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Author Topic: Mini-Review-John's Background Switcher  (Read 15394 times)
y0himba
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« on: June 18, 2008, 10:32:57 PM »

I am personally surprised that I didn't find more about this gem when I searched the DC forums!  This background switcher is probably the best I have ever used. 

It provides not only the ability to use pictures you select, or entire folders and sub-folder you select, but also allows for random Flickr and Yahoo photos/pictures!  You read correctly, you can configure John's Background Switcher to grab the top 100 or whatever user specified number of photos/pictures off Flickr and Yahoo for endless random backgrounds.  You can also specify tag/text keywords for Flickr, and search terms for Yahoo. 

There are other services that unfortunately I don't subscribe to or use, specifically Phanfare, Smugmug, and Picasa.

Now get this, new to the version released this weekend, you can also get your friend's and your own FACEBOOK photos!

Now to the best parts, the options.  You of course can set the interval for background switching, you can set the length of time that downloaded/cached photos are kept. You can tell John's Background Switcher to display quite a few ways, such as Center, Stretch to full screen, Scale to fit the screen, and Scale to full screen.  This beauty also includes some very creative and unique modes though, such as "Thumbnail Mosaic", "Four Picture Montage", and "Create A Snapshot Scrapbook".  Each of these modes is configurable using the "More options" configuration section. You can configure the size of the mosaic tiles.  Most interesting though is the configuration of the Snapshot scrapbook.  You can have photos thrown randomly on your desktop, or postcards randomly on your desktop!  You can configure the size and amount of photos, and the scattering is random each time.  This really must be seen to appreciated. There are also effects for the background behind the scattered photos such as Sepia, B/W/, and Desaturate, or you can choose a background color. John's Background Switcher also automatically sets the desktop color when centering or scaling photos, based on the content of the photo!  (If you tell it to of course) Also, there are plenty of options so the switching doesn't interfere with other programs and gaming.

You can also use the integrated photo browser to get the originals from the web!

You can configure John's Background Switcher to pick a random mode (Flickr, Yahoo, Smugmug, Phanfare, Picasa, Facebook, Photos or Folders) each time it switches!  This, and the ability to grab backgrounds/photos/pictures from the above mentioned Internet make this a welcome and handy addition to any system, and creates an ever changing randomness that alleviates a boring desktop  You can almost just sit there, staring at your desktop, amazed at what comes up next!

While I have covered a lot of the options, this program is highly configurable, so there are many more options.  Play around with them and see what you get.

I RARELY let anything start with Windows, or run in the background, but I have allowed this to do both.  Resource and CPU use are fairly low for this type of program making it easy to run with low to NO impact.

As you can probably tell, I really like this program, it is one of the best freewares I have ever downloaded.

This switcher surpasses all others in my opinion, and completely leaves comparable commercial products in the dust.  The author is very personable, and responds to every feature request and bug report through his forums.  While you are on his site, check out his photography.  If you enjoy this program as much as I am, please donate.

I have rambled enough, so now for the links!

John's Adventures:  http://www.johnsadventures.com
John's Background Switcher:  http://www.johnsadventure...ftware/backgroundswitcher
Support Forums:  http://www.johnsadventures.com/forum/




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« Last Edit: June 19, 2008, 09:07:22 AM by y0himba » Logged

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mouser
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« Reply #1 on: June 18, 2008, 10:36:47 PM »

Sounds very cool, thanks for posting this y0himba  thumbs up thumbs up
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wreckedcarzz
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« Reply #2 on: June 19, 2008, 12:25:11 AM »

I used John's Background Switcher for about 2 months before uninstalling it - great program, but I didn't use it a lot. I did send the author an email with suggestions for the next update, and got a prompt response saying that he would do what he could and thanked me for my ideas.

Definitely worth the download, the disk space, and the time it takes to get it working. It's one of those things that should be built-in with Windows, but even better.
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« Reply #3 on: June 24, 2008, 05:44:53 PM »

gHacks.net writes about John’s Background Switcher and credits y0himba for its find and the review.  Thmbsup





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y0himba
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« Reply #4 on: June 24, 2008, 05:52:52 PM »

 COOL!  Thanks for the heads-up! smiley smiley

----------------
Listening to: John Lee Hooker - Henry's Swing Clubsmiley smiley
« Last Edit: June 24, 2008, 06:00:50 PM by y0himba » Logged

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Daleus
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« Reply #5 on: June 25, 2008, 12:49:45 PM »

Well, I found it through gHacks, so conga ratz to y0himba.

I really like this proggie and have been looking for it's features for close to 10 years now.

The only option I havce not been able to get working is that where the pic info is supposed to be posted in the upper right hand corner.  Not terribly essential, and perhaps the two monitor setup is part of the problem.

Has anyone figured this one out or had similar difficulty?

Cheers!

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« Reply #6 on: June 25, 2008, 12:55:48 PM »

I`m using John`s background switcher for half a year now, and I must say it is really the best of his kind  Thmbsup with more then enough settings to give the background that you wish.
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y0himba
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« Reply #7 on: June 25, 2008, 01:30:01 PM »

Well, I found it through gHacks, so conga ratz to y0himba.

I really like this proggie and have been looking for it's features for close to 10 years now.

The only option I havce not been able to get working is that where the pic info is supposed to be posted in the upper right hand corner.  Not terribly essential, and perhaps the two monitor setup is part of the problem.

Has anyone figured this one out or had similar difficulty?

Cheers!

I was confused about that also.  The option only enables or disables the Watermark in the upper right of your screen.  Picture information is show using scrapbook, photo pile mode.  I posted about it in the support forums here:
http://www.johnsadventure...om/forum/topic.php?id=338
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wreckedcarzz
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« Reply #8 on: June 26, 2008, 02:24:30 AM »

The option I wanted most it lacks - an OS X type of fading effect from one image to another. Sad, I would have kept it if it had it (I told the dev about it, it may be in another version!).
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y0himba
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« Reply #9 on: June 26, 2008, 08:08:02 AM »

I requested that feature and he is looking into it for the next version.  For now, you can use DesktopFX.
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y0himba
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« Reply #10 on: September 21, 2009, 07:00:19 PM »

Version 4 has been released with even more amazing features, effects, and MORE SOURCES.  

Announcement here: http://www.johnsadventure...und-switcher-4-goes-live/
Change log here: http://www.johnsadventure...om/forum/topic.php?id=708
Main page here: http://www.johnsadventure...tware/backgroundswitcher/

The option I wanted most it lacks - an OS X type of fading effect from one image to another. Sad, I would have kept it if it had it (I told the dev about it, it may be in another version!).

It's in there.  Thmbsup
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TucknDar
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« Reply #11 on: September 24, 2009, 04:32:39 PM »

Amazing application! Thanks for the recommendation, y0himba! I've always been sceptical of wallpaper changers, just didn't see any need for them, but this one blew me away. Problem now is I might not get any work done, just want to sit and watch the next change of wallpaper... I prefer the postcard mode! Kiss
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