Welcome to the 471st issue of the PC Improvement News. PCIN consists mainly
of news highlights 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!
Christine is going to be 3 weeks old tomorrow, and for the first time Lisa
is going to be alone during the day as a mother of 3. She's a little scared.
I was off for a week, and then her mother has been here. Now the fun begins!
Andrew and Matthew are very excited for Halloween. This past Monday we made
a haunted gingerbread house (using orange and black icing) and we ate some
of it tonight. They have their costumes ready and my parents (their Nanna and
Poppa) gave them some Halloween pajamas that they look very cute in.
Several major research libraries have rebuffed offers from Google and Microsoft
to scan their books into computer databases, saying they are put off by restrictions
these companies want to place on the new digital collections.
The research libraries, including a large consortium in the Boston area,
are instead signing on with the Open Content Alliance, a nonprofit effort
aimed at making their materials broadly available.
Teenagers are using their parents' credit cards to buy thousands of dollars'
worth of virtual property, including real estate, on Web sites such as Second
NetSafe chief executive Martin Cocker says parents are shocked because they
don't realize it's possible to buy something that doesn't exist in the real
world -- and they don't know how fast it's possible to spend.
To hear Ballmer tell it, Microsoft is the little engine that will eventually
surpass the behemoth that is Google. Comfortable with sports metaphors, he
referred to Microsoft's search and advertising teams as young athletes who
will eventually rule the basketball court. "You're growing up quickly.
You're getting better every day," he said. "You're three years
old and you're playing basketball with 12-year-olds. You're going to dunk
on the other guys some day."
iPhone Mystery: 1.4 Million Sold, 250,000 Never Activated
Out of 1.4 million iPhones sold since the hot gadget debuted June 29, fully
250,000 have not been activated to run on AT&T's wireless network, The
New York Times and The Register, a British technology blog, both reported
An Apple executive admitted the discrepancy during a conference call with
analysts following the release of fourth-quarter performance results.
"[A] number of [iPhones] were sold to people that have an intention to unlock
and where we don't know precisely how many people are doing that, our current
guess is there is probably 250,000 of the 1.4 million that we sold where people
had bought them with the intention of doing that," said Chief Operating
Officer Timothy B. Cook. "Many of those happened after the [September] price
I have talked about depth of field and using aperture to minimize or maximize
depth of field in the past. Today I will talk about Automatic Depth of Field
function some camera's have and depth of field preview.
Automatic Depth of Field (A-Dep or DEP) is creative mode on some camera's
that will help you select the best aperture to get everything in your frame
in focus. To use A-DEP, turn the dial on your camera to A-DEP, and compose
your image. The camera will then evaluate your frame, set your aperture and
focus on a point where everything from front to back will be in focus by setting
the focus to the hyperfocal distance. As it is an automatic setting, it tends
to be hit and miss at time. When using this setting, be sure to have everything
you want in focus to fall within your camera's focus points as this is what
the camera uses to determine what needs to be in focus. On older cameras (DEP)
you were able to focus on the point nearest to you that you wanted in focus
the press the shutter 1/2 way. Next, focus on the point (without changing the
zoom setting) further from you and press the shutter 1/2 way. Finally, recompose
your photo and press the shutter all the way. The camera will then focus at
the correct spot to get the near and far points in focus.
If you want a more manual approach, using your depth of field preview button
will help you determine how your given aperture will affect your image. Once
your image is composed, press your depth of field preview button to stop down
the lens. This will force your diaphragm blades to close and you will be able
to see how the depth of field will be represented when you take the photo.
Because you are closing the diaphragm blades, the image will go darker in your
viewfinder as you let less light into the lens. This is normal and will not
alter your image.
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 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.
PCIN.net Site Update
Check out these new or updated pages on the PCIN.net site:
With Halloween coming along soon, you may be looking for some "scary" web
sites. A fun one to check it is Hershey's TrickorTreats.com.
There are all sorts of activities, crafts, pumpkin stencils, and more that
you can download.
Internet Explorer and Firefox both come with integrated RSS feed readers.
These are both pretty basic, but give you quick access to your feeds. I think
I've mentioned in the past that I use BlogBridge.
This allows you to have a profile of feeds that can be loaded on any computer
that has BlogBridge installed. I sync up my feeds at work, on my home computer,
and on my laptop.
Recently Chris has been using Attensa
Feed Reader. This can either be a standalone application, or an Outlook
add-in. If you live in Outlook, then it can be a pain to have to go to
other software to read your feeds. Attensa brings your feeds into Outlook
and gives them the same look and feel as your email. It looks quite impressive.
If they added in a sync feature like BlogBridge, I'd probably switch.
Depending on how you calculate it, the Web has been around for between
15 and 17 years--which makes it old enough to ask for the car keys, but
still an awkward teenager growing toward maturity. Yet it already has a
long and storied history (and some prehistory). We've decided to chronicle
its 16 greatest moments here.
When possible, we pinpointed a specific day, hour, and even minute--the "aha" moment
when the people involved got the original idea, launched the site, sold
the first product, or posted the first entry. Instead of listing the events
chronologically, we've ranked them in ascending order of importance.
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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