Category Archives: Designing

GIMP 2.8.6: Free Simple Alternative To Adobe Photoshop

Gimpshop is a FREE, downloadable photo and image editing software program built to rival Adobe Photoshop.

This latest build – Gimpshop 2.8.6 – represents over 17 years of development and collaboration. The GNU Image Manipulation Program (or G.I.M.P) is an Open Source program designed, maintained and supported by a team of international volunteers.

gimp vs photoshop

This lastest version of Gimpshop incorporates support of 16 & 32-bit color, a highly intuitive user-interface, a huge array of filters & dynamic brushes and leading-edge advanced tools that power users and professionals demand in high-end, high-priced photo and image manipulation programs like Adobe Photoshop.

If you are already using Adobe Photoshop and want to use GIMP, there will be a slight learning curve as you will need to see and learn the new interface and shortcut keys of GIMP which are different from Photoshop.

One of the features of GIMP 2.8 is highly expanded brush dynamics engine allowing users unprecendented control and flexibility to configure unique response curves.

Gimp 2.8 introduces the single-window mode. This highly requested feature was added to give Photoshop users the look and feel of the Photoshop workspace, but allows advanced user to quickly toggle to multi-window mode.

Import and Export your images in a wide range of common file formats like: JPEG, GIF, PNG, TIFF – to special use formats such as multi-resolution and multi-depth Windows files.

A completely new Cage Transform tool was developed for 2.8 as a result of the Google Summer of Code 2010. The tool takes an innovative approach to free transformation and makes it easy to warp parts of objects.

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Download GIMP 2.8.6

Will Windows 8 Secure Boot Address x86 Device Market By Preventing Piracy?

For quite some time, the market has been rife with the news that the latest version of Windows, Windows 8, is going to be launched sometime soon. While there is no official word on the matter, there have been many rumors that have spread. Most of them have been denied but some information has been verified by the industry experts. Among those waiting excitedly for the new Windows are industry gurus, broadband experts and obviously the customers. They want to know whether they need to get new devices or that their existing gadgets will be compatible with the new operating system. There is another pertinent question being asked: will Windows 8 secure boot address x86 device market by preventing privacy? The answer to this can be derived only after taking certain facts into consideration.

The Major Concern: UEFI Secure Boot

Microsoft has created a comprehensive list of requirements for manufacturers that want to use the new operating system. Among the various requirements are at least 10 GB of free memory space. Touch based devices need to have at least five points of touch. There are certain other criteria that need to be fulfilled in order for a manufacturer to declare that its devices are compatible with Windows 8.

Essentially, this means that Linux is the manufacturer that is going to suffer. None of their devices meet the required criteria. This is the main point of contention for the Linux users as they are simply prevented from making use of the Windows 8.

The one new feature that is the root of the problem is the UEFI secure boot. Designed as a replacement for the BIOS, the UEFI has been known to be one of the reasons why Microsoft is cautious about letting on information about Windows 8. Little has been confirmed about this feature but broadband experts agree that the major issues lie with it.

The Future of x86 Processors

The main thing to be taken into consideration is that the predecessors of the UEFI secure boot were designed for the x86 processors. As you know, the x86 is one of the oldest versions of processors and there are specific requirements for booting. This can create problems when you are trying to dual boot a device with a newer processor.

Microsoft has attempted to keep the Windows 8 free from piracy. This involves designing the secure boot to work in such a way that there are no chances of operating it without a license. For the new feature to work on x86 processors, the systems need to have the permission to make changes to the firmware certificate store. If the users are unable to add or remove firmware, they will be unable to use the Windows 8 operating system on an x86 processor.

The newer x86 Windows 8 systems need to allow users to install the necessary certificates. For this, Microsoft has altered the standard mode, which allows only Microsoft certificates. The users enter custom mode, under which they are allowed to install the necessary certificates on their systems. But, there is a drawback to this.

The compatibility of Windows 8 with an x86 processor has still not been assessed. This means that the user needs to turn off the secure boot in order to install the certificate. With the new UEFI secure boot, it is still not certain that users will be able to do so. In effect, the users have to change their systems to BIOS mode to install the certificates.

Here, you can question the necessity of having a new booting feature installed when the required certificates can be installed only with the older version. This is a chink in the armor that Microsoft needs to address sooner rather than later.

Conclusion

Hence, it is clear that Microsoft is trying its best to protect the Windows 8 from being pirated. It has designed and developed a new feature to ensure there is no wrong use of the new operating system. However, Windows 8 does not secure boot address x86 device market with this move. Users will have to switch to BIOS mode, something they have to do manually, for the necessary certificates to be installed properly.

The above article is written by Rosette Summer. She is associated with many technology and designing communities including broadband experts as their freelance writer and adviser. In her free time she writes articles related to technology, mobile applications, etc.

Advanced Online Photo/Image Editor–Pixlr

I have used many online photo editors  but was not satisfied with anyone of them because most of them will lack one feature or the other. I wanted to have a photo editor which works online without the hassles of downloading and installing and will give most if not all of the features of Adobe Photoshop. I’ve found one today Smile.

Pixlr has a very good photo editor which works online so that there is no need to download anything. You can start from scratch by creating a new image or edit an existing one from your Computer or from any URL of the internet. You can also signup with Pixlr and edit your photos from Facebook, Picassa or Flikr.

pixlr editor

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Wondershare DemoCreator, Screen Recording Software, Review And Giveaway [10 Licenses]

I have been using Snagit for a long time for screenshots and screen capturing. A few days back, Sameshow team contacted me for a review of their software, Wondershare screen recorder Democreator. I decided to give it a try and was amazed by it’s capabilities. It’s far advanced than any other screen recording solution I have used.

wondershare democreator

Screen Capture / Print Screen With Handy Software

FastStone Capture is a powerful, lightweight, yet full-featured screen capture tool that allows you to easily capture and annotate anything on the screen including windows, objects, menus, full screen, rectangular/freehand regions and even scrolling windows/web pages. You can choose to send captures to editor, file, clipboard, printer, email, Word/PowerPoint document or upload them to your website. Editing tools include annotating (texts, arrowed lines, and highlights), resizing, cropping, sharpening, watermarking, applying edge effects and many more. It also allows you to record screen activities and sound into highly compressed video files. Other features include global hotkeys, automatic filename generation, and support for external editors, a colour picker, a screen magnifier and a screen ruler.

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Pixie | Free Portable Color Picker

Pixie is a quite handy alternative of full fledge software. Pixie is a small and portable color picker application with built-in options of copying HTML codes, color mixing and magnify any part of the desktop. Pixie is only 11KB application file. All you need to do is that start the application and drag your mouse over any color, this will display the breakdown of HEX, RGB, HTML, CMYK and HSV color values. Pixie is very useful for developers and designers who prefer to determine these color values more quickly instead of open a full suite image software.

Get Free License and Download of Adobe Flash Builder 4 (Flex)

Adobe Flash Builder (previously Adobe Flex Builder) is a software designed for developers to rapidly develop cross-platform rich internet applications (RIAs) using open source Flex framework. It includes support for intelligent coding, debugging, and visual design and features powerful testing tools that speed up development and lead to higher performing applications. Adobe is giving free licenses of Adobe Flash Builder 4 to students, teachers and developers.

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