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Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Create special effects with Irfanview


With Irfanview, you can easily create many special effects for your photos. You can read my descriptions below or view the video.

All you need to do is go to Irfanview horizontal menu, click
File > Open

to load the photo into Irfanview, then

Free Screen Recorder - Introduction, tutorial and review


The FREE SCREEN RECORDER (have to write the name in upper case because that, FREE SCREEN RECORDER, is the name of this screen recorder that is free courtesy of NBXSoft) is a small 600KB download with a very simple GUI:

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

How to reset Google Apps account

http://www.google.com/support/forum/p/Google%20Apps/thread?tid=5295453106732a64&hl=en
Reset Google Apps Admin Password Report abuse

nicheplayer
Level 2
5/8/09
Clearly, my issue is not an unfamiliar one. I do not have the admin password for Google Apps and cannot reset it via the login page. (I get the "Please contact your domain administrator to help you access your username or reset your password." message.) I am the administrator.

Yes, another DreamHost customer.

After many, many attempts to get to a contact form yesterday (viscious circle of links in Google Apps Help), I found and filled out to the best of my knowledge. This is urgent and I need to resolve right away.

I hope this post will reach a Google employee who can send me a reset link or scrap the google apps account for psychologyjobs.com so I can start over. (Will scrapping also affect gmail?)
Best answers


LMckin51
Top Contributor
Power Poster
5/10/09
Best answer - nicheplayer (Asker) Go to this answer
nicheplayer,

If you having trouble reset your admin password follow this link below and then scroll down to the blue box click no then go bottom of the page where it say submit form for more help.
References:
[1]
Reset admin password - Google Apps Help(Help Articles)
www.google.com
Query used: reset admin password google apps
13 of 24 people found this answer helpful. Did you? YesNo Report abuse

nicheplayer
Level 2
5/16/09
Best answer - LMckin51 (Top Contributor) Go to this answer
UPDATE - RESOLVED

Thanks to all for your input. In the end, the ONLY thing that resolved this issue was getting this issue to a Google support person. They were able to send domain ownership verification instructions (cname or HTML file upload) that included a specific code.

So, if you are having the issue of lost admin password and the reset functionality not working, the answer is to submit a form (best you can). Follow this link below and then scroll down to the blue box, click "no" then go bottom of the page where it say submit FORM for more help.

https://www.google.com/support/a/bin/answer.py?answer=33561
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Replies 1 - 24 of 24


Mark L
Level 6
5/9/09
I have linked this question to a similar thread, which has a top contributor responding; this is due to you not checking "allow password reset" option in your control panel.

http://www.google.com/support/forum/p/Google+Apps/thread?tid=694ffb3277ccbcdf&hl=en
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nicheplayer
Level 2
5/9/09
Yes, Mark, I see that thread and many others like it (Google, are you listening?) but it does not help me today.

I need a password reset, not a reason why its broken.
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Mark L
Level 6
5/9/09
It is not broken; you choose not to enable password resetting for your users.
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nicheplayer
Level 2
5/9/09
Mark, tomato/tomah-to... your reply is not helpful to the current situation.

If anyone knows how we can get action on resetting the password or scrapping the apps account to start over, please provide us with that info.

Thanks!
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nicheplayer
Level 2
5/10/09
Hi Google Employees,

I thought you should know that, when someone is the Admin and does not have the Apps password (and did not enable password reset), your help system is no help at all. Even the option of upgrading our Apps account (where additional support is available) is predicated on being able to login to Control Panel.

A suggestion for improvement: Given the high number of lost admin password messages in the forum, you might consider an easy to find link that says something like... "Lost your password and you are the Admin? Click here."

And, in the meantime, I'd really appreciate if someone could send a pw reset link to admin [at] psychology jobs [dot] com

Thanks a bunch.
3 of 3 people found this answer helpful. Did you? YesNo Report abuse

LMckin51
Top Contributor
Power Poster
5/10/09
Best answer - nicheplayer (Asker)
nicheplayer,

If you having trouble reset your admin password follow this link below and then scroll down to the blue box click no then go bottom of the page where it say submit form for more help.
References:
[1]
Reset admin password - Google Apps Help(Help Articles)
www.google.com
Query used: reset admin password google apps
13 of 24 people found this answer helpful. Did you? YesNo Report abuse

nicheplayer
Level 2
5/10/09
Hi LMckin51,

Thanks for your message. We've tried that link more than once - it seems to put us in a loop with regard to pw reset. If the blue box is clicked "no" then it refers to verfiying domain ownership link (which does not show up). I believe the domain ownership process also requires unique code provided by Google... except, we can't login to get the codes.

Here is a quick video that demonstrates that the Admin password cannot be reset or retrieved through this process... http://screencast.com/t/dr04gc8sUy

Hopefully someone from Google sees it and makes it a bit easier on Admins to communicate the need for pw reset.

David
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Andrew Disley
Level 1
5/10/09
@nicheplayer

I'm another Dreamhost customer and had a similar issue, here's how I fixed it.

I was attempting to add domain alias for another Google Apps account but a number of the domains would not add as they *already had accounts setup or were alias' for other accounts* which wasn't the case.

The solution;

1) Re-click the link "register at Google Apps for your Domain" in the Dreamhost Web Panel > Custom MX / Gmail for each of the domains which took me to the Google Apps setup page.
2) Setup accounts then delete them once logged in
3) Wait upto 5 days before you can re-use the domain as alias' for another Google Apps account.

Now this isn't exact same problem as you but clicking the "register at Google Apps for your Domain" may trick Google into logging you in or at least giving you better option to reset password.

Best, Andrew
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Andrew Disley
Level 1
5/10/09
@nicheplayer

Just another thing that might help you the URL of the "Forgot your administrator username or password?" is:

https://www.google.com/a/domain.com/ForgotAdminAccountInfo

Best, Andrew
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LMckin51
Top Contributor
Power Poster
5/11/09
nicheplayer,

Did you go to the bottom of that page after you click no where you see this messages

Online password assistance is not offered to accounts with 500 or more users. If you purchased your domain registration from Google for $10, you'll only be able to reset your password with the secondary email address option. If your control panel login page says Server Error, click here for instructions. If your login page is functional but you still can't reset your password, you can submit a form to request more help. If you're a Dreamhost customer, please create your initial admin account with the Dreamhost intructions.
http://www.google.com/support/a/bin/answer.py?answer=112048


Click where it say submit a form to request more help.
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mmond
Level 1
5/11/09
Hi folks. So there is no fix for this yet? I'm in the same situation for domain: markpreynolds.com.

I do not recall ever using the domain for Google apps and now I'm trying to set up Gmail integration and getting password prompts I can't answer or reset. It's my domain, so any direction on how I can access or reset it is much appreciated.
0 of 1 people found this answer helpful. Did you? YesNo Report abuse

nicheplayer
Level 2
5/11/09
@LMckin51

Yes, I tried that form before. Problem is, it asks about a credit card used to create a google checkout account? I don't believe I have a checkout account and I'm pretty sure I did not need a credit card to create a Standard Apps account. So, several fields on the form are really not applicable.

Crazy thing is, I'd be glad to upgrade to the paid Apps account to get support... except you need to login before you can upgrade. Er... that's the problem.

Anyone Google Employees listening? Can you send a reset to the admin email on file or scrap the apps account so we can start over?
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mmond
Level 1
5/11/09
Ok, I found a solution. I chose the "I never created an administrator account." from http://www.google.com/support/a/bin/answer.py?answer=143296 and then the Dreamhost option. I do use DH but don't remember setting anything Google related there. But I completed that recommended process and it got me in to the control panel. Not sure if there was another option to create an administrator account because the other 'how I got the domain name' options did not seem to apply.

The original error of "contact your administrator" is pretty much the most misleading information possible.

I'll follow-up with this info to the other threads I posted.
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nicheplayer
Level 2
5/12/09
No, not a solution for us because we HAVE set up an administrator account. When we follow that process it leads right back to the login screen (and we're back in the unending loop).

Can a Google Employee please send our Admin a reset link? Please.
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LMckin51
Top Contributor
Power Poster
5/13/09
nicheplayer,

Thanks after i posted i seen your domain on your first post then i deleted my last messages that why you didn`t see it when you viewed the thread.. i`ve flag this for an advisor. one other thing did you remember enable the password reset on your google apps account.? if you didn`t enable it that could be reason it not let you reset the password.
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nicheplayer
Level 2
5/13/09
@LMckin51

The core of this issues is likely that the password reset feature on the apps account was not enabled. The frustration is, when that is the case, what is an admin to do? Based on all the similar posts in this forum, it is a common issue and the solution really should be addressed more clearly (as the help form asks several unrelated questions).

I appreciate you flagging this for a Google Advisor. Hopefully we'll be able to reset the pw and get running again.
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nicheplayer
Level 2
5/16/09
Best answer - LMckin51 (Top Contributor)
UPDATE - RESOLVED

Thanks to all for your input. In the end, the ONLY thing that resolved this issue was getting this issue to a Google support person. They were able to send domain ownership verification instructions (cname or HTML file upload) that included a specific code.

So, if you are having the issue of lost admin password and the reset functionality not working, the answer is to submit a form (best you can). Follow this link below and then scroll down to the blue box, click "no" then go bottom of the page where it say submit FORM for more help.

https://www.google.com/support/a/bin/answer.py?answer=33561
11 of 15 people found this answer helpful. Did you? YesNo Report abuse

silverton
Level 1
6/18/09
Yep, another long time Dreamhost customer here. I did the process at https://www.google.com/support/a/bin/answer.py?answer=33561 and reset the password. It said that the reset was successful and I could log in now. Nope, same problem, sends me to CAPTCHA page. Google Apps for Domains login refuses to allow my Apps for Domains administrator account to login. Users CAN log in, just fine. Also, IMAP mail for my administrator account works just fine, so the password I'm typing is not wrong. Google Apps for Domains login is broken, borked, hosed, or something. Good thing this is not a truly mission critical site that I'm talking about. At this rate, I'm sorry to say that there is no way I can recommend Google Apps for Domains to businesses, given all the experiences posted in this thread. This is really, really, really, really, really, really, really bad news for adoption rates, Googlers. I've tried logging in again from Mac, from PC, on every conceivable browser, with proxy on, proxy off, nothing helps. Finally, I tried the "upload an HTML file" method, but that says I now have to wait 48 hours ... and why would I leave that "secret code" in a plain html file, publicly accessible, for 48 hours -- as instructed by that process -- anyway?
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silverton
Level 1
6/18/09
Followup: While poking around Dreamhost Panel -- since I've had this set up and working just fine for months, up until recently -- I just randomly clicked to login via http://SITES.mycustomdomain.com/ (in the Fully Hosted page section) and it let me login to my Sites hub. From there, suddenly I could access the google apps Dashboard and all other subsites. Logged out, and logged right back in to the Dashboard. The timing of this "fix" could be totally coincidental with the aforementioned HTML upload -- I know, I know, *never* change more than ONE variable -- but I was impatient. Maybe someone else will try this at some point to see if the result can be duplicated. Wow.
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pragmites
Level 1
6/19/09
Hi,

Im having more or less the same problem. I am the admin for the domain renewingsmiles.com. I was unable to login with my admin details.
I did a password reset (got an email and followed the link) filled in the new password. (Several times) Though, I am just unable to log in even with the new password.
Its going around in loops!
I am in urgent need of creating some new email id's for my client though I just cannot login in.
Any assistance would be much appreciated.

Thanks
Gaurav
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LMckin51
Top Contributor
Power Poster
6/19/09
pragmites,


try this link and provide a new email address and verify the domain again

https://www.google.com/a/cpanel/renewingsmiles.com/VerifyAdminAccountPasswordReset
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btk
Level 1
11/19/09
* SOLUTION FOUND *

Hi all I was having the issue where I was changing my password but i couldnt log on with the new p/w after changing it.

As well as being a google apps user I'm also a gmail user, it seems that there may be a cookie issue.

Sign in to your apps from a different browser, or clear your cookies, solved it for me

cheers

Will
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Alindgupta
Level 1
6/8/10
Wow!, just change your domain name in this link and it takes you to the verification form, bingo

https://www.google.com/a/cpanel/renewingsmiles.com/VerifyAdminAccountPasswordReset
1 of 2 people found this answer helpful. Did you? YesNo Report abuse

gs.gill
Level 1
9/20/10
Here's how i got it done:

Goto https://www.google.com/a/domain.com/ForgotAdminAccountInfo

this works even if the reset link does on appear on google apps login page
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Post reply

How to add Favicon to blogger (blogspot) blog

http://www.infotech.ws/2010/10/how-to-add-favicon-to-blogger-blogspot.html
How to add Favicon to blogger (blogspot) blog
12:01 AM Posted by Admin
Labels: add favicon, blogspot, how to, tips and tricks, to blogger
Adding a favicon to the blogger(blogspot) blog:
For those who don't know what Favicon is 'Favicon is a small icon(image) displayed at the beginning of the address bar of the browser.It is also called Favourite Icon,Pageicon and urlicon.

The main advantage of creating and using favicon is ,it makes it easy to find your blog or site when someone favourited or bookmarked your site/blog among several other sites.


Most of the people use 16*16 pixel favicon(you can also use 32*32 pixel favicon) with ".ico" format.But,you can also use gif,png(image formats) aswell.

So,ready to create a favicon?

Updated:
I created a Free Favicon generator tool which will save lot of your time. Just go to this page and upload any image file (JPG or GIF or PNG or BTM) and it will automatically convert it to icon file and you can save it to your desktop.
Next, you need to upload it to some host. There are lot of free hosts available to host .ico files and with hotlinking enabled.. Just do a quick google search.
Once you upload it to some host. you get a direct url to the favicon file..
Ex:

http://howshealth.com/favicons/bt.ico
Next, Skip the below part and go to Next step..

{SKIP THIS PART- ITS OLD} {start}

All you need is a program to create a favicon in (.ico) format.If you haven't a program to create in .ico format,No Problem....you can also use png or gif format.If you have Photoshop, or any other programs like that,open it and create a 16*16 image and save it as .png or gif format [look at the below screenshot below] or there are so many online sites which can create a favicon for you,just search by typing'free online 16*16 icon generator' in google.They ask you to upload a picture from your desktop,and they convert it into 16*16 .ico file.

So,Now your icon is ready...You are just a few steps away from creating a beautiful favicon for your site...

Now,go to Google Page Creator
and upload your icon file by clicking on the upload link(look at right side) and browse the file and note down the url of the file by clicking on the file.[see the screenshots below]




{SKIP THIS PART- ITS OLD} {end}


Now,go to your blogger dashboard>layout>Edit html[look at the below screenshots]


and look for this code(it is at the top the template)


<title><data:blog.pagetitle/></title>
and add the below code just after the above one[as shown in the below screenshot]

<link href='ICON FILE URL' rel='shortcut icon'/>
<link href='ICON FILE URL' rel='icon'/>

and replace the 'ICON FILE URL' with the url of your icon file.(like http://howshealth.com/favicons/bt.ico)
That's it! Now you can see a beautiful favicon in your blog.
Fee free to add the comments.....and doubts(if any?)

Monday, October 11, 2010

Free GIMP Open Source Graphic Editor

You can get a free open source photo editor that is as good as the very expansive Photoshop. That free open source photo editor is GIMP. It is more powerful but harder to use than the relatively simpler Irfanview photo editor. To help you, here are some tips on what you can do with GIMP:

Tips for GIMP photo editor

GIMP allows you to undo most changes to the image, so feel free to experiment.

You can get context-sensitive help for most of GIMP's features by pressing the F1 key at any time. This also works inside the menus.

GIMP uses layers to let you organize your image. Think of them as a stack of slides or filters, such that looking through them you see a composite of their contents.

You can perform many layer operations by right-clicking on the text label of a layer in the Layers dialog.

When you save an image to work on it again later, try using XCF, GIMP's native file format (use the file extension .xcf). This preserves the layers and every aspect of your work-in-progress. Once a project is completed, you can save it as JPEG, PNG, GIF, ...

Most plug-ins work on the current layer of the current image. In some cases, you will have to merge all layers (Image→Flatten Image) if you want the plug-in to work on the whole image.

If a layer's name in the Layers dialog is displayed in bold, this layer doesn't have an alpha-channel. You can add an alpha-channel using Layer→Transparency→Add Alpha Channel.

Not all effects can be applied to all kinds of images. This is indicated by a grayed-out menu-entry. You may need to change the image mode to RGB (Image→Mode→RGB), add an alpha-channel (Layer→Transparency→Add Alpha Channel) or flatten it (Image→Flatten Image).

You can adjust or move a selection by using Alt-drag. If this makes the window move, your window manager uses the Alt key already. Most window managers can be configured to ignore the Alt key or to use the Super key (or "Windows logo") instead.

You can drag and drop many things in GIMP. For example, dragging a color from the toolbox or from a color palette and dropping it into an image will fill the current selection with that color.

You can use the middle mouse button to pan around the image (or optionally hold Spacebar while you move the mouse)

Click and drag on a ruler to place a guide on an image. All dragged selections will snap to the guides. You can remove guides by dragging them off the image with the Move tool.

You can drag a layer from the Layers dialog and drop it onto the toolbox. This will create a new image containing only that layer.

A floating selection must be anchored to a new layer or to the last active layer before doing other operations on the image. Click on the "New Layer" or the "Anchor Layer" button in the Layers dialog, or use the menus to do the same.

GIMP supports gzip compression on the fly. Just add .gz (or .bz2, if you have bzip2 installed) to the filename and your image will be saved compressed. Of course loading compressed images works too.

Pressing and holding the Shift key before making a selection allows you to add to the current selection instead of replacing it. Using Ctrl before making a selection subtracts from the current one.

You can draw simple squares or circles using Edit→Stroke Selection. It strokes the edge of your current selection. More complex shapes can be drawn using the Path tool or with Filters→Render→Gfig.

If you stroke a path (Edit→Stroke Path), the paint tools can be used with their current settings. You can use the Paintbrush in gradient mode or even the Eraser or the Smudge tool.

You can create and edit complex selections using the Path tool. The Paths dialog allows you to work on multiple paths and to convert them to selections.

You can use the paint tools to change the selection. Click on the "Quick Mask" button at the bottom left of an image window. Change your selection by painting in the image and click on the button again to convert it back to a normal selection.

You can save a selection to a channel (Select→Save to Channel) and then modify this channel with any paint tools. Using the buttons in the Channels dialog, you can toggle the visibility of this new channel or convert it to a selection.

After you enabled "Dynamic Keyboard Shortcuts" in the Preferences dialog, you can reassign shortcut keys. Do so by bringing up the menu, selecting a menu item, and pressing the desired key combination. If "Save Keyboard Shortcuts" is enabled, the key bindings are saved when you exit GIMP. You should probably disable "Dynamic Keyboard Shortcuts" afterwards, to prevent accidentally assigning/reassigning shortcuts.

If your screen is too cluttered, you can press Tab in an image window to toggle the visibility of the toolbox and other dialogs.

Shift-click on the eye icon in the Layers dialog to hide all layers but that one. Shift-click again to show all layers.

Ctrl-clicking on the layer mask's preview in the Layers dialog toggles the effect of the layer mask. Alt-clicking on the layer mask's preview in the Layers dialog toggles viewing the mask directly.

You can use Ctrl-Tab to cycle through all layers in an image (if your window manager doesn't trap those keys...).

Ctrl-click with the Bucket Fill tool to have it use the background color instead of the foreground color. Similarly, Ctrl-clicking with the eyedropper tool sets the background color instead of the foreground color.

Ctrl-drag with the Rotate tool will constrain the rotation to 15 degree angles.

To create a circle-shaped selection, hold Shift while doing an ellipse select. To place a circle precisely, drag horizontal and vertical guides tangent to the circle you want to select, place your cursor at the intersection of the guides, and the resulting selection will just touch the guides.

If some of your scanned photos do not look colorful enough, you can easily improve their tonal range with the "Auto" button in the Levels tool (Colors→Levels). If there are any color casts, you can correct them with the Curves tool (Colors→Curves).

Video tutorial: GIMP 2.3 User Interface



Hi there and welcome to my GIMP tutorial. In this tutorial, I will work through the user interface of the GIMP and the goal is to make you understand enough of the user interface so that you can explore GIMP all by yourself. And to get started we have the tip of the day, nothing complicated, just read ... I will just close this down. And if you haven't missed too much of GIMP, you will get 2 windows when you start it and you will have a main window which is the window with the tools in it, and if you close down this window, all other windows in GIMP will be closed. And you will also get a DOCK window. And I will concentrate on the DOCK window first. And a DOCK is made up of dialogue and a dialogue is anything from a LAYERS dialogue or a CHANNELS dialogue or a PATHS dialogue. And down here we have the BRUSHES dialogue and the PATTERNS dialogue and so on. And all of these dialogue can be rearranged in anyway you like. We can move down under it down to these palletes or we can move out the LAYERS pallettes by just dragging it out here which create a new DOCK for us. And you can place these pallettes into the new DOCK and you can place these Dialogues and you can place these PATTERNS into the new DOCK and you can arrange all these dialogues on top and under each other. You can drag this LAYERS dialogue here which will create a new row or drag this dialogue into this new DOCK and you can resize this in the normal way.

So basically you can customize these dialogues into very different ways, but I tend to keep all my dialogues in a single DOCK because that works great for me. And then you will ask, where can we find all the dialogues and one good place for doing that is in the main window under FILE > DIALOGUES. Here you will find all the dialogues available in the GIMP and you can for instance bring forward the COLORS dialogue. And this is usually where I grab my LAYERS and you can also grab them from these little buttons here. Click ADD TAB and you will have all of these dialogues here and you will find out that most of those features of GIMP can be accessed in several ways and these are the ways I usually get myself the new dialogues.

You can also use preconfigured DOCKS from FILE > DIALOGS > CREATE NEW DOCK and here you have LAYERS, CHANNELS and PATHS DOCK which is pre-made for you.

Well, I hope that covers the Dialogs and DOCKS port and we will move on to the tools of GIMP. And by default you have all the tools in the main window and you have a TOOLS OPTION dialog. I will move this out, and you can see that it is a normal dialog. It is good to have it here because it is more of less standard. And the TOOLS option contains all of the options for the selected tool. For instance if I select the RECTANGLE tool, select, I get all of these options here. Next I select the PEN tool and I get the PEN tool options. And this is basically the way you adjust the behavior of these different tools. For instance if we take the PAINTBRUSH tool here, you can change the brush you wish to use, or you can change the OPACITY of it and so on. You can go through the various tools here and see what options you have for the tools.

And another thing that is important to know is that the dialogs works on the current image so if I bring forward the LAYERS dialog for instance I create a new image and I create another image and I paint a little bit on a random image I create this one here, and I select the PAINTBRUSH tool. Then you can see that when I change image here the UNDO history for instance, get updated and the LAYERS dialog get updated, so keep in mind that the information that the different dialogs displayed are for the active image. And you will also note that there is a menu on all image windows. And these menu like the FILE menu mostly have the same thing that the main window have, so this is another example of duplicate things to reach them. You can also bring forward a very useful menu when you you have an image, you can maximize this, but now I can't because I have a little trigger now, but I can bring forth a menu by right-clicking on a canvas. And from here I can reach all of the interesting options as well.

So if you keep all those separated you can have dialogs, you have docks, and you have tools, and you have images. Once you grasps that, you will be able to explore GIMP more easily and find out all the awesome stuff that you can do with it. So good luck with exploring and thank you for thank you for watching.

Email reminder easiest method

The Easiest Way to Setup Email Reminders
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Do you ever want to email something to yourself so that you can remember it later?

It happens to me all the time especially when I am on a mobile phone. For instance, if I come across a cool site that I would want to check out later from the desktop, I just send the URL to my own email account. If I have an idea for a blog or need to remember something, I jot it down in a message and email it to myself.

Now there are quite a few apps that can help you schedule email based reminders, including Google Calendar, but if you prefer to have something really simple that you can use from your email program itself and one that requires no setup, check out FollowUpThen.

With FollowUpThen, you can quickly setup custom email reminders using email itself. Just send a message to time-interval@followupthen.com and the service will send you a copy of the same email message after the specified time interval.

Here are some sample date formats that you may use while setting up email reminders:

6pm@followupthen.com (get a reminder at 6 PM exact)
6pmTomorrow@followupthen.com (get a reminder at 6 PM tomorrow)
10minutes@followupthen.com (get a reminder after 10 minutes)
3days@followupthen.com (remind me after 3 days)
tuesday@followupthen.com (remind me the next Tuesday)
nov29@followupthen.com (setup email reminders for a specific date)
The service recognizes time zones from the email headers so if you setup a reminder for 11 AM, you’ll be reminded as per your time zone. You may also setup recurring email reminders with FollowUpThen though an online calendar would be a more suitable option for such tasks.

How to crop and resize images with Irfanview - Video tutorial



Hello, welcome to our tutorial on how to crop and resize photos using Irfanview. To accurately set our cropping region we will need to zoom out until we can see the entire image on our screen. Do this by clicking on the zoom button Irfanview zoom buttons in the toolbar. To further adjust the region we want to crop, click and drag the mouse around the image to the right size. To further adjust the cropping area, click and drag on the sides of the box. When happy with the region we wish to crop, move to the EDIT menu, and select the CROP option. Our image has now been cropped, but it is still too large. To resize the image, click the IMAGE menu and choose the Resize/Resample option. Our new image size will be highlighted by default, and in here I shall type 900 pixels which is the size we wish the image to be. Make sure the Preserve Aspect Ratio box is ticked, and click OK. Our image has now been resized and we need to save it. Move to the FILE menu, select SAVE AS, browse to the directory you wish to save your file in. Give your file a new name, and adjust the compression ratio. 75% gives you the ideal compromise between the file size and quality. And I would'nt recommend anything less than 60% as this results in undesirable compression artifacts. Now click SAVE and there you have it, you have cropped and resized your first photo using Irfanview and hope you enjoyed our tutorial.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Video Tutorial: GIMP Basic Part 1



Transcript for video tutorial: GIMP Basic Part 1

Hello, this is Mike Lively from Northern Kentucky University.

Today I would like to talk about a great image processing software package which is called GIMP. And GIMP is free. That is the good news, and so if you don't have the money to buy Photoshop or a high end image processing package, you are going to find this a great substitute. So to get started you go to www.gimp.org and download GIMP. So click on the download button.

GIMP is cross platform so it will run on MAC, Windows or Linux. In this case we will be running on a Windows machine. So click on Download GIMP 2.4.4. It will take you to Sourceforge.net and accept that. Then go and save it and it is just a typical executable file. Once it is on your desktop, click on it and it will go into the installation process. Everything is very standard here. So I have already done that after the installation process, it will go back to GIMP and let us talk about the Interface. One more thing here, you would want to go ahead and check out the documentations. It is very good and read up on how to use it to enhance what we do with this tutorial today.

Let us open up GIMP, go to the START > Programs > GIMP and GIMP 2. And when GIMP opens up, you will see the Tip of the day, and that may be useful for you, but now we will just close it and you will see 2 sets of panels, and one on the right and one on the left. And one on the left is the GIMPS Tools and below that is the Tools Options. So click on different tools, you will see different options and it is extremely helpful. And the one on the right is the LAYERS panel and these Layers are dockable so you can slide it around and dock them in different places. You just slide them out and see, we dock it out here. Eh in this tutorial we will not be dealing with Layers panel or the Dialog panel so we are going to X that out.

We will be looking specifically at the Tools panel. Now if you lose the Tools Option panel or you want the Dialogs panel back, there are some steps you can take to do that. So here is something actually from the GIMP documentations. If your GIMP layout gets trashed. In the File menu from the Main Toolbox, you can actually go to Select File > Dialogs > Create New Dock > Layers, Channels and Paths. This will bring your Dialogs back. So let us show you what we mean by that. So Files > Dialogs > Create New Dock > Layers, Channels and Paths and there you go, you get your Dialog back. X out that. If you lose these Tools and Options bar, it is very important, you can get that back by going to Select File > Dialogs > Tool Options. So just go to File > Dialogs and > Tool Options. So if you lose that you will be wondering how the hack I'm going to get that back, that was pretty easy to do. Just go to the Dialogs panel.

So what we are going to do now is to bring in an image and start editing. Now when it come to the editing process, for the beginners, there are like 7 big things that you would need to know how to do:
  • Scaling
  • Cropping
  • Cutting (with Transparency)
  • Flipping
  • Rotating
  • Reducing
  • Saving

So we are going to show you how to do all those 7 big items today.

So let's bring in an image into GIMP. Go to File and Open, and I am going to navigate to my Desktop. I have an image on my Desktop that I want to work with and that is Market Places. Let's click on that. And this particular image, I actually got from SketchUp. So we have a SketchUp image here and we are going to work with it a little bit. And you are going to find it very easy to do.

Scaling

And the first we are going to learn how to do is Scaling. So let's change the size of this image. We go and click on this Scale tool GIMP scale tool, and click right on the image. You can do a number of things here. You can just drag these control handles and scale that way. And note that I am not scaling symmetrically. So there is a box that came up with it a little panel here and it allows me to lock it GIMP Lock tool, so lock right there. And from there I can actually enforces image scaling symmetrically. See that? And many times we are going to work with image that we just want to reduce in size for the web. We want to scale symmetrically. So make sure you grab that corner control handle and it will allow you to do that.

Now if you want to actually control by the numbers, you want to scale by the numbers, you can just type in a different number like for example, 200. And enter. And that will scale you image up automatically. Let's try another one. Lets go 100, enter and that will scale your image automatically scale for you. Let's bring that up to 300. There you go. And you can take this lock off and actually scale assymetrically as well. That is how you use that tool. Once you are done scalling, just hit scale and you are all set. And now we have this transparent background right here. We are going to take care of that.

So what we have done is, we have shrunk our image, but our canvas size stays the same size, we now have this transparent background. I'm going to get rid of that by going to Image > Fit Canvas to layers and we are going to grab it and click on that and it would have done that. So now we proceed with this. So now we have scale, fairly easy to do.

Cropping

The next thing we want to learn is how to crop. Cropping is realy easy, and in the GIMP, all you have to do is come along here and this is great for this. You have these tools here. If you forget what tool to use, just roll your mouse over the tools till the tool tips come up. Here is my cropping tool GIMP crop tool. Here we go. Crop tool. Just click on it, and scroll round the area that you want, and let go, and click, and automatically it is cropped, both the canvas as well as the image that you click over. Isn't that fantastic. So easy to do to crop an image. Every time you find that when that is one of the things you need to do, we got a photograph and we don't want a full body, we just want the face, so just crop around the face. OK next.

Cutting (with transparency)

So if we look at our list, the next thing we want to do is cut with transparency. And this is one of the biggest thing that the instructor want to know how to do. Typically we have an image and we want to cut a piece of it out and put another image. So we can move anywhere we want with transparent background. Let me show you how to that in GIMP. Go to the PATH tool GIMP path tool and click on that. And then you just basically click, and then move, and click and move, and outline the object you want to grab. And depending on how complex your object is, you actually may have to do more of these clicks and the simple ones I chose this nose and I roll over the closing path, there is a little arrow at the top there right hand side. Click on that and you can see it closed. At this point we want to shift V to go from path, and control I to select everything that is inside the path. Then DELETE to delete everything but what is inside the path. So the number of steps. Now how do I know how to use all these control keys, go to SELETE menu see Shift+V was to go FROM PATH. Ctrl+I was to INVERT, and then DELETE is to that is being selected. So I select everything that is outside the path. Now if you really want to become good, these types of software, you will want to learn these keyboard commands and these make pretty easy because each time you want to go to the menu items and then you see the keyboard commands are right there. Memorize those commands. You will find them very useful and it will speed up much you can do.

So now you have an image and a transparent background. You click on these little keys here and actually move them where we want to. There you go. Ctrl+Z and this is my last command, and ctrl+Y. So remember, ctrl+Z and ctrl+Y can be pretty useful. Good, let's go on to the next topic. Let's ctrl+Z all the way back to the original image. There we go.

Flipping

And now what we want to do in GIMP is to learn how to flip. Flipping is extremely easy. There is a flip command GIMP Flip tool in the Toolbox. There you go. Just click on it and roll over the image and click, and your image goes back and forth. Very easy to do.

Rotate

Next thing we want to do is to rotate. Let's go over here to the Toolbox, and here is your ROTATE command GIMP Rotate tool, just click on that, and click on our image, and out comes a dialog box and you can basically scroll and rotate that you want a little bit. If you want to be exact, for example, you want to rotate a 160 180 degrees, then you can just type the number out. Otherwise you can just use this scroll bar. And when you are done, you can just click ROTATE, and it rotates the image for you. Very easily done. And ctrl+Z just to get back. So let's just check out the Big Seven here, and we have 2 left, Reducing and Saving, and we will treat that in the next video.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Tools for covering live events



If you are a blogger who wants to cover breaking news or sport events live, Cover It Live gives you a very nice tool to do so. If you want to see an example, do surf over to Live coverage: Dr. Porntip at Teoh Beng Hock inquest which although already a past event, but you can still read about the sequences of happenings. (Dr. Porntip Rojanasunand is the famous forensic doctor who helped identify the dead bodies in the huge tsunami caused by the 2004 Indian Ocean earthquake)

All you need to do is to sign up for an account at www.coveritlive.com/, sign in and get the script, then paste it into the post editor in the Edit HTML mode, publish and you are all set to cover live any event you want. For an update on CoverItLive, refer to their recent email.

CoverItLive has many advantages over what many now uses to cover events live, namely Twitter which I will discuss later. In the meantime, you can get some ideas over at Tempero: Using Twitter for Live events

Other tools you can use to cover events live is Twitter. However, unlike CoverItLive which archive your live coverage so even after the live event has past, visitors can still browse through all the happenings as it had been covered. Twitter however does not archive your tweets for long and whatever new tweets get published, they will overide the old tweets.

In any case I have done a test to explore possibilities over at Testing Tweetizen's Twitter embed code. More later.


Email from McSpurren, President of CoverItLive:

Hello,

It has been a tremendously busy year for us at CoveritLive. I wanted to thank all of you for playing a big part in that success and give you an update on some new features and thoughts on our software:

It's still 100% free for smaller users: In late 2007, I literally had to beg anyone to even give CoveritLive a try... and not many people did. Certainly not our big media brands (who I love very much), who now view our software as mission critical. I will never forget that it took five, then ten, then fifty people to sign up and create live events with our buggy software for audiences existing of a small handful of people. So thank you to geoffshackelford.com, norunnyeggs.com, @krochmal, @truzenzuzex and the hundreds of others who took a chance early. Because of our early adopters, we'll keep the software growing and free for the people who write for the passion of it.

180 million minutes of readership in September: Our customers who have been with us for a long time (relatively speaking) understand that it's not just about a page that updates instantly...it's about reader engagement over a longer period of time. We run over 500 events each day and readers stay online for an average of 12 minutes during a live event. We also know that those 'heavy users' of your content stay online for more than 45 minutes (if your event were one hour in length). In short, this data point tells us (and you) that your live events are working well and becoming the 'must have' we all hoped for.

Instant scalability is the most important feature: We have spent a tremendous amount of effort and money to put a world class infrastructure in place. It is complete and utter garbage for a software company to just say the word, "cloud" as proof of their ability to scale and provide real time redundancy. We have recently completed our largest upgrade again to make full use of Akamai's RMA (rich media accelerator) with two independent web farms and two (yes two) cloud based backup systems as well. Things that took 350ms in the Amazon cloud are down to 5ms now, no matter where you are in the world. It has been vetted by the IT departments from some of our largest customers and we welcome anyone to do their diligence in this area. One interesting anecdote on this point: if you visit skynews.com you'll see our new Ticker sitting in the middle of their homepage. Every day, 24/7. They expect us to take scale and redundancy very seriously.

NEW Ticker: It sounds simple but it's one of the best customer ideas we've ever turned into a feature. The Ticker does everything a normal event does except: You build it once... and leave it on forever. Many of you build new events each day (which is fine by the way) for the same purpose. Think about using a Ticker instead. There's a convenient 'clear' button if you want to start fresh each day. The CBC and Sky News are already using it to collect tweets and instantly display breaking news and analysis, and their readers now know exactly where to go for interactive content. We even combined the new Ticker with our new 'Auto-Publish' API to create a permanent feed of Flickr photos here in our Support Center (note the cool Custom Skin for that window as well): http://www.coveritlive.com/tickers.php

NEW APIs for advertising, SMS or anything else: For a long time, we've had the XML feed to get your content OUT of your events into any format you like. But in the spring we added an API to pull in content from ANY source into the reader comment moderation panel (you're welcome MTV and BBC). The BBC used this recently to pull in text messages from readers to give suggestions during their, "Control Katy Perry" event (it was awesome by the way). To enhance it even more, we launched the 'Auto-Publish' API (you're welcome Le Monde) which can pull in content from ANY source and instantly publish it directly into your event (like we are doing in that Ticker example with Flickr photos). Beyond the creative possibilities this opens up, feel free to attach a repository of advertising or sponsorship banners. Imagine setting it to publish an ad every 10 minutes directly into your event (or across all of your events if you are an Enterprise customer).

What's next? Although we love developing features, we need to protect the ease of use that our product is known for. Many of you have 'one-off' Panelists participating in events, and the last thing we want to do is put a bunch of buttons in their face. That said, this fall you'll see a decent upgrade to our iPhone App as well as the rollout of a Blackberry and Android App. For those of you with iPads running events...it's already awesome as is thanks to the full Safari browser. But the biggest new feature set is something we have never done before and kept fairly secret. I'd really like to keep it under wraps for a little while longer but it involves giving your readers MANY more reasons to join you online and stick around for a long, long time.

I'll hopefully have a great announcement on this before the end of November. Until then, thank you again for your support and feedback. Please send any thoughts you have to support@coveritlive.com and if you want to reach me personally, keithm@coveritlive.com or follow us (well, me really) on Twitter @coveritlive.

Keith McSpurren

President, CoveritLive

@coveritlive

Saturday, October 2, 2010

CamStudio Screen Recorder Video Tutorial



In this tutorial I will be showing you a little known program called CamStudio. CamStudio is the program I am using right now to capture what you are seeing, everything that you are seeing. Everything I move on this video is captured by CamStudio. So it is a screen recorder. It's absolutely free, it's open source so you can see the source code for it and it's a really good program. To download it, all you have to do is go to Google, type "download cam studio". This is the first result. Scroll all the way down. Oops, passed it. Here it is. Use SourceForge, I don't know. You can go to SourceForge, or you can click these convenient links. This is CamStudio, and this is the LossLess Codec. So you download CamStudio. You open it, now you have CamStudio here. I recommend you install LossLess Codec, it's pretty useful.

So now we go to OPTION > VIDEO OPTIONS, and now we are going to set the compressor. Compressors are so that your video turns out to be small file size, for example, instead of the movie being 500mB, it is going to be 5mB. It is reasonable enough to upload on Youtube. Youtube have a 100mB limit for videos. Using the Compressor will make it much smaller. By default, Microsoft Video 1 is the compressor. It will make your video files huge files size, so don't use it. Use DivX or CamStudio Lossless Codex. DivX is free so you can download it. DivX Pro is not free. So download the free version. Uncheck the boxes that ask you for the DivX Player, the DivX Converter and other stuff. Only install the Codec. And also you can configure the BitRate to 256. Click this button here. And you want to reset Settings. Set Key Frames every 30 seconds. You need to adjust the Auto Adjust button. Capture Frames Every 50 milliseconds and Playback Rate every 20 frames/second. By default, the options in CamStudio don't work. And if they do work, they set it up to something like time lapse feature, meaning your audio and video are not synchronized. So I recommend you use these settings, DivX. Everything works great. OK now just go to OK.

Now you are ready to record. You can record whatever you want now. But let's configure the audio. Set Record audio from microphone. Record audio from speakers will record will record the studio mix, meaning that if you are recording a video game or something, it will capture the audio, too that is coming from your computer.

So we have Record audio from microphone. I'm going to set the audio option to microphone and I am going to reset it to smaller format. I like using Lame MP3. Click Choose compress format. By default, it's PCM. If you have MPEG Layer 3 around, I'll recommend you use that. PCM I guess it's OK. It's not horrible. But I like Lame MP3, it makes the video a little bit smaller. The download Lame MP3. You have to download it. You go to Google and I am going to search Lame download. Audacity have a quick link page. That will let you download it from Windows. Just click Lame MP3. Lame download page, and click one of those links. Save this file. You have it right here. Go ahead and unzip it with your Zip program. I like 7-zip. You can use WinZip or WinDrive. And here we have the files. Ignore everything except ACM, and right-click here (LameACM.inf) and Install. This will install Lame in your computer.

Now if you open CamStudio again. If you go to Tools, Audio Options, microphone, you should have Lame MP3 as an option in this list. 32 kBits and 22,050 Hz Mono is really good. It makes your audio files really small. So you will have compressed audio and compressed video that will show up well on Youtube. It has a lot of options like Cursor options. I think all these are basically pretty straight forward. Eh 320 by 240 is the Youtube default size. So it's usually good enough. Again if you want to teach your friend how to download music online. You want to show them how to do something. There is always great demand for video tutorials and visual learning online. So upload your video tutorials. This is a tutorial jimmyr.com. Thanks for checking it out.


Download CamStudio

Download Lame

Download Divx

You can also use xvid
http://www.xvid.org/

Make sure width and height are divisible by 2. Use fraps or taksi for games, don't be a retard and try to screencapture a dvd. For more info search "camstudio faq" on google.

Also try ffdshow tryouts. If it says error using default compressor make the width and height divisible by two of your recording area.

Post your video tutorials or misc screen recordings as reply videos. Riverpast and Camtasia are good too... but then again they're not free.

Friday, October 1, 2010

GIMP: How to make speech bubbles

Making word bubbles in the GIMP




How to create word bubbles with GIMP gimp.org
and KINO kinodv.org

I created a transparent layer called "text"
Select this layer and type your words
Now select the "bubbles" layer. Make sure it is under the "text" layer
Then select the circle ellipse tool to create the word bubble
Make sure to select the "Add to current selection" box. This allows several circles to join to each other
Next we need to point the bubble to who is talking. In this panel it is the girl. Select the "paths tool" and create the point.
Hold down the shift key while clicking "Selection from path" button. This will join the point to the bubble

Now we need to fill the bubble with color.
Right click > Edit > Fill with BG color
I chose white for the BG color

I want a black outline of my bubble.
Right click, Edit > stroke selection
This will pop up a box, you can choose the line width

Now you are done! Of course there are several ways to do this
I prefer this way because it is fast for me.