Windows software of the day [August 17, 2012]

Today’s Software

  • WeatherBug: a beautiful Metro Windows 8-style weather app
  • Qsel: A nice-looking program launcher
  • Clover: get amazing, Chrome-like tabs in Windows Explorer

Subscribe to dotTech to never miss an article: RSS Feed | E-mail

About Windows Software of the Day

Windows has hundreds of thousands of programs. Because of this great volume and lack of a central store, software discovery (aka finding new and useful programs) is extremely difficult. With our Windows Software of the Day initiative, dotTech aims to change that. Everyday we post three programs, allowing our readers to discover new software, daily. Enjoy! [Subscribe to dotTech to never miss an article: RSS Feed | E-mail]

Developers: Click here to get your apps featured here!

dotTechies: Want to see an app on here? Send us a tip!

Software for August 17, 2012

WeatherBug

If you’ve ever visited a building and seen a WeatherBug station, you might wonder what exactly they are. They’re thousands of little stations scattered throughout the country that measure extremely local weather conditions, giving you the most accurate weather possible. It’s definitely a step up from measuring at your local airport or TV station.

The Windows 8 WeatherBug app has a great interface. The background is a representation of the current time of day–when the screenshot to the right was taken, it was around 11pm, and over here in Portland, we have a lot of tall trees. The current weather, today’s weather, and the forecast are all shown simply in small tiles.

It also has several other views, other than the current station view. You can use its station select screen, or go to the Map for a full-on weather attack. You’ll be able to show overlays of current temperature, pressure, humidity, and windspeed, as well as selecting one of several satellite views.

Of course, it’s a weather app, and like all weather apps, it has ads. Luckily, they’re non-intrusive: they’re just stuck into a tile like the temperature, location, and everything else is. You can see it in the screenshot to the right: it’s not intrusive at all. Still, it’d be nice to have an ad-free weather app for once, but then there’d be no way for them to make any money.

Overall, the WeatherBug app is an awesome app, and it’s definitely a sign of what’s to come in terms of Windows 8 apps. It sticks fairly close to Windows 8 design standards, and though the tilework is a little oddly laid out, it works well for what it is. WeatherBug is a must-have app for any amateur meteorologist, or anyone who simply enjoys analyzing the weather.

Price: Free!

Last updated: 8/16/2012

Supported OS: Windows 8

Download size: 36MB

WeatherBug on Windows Store

Qsel

There are thousands of different possible workflows, and billions of different combinations of apps you might use to work. If you’ve ever needed to have a quick-launch program for frequently used programs, try Qsel: with it, you can open programs, links, or files with a single click.

Qsel, which is entirely portable, is very easy to use. You set it up by category, and within each category, individual files, links, or programs. A possible configuration is shown to the right, with two apps and no separators. You can add as many apps as you want, but be warned that you’ll of course still need to fit it on your screen.

However, having a window full of shortcuts is no more useful than having a folder full of shortcuts. That’s why Qsel offers more: with a single tap of your keyboard, you can pull Qsel up. And, you can set it to launch items with one click and for the window to disappear after launch.

Qsel also claims to have “automatic drive letter handling on USB Flash Drives”, but what exactly that means is anyone’s guess. If you’re looking for an instant, awesome launcher that’s easy on the eyes, Qsel is definitely worth the download.

Price: Free!

Version discovered: v2.16

Supported OS: Windows unknown

Download size: 107KB

VirusTotal malware scan results: 0/37

Portability: No installation required!

Qsel homepage

[via AddictiveTips]

Clover

A few days ago, we covered TabExplorer. This free program let you add tabs to Windows Explorer by plopping them on top of the current Explorer window. Clover is different–very different. Instead of taking the tabs and plopping them on top of the current window, it entirely redesigns Windows Explorer with beautiful, functional Chrome-like tabs and bookmarks.

You probably never thought you’d live to see the day that Windows Explorer got proper, beautiful tabbed browsing, but with Clover, that day is today. The tabs are amazingly responsive, and act nothing like any tab app I’ve ever seen before. They even allow for standard tab-centric keyboard shortcuts, such as Ctrl+[number], Ctrl+Tab, Ctrl+T, and Ctrl+W. This allows you to adopt browsing habits such as easy tab management easily into Windows Explorer.

Of course, if you’re a heavy user of bookmarks you may still be asking why no one has implemented this in Windows Explorer. Clover has. Just like in Chrome, press Ctrl+D to bookmark a folder. It’ll be automatically added to your bookmarks bar, but you can just as easily as add it to your Other Bookmarks folder, which will then appear as a dropdown button on the right side of the bar. If you detest bookmarks, you can even just hide the bar entirely.

Clover is an amazing program for anyone who likes Chrome’s tabs even in the least bit. It’s responsive, fast, and brings tons of cool browser-based features to Windows Explorer. The developer’s website is only available in Chinese, but using Google Translate, it’s easy to find, and the program itself is entirely compatible with English. If you’re looking for tabs, bookmarks, or any other way to improve Windows Explorer even a tad, Clover is the awesome program that will let you do that. Virtually its only problem is the creation of a new Clover icon in the task bar to replace the Windows Explorer icon.

Price: Free!

Version discovered: v2.0.121

Supported OS: Windows unknown

Download size: 2.6MB

VirusTotal malware scan results: 0/42

Portability: Requires installation

Clover homepage [Google Translate] | [Original (Chinese)]

[via The Windows Club]

dotTechies: We have tested all the software listed above. However, Windows Software of the Day articles are not intended as “reviews” but rather as “heads-up” to help you discover new programs. Always use your best judgement when downloading programs, such as trying trial/free versions before purchasing shareware programs, if applicable.

Share this post

Comments

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>

10 comments

  1. Janet

    @vagablonde:

    I think the one that is doing most/all (?) of the work on my system is Sage Thumbs. But you should also check out
    Pictus
    ThumbView Lite
    Preview Config
    ThumbsViewer
    Thumbnail Database Viewer

    You can do pretty much anything in Windows Explorer with small add-ons. One of my favorites is FileMenu Tools, where you can r-click on any file or folder to get a customized popup menu with a huge choice of options, such as itemized file size for folders; copy path; copy content, synchronize, etc.,etc., etc……

    I’m Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit

  2. Peter

    WeatherBug behaves strangely here (Win8 Rel.cand.). 1.: it does not ask for a password while installing. 2. it asks for permission to locate my laptop. 3. it crashes.
    Every further attemp to start this program leads to a monster-sized (full screen) tile with the bug and a crash ~1 second later.
    How would I tell Win8 to start it as privileged user if I wanted to (actually, I don’t). I’m missing the “compatibility settings” and even “file properties” in this toy-OS.

  3. David

    Clover didn’t work for me. Got an empty frame with a tab ‘Loading’- supposed to be explorer. (The initial explorer window blinked and resized).

    I don’t think it’s happy with the default file manager being reassigned.

    Also got an installation error about ’360 Safe’ -or other security software. Hung up on uninstall on unregistering a dll – had to log off/on. Tried again.. disabled program guard in Online Armor and reinstalled. No go.

  4. Janetb

    @RobCr:

    Hi Rob!

    I actually have XYPlorer—perhaps I got it on your earlier recommendation…:-)…..? I use it regularly for one particular purpose, but found it missing too many features that I use a lot in W Expl. to use it regularly. I’m constantly finding features in W Ex that I never knew existed! I particularly like it’s thumbnail and preview capabilities and its easily accessible properties info. With a third party app, I get image thumbs and previews for ALL formats–including vector formats (.cdr), pdf’s, Photoshop, .doc etc., etc., etc. which is phenominally helpful. It even shows all pages of multiple page files in the preview pane! A lot of other little things. Like infinitely more choices for Details columns (which I use a lot).

  5. RobCr

    @Janet Berg:
    I hope to cure you of the habit of having two Explorers open at once.
    What I am about to describe applies to the tabbed File Manger XYPlorerFree, which I have recommended a few times on DotTech (I won’t bore the other members by describing it again. Yell out if you want me to find the links on DotTech.)
    You select a Tab and navigate to the desired folder.
    You select another Tab, and navigate to another folder.
    If you select some files in one Tab, you can just drag them to the other Tab, and let go.
    If you hovered briefly on that target Tab, that also tells the program to switch over to that Tab. If no hover, then you remain in the first Tab.
    If you use the right mouse button, you do not get a move, you get asked whether you wish to copy, or move.

    Perhaps today’s offering does similar ?
    (I won’t be trying it, because I dislike Windows Explorer, with or without Tabs)

  6. Janet Berg

    CLOVER
    I tried Tab Explorer but uninstalled because it prevents you from having two Explorer windows open at the same time (or am I missing something?). So you can’t drag files from one open folder to another. Does Clover have the same problem?