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Archive for March, 2009

Better resizing tool – Genuine Fractal 6.0

OnOne Software has released Genuine Fractal 6.0 (details), and I was hoping to see it in action at the Photoshop World Conference in Boston. They claim you can take a 12mp image up to 75x115 inches! That's deeply insane and makes me drool about about making posters from shots taken with older digital cameras. The key is in the edge detail - GF's processing preserves edges much better than Photoshop's native resizing algorithms. I just moved into a new office with some new wallspace, so I may be taking GF 6.0 for a spin. For $160, why not?

Other exciting applications are resizing video exported as frames. I wonder how it compares to Red Giant's Instant HD? Since the leap from SD to HD is fairly small, it may not be noticeably better. But for taking frames from video and resizing them for some print work - GF may be a good tool.

Rapid prototyping from the designer’s chair

So many projects don't have the best result because they never get tested or get tested at stages when it has become to difficult to make major changes. MediaLabs just released a plugin for Photoshop that has great possibilities for creating rapid prototypes. It's called Sitegrinder 2 and it can build HTML/CSS websites right from Photoshop comps. I would not just throw this into a designer's work flow and say "figure it out," since the whole process involves using strict naming conventions in order to build the site (go here to see a list of the Sitegrinder "hints").

From what I can glean from the product tour, you could take some comps from a designer and quickly clean them up and add the Sitegrinder "hints" and then throw them in front of some users and do some quick testing. Do they recognize what is clickable? Do they see how they information flows? No big deal if it's a static representation of an animated site - animation rarely helps a user "get it." I would much rather know if people are recognizing buttons for buttons before I spend time animating and adding some pop. And the Agile freaks would love this.

Light painting at night

After finding some shots of Pablo Picasso drawing with a pen light, I could not resist trying this. My drawing was...marginal, but at least the setting was gorgeous. For some great examples of full moon light painting, check out

Light painting on the veranda of a Culebra beach house

Light painting on the veranda of a Culebra beach house