Photo Of The Day: Christmas Rose

11 28 15_4970_edited-2Actually a scarlet red camellia bloom photographed in late afternoon light here on the Farm. Nikon D800E.

Well, when we last met, I had decided to give Paint Shop Pro 8X a whirl as my photo organizer with an eye toward  replacing Photoshop Elements 12 as my primary editing software.  Elements, you might recall me saying, had been giving me acute migraines with its constant freeze ups and crashes.  There’s more to report on that side of the story but first, some  Initial thoughts on Paint Shop Pro 8X.

I shelled out 49 bucks for PSP8X and have been trying ever since to negotiate the mother of all learning curves to use it.  The instruction manual is just as daunting.  It’s another one of those “missing manuals,” as David Pogue titles his books on the Windows operating systems which are, by the way, fabulous. I have every edition from Windows 98 on.   David, please do one for Paint Shop Pro!    The only manual now is a PDF File.  Of course you can print the whole thing out but be warned, it is more than 800 pages.  Having spent a “kings ransom” on printer ink, I decided to go with the PDF.  A book would have been better but I’m old and not into reading ebooks.

No doubt my calcifying brain has a lot to do with my difficulty.  Perhaps I am a 70 year old suffering from ADHD and need a dose of whatever they’re feeding the kids these days.  Frankly, I just got totally lost in the maze of brushes, graphics and so on.  Perhaps if they had made the graphics part of it another section or something, it would have been easier to grasp.

I did, however, find my way to and through the RAW Conversion Panel and it is quite good though I think Elements is more thorough and easier to use…..that’s probably a cheap shot because I am so used to Elements.

Suffice to say, I’m still messing with it and will, from time to time, give further progress reports on my schooling.

In the midst of all this, my 4 year old desktop began sending distinct warning signals of hard drive failure: Constant pleas to run “Check Disc” to repair damaged sectors and repeated messages that windows “has stopped working” etc and etc.  So I did a little cyber monday shopping and picked up a Lenovo H-30-50 desktop machine with 16 gigs of ram, a 2 TB hard drive and an Intel I-7  processor at a reasonable price.    The Windows 10 Operating system is a big improvement over Windows 8 but then anything would be an improvement and best of all, the learning curve isn’t as steep as Paint Shop.

I also reloaded my Elements software and so far, knock on wood, its working swimmingly. Perhaps I gave Adobe a bad wrap. Old guys can get crabby.

Now that I am back in cyber space, I will try to be a bit more productive blog wise.  Keep the Faith everybody. See you next time.

Sunrise on a new computer system.


Sunrise on the 9th of December in the Soybean Field.

This morning, the day began with a new computer system.  How’s that for a  seque.   I had spent just about the entire day yesterday installing it.   In the past, that has been akin to a root canal but I have to admit,  yesterdays transfer to a new setup with a new Operating System was just about stress free.       A bit of background.    We went with a 64 bit Vista OS back in 2009.  In less than a week, most of us were lamenting the ditching of Windows XP.  Prone to incurable crashes and hangups,  Vista was without a doubt the most unstable Microsoft OS any of us had used and for me, that goes back to Windows 95 in my news days.  Clearly, it was  time to upgrade. We had all gotten pretty lathered up about the new  Windows 8 system when it came out but after taking it for a test drive,  we quickly discovered that while it may be just ducky for tablets and laptops and phones,  using it on a non-touchscreen PC was a disaster.  In effect it would have required everyone to go back to computer school learning a whole new set of key strokes to compensate for not having touchscreens.     We quickly decided to go with Windows 7.   It was basically a seamless transition thanks to Microsoft’s much improved  “Easy Transfer Program”.  It was simply a case of downloading the program, running it on the old machine ; saving all the files and settings on an external drive then moving them over to the new system.  Piece of cake!   I spent more time configuring our new WIFI (Just about the entire farm is a Hot Spot) and hooking up the external drives than messing with the clean load of Windows 7.    The last time I had used Easy Transfer was in 2009 when yes, it crashed on the then new Vista Machine leaving me to manually transfer all of the accounts and files.  A process that took several days of intense work.  So I was all braced for another nightmare scenario.  Suffice to say I was pleasantly surprised.

Have a Great Evening and thanks for the visit.

The Wetlands and back to Windows 7

One of my favorite views of the Wetlands here on the farm showing one of the Wood Duck Boxes that dot the large beaver pond.

New Computer

My HP Pavilion Elite Computer with the crash prone Windows 64 bit Vista Operating System is coming up on four years of service in early 2013  so I’ve been shopping around for a replacement for sometime.   The Black Friday Sales enticed me to intensify my search. Some of the deals on computer hardware were almost hard to believe.  Printers going for 50 bucks and such.   I got some hands on experience with a desktop loaded with the new Windows 8 Operating System.  You know, the one with all the pretty colored tiles on the “Start” screen.   I watched a demo which convinced me that  Windows 8 will no doubt prove to be marvelous on those touch screen pads and phones that are all the rage.  But what about those of us who do real work on a desktop PC with no touch screen but rather mice and keyboards.  After about 20 minutes I began to sense  unmitigated disaster.  It took me 10 minutes to find the “Start” Button only there’s no button.   And trying to turn the machine off was a nonstarter, no pun intended.  I  began wondering if it was too late to customize a new PC with Windows 7 instead of 8.   A quick query to HP yielded a quick “NO” it wasn’t.   They had a handful of fully customizable towers all loaded with the Windows 7 64 bit  OS.  After two days of researching what I wanted … primarily as much RAM and hard drive memory as I could afford … I finally pulled the trigger this afternoon.  It’ll be here by mid December.  I’ll let you know how it all works out particularly with the Adobe Software I’ve ordered.  Now I’ve got to start remembering how to move all these files to a new rig.  Thank God for External Drives.   Have a Great Evening and thanks for the visit.