Tidbits for May 2013

This is something I’m starting this month. I will do one a month but with a twist. I’ll continue to add tidbits to this one page for the entire month.

May 30, 2013

What’s coming in the upgrade to Windows 8

Personally I’m glad the Start button is history or was history. But other changes are being made for Windows 8.1.

Read about what’s coming in Windows 8.1 here.

May 27, 2013

Do I really need that digital camera?

If all you’re doing is making 4X6 inch prints and posting to the Web then probably not. Just get a good smartphone and have at it.

Here’s a bunch of examples of the iPhone photos.

May 21, 2013

5 Things To Know About the New Flickr

Ted Forbes over at The Art of Photography has put up a post on what you need to know about the new Flickr. Ted is a good writer and does a good job of explaining things. I read him often and also view his videos. Check him out.

Here’s the link to his Yahoo post.

May 21, 2013

RAW or JPEG?

Reasons why one photographer shoots RAW most of the time.

What I tell people wanting to know which to use: If you don’t use any photo editing software or you shoot for web sites like Facebook or Flickr then JPEG is what you should be using. Otherwise use RAW.

May 20, 2012

So What Are The Differences Between Photoshop And Elements?

I’ve always wondered what was missing from the cheaper version of Photoshop. After all $99 retail price for Photoshop Elements is way less than the $609 for Mac or the $649 for Windows for Photoshop.

Wonder no longer. Someone at the Adobe forums is compiling a list of differences.

The complete post is here.

May 15, 2013

Adobe publicly confirms stand-alone future for Lightroom

Adobe Product Manager Tom Hogarty stressed that Adobe has, ‘no plans to make Lightroom subscription-only at any point in the future.’ The statement, made in light of the overwhelming response to Adobe’s Creative Cloud announcement last week, was made during a Google+ Hangout today in which both Hogarty and Lightroom PM Sharad Mangalick responded to audience questions.

The Complete Post Is Here.

May 14, 2013

Windows 8.1 Due In Late June

Today at the JP Morgan Technology, Media & Telecom Conference in Boston, Tami Reller shared with the audience that the update previously referred to as “Windows Blue” will be called Windows 8.1and will be a free update to Windows 8 for consumers through the Windows Store.

Complete post here.

May 9, 2013

Scott Kelby on Adobe’s Announcements at the MAX Conference

If you’re a user of any of Adobe’s CS software bundles then you should read this question and answer post by Scott Kelby.

May 7,2013

The Five Stages of the Camera Buying Process

You want or need a new camera and aren’t sure of the best process to use in deciding on and purchasing said new camera. Here’s a blog post that just may help you solve your dilemma. Read and weep.

Or just go out and buy the dang thing.

May 6, 2012

Adobe heralds subscription-only future for Photoshop and Creative Suite

See story at DPReview.

Amazon is having a Gold Sale of the 3M Streaming Projector Powered by Roku (SPR1000.)

3M Streaming Projector Powered by Roku
The portable ultra-compact 3M Streaming Projector Powered by Roku allows you to wirelessly stream your favorite online movies onto a 120-inch projection field. The rechargeable battery runs for up to 2.5 hours (on eco mode) between charges.

Sale Price: $169.99.

Check it out here.

May 2, 2013

The High Cost Of HDMI Cables

First up this month is HDMI cables. Why do they cost so much? I’ve been of the opinion that merchants, including Fry’s Electronics, charge a hefty price because we have been told over and over that any HDMI cable is an expensive thing to build. It is really? The least expensive HDMI cable at Fry’s was $16.00 for a 6′ cable with most 6′ HDMI cables in the $30.00 range. So the question is can we do better?

Amazon to the rescue.

Amazon is selling two, I repeat 2, 2-meter HDMI cables for $9.99. Even with shipping and tax this is still cheaper than any local store’s price. And that’s FOR 2, I repeat two, HDMI cables.

I’m currently using one of the two HDMI cables I purchased from Amazon and it works just fine. The second one I needed for the club meetings.

Here’s the link at Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B0052SCU8U/ref=pe_175190_21431760_M3T1_ST1_dp_1

Agenda For The April 2013 Meeting

Circle

Curves Included

What’s Up With This Sunday’s Meeting

by John Krill NOCCC 3160

I had to purchase a new Laptop after last months meeting. My choice was another Dell Inspiron 15. 64 bit. 4GB memory. 500GB storage. Windows 8. $400.00. Added another 4GB of memory. Nice machine.

It’s taken a while to get used to Windows 8 but it’s an alright OS. Yes the new Start Screen is weird but you can get used to it. Kinda.

Problem:

Not problem per say but with these new machines you no longer have a VGA port. Only output for video is HDMI. This means I either need to get a comverter to go from HDMI to VGA or we find a projector with HDMI or maybe USB input. So for the meeting we may spend some time just getting the laptop and projector working together. We may use one of the club’s projectors.

What’s on the agenda?

Maybe we will talk about Windows 8. There are some interesting utilities with Windows 8. I may also cover some of the quirks of the OS. For starters you may want to look at the two previous posts on this blog. Their both on Windows 8.

As always we try to answer your photography questions.

Lightroom:

I was going to start a new SIG this month covering Adobe Lightroom. It was planned for a Noon meeting time in Science 127.

Can’t do it this month. Family business has forced me to leave after the Beginning Digital Photography SIG.

So maybe some Lightroom near the end of the Beginning Digital Photography SIG.

See you at 9AM.

Is New Better?

StartMenuOld

Start Button used in previous versions of Windows.

Is Windows 8 New Start Screen Better Than Older Windows Start Button?

by John Krill NOCCC 3160

If you are a Windows RT tablet or phone user you may like the new Start Screen because it looks and acts like a Windows tablet and phone. If you have used Windows in the past you might not like the new Windows 8 Start Screen.

I’ve been using Windows 8 and it’s new Start Screen for about 3 weeks and I’m still not completely liking it.

My Reasons Are As Follows:

First naming conventions: In past Windows we had the Start Button and in the new Windows 8 we have the Start Screen. For this article then ‘Start Button’ is old versions of Windows and ‘Start Screen’ is the new Windows 8 version. Confusing? It should be.

1. The Start has been Balkanized.

No longer is everything you had in the old Start Button in the Windows 8 Start Screen. You want to ‘Shutdown’ that’s inside all Charm menus and the Power Icon. Want to ‘Log Off’ then go to the Start Screen and you’ll find user info as well as logging off  in the upper right corner. Want to go to ‘All Programs’ then first go to the Start Screen then Right Click the mouse and then click the ‘All Apps’ Icon in the lower right of Start Screen. Got all that? In other words go here or there or maybe over there to accomplish what you could do directly from the Start button.

Want the Control Panel: Go to the Charm menu from the Desktop.

Want to do a search: There is a Search Icon in every Charm menu but they’re all not equal. Good luck there.

Remember ‘Run’ in the Start button? Go to the Start Screen then to ‘All Apps’ and over in the Windows System section is ‘Run.’

Note: Like the old Start button any program could be put in the Start menu and likewise any App can be put on the Start Screen. This means you can collect your favorite old Start Button apps into one section of Start Screen.

Weirdness of the Start Screen: Try arranging the apps on the Start Screen the way YOU want them. Good luck with that. And if you find a way to keep them from moving all over the place please let me know. I’ve given up on that little project.

2. Productivity has been reduced with Windows 8.

Balkanized Start functions is one example.

Because I haven’t been able to organize the Start Screen I’m always looking for the program I want. For this reason I’ve put a lot more programs into the Task Bar than I did in the past.

More mouse clicks is another. Almost everything I have to do in Windows 8 involves extra mouse clicks. Also you spend more time moving from one screen to another as well as one area of a screen to another area to accomplish a task.

For instance why do I need to right-click the mouse in the Start Screen in order to get the ‘All Apps’ Icon? Why can’t that Icon always be present?

Win8 apps designed especially for this OS can’t replace the same program of old. They just don’t have the flexibility. Only those apps that have limited functionality, like Twitter, work well as a Win8 app. Win8 app what’s that? Technically, and I’m no expert, I believe those are apps that have been ported to Windows 8 from the RT OS that the Microsoft tablets and phones use.

A really good example of a Win8 app is Twitter.

OK we have Windows programs and Win8 apps. I know how to install a Windows program but how do you install a Win8 app? Good question. Here’s the answer. Go to the Windows Store. What Windows Store? You mean the one downtown? Or maybe you mean the Windows store at microsoft.com? The answer is NO to both.

You will find the Windows Store on the Start Screen. Keep looking, it’s there. Find it? OK start the Windows Store app and begin searching for and installing all those free Win8 apps. Wait a minute how do I do a Search? OK I’ll tell you – look in the Charm menu. Click Search. Isn’t this fun.

I suggest you install the Twitter Win8 app first because it really is a well thought out app and it actually works.

A lot of the Win8 apps, maybe all of them, are web sites also, like Twitter. This means you can always just fall back on the old web version of the app. In general I suggest you use the Web version instead of the Win8 app. Remember the win8 app had to be ported over to Windows 8. The Web version is usually the REAL thing. Again Twitter seems to have gone over to the dark side and still remained workable and friendly.

Want to experience a bad Win8 app then try one of the Facebook Win8 apps. That’s right there is more than one.

Remember Win8 apps were originally designed for small screens like the Microsoft phone and on your big screen they can look weird.

My Biggest Complaint:

Windows 8 just isn’t that intuitive. Logic isn’t part of the Windows 8 experience. Why do I have to leave a Win8 app before I can close that app?

For us old time Windows users getting used to Windows 8 is going to take a while. But I may never stop being annoyed at some of the methods of this new Windows OS.

The Silly Secret Of Windows 8

windows8PC

So what is the silly  secret of Windows 8? First a story.

Above is the look of the new Start Menu. No more Start button. Is it better? Not really. You can’t get to the Control Panel from here. You can’t get to printers from here. You can’t go directly to you user root directory, or the Pictures directory, or the Documents directory form here.

You can start programs from here if you can remember what silly square to use. And the silly squares move around in a fashion that is just plan weird. Try moving one of those squares to exactly where you want it. Good luck with that.

And now we have the Charm menus. Charm????

In short what could be reached from the old Start menu requires you to remember if it is the new Start menu or one of the Charm menus. Charming. Or maybe on the All Apps page. And then you have to remember, or discover, the trick to get to the All Apps page. Tricky.

And this is just the beginning of all my complaints about Windows 8 and to top it off I LIKE IT!

So back to the silly secret. Microsoft says that the new Start Menu in Windows 8 is to make ALL of Microsoft OSs look alike. OK I’ll kinda buy that except for one thing, the silly secret.

Here’s the silly secret: The Windows Operating System no longer has productivity has it Number One priority. So what is Priority Number ONE?

The silly secret is now Priority ONE: The Operating System as a Market Place. Sell, baby sell! Then sell some more. All those Apps. All those Games too. You name it you can buy it right from the Windows Store. Yup there is a Windows Store app. And Games Store App too. Maybe more stores are hidden in the Start menu if only it will stop moving things around.

The Marketing arm of Microsoft INC has finally, and completely taken CONTROL

If I’m right then they should give away the OS and make all their profits on Apps.