Dry Spell

It’s been a while since I’ve added to the Deauxmayne. Work’s been a bear, and it’s just sapped every ounce of juice I’d normally use for creative playing. In fact, I’ve only just tonight gotten around to cleaning up some stuff in the photo archives that’ve been begging for cleanup for a good long while. Maintenance sucks, but it’s a necessary evil.

I did grab some new software over the weekend: Comic Life Deluxe, iLife ’06 and Virtual PC. Here’s the scoop on those.

Comic Life Deluxe allows you to put a comic strip twist on images. You can add balloons of speech, special effects (like the old Batman KA-POW effect) as well as applying comic strip filters to images to make them look like real comics. It’s a cool tool, and one I’ve been looking at for a little bit. Sure, it’s fluffy, but sometimes fluffy is good, and it’s real easy to use.

iLife ’06 is a pretty major upgrade to iLife, and includes upgraded versions of the old code, along with some new stuff. The big influence for me to get this was support for 250,000 images now in iPhoto. Realistically, I wonder how well that will work, but that’s a whole lot better than the 10,000 images supported in iPhoto under iLife ’05. That alone could help with my cataloging and maintaining my library. The other real cool thing is new, and it’s called iWeb. iWeb is used for publishing web content — photo pages, blogs, and more. I’ve not had the time to generate a lot of material with it, but it sure looks like it may be a key to making good photo pages for the site. I’ve had to keep jpg versions of every photo in the library that was shot in raw, just so JAlbum could see them and create pages for them. OS X natively supports raw, and its tools do too. So, my thinking is that the combination of iPhoto and iWeb could help keep the photos on the site, and up to date. Time will tell!

Lastly, Virtual PC allows me to run a Windows XP session on my Quad. Why is that important? Well, in my support role at work, I need to be able to VPN in, and that just isn’t possible without a recent version of IE, and that just doesn’t exist for OS X. With this code and XP Pro (which came with it), I look just like an XP client running IE, and our work network knows no different. It’s very cool, and works extremely well. With that, my Gateway laptop can be recycled into someone else’s hands, and I can wait for the right time to move into a Mac laptop (once the 64-bit multicore versions are around — probably late this year or early ’07). There’s definitely no rush on that — my bread and butter, Photoshop CS2, doesn’t yet have a native version for Macintel platform.

So, some new toys to play with, and hopefully some fun stuff, too. And along with that comes the big projects of coverting the old home videos to DVD, scanning the old slides and negatives, and trying to womp my digital life upside its virtual head, while at the same time trying to get my new business venture off the ground.

As I typoed once, I am a gluton for punishment! 🙂