Mike Williams

Find website accessibility issues with Koa11y

Koa11y is a cross-platform tool for detecting accessibility issues in any web page you specify. Problems detected include missing image Alt attributes, color contrast issues, missing titles, lengthy ALTs, poorly designed forms, and anything else that doesn’t play nicely with accessibility software and APIs.

We downloaded a copy of the Windows version. It’s a portable program, no installation required, we just unzipped the download and launched Koa11y.exe.

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Webcamoid is a one-stop webcam capture and recording suite

Webcamoid is a surprisingly versatile open-source webcam suite for Windows, Linux and Mac. Launch the program and it looks very simple. The image from the default webcam is displayed, there’s a small transparent toolbar at the bottom of the screen, and nothing else at all.

The toolbar seems basic, at least initially. There’s a Camera icon, clicking it takes a snapshot of the current screen and offers to save it as a PNG. Useful, but nothing special.

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Manage Windows 10 privacy settings with Privacy Repairer

Privacy Repairer is a portable tool for viewing and managing Windows 10 telemetry and privacy settings.

There’s now almost a whole sub-genre of software doing more or less the same thing, but Privacy Repairer has more than enough extra power and detail to justify its tiny download.

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Easily explore Windows’ hidden emojis with winMoji

Windows has come with its own set of emojis for years, but they’re so well hidden that many users don’t realize they exist. WinMoji is a tiny open-source tool which makes it easier to find and use the built-in emojis.

Install and run the program and it displays the full smiley set in a scrolling box. No need to mess around with other Windows tools, they all on view and ready to use.

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LanguageTool is an open-source proof reader for 25+ languages

LanguageTool is an open-source spelling and grammar checker for Chrome, Firefox, the desktop (via Java) and more.

The browser extensions enable checking the text you’re entering a web text box, or any other selectable text on a web page. The system works much like other spell checks. Enter text, click the LanguageTool icon and it instantly displays a report listing any issues. Browse the list, click any corrections you’d like to accept and it’s updated in the source text.

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Convert JPEGs to ASCII art with ASCII Art Studio

ASCII art is one of the oldest computer graphics techniques, and can create surprisingly realistic pictures from the 95 printable ASCII characters (letters, numbers and symbols).

The idea was originally used in the 1960s to produce images on the line printers of the day, but the stark and high-contrast results can still deliver interesting designs today.

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Easily trim and cut your movies with VidCutter

VidCutter is an open-source Windows, Linux and Mac tool for trimming your videos.

The program’s use of FFMPEG enables opening just about any video type, and you’re then able to cut as many scenes as you need.

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Quickly check a bootable USB key or ISO with Bootable USB Test

You’ve downloaded an ISO recovery disc, maybe used it to create a bootable USB key -- but does it work? Finding out can be a hassle as you close down applications, reboot, maybe tweak your BIOS, boot into the key and reboot again back to Windows.

Bootable USB Test is a portable tool which provides a quick and easy alternative.

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Instantly enable and disable Chrome extensions with Extensity

Chrome extensions can be incredibly useful, but they also grab resources and clutter your toolbar, annoying if you only use them occasionally.

Extensity is a free Chrome extension which allows all, individual or groups of extensions to be turned on and off with a couple of clicks.

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Cyberduck 6.0 encrypts your cloud data with Cryptomator

Iterate’s one-stop cloud storage client Cyberduck has hit version 6.0 with new support for client-side encryption.

The technology is based on the open-source Cryptomator, a powerful AES encryption tool with apps for Windows, Mac, Linux, iOS and Android.

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Share screenshots and images online with ImgurSniper

ImgurSniper is an open-source tool for sharing screenshots, desktop recordings and image files online via Imgur.

Simple tasks are very quick. Press a hotkey, draw a rectangle around an area and it’s instantly uploaded. A browser window opens at the Imgur URL, ready for sharing with anyone you like.

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Saladin is a versatile dual-pane file manager for Windows

Veteran dual-pane Windows file manager Saladin has recently been updated to version 1.0, its first major release since 2014.

The program opens with two independent Explorer-type views on your file system. Double-clicking, right-clicking and drag-and-drop all work as you’d expect, allowing you to start using the program right away.

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Fraqtive is a fast fractal art generator

Fraqtive is an open-source generator of gorgeous Mandelbrot and Julia fractals. It’s a crowded area and there are a lot of similar programs around, but Fraqtive has enough interesting extras to justify the download.

Speed is a plus. Launch the program, a familiar Mandelbrot view appears, and you can quickly zoom in and out by moving your mouse cursor to an interesting area and spinning the mouse wheel.

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Create professional lyrics videos with Superstring

Superstring is a free tool for creating stylish and professional lyrics videos. Choose an audio file and Superstring displays its waveform vertically. To the right of the timeline is a table where you can type the lyrics you hear at the right point.

Playback starts automatically but you can pause and restart as required, or click back on the timeline if you need to hear a particular section again.

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Take control of Windows 10's built-in network usage monitor

Monitoring which apps use the most network bandwidth can help you spot resource hogs, malware and more. If you’re using Windows 10, you don’t have to install any complicated network software to make this happen. The OS tracks all this information by default, and all you have to do is view it.

To check it out, launch the Settings app, click "Network & Internet", select "Data usage" in the sidebar, then click "View usage details."

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