firefox IS Better for those who are still afraid to switch over from Internet Explorer.

If you know of more ways to Pimp Up your PC, then be sure to write about it in the comments below!



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Comment by Ralph van den Berg

Posted on 1 January, 2008
If you enjoy this little pimpin' things, take a browse at Lifehacker.com for interesting ways to make your life and computer better (or just pimpier) to handle.

Comment by Ralph van den Berg

Posted on 6 February, 2009
Windows 7 is pretty 'pimp' right out of the box...

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