Welcome to the 364th issue of the PC Improvement News. PCIN consists mainly
of news and tips. There is something for everyone, and if this is your first
issue, I'm sure there will be something for you. If you give me two or three
issues, I know that you will come back for more!
I found something that will help me shorten URLs and track some links. I'm
still finishing it up, but I'll be sure to post about it on the blog and include
the details next week. There were a couple of good suggestions by readers,
but I ended up kind of stumbling into this.
October is here, but the last few days have reached a high of around 27° C.
It is going to cool down for the weekend, just in time for Canadian
Thanksgiving. Lisa is hoping that we make it to the Ball's
Show and Sale, but I'm not sure we'll have time. We're attending a wedding
on Saturday, and we'll be having our big dinner on Sunday.
After the weekend, I also hope to post some more pictures to the family
gallery. We've got some good pictures of Andrew taking swimming lessons,
as well as Matthew finally standing and learning to walk. These are fun times!
Major labels Sony BMG and EMI are releasing more and more new CDs that block
fans from dragging their tunes to iPods.
Now, in the most bizarre turn yet in the record industry's piracy struggles,
stars Dave Matthews Band, Foo Fighters and Switchfoot -- and even Sony BMG,
when the label gets complaints -- are telling fans how they can beat the
A senior U.S. official rejected calls on Thursday for a U.N. body to take
over control of the main computers that direct traffic on the Internet, reiterating
U.S. intentions to keep its historical role as the medium's principal overseer.
" We will not agree to the U.N. taking over the management of the Internet," said
Ambassador David Gross, the U.S. coordinator for international communications
and information policy at the State Department. "Some countries want that.
We think that's unacceptable."
Demand for used computers in some developing regions of the world is outstripping
supplies, a new study has shown.
One in every dozen computers used worldwide is a "secondary PC," and
about 152.5 million used systems were shipped in 2004, according to a study
released Wednesday by market research firm Gartner. Secondary PCs are systems
used for more than three months by the primary consumer and then made available
to another person.
The research company estimated that for every two new PCs shipped to mature
markets in 2005, one secondary PC will be resold. More than 200 million PCs
will be shipped in 2005, according to an earlier Gartner estimate.
Video-laced websites evolve into pseudo-TV stations
Don't touch that mouse. Online news and entertainment video is booming,
says market tracker Forrester Research, with video traffic doubling every
six to eight months on average at websites that offer sight, sound and motion.
America Online next month introduces a celebrity journalism series that will
offer video-on-demand stories about Paris Hilton, Tom Cruise and other stars.
Yahoo recently hired independent journalist Kevin Sites to file video news
reports from Iraq and other war zones. World Wrestling Entertainment just
moved two long-running shows from cable TV - WWEHeat and WWEVelocity - to
its wwe.com site.
Last week I
discussed framing your image for printing by allowing enough room in the viewfinder
to allow you to print a variety of print sizes. This week I will talk about
how to crop our image to obtain the highest quality print. If you remember
a few weeks back I talked about camera resolution. Today that is important
because you want to use the resolution your camera provides when cropping your
When you crop your image to fit a particular print size or even to adjust
composition, you do not want to change any of the pixel data that already exists
in your photo. When you crop you image to a smaller size you simply want to
cut off any part of the photo outside of your cropping boundaries. Some software
will allow you to resample your image when you crop it which is what you do
not want to do. Resampling an image basically means that the software will,
on it's own, either delete pixels in the image add pixels to the image.
In this image, the dimensions are 2500 pixels wide by 3000 pixels
high. We want to crop out the white section of the image (a section 1500 x
2000 pixels). To get the best quality image, the size of the image after cropping
should be 1500 x 2000. That is, no pixels have been added or removed from the
image we want to use. If your software changes the actual pixels after cropping,
it has been resampled and the computer has interpolated where to add or remove
If you use any of the Adobe
Photoshop versions (including Elements)
select the area you want to crop using the Marquee tool then on the Edit
menu, choose Crop. This will delete any of data outside of the cropped area
while still maintaining the original pixels in the final image. If you change
the marquee mode to Fixed Aspect Ratio, you can the ratio for the print dimensions
you are cropping to. If you use Picasa
2 by Google, it will crop your image
without resampling. There are a lot of software packages available, so look
at your manual or the help files to find out how to crop in your package.
The digital photography tip of the week is written by the PCIN Assistant
Editor, Chris Empey. Chris is a long time photographer and is currently
the vice-president of the Niagara Falls Camera Club. You can see more of
his photography at his Photo
of the Day website.
If you have a tip to send Chris, or a question about digital photography
he can address in the newsletter, send it to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Lunacore is a young site that focuses on writing detailed Photoshop tutorials
of high quality that are easy to understand, tips, FAQ, training, advice
and articles that can help users with this powerful product. Lunacore tries
to show those things that are not covered in the manual or at least not
in great detail.
The site doesn't appear to be selling any product or service. It is just
full of great Photoshop Tips.
There are tutorials, tips, and articles. There are 20 tutorials which give
detailed instructions on how to perform certain tasks. A particularly good
example is the Beautify
a Face tutorial (I don't want to debate what beauty is... this is the
title Lunacore gave the tutorial, not me). It is 7 pages long, and at the
end the difference between the original image and the touched up image is
Check it out at http://www.lunacore.com/
Convert to PDF from any application by simply 'printing' to the PrimoPDF
printer - it couldn't be easier! Within minutes, you can create high-quality
PDFs by converting from Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and virtually any other
printable file type.
Urban Dictionary is a slang dictionary with your definitions. Define your
I heard someone use the word "kife" the other day, and I didn't
know what it was. My sister pulled up Urban
Dictionary, and told me what the definition was.
It appears to be a wiki-type dictionary. You can add a word, and define existing
ones. The definitions can be ranked, with the definitions with the highest
ranking at the top.
Be careful, since anyone can post a definition, or define a new word/phrase,
some are profane and vulgar.
Check it out at http://www.urbandictionary.com/ In case your wondering, you can see the definition of "kife" here.
PCIN is brought to you by Graham Wing. The opinions expressed are those of
the Editor, Graham Wing and the Assistant Editor, Chris Empey. Graham Wing
and Chris Empey accept no responsibility for the results obtained from trying
the tips in this newsletter.
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