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201  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: I Have an Itch for a Video Camera... on: December 05, 2011, 04:09:04 PM
I'm not into 3D myself at this point - the tech is still too immature, if nothing else - but it's cool to see yet another demo of how versatile these little cameras are. I think one of the things that really appeals to me about their approach is it is very "techie" in nature, it's not like your typical consumer camera, there are tons of options and accessories and stuff, and it's designed to be *used* (almost "abused" some would say). Yet despite all that it's not very expensive.

- Oshyan
202  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: silly humor - post 'em here! [warning some NSFW and adult content] on: December 05, 2011, 12:19:40 AM
Lonely Island is brilliant. Their latest album is almost entirely awesome. The not awesome parts are still rad, so... still pretty good. cheesy

For example:

<a href="" target="_blank"></a>


- Oshyan
203  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: change image dimensions on: December 05, 2011, 12:03:34 AM
This is a very common and simple image manipulation problem solved by most image editors, as far as I'm aware. So the better question is do you need to automate it, do it programatically, or batch-process, or something else complicated? Otherwise many applications should do what you want with a simple Resize function. For example XnView handles this easily. Just open the resize dialog, make sure it's set to preserve aspect ratio and *not* preserve print size (which would change DPI as you changed resolution), and then enter your new Y value, the X will adjust automatically. Note also that XnView has a batch processing function and I think there is even a commandline version and/or a library that you could access in code to do things programatically.

- Oshyan
204  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: I Have an Itch for a Video Camera... on: December 04, 2011, 11:59:48 PM
Yeah, it's not necessarily what I was looking for either, but I *want* it!! Hehe.

They offer several models, but the latest HD Hero 2 is what I want. This page has a handy comparison and all the major specs on the Hero 2:

As far as how it compares to a standard "Digital HD Camcorder" type thing, well video quality is going to be similar, lens quality maybe slightly lower on the HD Hero - *maybe* - and you have no zoom on the Hero, whereas many HD Camcorders have a lot of zoom, which can be handy. However the Hero has got high speed, up to 120fps at lower resolutions, plus time-lapse modes, and a much wider angle lense (FOV) than any standard HD camcorder. Also waterproof housing and other fun, cool stuff. Basically I think the Hero is ideal for capturing outdoor stuff, sports, action, nature/landscapes. A standard camcorder would be better for people, shots of the kids, etc.

For my purposes the HD Hero 2 is pretty awesome.

- Oshyan
205  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: I Have an Itch for a Video Camera... on: December 03, 2011, 12:58:47 PM
That still leaves a pretty broad range of options, and I'll admit I'm no expert with video-specific cameras. But let me ask you, is zoom important to you? This is not an exact fit to what I think you're asking for, but I have to tell you this has got *me* excited and I'm nearly set on getting one before the year is out:
Watch the video: (apparently filmed entirely on the camera)

Now again I know that's not exactly what you're looking for, but maybe better than stating exactly what specs you want would be to describe what you intend to use it for. Personally the HD Hero 2 is a really exciting device, but it may not be so for you. cheesy

- Oshyan
206  News and Reviews / Mini-Reviews by Members / Re: Firefox add-on - MAFIAAFire now adds "PirateBay Danciing" - quick review on: December 03, 2011, 12:54:39 PM
But if you want to make it even easier, there is a greasemonkey script available that will put the status right on albums at

Now that is damn cool! Thanks App. smiley

- Oshyan
207  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Building XP SP4 ! on: December 03, 2011, 12:50:25 PM
Hmm...apart from multiple drives (including backups online), I don't have any good ideas about how to keep stuff safer (apart from not keeping anything...).

Hmm yes, I think a Buddhist approach, giving up all one's data and forsaking digital possessions, will solve the problem. cheesy

- Oshyan
208  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: silly humor - post 'em here! [warning some NSFW and adult content] on: December 02, 2011, 04:30:13 PM

That his some hilarious shit! Hilarious and true, so true.

- Oshyan
209  Other Software / Developer's Corner / Re: Ribbon UI - is it really THAT good? on: December 01, 2011, 06:04:06 PM
At the end of the day there is 1 and only 1 and exactly 1 consideration that matters: What will make life easier for the people that use the software? Nothing else matters beyond that. Nothing. If a ribbon fits that, then so be it. If not, then that's the answer.

I heartily agree. Now, how can you figure out which is right for a given user base? Polling and surveys? Test groups? Guesses? Extrapolations? Assumptions? Going through the work of creating 2 versions and see which is downloaded or "liked"/+1 more?... I don't see any really good solutions.

I also thought I'd weigh-in with my Ribbon feedback. I personally don't like it, and after reading some feedback from others in this thread who feel similarly, I think I might have figured out why. At the risk of sounding like a braggart, I have always had a knack for learning software and finding things in UIs. More than an occasional "ah hah!" moment, as an IT person I have in fact had countless experiences in my life where someone who uses a piece of software daily comes to me with a question I don't know the answer to, and I am able to figure out how to do it in many cases just by a quick look at the app and menus, without further research.

Often times I think this results from just having a good sense, from seeing many app UIs, of what a developer might have named a particular function and the multiple "normal" (as well as "abnormal") places a dev might have put it. A good example is Options/Settings: first of all you have the two names right there, which both often mean the same thing; accessing options can often be done from a Tools menu, but can also be found under File, and even Edit at times, among other places. These things are not necessarily intuitive, but from a lot of experience with different apps, I've learned where to look and what to look for. Believe it or not this extends even to complicated industry-specific apps like Indesign, where I may need to look for a tool to make a shape editable, and it may be called "Convert object to spline" or something. It helps that I know what a "spline" is, for one thing, but even just the word "convert" gives me an initial tip-off that it might be close to what I want, since I know the basic idea of what the function I need should do.

Ok, I'm getting to my point, hehe. The issue I have with the ribbon is that, for me, it makes things *less* discoverable. I can see and agree with that for many basic, day-to-day uses, it's a faster and more fluid UI, perhaps more intuitive for the average user. But as currently implemented, I never get the sense that I am seeing all possible options, which is important if I'm looking for something that I don't know where to find. In general with a menu-driven app, if I look through all the menus I'll know pretty well that I have seen all the functions and if I don't find what I'm looking for, I will at least know that it's sensible to try to do more research, e.g. a web search. With a ribbon I never had that feeling that I have fully explored it, seen all the options, largely because it tries to be just a bit too "clever". Even if ribbons had a mode where you could force all options visible or something, it would be a big improvement. But I think a menu option alongside or instead of the ribbon is still valuable for advanced users or at least certain users, like myself.

As to the original question, if the only reason you're adding the ribbon is as a marketing tool, then I think you have to ask yourself whether your audience is more marketing-driven or functionality-driven. For small utility apps often the latter is the case. Also remember that you can often get a few users being very vocal and making a particular feature seem *very* important, when the reality is the vast majority of satisfied customers just don't see anything (because they're satisfied), so they are under-represented, but in fact represent a much more significant portion of your user base than the vocal minority. Something to think about. As a casual first-step into the consideration you might want to run a poll on your website or even do a mailing to your users, if you have an existing email relationship with them (e.g. regular newsletter send-out).

- Oshyan
210  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: Software Shows How Much an Image Has Been Photoshopped on: December 01, 2011, 05:44:16 PM
Wow, some really, er, "interesting" examples. I like how they moved Jolie's eye up and Clooney's ear, heh. Academic research is interesting, but I always want to see a usable app from stuff like this. Do they provide anything like that, or anyone want to make one from the research? cheesy

- Oshyan
211  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Rootkits on mobile devices ... on: December 01, 2011, 05:36:16 PM
Someone has already found evidence of it on iPhones, though it's unclear what, if anything, is being done with the data. I wouldn't be surprised to find out it's on WinMo too.

- Oshyan
212  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: Easy Remote access to another PC? on: November 29, 2011, 01:30:40 PM
Note, I'm a great beta tester - if something can be done wrong

No, no, that makes you a very *good* beta tester! cheesy

- Oshyan
213  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: Easy Remote access to another PC? on: November 27, 2011, 11:47:22 PM
TeamViewer seems to punch right through firewalls/routers no problem, in my experience. It  probably negotiates through an intermediate server, but I'm ok with that, it's done securely. And isn't Hamachi a "3rd party app" in itself? You need to touch the machine to install it, so you can install that and VNC (or enable RDP), or you can just install TeamViewer, I think. Maybe doesn't work in your setups though.

Ultimately there are many good options, which I'm thankful for! And I've relied on several different ones over the last 15 years. TeamViewer is just the latest and most convenient, for me. smiley

- Oshyan
214  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: Easy Remote access to another PC? on: November 27, 2011, 08:18:02 PM
I was a big TightVNC fan for a long time but then V2 came out and if I recall correctly it no longer has a special driver for accelerated video conversion, so I find it to be quite slow, especially compared to RDP or TeamViewer, or even UltraVNC, and particularly when used on a LAN (in other lower bandwidth situations there is less expectation of near-realtime performance, at least).

Carol makes a very good case for TeamViewer, all of which I can confirm from my own experience.

Not sure why you'd bother setting up a VPN separately just to run RDP unless you need VPN anyway. As Carol said, TeamViewer is encrypted by default anyway. You can also do file and directory transfers, among other things.

- Oshyan
215  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: In search of ... information/opinions on VHS to DVD converters on: November 27, 2011, 05:06:18 PM
You're lucky you can get a 3-way test going with some friends, very cool! Pretty soon you'll be able to tell *us* what the best option is. smiley

- Oshyan
216  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: Easy Remote access to another PC? on: November 27, 2011, 05:02:11 PM
I use Teamviewer and UltraVNC, the latter less frequently now (but used to be my mainstay). looks very interesting, I'll have to check it out.

- Oshyan
217  Other Software / Found Deals and Discounts / Re: Sagelight Editor - $39.95 Lifetime Promotion Ending July 1st on: November 27, 2011, 04:58:24 PM
Thanks for the continued responses Rob. I'm very curious to see your take on all of this, pricing certainly, but perhaps more interestingly the balance between ease and power, amateur vs. pro functions. Definitely looking forward to seeing some of your ideas tested in the market. Maybe I'll learn something new! smiley

- Oshyan
218  Other Software / Found Deals and Discounts / Re: Sagelight Editor - $39.95 Lifetime Promotion Ending July 1st on: November 27, 2011, 03:03:30 AM
Yow, so much to respond to! Frankly I'd really rather do it in email. Is anyone else really interested in this depth of discussion about SL? lol. If not, I'm going to go back to email for much of this.

I will respond to a few things here though.

First, I'm not really clear at this point what your goal with developing and publishing (selling) Sagelight is. Is it your sole living, and if so is maximizing profit, or at least maintaining a living wage, then a priority? Are you doing it for the originally stated reason, you wanted an image editor that did things you couldn't find any other apps doing? If so that drive remains surprisingly strong! How much of a priority is it to maintain "accessibility", both in pricing and in functionality?

Second, you seem to have some desires that are potentially conflicting, or at least challenging to reconcile (again speaking from experience). The casual user, the amateur, has rather different needs and *abilities*, not to mention time and patience, as compared to the serious hobbyist and professional. Adobe doesn't just make Elements because they need something at a lower price point, they also change the UI and workflow a fair amount (for example Photoshop Elements actually has cataloging functions like Lightroom) because the home user has different needs. Frankly as a semi-professional (or at least serious amateur, in that I don't make money from my photos), I would rather you not be spending time trying to make a UI that caters to both types of users. It's very difficult to satisfy both with one product!

Regarding pricing, I still think you're really selling your product short. If you price to compete with Corel, e.g. Paintshop X4 ($30), you'll be brought down to their level (no offense to Paintshop fans!). Paintshop is an ok product, some people here really like it, but it just doesn't take imaging as seriously as Sagelight. It reminds me of the difference between our product Terragen and our competitor E-On Software's Vue product line. Their software is used professionally as well, but its focus is really on *tons* of features and ease of use. Basically, as long as a feature is implemented and ticks a box on the feature list, it's "good", even if the actual implementation is not great, even if the image quality is not great, etc. Terragen has a lot less features than Vue, but each of them tends to be more solid, higher quality, etc.

Anyway I don't really see you ever truly making people understand that underlying image quality value that SL has with a low price and a split focus on the average home user market. Splitting your product line will help, but the price point may *still* be an issue. It's important that you look at the right apps for comparison. SL is already on par with the likes of Lightzone ($99.95, discontinued), Bibble Lite ($99.95), DxO Optics Pro Standard (149€), and more at a similar price point, and from the sound of it what you're adding for v5 will put it on par with most of DxO Optics Pro Elite (299€), Capture One ($399), Bibble Pro ($199), and the majority of Lightroom's functionality ($299). The main thing you're missing that pros would want and that most of those have is lens correction. Catalog/digital asset management capability is another, but many people already use an external DAM and Sagelight has facility for that. Note also that many of these products have a similar lite/full or home/pro version split, like Bibble, but their lite/"home" versions are generally $99!

Now again I have to say I love that you're not jumping straight to high pricing and I'm not in favor of raising the price just because you can. *Iif* you can make a living pricing your product lower than everyone else and get at the market you want, then I applaud you. I'm just not sure that will work. And the tools SL has seem, to me, to have the potential to capture a different market, and in many ways I think are also above the head of most people who would buy a $39 app. So you may almost be hurting yourself there, by providing features that are not only not needed but even confusing, and at a price point that devalues those same features and the app as a whole. I know you recognize at least some of these issues, but you may not agree with others (i.e. you could argue that providing access to advanced tools but not forcing them on users helps them learn them over time and graduate to more advanced capabilities in their own time). I know you are also struggling with what to put in your high and low end versions, along with pricing of both. These are issues we continue to struggle with at Planetside as well, so I can't claim to have resolved them either, but I do have relatively long-term experience with it at least, and it's from that experience that I'm speaking.

In the end you have to make your own choices and I hope they will be successful. If you have the time and ability to stick with it for the long-term and remain flexible, then you can try other strategies if the one you choose now does not work. That is the ideal way to approach it I think, if you have the luxury of doing so. Above all I hope SL will continue and succeed.

- Oshyan
219  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: Mint 12 introducing DuckDuckGo ... on: November 27, 2011, 01:47:13 AM
 Roll Eyes

- Oshyan
220  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: In search of ... information/opinions on VHS to DVD converters on: November 27, 2011, 01:45:24 AM
You'll get used to the 55" and eventually be glad you have that instead of something smaller. At least I and everyone I know who has one of similar size did. cheesy

From my experience all TV's Internet access (and additional "fancy" functions) are awfully slow. Another reason not to bother.

Regarding 4:3 and "conversion", just what exactly where you hoping/expecting to have "converted"? You can't change the aspect ratio without distorting the content or losing some of it (chop off the top and bottom). Neither one is desirable. The best "conversion" that I've seen, which works "OK" for *some* things, is to progressively stretch the edges of the video frame the further you get from center. Since your focus is usually on center, this helps keep any distortion to the edges of the frame where you're less likely to see it. Still, it does not look good in many cases. Better, in general, to just ignore the black bars on the sides and treat it as a big (but slightly smaller at that aspect ratio) square TV.

I don't have any specific experience regarding hardware, but 2 thoughts do come to mind:

First, if you want something as easy as possible and have no interest in editing the VHS video contents, or combining multiple VHS into a single DVD, then an all-in-one unit, a straightforward converter, that avoids the computer step might be best.

On the other hand if you may want to edit *or* you don't actually want "VHS to DVD" specifically, but rather "VHS to something I can watch on my new TV", *and* if you have got it working to stream stuff to the TV from your other devices, then using something like Nigel posted and grabbing the VHS content to a computer for streaming might be ideal. That's what I'd do, no need for more DVDs laying around, just build up a nice digital library of old VHS stuff.

- Oshyan
221 Software / Coding Snacks / Re: Image Tile Joiner on: November 27, 2011, 01:29:09 AM
Another vote for an "interactive image tiler"! I've just been more or less asking Rob of Sagelight to add something like that one day, but I'm not really sure it's appropriate to that tool. A dedicated app would work for me as I do it infrequently enough that I wouldn't mind switching to something else for the task.

- Oshyan
222  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: Wave? Good-bye! on: November 27, 2011, 01:25:18 AM
I played with Wave on a number of occasions and in the context of 2 separate companies, and I never did find a situation where it was *clearly* better than either email, or a collaborative document workspace like GDocs is now (or Zoho was at that time, a bit ahead of GDocs then). I also don't think it really gave Google much useful info that they would have applied to G+, much more likely they applied its lessons to Gdocs and GApps in general. G+ isn't collaborative at all, nor is it anywhere near as persistent, both of which were huge founding principles of Wave.

Anyway, I'm glad Google experimented and let us all share in that experiment, but I'm also glad they have the sense to stop using resources on it when it clearly either wasn't a product that could/should succeed, wasn't ready to succeed, or "the world wasn't ready for it". In either of those 3 cases it is right to "kill" it for now. Fortunately Google is doing it right and open sourcing it, so if the idea is truly good, users can decide that and continue using it.

- Oshyan
223  Other Software / Found Deals and Discounts / Re: Sagelight Editor - $39.95 Lifetime Promotion Ending July 1st on: November 23, 2011, 06:54:43 PM
Good points Dormouse. One perhaps counter-intuitive (but nonetheless effective) change you might consider is being less frequent and detailed with releases and release promises and instead settle on a regular schedule you can stick to within the year. People like updates, but reading through this thread and your blog, you can see that the "It took a lot longer than I thought" comment is frequent and regular. So you'll say "4.2 is coming soon" but then it won't because hey, it took longer than you expected. That's fine, the problem isn't necessarily (or at least solely) with it taking longer than expected but that you externalized that expectation by hinting at or even in some cases announcing it. If you had said nothing and instead just had a general policy of bi-annual updates, and making them major updates (i.e. 4.0 at beginning of the year, 4.5 mid-year, 5.0 at the beginning of next year), that would create that sense of stability while taking some pressure off you.

Heck even annual releases are not necessarily to be expected from a lot of (professional) software. Lightroom gets point releases, but they're mostly bug fixes and support for new camera RAW files. With Version Control you can easily do patch releases while working on separate tracks with major features and merge them later for a big release.

I would not suggest reducing communications overall necessarily, I think your engagement with your users through the blogs, videos, and tutorials is part of the appeal of SL, but you could stick to helping people learn existing tools, creating videos for future features behind the scenes if desired and then releasing those when the version with those features eventually comes out.

Just a thought... All I know for sure is not announcing release dates ahead of time has worked a lot better in my experience. cheesy

- Oshyan
224  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Need Advice on a TV... on: November 23, 2011, 01:10:40 AM
Looks like a pretty good choice. LG makes nice displays.

Just a quick note regarding number of HDMI ports: the best way to handle this in my opinion is actually with your home theater receiver/surround decoder (if you have one - if not, then yes, TV needs lots of HDMI). Modern ones will handle simultaneous switching of audio/video signal, which can otherwise be a pain if you do have a separate amp and surround system (i.e. you're not just relying on the TV's speakers). The receiver is what has all the HDMI inputs and then 1 or more outputs and it handles switching internally, feeding your TV the appropriate video signal over HDMI, without having to switch your TV's own input source (i.e. HDMI 1, 2, etc. on the TV).

- Oshyan
225  Other Software / Found Deals and Discounts / Re: Sagelight Editor - $39.95 Lifetime Promotion Ending July 1st on: November 23, 2011, 12:57:33 AM
As someone whose "other editor" is $300 (Lightroom), I find your pricing considerations and general range to be very, very reasonable! Now granted LR does things that Sagelight does not do, things I wish SL did, and I cannot replace LR with SL right now because of that. Photo organizing, tagging, and uploading are the majority of that, but also things like HDR plugins. At the same time SL can do things that LR doesn't, or at least do things in ways that are easier to control and/or produce better results. The new lens blur/bokeh stuff is a great example.

So while I understand people's comments about "the app world" and whatnot, I also see the other side of things where SL is actually a tremendous deal compared to other *similarly capable* apps. That's the thing though, does SL have a professional reputation and if not, could it develop one? That's what you need to charge more than about $50 I think, or $100 at most. It's little or nothing to do with the actual capabilities which, as I've said, are excellent and already surpass programs that cost much more in some ways.

If I'm being honest, I think the UI design is probably the lest professional-seeming thing about SL. It's hard to put my finger on, but it feels less clean and polished than LR, Bibble, and the like. More colors, gradients, and icons than clear lines and text, perhaps. Beveled edges, that sort of thing. And the general feel and workflow is good, but still somehow just doesn't "feel" as "solid" as LR and others. That may be just my personal, subjective opinion of course.

At any rate I definitely understand the pricing difficulties. I admire your dedication to keeping features accessible, and that's one thing I've dealt with personally at Planetside Software where we make a fully free (with some limitations) version of our software available. I also understand the pro vs. hobbyist vs. amateur debate and the difficulty in establishing the right perceptions of your product, *especially* when you want to keep things accessible to a wide range of users and price points. I suspect that sometimes you do just have to make a sacrifice of one or the other, or take some radical approach like making an entirely different product (at least in name). But I do have some suggestions for a pro vs. "light" split if you're interested. I suspect you might not agree, but I think any decision you make on it is going to involve some compromise in your core desires and values. If that weren't the case I expect you'd have made a decision by now. Wink

By the way, great to hear that HDR functionality (that I recently emailed you about) is planned!

- Oshyan
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