Free and powerful photo editing software:

If you’ve seen any of my websites or Facebook post you’ve probable noticed that I do a lot of photo editing and create a lot of my own graphics. Everything from montages to cropping, labeling, to banners for videos. I do a lot of what is sometimes referred to as ‘photo-shopping’ pictures.

Some examples:




Plus the banner at the top of this page.
For over 8 years now I have not used any of the:
  1. “Photo/Graphics” free software (Microsoft/windows, etc.) that has come with any of my computers(3),
  2. I also haven’t used any of the Photo software that has come with any of my camera purchases (4),
  3. nor have I purchased any photo or graphics software… ever.
Why not?
  • Because from one computer to the next if the free software changes you have to learn the new software all over again.
  • Because from one camera to the next not only do you also need to learn the new software, but when you change computers the software that came with your new camera may not work on your new computer.
  • When you purchase software it’s difficult enough to install it on your current computer, imagine if it doesn’t install or work on your next computer. (this happened to me on a $400 Microsoft web editing program (FrontPage) that was discontinued)
  • Then there’s always the disaster that occurs when the file format for hundreds of pictures and graphics have to be converted from one format to another and the software manufacturer doesn’t supply a conversion utility.
So what do I use? How much does it cost? Where do I get it?
  • paint.net.
  • free.
  • download it.

How about updates? What about support? Does it measure up?

I have been using it since 2007, it was free then and its free now, you download it from the internet, it will do automatic updates or manual, you can put it on more than one computer at a time, when you get a new computer you just down load it to the new computer and transfer your old files (pictures & graphics) to your new computer (via flash drive, or whatever), it has on-line tutorials and forums, and yes, its just as powerful as Adobe® Photoshop®, Corel® Paint Shop Pro®, Microsoft Photo Editor, and The GIMP.

Paint.NET is free image and photo editing software for PCs that run Windows. It features an intuitive and innovative user interface with support for layers, unlimited undo, special effects, and a wide variety of useful and powerful tools. An active and growing online community provides friendly help, tutorials, and plugins.
It started development as an undergraduate college senior design project mentored by Microsoft, and is currently being maintained by some of the alumni that originally worked on it. Originally intended as a free replacement for the Microsoft Paint software that comes with Windows, it has grown into a powerful yet simple image and photo editor tool. It has been compared to other digital photo editing software packages such as Adobe® Photoshop®, Corel® Paint Shop Pro®, Microsoft Photo Editor, and The GIMP.”




Solving A Classic Bathroom Dilemma:


courtesy of Debbie T-J


Enable 'God Mode' for better Netflix browsing:

-the video may take a bit to load-

The Netflix website can be a huge pain to use. Sure you can search for specific titles but if you want to browse through all of the content you have to suffer through an endless and painfully slow scroll wheel. Luckily there is a new tool out there that you can use to change this and it's called “GodMode”. To use it, first make sure the bookmark bar is visible in your browser. The actual command to do this varies slightly depending on the browser you're using, but typically you can enable 7_17_4the toolbar by right clicking the empty area at the top of your browser and selecting the option to show bookmarks or favorites. Head to the website you see below and drag the green button to the bookmark bar. Now head on over to the Netflix website and sign in as you normally would. You will still see the horizontal rows of the shows but don't worry. Simply tap the new Netflix… view entire video.


17 Laundry Hacks That Will Change Your Life:


Making sure your clothing looks its best can be such a chore, especially if you are trying to tackle a stain or need to bring out the iron. These are just the necessary evils of being an adult, so stop avoiding laundry day and get it done with these 17 super easy tips.               click for full article from diply.com

  1. Revive Old Towels
  2. Resize Shrunken Clothes
  3. Never Forget Again
  4. Learn The Language
  5. Remove Red Wine Stains
  6. Get Rid Of Holiday Stains
  7. Grease Stains Be Gone 
  8. Abolish Ink Stains 
  9. Ink Stains Part Two 
  10. Actually, Just Remove ALL Of The Stains 
  11. Vinegar In The Landry? 
  12. Hand Wash Your Delicates Right 
  13. Don't Use Dryer Sheets 
  14. Seriously, You Don't Need Dryer Sheets 
  15. Don't Even Use The Dryer At All 
  16. Fold Your Sweater Better 
  17. Ironing Made Easier

click for full article from diply.com


3 (more) Netflix secrets you need to know:

With over 50 million subscribers in 40 countries, Netflix is the most popular TV show and movie streaming service. During peak evening hours, the service is using up to 34% of America's Internet capacity.

While Netflix may seem simple on the surface, though, the reality is that Netflix is one of the most complex services on the Internet - from the massive amount of HD videos it has to stream to its formulas for deciding what videos to recommend for each subscriber.

That means Netflix sometimes doesn't work as well as you'd want. I'm going to share some of the lesser-known Netflix secrets that will help you track down problems and make it work the way you want.

1. Streaming speed affects video quality

A side effect to Netflix's massive popularity is that it overwhelms Internet providers' networks - or so the ISPs claim. Some providers have even gone so far as to throttle, or slow down, their subscribers' connection to Netflix.

If you're paying for a hyper-fast Internet connection and getting lousy video quality, this might be the cause. Take a look at Netflix's ISP Speed Index Chart to quickly see how your ISP stacks up.

To know for sure, open Netflix and search for "Example Short 23.976." This video is an 11-minute series of random clips so it's not very entertaining. But it does hold the keys to one major secret.

If you look in the corner of the video, it shows your video bit rate and resolution. The bit rate is how fast the video is streaming and the resolution is the quality. The faster the bit rate, the better the quality you can get.

Typically, Netflix streams 1080p resolution at 3 Megabits per second (3,000 kilobits per second). That's ideally what you want to see.

Make a note of the highest numbers you see during the clip and then check the bit rate against what Netflix says your provider averages. That will tell you if you're getting the streaming speed that Netflix thinks you are.

If your bit rate is much lower than Netflix says it should be, then it might be a problem with your Internet. Run a speed test to see if you're getting the Internet speed you're paying for.
Speed Test
Test Result explanation

If you aren't getting the speed you're paying for, call your provider and let it know. Once it gets your speed where it should be, Netflix streaming should improve.

If you are getting the speed you're paying for, and it's faster than the Netflix bit rate, call your provider and let it know there's a problem with Netflix streaming. You might find out that you're being throttled.

2. Time of day affects video quality

Poor video quality and streaming speed might have another cause, though. Remember when I said at peak hours Netflix uses 34% of the U.S. Internet? That's a lot of information moving around at once. Traffic jams are bound to happen, which slows things down.

To keep things flowing, Netflix and ISPs might both decide to drop the video quality - and thus the amount of bandwidth needed - a little.

So, you might still get HD video from 7 to 9 p.m. in your area, but you probably won't be getting full 1080p quality. If you are testing Netflix for quality using the methods above, be sure to do it throughout the day.

Consistent quality is actually the one area where traditional TV has streaming beat. If you want the best possible at all times, then you might want to consider flipping to regular old TV during primetime hours.

Consider buying an indoor HD antenna that will let you watch local news, syndicated shows and sports.

3. Tweak your recommendations

Netflix takes every movie you watch into account when developing your Taste Profile. This helps it recommend videos from a pool of 76,897 genres. Sound like a lot? Well, Netflix has genres like Quirky Sci-Fi Comedies and Dark Independent Police Dramas.

The way to change your recommendations is by rating what you watch. When you're first starting Netflix, you'll see a lot of surveys called Taste Preferences that ask you to rate movies, shows and genres you've watched recently.

Handy tip: If you have several people in the house using one Netflix account, be sure to set each person up with their own Netflix profile to avoid conflicts. On the Netflix website, click Manage Profiles in the top right corner to get started.   4 ways to perfect your Netflix experience:

Taste Preferences are important to fill out so Netflix can build your Profile. After a while, you won't see as many of these, however.

If you want to revisit your preferences, go to the Netflix site and under Your Account load the Taste Preferences survey.

A few minutes tweaking your ratings can mean less time scrolling past movies you'd never watch.


On the Kim Komando Show, the nation's largest weekend radio talk show, Kim takes calls and dispenses advice on today's digital lifestyle, from smartphones and tablets to online privacy and data hacks. For her daily tips, newsletters and more, visitwww.komando.com. E-mail her at techcomments@usatoday.com.

from: USA TODAY, news source