Always Streamline and organise your Layers palette by creating and labelling groups of related layers. Layers are powerful tools, but things can get confusing if you dont keep them under control by labelling them and placing them in sets.When layers appeared back in version 2 of Photoshop, designers wondered how they had ever managed without the facility to create artwork on multiple editable layers.Although we now take layers for granted, there are some useful management options that many users may not be taking advantage of. Working smarter with layers means labelling them for a start; this saves you having to scroll up and down the Layers palette, trying to guess where a particular element is stored.Grouping related layers into sets, and colour-coding them, will help you to further streamline your workflow.Creating Layer sets:To quickly create a layer set, click on the chain icon link a group of related layers together. Open the Layers Palette menu and choose New Set From Linked.Layer sets can be opened for editing purposes and then collapsed to display a single folder icon, saving valuable screen space.Another way to create a layer set from linked layers is to click the Create a new set icon at the foot of the palette. When you create a new layer, colour-code and label it for easier access.You can easily remove and reorganise layer sets. Right-click on a sets icon to delete the set while retaining the individual layers.Quick tip if you are working on a project and you are working in minimised mode, this will help you not to cullter your workspace and helps keep all the layers out of sight, but immediately accessible.
If you work for yourself, outsourcing has no doubt crossed your mind. Its something that requires a decision sooner or later. Whether your preference is to defer to another designer, outsource entirely, or simply turn work away - the question remains.One option designers now have is that of partial outsourcing to any one of a growing list of coding services that have sprung up in the past year or so. But how do you make the determination which firm to go with? Well, figuring that out has been on my mind this week, so I thought Id share my selection criteria.
Judging qualityFirst, is the site in question easy to use? Is it designed well - and more importantly, CODED well? As a service seller, your site IS your portfolio above any other work you decide to showcase. Your outsource must play by the same rules. Poke around under the hood of their site. Does the code measure up to their claims? What about any client work they have listed?
Gaging responsivenessBefore you upload a file or spend a dime, email them a couple questions. If you dont hear back from them in 24 hours, theyre not your best bet. You need someone who can crank out quality work, but you also need reliability. If theyre promising delivery times of 8-12 hours, but they cant answer a simple email, getting your code on time becomes a valid concern. Many of the services I reviewed had live chat available via Skype or Yahoo. This speaks volumes about their willingness to provide good customer service/support.On a sidenote, I recently contacted a company called Stoodeo, to see what they were all about. Because their main selling point is discretion, theres very little info on their site, and no testimonials or recent projects, save one. I sent an email briefly outlining an upcoming project, along with a few questions. That was three days ago and I still havent heard from them. A response time like that (without at least an auto-email) is disgraceful. Ive already dismissed them as someone to do business with.
Pricing and time-linesThe big question is always whats it gonna cost me? Well, here are a few more questions to ask while youre shopping: * Are their prices listed, and are they competitive? * Do they offer any discounts for subsequent pages? * Do they offer different time-lines? Can you get deliverables cheaper from Company A for a 12-18 hr turn-around, as opposed to only one option of 8 hours from Company B? (Sometimes theres no hurry, why spend more?)Also, be wary of someone who does not list their prices at all, or who wants you to request a quote. As designers, we must quote projects based on the given parameters, but a coding service? Design slicing is an assistive service specializing in expedited code! Providers dont have to give any thought to UI, dance around client demands, or build out content. They dont need to worry about client branding, site goals or file structures. All they must do is follow an approved concept, along with your notes. Asking designers to request a quote negates the point of the service in my opinion, especially if you need it yesterday.
Suppose you want to sell or buy a classic or vintage collector camera. One of the first things you need to know is, how much is it worth?Apart from differences between models like which lens is fitted, one of the main factors determining a value is a camera's condition. Collectors will pay top prices for cameras which are like new. And easily pay less than half when a camera looks tatty, is missing parts, or is defective.Here's a checklist you can use to determine condition:1. First look at the camera as a whole. Are there scratches, are there dents? Are parts missing, is there evidence it has been opened or repaired (look carefully if all screws are undamaged, and for signs the leatherette has been off to reach screws)2. Then test if the shutter works at all speeds, especially the slower speeds like 1 second. A good test point is 1/10th of a second - it has a specific sound which will tell you if the shutter is off at that speed3. For reflex cameras: check if the mirror flips up properly and isn't dull4. Then point the camera at an object at a known distance and check if when focusing the distance shown on the camera corresponds with the actual distance5. Check if there is no play, especially at a film transport handle and between the lens and the body (try to move the lens while holding the body fixed in your other hand)6. Then check the lens. You don't want to see scratch marks or stains on the outside. Hold the lens to a light source like a light bulb and look through it. You don't want to see scratches, and internally you don't want to see obscurities or thin lines (fungus). Slight marks on the front of the lens are not so disastrous as marks on the back of the lens (inside the camera body)7. Look on the inside of the camera for evidence of wear. Sometimes many rolls of film going through have caused a lot of wear. Shutter curtains may be damaged8. For cameras with batteries: check the battery compartment. Leaking batteries could have caused a lot of damage9. Check if the exposure meter works and gives a reading which makes sense in various light conditions.To find how condition and other factors affect the value of a classic camera, there's a free guide "How to easily determine vintage camera values yourself" at http://www.vintage-camera-online.com.
Create and use a temporary email address.Yahoo and Hotmail provide this feature in order to keep your private email address strictly for your friends and family members and only. The secondary address, you can use for your subscriptions and other purposes. If your secondary address is abused from spammers and your inbox is filled with spam messages, then you can delete it and create another secondary email address.Use the Spam arrest service.When you signup for Spam Arrest, you will receive a spamarrest.com email address. You can also protect your existing email accounts by forwarding them to your Spam Arrest email address, or by having Spam Arrest periodically poll them. In that way over 90% of your spam messages will be filtered.Use your e-mails filters.Almost all email applications have this feature. You can create filters blocking spam words like make money, opportunities, Viagra, e.t.c .Doing that, you will block many of your spam messages but not all of them.NEVER post your email.Dont post your email on forums, websites, message boards, guest books and other online places. You should also avoid posting your contact email address on your website. Spammers use software robots and extract email addresses from thousands of websites. If you want to display your email at your website change it to jpeg photo with Photoshop or other image design software.The use of email blocking tools.Yahoo for instance has this excellent tool which can block up to 500 email addresses (the Free option, the paid one provide more) and this amount of spam emails will never reach your mailbox. Other web mail services provide similar features too.The preinstalled filter in your email application.If you use outlook express you can click message (from windows 98 versions and later) and then click Block sender. Just doing that you will block many of your unsolicited emails.Do Not respond to spam at all costs.When you receive a spam message which asks you to click a link for whatever reason (fake unsubscribe and other) do not click it. If you do that, the spammers will now instantly that they deal with a real email address.Do Not Ever open unknown messages with attachments.This is critical. Most of the times the attachment will be a virus (especially if its exe or zip format) If you open it you will activate the virus it contains and harm your computer. Accept email attachments ONLY from well known resources such as friends, business colleagues e.t.c. You should also have installed an antivirus which scans your emails before they are saved into your hard drive.Excellent tools and resources to fight spam are these below:http://www.mailwasher.nethttp://www.sunbelt-software.com/products.cfm
Do you have many sensitive files and documents that dont want others to visit or modify. Does your company has some important data to protect. Now this tool is an ideal solution for you to keep your data security. Folder Lock is an easy-to-use tool to create a password protected folder, which you can use to store all your sensitive files and documents. The application was design by New Software, Inc. and work with Win98/ME/2000/XP/2003/Vista. Its very small and only 2172 KB. This review is form SoftSea.com it provided the latest software reviews with downloads for free trial. All software are safe and friendly.The folder is completely hidden while it is locked, and the files and folders contained in the Locker are inaccessible from Windows Explorer or even DOS mode. The program is very easy to use, it offers a simplistic interface that lets you unlock/lock and open the protected folder, and then simply drag new files into the Locker. Folder Lock offers 3 different protection methods (lock, scramble and 256-bit Blowfish encryption). You dont have to keep folder lock running all the time in order to keep your files protected, just launch it when you need to gain access to your protected area or want to add new files.The program is completely self-contained, and you can use it to protect removable drives (e.g USB drives) and transfer data securely from one location to another without the need to install any software. Additional features include file shredding, stealth mode, hack attempt monitoring and more.Folder Lock offers a free trial, but only can be experienced 30 days free and some features are disabled. Its current version is 5.7.5 and you can get registration for only $35.00. Its standalone software and does not need any extra software and hardware requirement. What are you waiting for? Download the free trial now and experience what powerful and effective it is at once!