Review Basics is a collaborative workspace for small teams and businesses. It runs right in your browser, and offers a fairly simple and straightforward way for others to share and leave feedback on photos, video files, and office documents. The interface runs entirely in Flash, so there are no special extensions to download, or programs that need to be installed on your computer. Just start up a workspace and go.
Review Basics works with a variety of common office document standards like Microsoft Word, PowerPoint, and PDF. It also can handle uploading an entire zipped folder, so if you get a zipped attachment in an e-mail, you can upload it straight to the service without having to unpack it and send files one at a time. Review Basics also handles videos, although they have to be in the .FLV Flash format, which despite its popularity on the Internet, isn't a consumer-friendly standard compared to .MOV and .AVI. Files are capped off at 25MB apiece, so if you're working with any video clip over a minute or two, it's likely to be too large.
Annotating media is fairly simple. Users get five different tools to mark what's on the screen: boxes, arrows, a highlighter, call-outs, and emoticons. There is no drawing tool, which is one thing I enjoy and make use of on other collaborative workspace services like ConceptShare [hands-on] and Octopz [hands-on]. I think at a basic level it makes things feel familiar, like using a pen. There are still boxes which can be resized and color coded, but for irregularly shaped elements, you're out of luck.
To separate which feedback is being displayed, you can toggle each person's edits on and off. It's a lot like PhotoShop when you show or hide layers, and useful when you have more than two or three people working on a piece of media at a time, as things tend to get crowded.
Review Basics is very versatile for a free app, but it's missing a few things I think would make it far more competitive in this space. I'd like a way to leave audio or video notes. Some people (like me) find it easier to hit a record button, say something and move on, instead of writing it out. I'd also like to see live chat or live video conferencing, something that can take telephones out of the equation for both businesses and customers. The service is planning on moving to a paid model in the future, adding these things would certainly put it in the realm of some of the other services charging monthly fees.
The team has put together a series of hands-on demos you can play with to get a feel for the service. [More screens after the break.]
It's been a while since we covered a file transfer product like Izimi, Tubes, YouSendIt, or Zapr. But there are still new solutions popping up to solve the problem of sending big files. The latest--that we know of--is Quickeo.
This product's special sauce is that it will bundle up several multimedia files into an attractive e-mail "album". When a recipient clicks on link in the e-mail, it will fire up a Web page that he or she can use to play your files directly.
To create a Quickeo album and send these e-mails, you need to … Read more
Zooomr Mark III Take 2 will arrive in three weeks, but at the same time, the photo-sharing site may enter a "hiatus."
In March, glitches forced the photo-sharing site to back off a redesign that would permit Zooomr users to sell their own photos and would lift storage limits, among other changes. The new version now is scheduled to arrive in three weeks--May 21--said lead programmer Kristopher Tate on his blog Monday.
Tate also said the company is looking for new investors.
"I have some breaking news to share that may create a period of hiatus for … Read more
YouTube has added a new feature to its TestTube section as of last night, called Active Sharing. With this feature enabled, YouTube will keep track of videos you watch, for both archiving and real-time interaction with other users. If you're watching a video with other Active Sharing-enabled users, you'll be able to see their names with a little green dot next to it to signify they're watching too. Clicking on someone's profile name will show you the last five shows they've watched using the service.
Ohio University has become the latest college to crack down on file sharing.
The school announced this week that it would restrict the use of all peer-to-peer file sharing on the campus computer network.
"The network is a shared resource, and we must ensure that it is available to all users," Chief Information Officer Brice Bible said in a news release. "Peer-to-peer file-sharing consumes a disproportionate amount of resources, both in bandwidth and human technical support."
It seems like the current Web 2.0 boomtown (figuratively speaking) is in broadcast tools that allow you to bring your self-programmability a few steps above the YouTube + 20-dollar webcam norm. We've seen Kyte.tv recently, which allows you to create your own live vlogging stream--a phenomenon that certainly got a boost from the popularity of Justin.tv. I recently heard about another emerging player in the business, Veodia, which appears to be catering to a slightly more highbrow breed of video blogger.
Veodia promises that it'll allow you to create professional-quality video in "one click,&… Read more
If you're anything like me, you've got a ton of documents that have piled up over the years. People my age (recent college grads) are some of the worst, with nearly a decade of research papers, projects, and various snippets saved along the way--many of which took hours of hard work and are now relegated to a hard archive somewhere in your documents folder or on burnt optical media. Luckily for your files, there are a few places to share them with others who might be interested in reading.
It was fun while it lasted.
Market analysts say that Intel regained large chunks of market share from AMD in the first quarter. Analyst firm iSuppli says Intel's market share jumped from 75.7 percent in the fourth quarter to 80.2 percent in the first quarter. AMD, meanwhile, sank from 15.7 percent to 11.1 percent.
Sam Bhavnani of Current Analysis, meanwhile, broke it down by type of computer for U.S. retail (about 11 percent of the worldwide market). In desktops, Intel rose from a 46 percent share to a 58 percent share while it saw … Read more
Grouptivity launched an updated version of its content-sharing tool on Monday. Blog posters can now add a "discuss this" button on the bottom of any post, which will pull up the Grouptivity sharing dialogue to send off the post or article to others. This dialogue allows you to pick from various pieces of media (photos and videos) that you want to share, along with a full text copy of the content. There's also the option to send it off to multiple e-mail addresses, set up read confirmations, and author explanatory messages to your recipients.
If you've … Read more