Oct 14, 2007

Hat-Trick Freebie by Chua Welic

Usually, when someone says "free" you first think "awesome" then "what's the catch?" then "it sure ain't as great as it sounds". That is the case until you actually try the thing and go "I knew so" or "it's good but not great" or "oh my god, is this truly free?". Rare are the apps that make you reach that 3rd state. Still we won't complain if developers keep on trying ;)

I recently came across 3 great freebies by Chua Welic that made me go to the "is that really free?" state : cClock, cCalc and cCam . Let's proceed step-by-step, shall we?

Note: head on over to the official site for the screenshots (I won't post everything here) and to download the apps. And care to donate to keep him going!

This is a screensaver wide-clock for S60 3rd. Basically instead of that small line on S60's screensaver, you get something so huge I'd almost swear a blind person could see it. Yet this ain't the most amazing part! The app is totally configurable so you can show the date, the day of week, the week number, the network and battery status, indicators for email, sms, missed calls, with numbers count of each event, a chinese calendar and many more, all while being able to adjust the font, size and position of almost everything. Add to that the fact that this little thing doesn't burn your battery power and you've got yourself the First Goal. Way to go Chua!

Sure Calcium is a nifty little treasure but it was made for basic math, so for more complex executions, we only had BestCalc to chew on for quite some time now. Not anymore. cCalc doesn't have the good graphics of Calcium or BestCalc, but it does combine the best of both worlds: keypad shortcuts + complex math operations. Users of Calcium will find a known territory with the same directional basic math shortcuts (+ - / x). Math geeks will rejoice over all-you-can-eat sin/cos/ln/e/sqrt/deg/rad/grad... that are only a couple of clicks away. All you have to do is press * repeatedly and the keys will toggle from numbers to math to trigonometry to base to financial. All functions are keypad mapped and once you've got hold of it, you'll be mathing away in milliseconds. It also has a special version with key mapping for the E61's QWERTY! If that's not enough to make you drool, you'll sure do when you find out it has a built-in converter (that's Formula on the right softbutton) with preset conversions from feet to meters, calories to joules, ounces to grams, celsius to fahrenheit,... As if that's not enough, it's totally configurable. Clicking repeatedly on Formula will get you to the converter then the "edit function" then the "edit label" where you can input your own conversion rates and rename the buttons. Add a nice copy/paste trick which is more handy than MR M+ M- and you've got yourself Goal Number Two!

One thing that always annoys me about my 3250 is the cam shutter sound that tells everyone "A pic has been taken". The 3250 has the ability to snap pictures sideways, which means you can take the pic of someone on your left or right without looking and by pretending you're fiddling with your phone. No one would suspect a thing until the cam shutter goes and you're the only person standing with a phone in your hand. cCam relieves you from the awkwardness of this situation by providing a silent pic snapping solution. I had been waiting for something like that ever since I got my mobile. cCam doesn't come with bells and whistles like the previous apps but it does what it needs to do and it does it well. Hat-Trick to Chua Welic!

And if all of the previous haven't convinced you yet, maybe you will be if you knew that all apps are frequently updated and improved. Be sure to check out Chua Welic's page every now and then. Great additions are always on their way. I'm crossing my fingers for some cCal (calendar) or cCall or cContact apps: all fall within the "cC" naming scheme :p

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