The Lucky Bag of Freebies

Some free software and useful websites.

Page content

The Lucky Bag

We all like freebies. Try this goodie bag

When I was a lad the local baker shops used to sell us kids what we called ‘lucky bags’. These contained broken biscuits, stale cakes and buns. They were served up in a big white paper bag and this veritable feast only cost 3d (three old pennies, pre-decimalisation) and contained more than enough to feed two hungry boys.

I was particularly fortunate because my mother was a friend of the lady who ran the small shop which was part of Milanda Bakeries. So when I asked for a lucky bag (yes, that’s what we called them) the lady would slip in a fresh delicious empire biscuit , which made me very popular with my pals.

These bakers bags were true lucky bags, not the ones that shops sold which contained cheap plastic trinkets. They sold blue bags for boys and pink bags for girls. Those bags cost sixpence - SIXPENCE! - you could buy two proper lucky bags for that!

The lucky bag I have on this page contains links to free software and very useful websites - all free. There is something for everyone here.

  • Text coloured red are clickable links

  • I am NOT affiliated to any of these links

Free Applications & Useful Websites

Application OS Description
IrfanView Photo Editor Windows Linux This photo editor can resize your photos, turn them right side up and enhance/sharpen colours. Some handy plugins too.
DocumentaryHeaven Website Watch free documentaries online. 39 categories from the top channels around the world.
Standard Notes Windows Linux MacOS Android iOS browser My favourite app for making simple notes across ALL platorms, PC/laptop and smartphones. It is just a basic text editor, no formatting to get in the way. I recommend that this app should be used for temporary notes, prior to pasting into a word processor.
Google Translate Website If you want to translate a block of text, this is the place to go. Over 110 languages available. Google Translate even tries to detect the language you pasted in.
Blender Windows MacOS Linux It's hard to believe that this truly amazing software is free. It can render 3D graphics, animation and create videos. It's supported by big industry names. There are lots of free tutorials on YouTube. Here is an example of what professional animators can do with Blender - Spring - Blender Open Movie
allrecipes Website Lots of free recipes, many with video demonstrations.
balenaEtcher Windows Linux MacOS Easy to use app for flashing an operating system onto USB drives or SD cards. Ideal for trying out Linux LiveUSB distros without having to install the operating system.
Cheatography Website Print or read cheatsheets on lots of subjects. The categories are: Programming, Software, Business Marketing, Education, Home & Health and Games & Hobbies.
LibreOffice Windows MacOS Linux LibreOffice is a free office suite that is very popular. The suite consists of Writer, which can read some MS Word documents; Calc, similar to MS Excel, some basic Excel sheets can be read in Calc; Impress, similar to PowerPoint but does not have as many features; Draw, which is a very versatile drawing package. There are other parts of the suite.
Print Friendly & PDF Website Turns any webpage into a printer friendly page. Or you can create the webpage as a PDF to download.
Dropbox Basic Windows MacOS Linux Android iOS Get 2Gb of online storage free. Syncronize with all your devices. Get the Linux version here: Dropbox for Linux Website Create a free page online to promote who you are and what you do, in one simple link.
Audacity Windows MacOS Linux An excellent open source audio multi-track editor that is easy to use and can enhance your recordings.
alternativeTo Website A useful website if you are looking for alternatives to software that you'd like to change.
Calibre Windows MacOS Linux If you have a lot of ebooks on different devices, this program will help you organise them. It also converts files such as .mobi, MS Word and PDF. Calibre also has a built-in ebook reader.
CV Maker Website Create online CVs for free, then download as a HTML, PDF or TXT. Choose from a range of templates. You can also save your CV online.
FreeCAD Windows MacOS Linux A very powerful 3D cad program. Best to let FreeCAD describe it themselves:
Freedom to build what you want - FreeCAD is an open-source parametric 3D modeler made primarily to design real-life objects of any size. Parametric modeling allows you to easily modify your design by going back into your model history and changing its parameters.
The Bored Button Website A bit like the sadly missed StumbleUpon, although you have no way to interact. Just click the red button and be taken to a random website. You never know what you may find.
LibriVox MP3 Downloads Free downloads of public domain audiobooks voiced by volunteers. Very high quality narrators, only occasionally let down by having more than one narrator for one audiobook, but it depends on how many pages the original book is.
Radio Garden Website Free radio stations from around the world. Use the globe to search for any station from any country. You'll be amazed at how many local radio stations there are in your own country.
DarkTable Windows MacOS Linux
darktable is an open source photography workflow application and raw developer. A virtual lighttable and darkroom for photographers. It manages your digital negatives in a database, lets you view them through a zoomable lighttable and enables you to develop raw images and enhance them.
Web archive Website This website has archived billions of long forgotten websites over the years. Is your own website on here? It is possible to reclaim some articles and photos, if you are the owner.

This list will be updated on a regular basis

Glasgow Tales Home button