Category Archives: Try this at home

some stuff which you can actually do on your own!

How to Run Android Apps on Your Desktop the Easy Way


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Ever feel like running an Android app on your Windows machine? Using BlueStacks, you can easily get apps from your Android device to your desktop or laptop without any complicated set up or fussing with the Android SDK.

Android Apps on Windows

BlueStacks is essentially a self-contained virtual machine that runs Android apps on your Windows 7 computer. While it’s still in alpha, it’s surprisingly stable, pretty novel, and constantly improving. It has very little set up and runs quite nicely smoothly, albeit with a few limitations. The biggest appeal is that you don’t have to deal with the Android SDK – or even know what that is, really – and so it’s great for beginners. You can easily install apps available from BlueStacks’s list of free apps, and if you have an Android device, you can install many apps from your device via the Cloud Connect app.

Why would anyone want to do this? Well, suppose you have an app that you really like and there’s no proper desktop equivalent. You can run it on your main computer instead of on your tiny little Android phone. Or, perhaps you’re thinking about buying a tablet, but you’re not sure what apps you’d like. You can try out many of the free apps that BlueStacks provides, or get a friend with a tablet or phone to show you the apps they use. You can play around with those apps on your desktop or laptop and see if you like them before you buy something you may or may not use. It’s pretty great for developers who want to demo their app, but for some reason don’t have access to a PC with the SDK.

You can use the standard mouse to navigate everything and it works pretty well, but if you’re lucky enough to have a touch-screen, then this works spectacularly. Some of the games may require nicer hardware (and BlueStacks is partnering with AMD for this in the future), but most apps run fine on their own. We tried this on a year-old netbook and things ran perfectly fine. There were a few hiccups here and there, but no crashes or major slowdowns.

BlueStacks Installation

Installing BlueStacks is easy. Just head over to the download page and grab the installer. Currently, BlueStacks only runs on Windows 7 (it says x86, but it worked on our 64-bit Windows 7 installation, too). They seem to be working on a version for Windows XP and Vista as well as Mac OS X, so we’ll hopefully see those in the near future.

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After the program is installed, the installer will ask if you would like to view an introductory video. It’s very short and gives you the basics of how the program works.

BlueStacks installs a desktop gadget that acts as a launcher.

gadget

You can move this around and change the opacity like normal gadgets. To open up the launcher, just give this a left-click.

launcher

You’ll see the list of default installed apps. Click any one to launch it.

desktop

You’ll see the app come up like it would on an Android device. Just use the mouse like you would your finger, and if you happen to have a touch-screen, then you’re probably ecstatic.

As mentioned in the intro video, you can see that there are some icons on the bottom of your screen that you can tap.

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These simulate the hardware buttons found on Android devices. There’s a few extra buttons that allow you to change the screen orientation and zoom level of the apps, as well as close the app out entirely. Actually, I found that you can drag from the top panel and the notification drawer comes down. There’s even a built-in browser for when you click on “help” links and the like.

browser

The onscreen-keyboard also pops up for text boxes. Normal PC shortcuts for copying and pasting and selecting all text do not work, however.

desktop rota keyb

Adding More Apps

more apps

From the BlueStacks Launcher, you can click the Get More Apps link, which will open a browser window pointed to the BlueStacks Channels website.

cloud connect pin

Here, you’ll see a 9-digit PIN for use with the Android Cloud Connect app. You can click on the Featured Apps link on the left to browse and subscribe to the free apps available from BlueStacks.

featured apps

Of course, the big feature here is that you can add apps from an Android device as well. To do this, install the BlueStacks Cloud Connect app from the Android Market.

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Once installed, launch the app and enter the 9-digit PIN that you found on the BlueStacks Channels website.

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Then all you have to do is select which apps you’d like to use in BlueStacks and hit the Sync button up top.

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On your computer, you’ll see a popup in your system tray when the apps have successfully installed.

subsonicbluestacks cloud connect installed

Uninstalling Apps

When you go back to the BlueStacks Channels website, you can click on the Cloud Connect link on the left to see which apps you have installed this way.

subscribing

To uninstall an app, just click the Subscribed button. After a little while, the app will be uninstalled from BlueStacks and you’ll see a blue Subscribe button, in case you want to reinstall it.

Limitations

As we mentioned before, BlueStacks is currently in the alpha stage of development. While it is surprisingly stable, there are some issues. For example, not all apps were able to have their orientations switched from landscape back to portrait, though we didn’t find it to be a particular disadvantage for when it happened. There are also some limitations present in the software.

You can’t browse the Android file system from Windows. This was particularly disheartening since I love Moon+ Reader for ebooks, and to get them on the device I had to use DropBox and download them manually. Once I got them on there, I could navigate to where they would be in the Android system folders like normal and things worked fine.

Dropbox notification drawer

Some apps don’t work because of this, however. I installed the SubSonic client without issues and had it connect to our server, but songs wouldn’t play even after being successfully downloaded. This could also be due to the way that the app played back media, and since Talking Tom 2 worked fine and even handled microphone input properly, it may be a problem with SubSonic itself.

Perhaps the biggest limitation is one placed on purpose: games. Not all games will play via the app. This seems to be because of an upcoming Pro version which allows unlimited use of “premium” apps.

Pro coming soon

On the website, this mentions popular games like Angry Birds and Fruit Ninja, and a few other media apps that I tried to sync with BlueStacks didn’t work, either. They seemed to upload without problems, but on the Cloud Connect website, I got an “Unavailable” status for the app.

subscribing

Depending on how well these games and media apps run, it may be worthwhile to pay for the Pro version of BlueStacks. Unfortunately, there’s no word on pricing or availability right now, and it’s a bummer that they didn’t include this function for free in the meanwhile.

One final drawback is that BackStacks seems to be using Android 2.2 FroYo as a basis for running these apps. While this doesn’t pose a big problem yet – most apps aren’t reliant on 2.3/Gingerbread yet – we hope to see this change, especially since Android 4.0/Ice Cream Sandwich is right around the corner.

Conclusions

On the whole, the apps that did work by and large worked very well. Aside from a few hang-ups, BlueStacks seems like a very easy way to get Android apps working on your desktop, laptop, or even Windows tablet. Performance was smooth on our year-old netbook, a fact that was pleasantly surprising, and we can see how great this would be with a touch-screen. It’s not perfect, but it’s incredibly easy and very stable.

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Turn your web browser into a Notepad


Here is a nice little Trick through which you can turn your web browser into a notepad with editable content: Read the rest of this entry

See who visits your Facebook profile the most


Ever wonder if someone in particular views your Facebook profile many times a day, whether it’s someone you like 😉 or if it’s a random stalker?

Follow these steps and you can find out which people in your friend list see your profile most.

Read the rest of this entry

Get unlimited lives in candy crush for free!


Here are the steps to get free unlimited lives in candy crush saga.

(works on both Android and iOS devices)

(screenshots for android device – HTC One V)

  • Go to Settings > Date & Time. (Settings > General > Date & Time for iOS).

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  • Uncheck the Automatic date & time check-box. (Set Automatically option in iOS).
  • Go to Set date

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  • select any date after today’s date.
  • Start Candy Crush Saga and the lives would be increased. But, DO NOT play the game yet.

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  • Go back to Settings > Date & time and check Automatic date & time check-box. (Settings > General > Date & Time, Set Automatically option in iOS )
  • Play candy crush saga.

Enjoy! 🙂

Google: Trick#8: “atari breakout”


Hi,

Here is a Google Trick in which you can play the classical Arcade game “breakout” on Google Image Search.

  • Go to Google Image Search.
  • type “atari breakout” inside the search box (without the quotes).
  • press Enter.

wait for the Game to load.

Here is a screenshot of the game :

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The circles on the top left indicate the lives that you have, and your score is visible on the top Right.

Have fun playing!

😀

25 things to do before turning 25


Hi friends,

Here is my list of 25 things to do before turning 25:

#1. Pursue a hobby:

Remember that one thing that you always wanted to do, but never had enough time to pursue it? Well now is the time to actually do it!

hobby Read the rest of this entry

YouTube more Easter Eggs


Hey,

I am back with a few more great YouTube Tricks/Easter Eggs!

1) “1980”

Just Open YouTube and open any video of your choice, (I used this video: God Is an Astronaut – When Everything Dies) and type “1980” (without the quotes) but not in the search box, click anywhere on the white spaces at the sides, and just type “1980” (without the quotes).

YouTube will shift the video down and open up a screen saying “MISSILE COMMAND Blow the missiles out of the sky! Click to Continue” as shown below:

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Click on that and a game will start as shown below, you have to defend your Video from getting destroyed by the incoming missiles.! (pretty cool! huh?) Just aim with your mouse and click to shoot.

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The health bar of the video is shown at the top, (the gray bar) the game will finish when this health bar gets to Zero.

here is a video demo of the Easter Egg:

 

have fun playing!! 🙂

 

 

Click for more YouTube Tricks!

YouTube Easter Egg!


Hey!

Here is a new fun trick on youtube.

just go to YouTube, and type “Ponies” (without the quotes) in the Search box at the top!

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and click on the Search button (or just press Enter) .. YouTube will show a lot of Pony Videos, but keep watching the screen closely! 😉

You’ll enjoy it..

Here is a video demonstrating the Easter Egg:

Have fun! 🙂

3Doodler


Image a pen with which, whatever you write could just come out of the paper and stand out in 3D!

wouldn’t it be amazing??

Well with this 3Doodler pen, you can actually just do exactly that. Just write something on a paper, and it comes out of the paper in 3D!

or even forget the paper, just get a base for support and start drawing in the air! sounds pretty cool yeah!?

you can see the 3Doodler in action here in this video:

It works kind of similar to a glue gun, and uses (ABS or PLA) plastic as an Ink (similar to those used by 3D printers) which is heated and cooled to get the Ink to flow out and then harden it as desired.

The good thing about this 3Doodler is that you can just start writing and the things will come to 3D, unlike other 3D printers in which you have to provide models and do some programming or use some software etc. to get it to work. So basically any layman can use it. It’s just as easy as using a normal pen. It’s up to you to be as creative as you can! 🙂

More on 3Doodler can be found Here: 3Doodler

 

Cheers! 😀

April Fools’ Day!


Hello friends! With April fool’s day just round the corner,here are a few simple everyday tricks you can pull off on your friends 😉

 

 

 

But before you plan and carry out any of these practical jokes, make sure it doesn’t harm, humiliate or embarrass the intended target or damage anything in the process.

  • Turn up the volume as high as it can go on someone’s computer before they turn it on.
  • Attach magnets to a large cup, place the cup on the hood or roof of the car and take off. and watch people stare in surprise as you go by.
  • Put some powder on top of the ceiling fan blades and wait for someone to turn it on! 😉
  • Take some pebbles and paint them like strawberries and watch as people try to eat them

strawberries

  • And the most common Prank: Swap out sugar for salt and watch others put it salt in the morning cup of coffee. (Have a second, non-salted cup ready to go though).
  • This one will need some preparation: Put water in a cereal bowl, and freeze overnight. The next morning, pour normal cereal on top of the iced cereal, completely covering it, and watch others trying hard to dig in it. 😀
  • A good Office Prank: Put part of a post-it note over the Laser light on a computer mouse — it won’t work! (Make sure to write “April Fools!” on the note 😀 ).
  • Duct Tape a pressure horn to the inside of a door!

pressure horn

  • Stuff in some newspaper inside a friend’s shoe’s tips, they’ll wonder why their feet don’t fit! 😀
  • A prank to pull on your school going kids: When your kid comes home from school, tell them a teacher or the principal called to discuss your kid’s bad behavior. Let them know the gag’s up when you see them start sweating.
  • A very old trick but still works: Take a screen-shot of your friend’s computer screen and set is as the desktop background and then hide all the desktop Icons and the start menu! then sit back and enjoy as your friend tries to figure out what’s wrong with his system.
  • Put Googly Eyes on Everything!

googlyeyes

  • Hard-boil all the eggs in the refrigerator and place them back into the carton.
  • Put a Straw in frozen Jell-O shots and put them out like a drink, only they won’t be Drinkable!

Jello

  • Take an empty Coke bottle, pour in some sprite then Add soy sauce until  it looks like the color of Coke and replace the cap and put it back in the Refrigerator.

and while you are waiting for your friends to be fooled by those pranks, why don’t you try to solve this fun Crossword game yourself.

😉

crossword

Have Fun! 😀

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