Thursday, August 28, 2008

Edit your photos on-line. But where?

I don't have a Photoshop on my Computer right now, so I turned to the big WWW for some help. I wanted to see to what extent can a person edit his/her pictures on-line. Well I'd say theat overall in all the editors options are quite limited, although good enough to remove red eyes, or make your pictures in a sketch mode or sepia tone.

I am trying out couple of editors and here is my quick review of the first one:

Adobe Photoshop Express
The official Adobe online application for picture editing.

It has a really nice look and feel, very mac-like :). The effects available are very basic, but I did like quite a bit of elements of this web application:
- the effects can be applied to different sections of a picture and not only to the whole picture
- a certain change done to the picture can be easily removed without effecting the entire work done on the image (changes/effects applied are treated as a separate element)
- navigation is very easy and clear
- picture upload is relatively fast, but equal to other applications as far as I can tell
- very nice slide show options - you can choose speed and order of your slideshow, whether picture fly around in a circle or just in a straight line :) etc. However, the slide show only looks stylish on the gallery of the Photoshop Express website, but not if you embed the code to your website...unless I don't know how to do it properly?

As already said, the effects are quite limited, and can't really be used for professional photo editing, but rather for a quick edit of your photos before you post them on Facebook or blog, if you want them to look a bit different

See this for the public gallery (click the play button on the album) and see bellow for embedded code. A bit of a difference between the two, eh?

For next time, I will be trying out the flauntR picture editor, so come back to see if I liked it and keep an eye open for News (TM).

Thursday, August 21, 2008

New Dell Designs for Laptops

Great news for all Dell lovers (such as myself) who always believed in Dell but wished they could get their laptop in a more trendy version.

Wish no more, as Dell released new designs for their computers with art done by Brooklyn based artist Mike Ming. There are 5 design available and I have to say they look very cool. Combining colors and photo realism bring art to life...well at least according to the Dell web site.

Judge the designs for yourself and decide if they meet your taste...I know for sure that the next laptop to replace my old Dell will be one of these funky Dellios.

Read more about Mike Ming.
Check out more info on design, prices and tech details on Dell's website.

Be funky and keep an eye open for more News (TM).

"Is Slovenia A Povery-Ridden Country?" My response to L.A. Times Olympic blog debate

I went back to the L.A. Times Olympic blog because I wanted to check for an updated list of countries' medals per capita list. Instead of the list, I found countless comments that the last post generated - or rather that the last post's comment generated.

As a comment to the post from August 17th, Margarita wrote:
"Mr. Culpepper's pathetic sarcasm aside, I think it's incredibly remarkable that such tiny, poverty-ridden countries that most people cannot even locate on a map have shown such athletic prowess and talent. With all the money, support, food, propaganda and access to performance-enhancing drugs that major countries like the US and China have at their disposable, it's amazing that they don't dominate and take three for three in every event. Is that fact keeping Mr. Culpepper from acknowledging the accomplishments of these forgotten countries without lacing his entire article with biting sarcasm?"

The cause of the extremely long flood of comments are these (slightly) misunderstood words: "poverty-ridden countries". I believe that whoever Margarita is, does not know what/ where Slovenia is and probably assumes it looks a bit like something you see in movies like Eurotrip and Wag the Dog, where they show a very American interpretation of Eastern European countries. I also believe that Margarita only meant well and wrote within boundaries of his/her knowledge of Slovenia. Great...but what the flood of comments and patriotic posts from Slovenians demonstrate is what a lack of knowledge causes. Slovenian are proud of their country, as every nation is. We (yes, I'm Slovenian) tend to not over dramatize our patriotism and really don't show it that obviously, unless we come across comments like the one made by Margarita.

You have to understand that it's hard to be a small country that nobody knows about or thinks that it's still a very dangerous war zone that you should avoid. As we meet people from other countries we have to convince one at the time that our country is safe, that we have a very competitive economy, that our living standard is almost the same as in the rest of "western" Europe and so on and so on. So you can see how we get very irritated when people like Margarita say uneducated things like that. They might have been meant in a very subtle way, but to us they sound loud and hit us right in the spot that opens the "patriotic" flood gates. And I am pretty sure every nation has a spot like that...for Americans it could be saying that they are stupid, for Canadians that they are just like Americans etc.

So please, before saying thinks about any country, please make sure that they are accurate. We all sometimes say things that we don't know much about but when talking about other nations and other countries it just causes too much problems and evokes strong emotions. Sadly, floods of posts like the one on the L.A. Times Olympic blog never reach a conclusion and never promote understanding and peace.

Nevertheless, I did end up finding the latest list of medals per capita, so here it is:

1. Jamaica (7) - 400,618
2. Slovenia (5) - 401,542
3. New Zealand (9) - 463,717
4. Australia (36) - 572,246
5. Armenia (5) - 593,717
6. Estonia (2) - 653,802
7. Bahrain (1) - 718,306
8. Belarus (13) - 745,059
9. Cuba (13) - 878,765
10. Denmark (6) - 914,120

Selected Others:

11. Norway (5) - 928,891
13. Georgia (4) - 1,157,710
22. Britain (37) - 1,647,132
41. Greece (3) - 3,574,272
42. United States (82) - 3,705,178
50. Japan (23) - 5,534,279
53. Israel (1) - 7,112,359
70. Afghanistan (1) - 32,738,376
75. Mexico (2) - 54,977,700
79. India (2) - 573,997,949

Keep your mind open and an eye open for more News (TM).

Read about L.A. Times Olympic Blog's comment on the debate.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

More Slovenian Golden Medals Found

Even I make mistakes... or maybe especially I make mistakes.
Thanks to the correction of the Anonymous reader I am happy to announce that Primoz Kozmos's golden medal is not the first one for Slovenia since being independent, but actually the third. Previous Olympic winners are:
- Rajmond Debevec, 50m Riffle 3x40, Sidney 2000
- Iztok Cop & Luka Spik, Double Sculls, Sidney 2000

So one could also say, that Slovenians now got a total of 4 golden Olympic medals :)

Keep reading so thoroughly and keep and eye open for more News (TM).

Monday, August 18, 2008

Slovenia leading on The 2008 Olympic medals per capita list

I am proud to report that Slovenia is number one when counting medals per capita at 2008 Beijing Olympics.

After Primoz Kozmus won the gold in the hammer throw he really did throw Slovenia to the first place of the list (btw this is the first golden medal for Slovenia since becoming a sovereign country in 1991). So for the first time in many years (or even ever), thanks to Kozmuz, Isakovic, Debevec and Polavder, Slovenia ranks as first in a Olympic rank of some sort.

Congratulations to the athletes that made this small country visible once again and made all 2 million Slovenians very proud.

Countries by medals per capita (on August 18th, as reported by Los Angeles Times):

1. Slovenia (4) - one medal per every 501,927
2. Armenia (5) - 593,717
3. Jamaica (4) - 701,083
4. Australia (29) - 710,374
5. New Zealand (5) - 834,692
6. Belarus (10) - 968,576
7. Trinidad & Tobago (1) - 1,047,366
8. Norway (4) - 1,161,114
9. Estonia (1) - 1,307,605
10. Slovakia (4) - 1,311,187

And some others:

11. Denmark (4) - one medal per every 1,371,180
25. Great Britain (25) - 2,437,756
26. France (25) - 2,562,311
35. Germany (21) - 3,922,359
40. United States (65) - 4,674,225
41. Canada (7) - 4,744,670
44. Japan (20) - 6,364,420
46. Spain (6) - 6,748,508
56. China (61) - 21,804,010

Keep cheering for your favorite team and keep an eye open for more News (TM).

100 web sites that you have to see

PC Magazine put out a list of 100 web-sites that you most likely did not see yet, but definitely should.

Visit this link see the slide show of all the 100 web sites.

One that I liked and am currently addicted to, is the Type racer. You can compete with other visitors on the site or invite your friends to see who can type the fastest. My fingers are beginning to hurt :)

Type fast and keep an eye open for more News (TM).

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Scientific research on Heath's vs. Jack's Joker interpretation

Heath Ledger or Jack Nicholson? Who is a better Joker? I thought that when I see the movie (The Dark Night) and could decide easily, but that is not the case. The problem is that you can't really compare the two Jokers as they are pretty different. So the only way I imagine, that could help me get to the final decision is a very scientific, non biased and objective comparison of the two. The control subject of my study is the Joker we all have in mind - Joker from cards (see picture on the left). He is the standard that I will compare Heath's and Jack's interpretation of the Joker too.
Let's start!

First category: Fashion style

Description: In this category Jack and Heath compete in their fashion style. Compared to the control subject, what they should have is a hat, funny clothing and elf like unfashionable shoes.
Analysis: Both Jack and Heath fail to demonstrate a crazy hat, so the get 0 points. When comparing the clothing we get to the conclusion that both don't have as crazy clothes as the control subject but wear purple color which should not be a normal men's suit color. They both get one point for courage. Lastly, shoes. I have to admit I do not remember the shoes they wore. So, since they did not stick in my memory, I scientifically conclude that they were not crazy enough to be memorable and the both get 0 points for this one.
Jack: 1 point
Heath: 1 point

Second category: Creepy smile

Description: The most recognizable characteristic of the Joker is his smile. It is what maker him very creepy and is the deciding factor for most parent's decision of rather inviting a clown to their children's parties.

After detailed study of the zoomed in and enlarged pictures of the three smiles we can conclude that Jack's smile seems to resemble the control subject more. Jack is the only one that actually has his mount pinned up in a, what seems to be, a very hurtful way, so he deserves a point for this. Heath on the other hand has very bad scars from his father's evil ways, but he fails to demonstrate a smile as we see in the control subject. He, sadly, gets 0 points for this.
Jack: 1 point
Heath: 0 points

Third category: Persona

Description: What counts here is the character, evilness and overall madness that the actor portrays.
Analysis: Jack's Joker always smiles. He is happy, dances around, and would be (if you didn't know he likes to kill people for amusement) a very good party host. Heath's Joker, on the other hand, is darker, not so happy, all about destroying simply for the pleasure of destruction. He is the "messed up, my father molested me and i am not smiling since then" Joker. It depends on the type of the viewer but my analysis shows that Jack's Joker is more suitable for happy, positive people who like to be cheerful a lot, whereas Heath's Joker suits darker, depressed, negative people better. But as they both did such a great job at figuring out what a Joker should be like, they both deserve a point.
Jack: 1 point
Heath: 1 point

Fourth category: Public opinion

Description: As this is a very objective research we have to take the public vote into account. So here are the votes from the poll that has been taking place on this blog for the past couple of weeks (i know, not that many votes, but hey it's not like I'm Yahoo! - which is by the way the most popular website according to
Jack: 6 votes (counts as 6 points)
Heath: 4 votes (counts as 4 points)

Fifth category: Personal veto

Description: Every really good research has to be at least a little bit biased, that is why I included this category. Here, my personal vote counts as 1 point as I don't want to make the research all too biased :)
Jack: 1 point
Heath: 0 points

Final results

When combining results from each category, these are the numbers we get:
Jack: 10 points
Heath: 7 points

So the official winner of the Heath vs. Jack competition is: Jack Nicholson. Congratulation to both, but fame and glory goes to the winner.

That's all for Joker happy and keep an eye open for News (TM).

P.S. Those of you who actually payed attention to what you were reading, the final scores might not make sense. I added an extra point to Heath at the last moment for his sexiness as this aspect of his interpretation must not be ignored :)