Add custom news and alerts to new tabs in Google Chrome

Rick Broida , PCWorld

For more than 20 years, Rick Broida has written about all manner of technology, from Amigas to business servers to PalmPilots. His credits include dozens of books, blogs, and magazines. He sleeps with an iPad under his pillow.
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OneFeed for Google Chrome.

If you're a Google Chrome user (it remains my browser of choice), you already know how to reduce tab clutter with OneTab and add a clock and weather station to new tabs.

But if you really want to amp up Chrome's tab acumen, install OneFeed. It turns new tabs (that is, those you open by clicking the new-tab button or pressing Ctrl-T) into a personalized portal, a page stocked with news feeds, e-mail notifications, social-network updates, and more.

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How to get a full-screen Gmail compose window every time

Rick Broida , PCWorld

For more than 20 years, Rick Broida has written about all manner of technology, from Amigas to business servers to PalmPilots. His credits include dozens of books, blogs, and magazines. He sleeps with an iPad under his pillow.
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Last week we talked about Gmail's spiffy new inbox-sorting tabs. Today let's look at another new feature, one that's just starting to roll out to users: a full-screen new-message window.

By default, when you click Gmail's Compose button, you get a window that appears in the right corner of the screen.

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How to enable or disable Gmail's new tabs

Rick Broida , PCWorld

For more than 20 years, Rick Broida has written about all manner of technology, from Amigas to business servers to PalmPilots. His credits include dozens of books, blogs, and magazines. He sleeps with an iPad under his pillow.
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Gmail tabs.

Gmail just rolled out one of its best features in years: Inbox tabs. (Actually, the feature was announced back in May, but is only just now starting to roll out to users.)

Borrowing a page from services like Alto and Swizzle Sweeper, Gmail can now automatically organize certain kinds of messages into tabs, greatly reducing inbox clutter in the process.

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Three cool ways to tweak File Explorer in Windows 8

Rick Broida , PCWorld

For more than 20 years, Rick Broida has written about all manner of technology, from Amigas to business servers to PalmPilots. His credits include dozens of books, blogs, and magazines. He sleeps with an iPad under his pillow.
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Microsoft may have bungled a few things with Windows 8 (snark reply: "Just a few?!"), but File Explorer isn't one of them.

For one thing, the file manager finally earned a home on the Taskbar (even if you have to switch to the desktop to find it). Even better, Microsoft endowed it with the now-familiar Ribbon interface, making for much easier navigation of your files (and Explorer itself).

However, I think it could be even better with a little tweaking. Here are three simple changes you can make to improve the File Explorer experience:

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Convert a PDF for Kindle viewing, no software required

Rick Broida , PCWorld

For more than 20 years, Rick Broida has written about all manner of technology, from Amigas to business servers to PalmPilots. His credits include dozens of books, blogs, and magazines. He sleeps with an iPad under his pillow.
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If you rely on a Kindle (or Kindle app) for reading, you probably know that it supports not only ebooks, but also PDFs.

In fact, if you've done your homework, you also know that your Kindle (or Kindle app) has its own email address, meaning you can send any PDF straight to your device just by attaching it to an email. (You can find this address in the Kindle's Settings area.)

Unfortunately, most PDFs arrive exactly as they are: static images that aren't optimized for Kindle viewing, and therefore require a lot of zooming and scrolling. If you ask me, they're almost unreadable in this state.

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Install any version of Windows using any Windows disc you can find

Rick Broida , PCWorld

For more than 20 years, Rick Broida has written about all manner of technology, from Amigas to business servers to PalmPilots. His credits include dozens of books, blogs, and magazines. He sleeps with an iPad under his pillow.
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Reader Chris needs to reinstall Windows 7 Home Basic on his laptop. Just one problem: he lost his recovery discs.

A more common problem is when you need to reinstall Windows and you never had recovery discs to begin with. Few manufacturers provide them anymore, and many new PCs don't have optical drives even if they did.

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How to bypass your PC when ordering photo prints

Rick Broida , PCWorld

For more than 20 years, Rick Broida has written about all manner of technology, from Amigas to business servers to PalmPilots. His credits include dozens of books, blogs, and magazines. He sleeps with an iPad under his pillow.
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FreePrints for Android

Old habits die hard. For example, many of us still insist on syncing our smartphones to our PCs, even though it's hardly necessary anymore. (Android, iOS, and Windows phones can automatically sync to the cloud.)

Likewise, many users still take the old-school approach when it comes to ordering prints of the photos they've snapped: They copy (or even email) them to a PC, then upload them to a printing service.

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