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Shorten URLs in TextExpander

If your Twitter client doesn't automatically shorten URLs for you, you can use TextExpander to shrink those long links to tweetable lengths. First, add the Internet Productivity group by choosing File > Add Predefined Group > Internet Productivity Snippets. Then, to shorten a URL using a service like TinyURL, copy the destination URL to the clipboard, and type the abbreviation /tinyurl to insert the shortened URL at the insertion point.

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Win a MacBook or iPod nano from Fetch Softworks

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Our friends at Fetch Softworks are having a back-to-school essay contest for U.S. students, teachers, and other school employees (including home-schoolers) to describe how they use the file transfer program Fetch in their academic work. Entries should be between a paragraph and a page in length, but you might still want to put some effort in, given that Fetch is giving away a new MacBook (worth $1,499) and $750 cash for the grand prize, and a new 8 GB iPod nano plus $100 cash for four runner-up prizes (plus, all five winners receive a stuffed Fetch dog). Jim Matthews tells us that judges will be looking for the most "creative, impressive, and unusual ways that entrants take advantage of Fetch," though I'm willing to bet that you'd get extra points for writing entirely in iambic pentameter or rhymed couplets. The contest runs from 10-Sep-07 through 21-Sep-07, and winners will be announced on 02-Oct-07. No purchase is necessary, of course, and that's especially true because Fetch has always been free to schools and charities.

 

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