Welcome to the 484th 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!
Lisa and I are most likely getting a newer minivan soon. We currently have
a 14-year-old van that is beginning to look and run like a 14-year-old minivan.
We've been out and done some test drives, and are pretty sure we know what
we're going to get. Stay tuned...
When I'm done work tomorrow I'm off on vacation. We have nothing exciting
planned, but it'll be nice to home with Lisa and the kids. I'm sure we'll find
some fun things to do while I'm off.
The economy may be teetering, but the personal computer business is still
nimbly running at full speed, according to the tally of sales in the fourth
quarter of 2007 from the International Data Corporation. Worldwide, 77.3
million PCs were sold in the quarter, up 15.5 percent from the fourth quarter
of 2006. That represents almost double the growth rate of 2005 to 2006.
For the year, IDC said, 297 million PCs were shipped, an increase of 14.3
percent over 2006.
IP addresses, string of numbers that identify computers on the Internet,
should generally be regarded as personal information, the head of the European
Union's group of data privacy regulators said Monday.
Germany's data protection commissioner, Peter Scharr, leads the EU group
preparing a report on how well the privacy policies of Internet search engines
operated by Google Inc., Yahoo Inc., Microsoft Corp. and others comply with
EU privacy law.
He told a European Parliament hearing on online data protection that when
someone is identified by an IP, or Internet protocol, address "then
it has to be regarded as personal data."
Leanne, my wife, recently wanted to go rollerskating. There is a rollerskating
rink about a 30 minute drive away, but we had never been. While looking up
information, I noticed the following photo on one of the pages and new what
my next tip would be about. Rear or 2nd curtain sync.
I think it is an interesting photo that does a great job of depicting motion,
though changing one setting on the camera could have made it a much stronger
photograph. This photo is being illuminated with two light sources, the ambient
light from the roller rink and the flash from the photographer's camera. The
racers are moving fast enough that the 1/60 second exposure shows some motion
within the frame. The flash has provided most of the exposure within the image
which has provided a sharp image of the racers, effectively stopping their
motion. In this image, the flash fired at the beginning of the exposure, front
curtain sync. The results of first (or front) curtain sync are a static image
with motion trails flowing in front of the subject. This of course is a little
In this photograph, the image is again lit by two sources, the ambient light
of the roller rink and the light of the flash. The difference is that in this
photo, the flash was fired at the end of the exposure. Using 2nd (or rear)
curtain sync this way causes the motion blur of your subject to appear behind
the sharp area of the subject in the photograph and enhances the effect of
In both of these images, the effects could have been exaggerated by using
an even longer shutter speed.
When I spoke to a few of my photographer friends about front and rear curtain
sync, we could not come up with a good example of when you might wish to use
front curtain sync. The best answer I could come up with was to use front curtain
sync when you are trying to capture a specific point in time and rear curtain
sync every other time. In other words, if you are capturing a subject that
requires a highly critical point in time capture, then front curtain sync would
be your best best as the flash will fire as soon as the exposure begins. Any
other time you are going to get a more pleasing image with rear curtain sync.
Read your manual to find out how to enable this feature with your camera.
Another note to consider, if your shutter speed during exposure is sufficiently
fast enough to stop motion on it's own, then neither front or rear curtain
sync will make a difference either way.
I would like to thank flickr users l3xh2k and photos-martha for
the use of their images with this tip. If you have a question about photography
or a subject you would like to see me cover, please leave a comment after the
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 email@example.com.
PDFHammer is a web-based application that allows you to merge and rearrange
PDF documents online. It's free, extremely easy-to-use and runs directly
from your browser. You don't have to register either, just upload PDF files
and start arranging the pages in any order you want. Once finished, use
the "Export Final PDF" button to download ready PDF file to your
Microsoft plans to end most sales of Windows XP on June 30, despite a
deep reluctance by many business and individuals about moving to Vista.
InfoWorld believes such an expensive, time-consuming shift with problematic
benefits should not be forced on Windows users, so we have decided to rally
XP users to demand that XP be kept available.
The web site has a countdown clock as well as a petition which as of the
time of this posting, has over 30,000 people who have "signed" it.
If you love Windows XP and would like to stay around a while longer, then
support the campaign.
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.
If any of the links are too long to fit on one line, you may have to cut
To subscribe another address or unsubscribe, please visit http://PCIN.net/ and
follow the appropriate links.
The only way to become a subscriber is by asking. You have either filled
out the subscription form or asked me directly.
If you have a web site or run your own newsletter, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and
I will add it to the subscriber web pages that I have on my site.