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Start Screen Unlimited Lite 3.1.0.31

Add assorted digital gadgets to the Windows 8 Start Screen

by Nick Peers

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License: Free, for personal-use only
Operating Systems: Windows 8
Requirements:
Languages: English
Software Cost: $19.95 (Windows)
Date Updated: 02 December 2015
Watchlist: Add download to my watchlist
Downloads To Date: 653
Developer: Greatis Software
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Twitter Feed: https://twitter.com/Greatis
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/StartScreenUnlimited
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Start Screen Unlimited
Add assorted digital gadgets to the Windows 8 Start Screen

Start Screen Unlimited Lite is a free tool which provides various ways to customise the desktop.

You can add custom menus, for instance. An internet search bar, with your choice of search engine. Digital clocks, maybe a stopwatch, power shortcuts, easy user switching, status panels and more.

The free Lite version is limited to personal use only, but has pretty much all the functionality you could need or want. A Deluxe version removes this restriction, adds 3D menus and promises early access to future features.

Verdict:

There's nothing here you can't do better with other desktop extensions, but if you're looking for a starter collection of gadgets then Start Screen Unlimited may be useful.

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Spotlight: Free Full Software

Spektrel Art 1.0.0

Free Full Commercial Software

Spektrel Art is a stand-alone program and Photoshop plugin which transforms digital photos into "magical art that glimmers and gleams with intersecting lines of tapered light".

What does that mean? Essentially it applies a configurable mix of effects, enhancing edges, smoothing backgrounds and emphasizing colours. Take a look at the thumbnail for one example, and the official product page has more.

Spektral Art works much like any similar tool. Open an image, click one of the thumbnails to apply a particular preset, or click a few buttons and drag some sliders to fine-tune the results.

There's surprising scope for variation, too. For example, just switching from the "Light" to "Dark" theme can transform a bright and friendly image into something dark and sinister, at least in some cases (results vary depending on the source image).

Please note, the demo version doesn't allow images to be saved.

SPECIAL OFFER: as we write, the developer is offering Spektral Art for free. The offer expires August 29th. Please note that you must provide your name, address and phone number to receive your free license.

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