control your computers from afar I'm a big fan of getting everything to talk to everything else in my house, which can be frustrating at times, but every now and then I come across something that "just works".
The VNC based HippoRemote app is one such discovery making it simple to control a Mac, Windows or Linux based computer from afar using an iPhone, iPad or iPod touch. Of course there are plenty of VNC based remote iPhone apps around but, rather than allowing screen pandora charm lettere sharing (which can be cumbersome on a tiny iPhone display), Hipporemote focuses more on controlling specific applications. You can't actually see the computer's screen on your iPhone, but that doesn't really matter because it's assuming you're sitting near the computer and just using the iPhone as a cordless keyboard and mouse. You can use the iPhone's screen as a touchpad for moving the mouse but, better yet, you can also call up profiles for specific applications offering dedicated buttons for specific features. Think of HippoRemote pandora by the sea collection a something like a Logitech Harmony universal remote for your iPhone, reconfiguring the buttons on the fly depending on which application you're controlling on the computer. Pre configured applications include browsers such as Internet Explorer, Firefox, Safari and Opera as well as a range of multimedia applications including Windows Media Centre (pictured), Windows Media Player, Front Row, Plex, Mediaportal, XMBC, Boxee, Pandora, iTunes, Hulu Desktop, QuickTime, VLC, WinAmp, DVD player and EyeTV. That should be enough to please just about everyone. As of HippoRemote 2.0, you can even access the online profile repository from within the app or even write your own profiles for non standard applications. Such options are a godsend if price of pandora necklace you're using a computer as a media centre and want to control applications that don't play nicely with a standard IR remote control. For example, if you want to watch video in iTunes or a browser based Catch Up TV service such as ABC's iView on your media centre, you'll probably need to walk over to the computer next to the television and muck around with a keyboard and mouse to get it running. Perhaps you've got a cordless keyboard and mouse sitting on the coffee table, but it's still not a very elegant experience. Enter HippoRemote. It only takes a few minutes to configure HippoRemote for Mac or Windows (a job made easier if iTunes is already installed). Now you just pull out your iPhone, launch HippoRemote and select the computer you want to control. In less than 10 seconds you'll be presented with a trackpad for controlling the pointer along with left and right click buttons. A menu at the top of the interface offers a long list of the applications HippoRemote can control it will automatically launch your selected application and bring it to the front. Once you're controlling an application HippoRemote reconfigures itself to offer dedicated controls. For example iTunes offers a MusicPad and VideoPad screen, while Firefox offers common options such as Back, Open and Search. There's also a keyboard option which even keeps a history of recently typed phrases. Many profiles such as Firefox let you tap a Macro button (or just shake the iPhone) to be presented with a long list of macros such as "New Tab", "Full Screen" and "Find in Page". Can't find the macro you want? No worries, you can easily create your own. There are also profiles for controlling core features of MacOS and Windows XP/Vista/7. The icing on the cake is pinch to zoom, which makes it easier to use a browser from the couch. The power and flexibility of HippoRemote opens up a world of possibilities. For some people it will be controlling music remotely, although I find the iPhone's built in Remote app is more useful if you're working with iTunes. For others it will be controlling video applications such as iTunes and Hulu Desktop. For me the attraction is easily accessing browser based content such as iView, Plus7, YouTube and Hulu. I don't need to wait for the likes of Sony and Panasonic to build Catch Up TV access into their devices when HippoRemote makes it so easy to control a browser from the couch. At $5.99 I'd say HippoRemote Pro is an absolute bargain. It's such an impressive application that I'd say if you don't already own an iGadget it's almost worth buying a cheap second hand iPod touch just to run HippoRemote.
An iPad specific version is also on the way, which should make Apple's latest wundergadget a little more useful around the house, although meanwhile the iPhone version works fine on pandora bracelet charms an iPad. If you're still not sold, there's even a cheaper Basic version and free Lite version to try out.
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