Subject: for your blog...?
Date: September 21, 2006 11:19:16 AM EDT
Saw this at the bottom of that Washington Times article-- wanted to make sure
you didn't miss this.
One of these things is not like the others...
Under "Advertising Links" we have"
Car Loans UK
Email Marketing uk
Wholesale MLM Lead
Family ski holidays
Jehovah's Witnesses news
Hear the Cries of Uganda
Flower Delivery UK
Cruise Vacation Trip Guide
Warren was referring to Hear the Cries of Uganda, which really doesn't sound
like a hook for some marketing scheme, but Jehovah's Witnesses news seems a
bit off, too... I think the computers just like to have a little fun now and
then — see if we humans are on our toes. Either that, or some geniuses are
tagging those links so that they pop up everywhere. In that case, they have
no clue about the value of affinity in marketing. If they pay per
click, they're probably paying through the nose for curiosity seekers. Or,
maybe that's just what they want...
Interesting Shot of Perspective
From the Shreveport, LA Times:
A year ago, Cameron Parish cattle farmer Mike Montie frantically moved his
cattle herd from their coastal pasture to higher ground north of the Intracoastal
Waterway, saving 174 of 175 cows.
He was one of the few lucky ones, as up to 30,000 head of cattle drowned in
Cameron, a center of the state's cattle trade.
Another 40,000 had to be sold and many are still dying from liver disease
due to drinking salt water.
On Saturday, the eve of the first anniversary of Hurricane Rita's landfall,
Montie and his fellow cattlemen hosted a symbolic cattle drive, hoping to capture
some national media attention for the plight of southwest Louisiana, lost in
the focus of attention on New Orleans.
Shoot it RAW
Not much more than three months ago, I finally started shooting RAW only.
Happily, that meant that I could get 120 shots on a 2GB card, but it was more
than that. With CS2, the workflow is smooth enough that RAW no longer presents
significant hurdles to production.
The best part of the transition for me, is that the benefits are more substantial
than I expected. Having one or two stops of headroom is a great concept. Seeing
what that actually means in practice, is really impressive. I shot a band
about a week ago, and made a web gallery from the pics. The interesting part
of the exercise is that I was able to build the gallery using only Camera Raw
and batch resize in Photoshop. The pictures look great, even without local
Of course, the top pics will get additional treatment, but the ability
to capture tones and adjust color temperature in RAW gives me global results
that work out better than applying curves to a JPEG image. That observation
doesn't move me to give Aperture and Lightroom a closer look, but
it does lend validity to the idea raw-processing engines with
no capacity for localized tonal adjustment like these.
I'm still coming to grasp how I'll work with Bridge. I prefer the catalog
metaphor of iView, but the way that Bridge allows you to synchronize settings
between several images could help speed up some of my post-processing. Supposedly,
there is a menu item that will allow me to transfer ratings and labels from
iView to Bridge, but I haven't found the menu item. In Bridge, I haven't figured
out how to show or hide selections, which is a very handy feature in iView.
For this project, I dragged the folder containing my RAW files onto iView,
and tagged the images that had potential with a green label. Then, I hid all
images that weren't labeled green. I dragged the images around within the
catalog to develop a presentation order. Then, I began to open the images
in Camera Raw using a contextual menu in iView. In Camera
Raw, I adjusted color temperature, exposure, brightness, and shadows to my
satisfaction, then clicked Done. The adjustments I make are saved in sidecar
files, which Photoshop will read when I run a batch process later.
Once I finished with my RAW settings, I ran two batch processes
— one to make large images, and a second to make thumbnails. Nice
thing about SimpleViewer: you don't have to expend the extra effort to make
square thumbnail images. It usually presents a nice square thumbnail by displaying
the central portion of a rectangular image.
To finish the SimpleViewer gallery, I needed an XML file containing filenames
and captions. I copied the filenames in their appropriate order from iView's
list view, and pasted that list (over 100 file names) into Excel twice — one
column for filenames, and a second for captions, which in this case would be
the file name, stripped of its _DSC prefix and the .jpg suffix. Find and Replace
cleaned the second column quickly. A not-so-complex text formula allowed me
to wrap the appropriate tags around the data displayed in the two columns.
The result was a single image's XML data. From there, it was a simple matter
to fill down to build the rest of the XML. I then copied the resultant column,
and pasted it into my XML file. Without Excel, this part would have involved
a lot more typing and typos.
When I previewed my SimpleViewer page, it mostly worked. The page title was
no good — a simple fix in Dreamweaver took care of that — and I found that
I could control-click (right click) on the large image and view the original
JPEG file in my browser. I didn't want that, and it turned out to be a simple
change in the XML file.
Processing 100 files and building a web gallery in SimpleViewer took the better
part of a day to do, but I could have used the
process described to build something much quicker and dirtier. Instead, I made
something of a much higher quality with just a small incremental amount of
Browsing This Month's MacWorld
A company called Orbicule has
introduced a kind of Lojack for Mac OSX. Undercover is
theft recovery software that captures and transmits network info and screen
shots from your Mac if it's put into use after it's been stolen. It can even
use the built-in iSight camera to photograph the thief for you. It gets better.
If the machine can't be recovered, the software will cause your Mac to intermittently
As clever as Undercover may be, it has me thinking that savvy Mac thieves
will now begin doing clean system installs as a first precaution. But, then
again, maybe that's too much like work.
Popabrella just looks
like a goofy little novelty. It's an umbrella with a mount that attaches to
your camera to protect from rain or sun flare. I think the sun flare argument
was added after the fact. A good lens hood will guard against flare in most
of the situations there the umbrella would be useful.
often, wind accompanies rain, turning that umbrella into a sail or turning
it inside out. If I were planning to shoot in foul weather a lot, I'd look
into a protective
rain cover like these from Kinesis. I doubt I'd carry a ‘just in case’
umbrella just for my camera.
Think Geek [stuff
for smart masses] has fun T-Shirts. Great, like I don't have enough of those
already! Three of my faves:
I just love a good SQL joke... Of course, jokes are never as funny when you
try to explain them, so I won't.
A company called Dynamism makes sushi-shaped
USB Flash drives and Hello
Kitty MP3 players — you move kitty's feet to control the music. Now, that's