Freeware/Open Source for Windows Weekly Summary

by Todd Ogasawara

Google Spreadsheet Adds Charts



Google Docs Spreadsheet added basic charting features this month. This is something a lot of people have mentioned as a big missing feature area. I wish it had the option to create the chart in a new window instead of overlaying it on the spreadsheet itself. You can read more about this and other new Google Docs Spreadsheet features on the Official Google Blog item...
How to make a pie


ActiveState Komodo Edit 4.0

ActiveState Komodo Edit 4.0 is one of those freeware lead-ins to a more fully featured for-fee version. It is a programmer's editor with support for Perl, PHP, Python, Ruby and Tcl; plus support for browser-side code including JavaScript, CSS, HTML and XML.. The for-fee Komodo IDE product costs US$295. Both versions are available for Mac OS X, Windows, and Linux.


VirtualBox Virtualization Engine Now Available for Mac OS X

I already mentioned the Open Source VirtualBox in an earlier blog item. But, that version was only available for Linux and Microsoft Windows. As of April 23, the Mac OS X version became available. It is a virtualization product that lets you run multiple Guest Operating Systems (say Windows or Linux) at the same time that the host (main) OS is running on a single computer. Parallels Desktop for Mac was previously the only production virtualization product available for Mac OS X (VMware Fusion is still in beta).

read more


SpeedFan: Monitor Fan, Voltage, & Temperature in a PC

SpeedFan is a freeware program that monitors voltages, fan speeds and temperatures in computers with hardware monitor chips (from its website). The latest version (4.32 released on Feb. 28) runs under Windows Vista's 32 and 64-bit versions. Note the author's note that this is for power users. If you use it to tweak your PC's firmware settings, you are on your own :-)


Scratch: MIT Language for Creating Games, Music, Art, and More

The MIT Media Lab's Lifelong Kindergarten Group created the Scratch programming language that makes it easy to create your own interactive stories, animations, games, music, and art -- and share your creations on the web (description from their website). It is available as freeware for Mac OS X and Microsoft Windows. A version for Linux is currently being developed according to the note on the download page. You can learn more about working with Scratch on its Informational Page.