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Member Since 10 Nov 2009
OFFLINE Last Active Apr 24 2012 09:08 AM

The Gift List app finally helped me Christmas shop like an adult

Yesterday, 04:00 PM

If you’re anything like me, Christmas shopping is a chaotic affair that basically involves putting it off until the very last minute, and then blunderbussing my thought, energy and money down the nearest high street, getting increasingly frantic with each shop I enter.

I stand, staring deep into the eyes of some kitten emblazoned mug, wondering if it’s a good gift for, for, well, anybody frankly at this point. I’ve not idea who I’ve bought for, what I’ve bought and how far I am from emptying out my bank account.

The tug-of-war of ‘good gift’ versus ‘no money’ pulls my brain apart at the seams. It’s only once the dust has settled, and my brother is actually opening his My Little Pony themed juggling-knife set that I realise I’ve not done well. 

Ho ho hopefully this will help

This year I decided I was going to finally be a grown-up and create a list. I thought about the old fashioned pen-and-paper approach, but I hate writing by hand, and I figured there is an app for literally everything these days so went hunting in the Google Play store.

I ended up going with the imaginatively named Gift List. It’s free, and totally changed the way I did my Christmas shop. 

You can add people to buy for, attribute a photo, set a budget per person, and then add gifts that you’ve already decided that you want for them (or just vague ideas). The app then automatically populates a ‘shop’ section that shows you what gifts you still need to buy, and a ‘stats’ section that shows you a (terrifying) countdown to Christmas, total spent (which is even worse), your total budget, and gifts left to buy and wrap. 

Some presents may have been changed to protect surprises

That’s right, in each person’s section, you can tick off the purchases and even mark when they’re wrapped. What’s even better is that the gifts get auto-generated Amazon suggestions, so you could end up doing all your shopping without ever leaving your house. 

It comes with dollars and US Amazon as standard, and I totally thought I would just use the power of imagination to change the dollars to pounds, but it can be changed to a whole host of alternative currencies and Amazon stores. 

It’s still utterly horrendous seeing the amount of money going out of your account, but this is the first Christmas ever where I’ve actually felt in control of my shopping. Now I just have to hope everyone likes the gifts.

  • Andrew London is a laughable excuse for a human being, barely held together with string and sticky tape. In Tech Yourself Before You Wreck Yourself he will be sharing with you the different technology that he uses to try and pass for a proper functioning person.

Logo design courtesy of FreePik

Downloads advent calendar: get Ashampoo Office free today

Yesterday, 01:00 PM

The holidays are an expensive time, so we’re bringing you a special treat: a full, free Windows program to download every day until Christmas.

Peek behind door number 17 on our free downloads advent calendar to discover Ashampoo Office Free – a complete suite of office software for creating and editing text documents, spreadsheets and presentations.

Ashampoo Office Free includes three programs:

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Ashampoo PlanMaker for creating and working with spreadsheets. PlanMaker includes over 330 built-in calculation functions, and can create great looking charts for presenting data visually.

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Ashampoo Office Free

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16 December 2017 - 01:00 PM

The holidays are an expensive time, so we’re bringing you a special treat: a full, free Windows program to download every day until Christmas.

Behind door 16 on our free downloads advent calendar you'll find Ashampoo Zip 2017 – a brilliant file compression tool that creates and extracts compressed file archives in over 60 formats.

Ashampoo Zip 2017's integrated ZIP engine is the fastest on the market, with multi-core support for processing huge archives in seconds.

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Download Ashampoo ZIP 2017 free today – it's the only file compression software you need.

Downloads advent calendar: get Ashampoo Slideshow Studio 2017 free today

15 December 2017 - 01:00 PM

The holidays are an expensive time, so we’re bringing you a special treat: a full, free Windows program to download every day until Christmas.

Peek behind door 15 on our free downloads advent calendar to discover Ashampoo Slideshow Studio 2017 – a brilliant alternative to Microsoft PowerPoint, and a great way to share photos with friends and family.

Ashampoo Slideshow Studio 2017 makes creating stunning slideshows as easy as clicking and dragging. 

Bring your presentations to life with voiceovers and sounds, apply fun transitions and other effects, and add overlays and subtitles.

Everything is presented in an intuitive interface that guides you through every step, and there are wizards and templates on hand to make the whole process as simple as possible.

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Once you're done, you can export your creation in WMV or WebM format, ready to play on the device of your choice, or share online. Grab Ashampoo Slideshow Studio 2017 today and transform your photos into an amazing presentation.

Samsung's Bixby smart speaker release date could be early 2018

14 December 2017 - 10:37 PM

2018 could be the year that Samsung enthusiasts - particularly those who bought into Samsung’s SmartThings ecosystem - will finally get their comeuppance. 

In a report from Bloomberg, sources told the publication that 2018 will be the year Samsung’s smart speaker should be announced and be available to buy - pointing to a release date in the first half of the new year. 

While the sources couldn’t provide too many details on the shape, size or feature-set of the speaker, they did corroborate earlier reports that it would utilize Bixby, Samsung’s proprietary smart assistant that works like Apple’s Siri or Amazon’s Alexa. 

The most interesting detail revealed in the new report was that Samsung plans on actually undercutting Apple’s smart home speaker, the Apple HomePod, by around $150 (about £100/AU$200). The Apple HomePod, which was delayed earlier this month, is targeting a price point of around $349 while Samsung’s Bixby-equipped challenger could be looking at a price tag of just $200. 

That $200 price point would make it a bit more expensive than the Amazon Echo, which currently sits at $79, but that price could be justified by its feature set ... when that information finally becomes available to the public.

Shedding some light on Project Ambience

If this all sounds somewhat familiar, remember that back at Samsung’s Developer Conference the company showed off a Google Home Mini competitor that went by the name Project Ambience

The speaker referenced by the Bloomberg story sounds different than the one we saw on stage in San Francisco, but the inclusion of Bixby as the speaker’s smart assistant is consistent in both cases. 

If Samsung does target early 2018 as the release date for the speaker just like Bloomberg’s sources suggest, our money’s good that the speaker will make its debut at the upcoming Consumer Electronics Show (CES 2018) that takes place in Las Vegas, Nevada in early January.