Useful & Free

Every now and then I come across something nifty and free that I mention to people online.  Here I will list only those things that have stood the test of time, for me personally. 

And everything here will be fully-functional, at least in the capacity I find it useful; no crippleware, expireware, limited book previews, etc.

Software (all Windows)

Inspiration Pad Pro – A nifty little random list-generator package.  You write a text file, or a couple text files, with look-up tables containing output terms, and then it cranks through and spits out a random collection of elements from those tables, glued together with what text you like.

For example, you create a TownName table and a PersonName table, filling them with suitable elements, and in your main table write:  This is [@PersonName] from [@TownName].  You might get as output:  This is Natasha Adams from New York.

Treepad Lite – The “lite” version, which is free, is text-only, but you can upgrade at low cost to versions that permit text formatting.  The gimmick is that within each Treepad file, you can create a heirarchy of nodes (a tree), each of which, when clicked on, has its own text file (a pad).

Since you can expand and collapse the tree, using the mouse or the keyboard, and you can even create links to other nodes or even to other files, it’s quite nice for rapidly noting ideas and coordinating projects.  Also you can export to html — a function I’ve never used.

There are a few other free TreePad-based products, like a program that converts a TreePad file into an .exe, so you can distribute a no-installation documentation or help file.  I haven’t used these, but they’re good to know about.

Published on July 24, 2009 at 10:13 pm  Leave a Comment  

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