Archive for June, 2007

Convincing Your Client He Can’t Secure His Images, Once And For All*

Friday, June 29th, 2007

On almost every website project I’ve worked on, there’s one question that pops up over and over again: “can you copy-protect my images?” I’m certain I’m not alone on that one. Most of the time, they’ll ask that you disable right-click. I always deny the favor, as it’s a major interference in basic usability (and simply rude as well as pointless). Then there is the possibility of providing embedded copyright meta-data, but there’s nothing secure about it, as it can be removed any time. Photoshop architect Russell Williams explains why Photoshop doesn’t provide secure metadata. Read that and you’ll have all the arguments you need the next time a client needs you to “protect his images”.

*At least until there are some major watermarking breakthroughs, of course.

Test Your Website on the iPhone

Thursday, June 28th, 2007

Test how your website will appear on the iPhone, in the (supposedly) pixel-perfect iPhone emulator, iPhoney. The iPhoney features the original iPhone-Safari browser interface, and can be rotated to view in landscape mode. So you can go ahead and test a few of those iPhone applications that are already springing up. Mac-only, for now.

Ubuntu Studio & Free Open Source Software Alternatives for Photoshop, Illustrator and Co.

Wednesday, June 27th, 2007

Ubuntu Studio
If you’re into Linux or open source software in general, or just can’t afford the expensive professional applications, you may want to have a look at Ubuntu Studio, an offspring of the increasingly popular Linux distro Ubuntu, targeted towards creative professionals and enthusiasts, be that designers, film producers or audio specialists. Ubuntu Studio comes with an array of applications striving to offer free alternatives to the expensive industry standards. While I can’t speak on the quality of said applications as I haven’t tried them, I think Ubuntu Studio is a good endeavor that’s worth looking into.

If you prefer to stick with your OS of choice, you might like to bookmark this list of free and open source software for Windows and Mac.

Last but not least, I’d like to point you to a great article by Shahid Shah on open source alternatives to Adobe’s Creative Suite. Shahid has taken the time to “trawl through the World Wide Web to find out how everyone can benefit from Open Source to build up their own studio and compete against Adobe Creative Suite”. Good links in there.

Safari Web Inspector for Windows

Monday, June 25th, 2007

Safari Web Inspector for Windows
I guess it’s no longer news that Safari 3.0 will run on Windows as well as the Mac, as Steve Jobs announced on this year’s WWDC Keynote. The bit that’s really going to be interesting for web developers, however, is that Safari will come along with a new version of Web Inspector, which is basically the Safari counterpart to Firefox’s excellent Web Developer and Firebug extensions. This is great, as Windows users will now have a reliable tool to bugfix CSS/XHTML for Safari. Going by the screenshot, it looks dead sexy, too. Now if someone would come up with something comparable for IE, that would be great (sorry, neither this nor this comes close).

Trees Can Draw, Too

Friday, June 22nd, 2007

Tim Knowles
Who’da thunk it? And not only trees: lots of other things in nature and urban areas can draw: vehicles, the postal service, a full moon, balloons, insects, and even people randomly walking about, unaware of their artistic deeds. Tim Knowles proves this with an impressive portfolio of seemingly random analog art. I must say: a tree with a pen in its… uh… hand, is one of the most peculiar sights I’ve seen. Awkwardly cool, too.

Painting On Speed

Thursday, June 21st, 2007

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No, actually, not that kind of speed. But I made you look. ;) I’m talking speed painting: creating images in a very short time, not paying too much attention to the little details but to the big picture instead, producing some very impressive stuff. Like 24-year-old Argentinian Nico Di Matita, who records his speed paintings, some of them photo-realistic, and puts them on YouTube for your enjoyment and education.
So there you have it, painting on speed, enjoy. (Thanks, Tanja)

Step-and-Repeat Technique in Photoshop

Monday, June 18th, 2007

Step-and-Repeat in Photoshop
Really quick one here: Pete Bauer at Planet Photoshop shows us a little technique called “step-and-repeat“. It’s quickly learned and can save you some time while creating repetitious patterns, such as bricks, footsteps, a clock face and the likes.
(Thanks, photoshop-weblog)

We Feel Fine: Global Exploration of Human Emotions

Monday, June 11th, 2007

We Feel Fine
Do Europeans feel sad more often than Americans? Does rainy weather affect how we feel? What do people feel right now in Baghdad? What were people feeling on Valentine’s Day? Which are the happiest cities in the world? The saddest?

It’s questions like these that the creators of We Feel Fine seek to answer, with a novel way of collecting data and a beautiful, playful way of presenting the data.

Apple’s New Animated OS

Saturday, June 9th, 2007

Core AnimationIf you’re anything like me, you eat up every update on new Apple products when they’re served. To those of you who checked out the new features that the next version of Mac OS X, Leopard, has to offer, I’m willing to bet the Core Animation tab on the Apple website was the least interesting. Well, it may actually be the most interesting bit.


The London 2012 Olympics Logo: What A Mess

Friday, June 8th, 2007

london2012_pink.gifBy now probably everyone’s heard about it. The recently announced London 2012 Olympics logo has stirred up an incredible amount of negative emotions ranging from discontent to pure hatred. Positive opinions are rare and hard to find. London taxpayers are not only worked up about its appearance, which is clearly not in tune with current design trends, but also about the hefty price tag of £400,000 that design agency Wolff Olins attached to it.

In less than 2 days, an online petition has managed to collect over 48,000 signatures demanding the logo be changed. Hundreds of blogs and news sites are filled up with devastating commentary, and the British boulevard press is having a field day: The Sun is presenting a logo created by a monkey that actually looks better, some may argue.

The video originally posted on the official website to demonstrate the versatility of the logo had to be pulled, due to 22 reports of people having epileptic seizures induced by the flashing colors, as well as 5 migraines and one lonesome vomiter. Even London’s mayor Ken Livingston hates it, reportedly saying he “wouldn’t pay them a penny”.

In the meantime, Londoners have been busy creating their own Olympic logos that, while amateurish, do a better job at representing the London factor of the games.

The BBC has a behind-the-scenes look at the logo, highlighting a bit of the creative process and the reasons why the logo turned out the way it did.

You know, they say there is no such thing as bad press, but perhaps this is stressing it a bit too much? What are your thoughts? Love it? Hate it? Too much hassle over nothing? Let me know! Personally I still prefer the logo used during candidature.

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