Tech KingTech King | Home Of Everything IT! http://www.nessos.gr?exam=techking Home Of Everything IT! Sun, 11 Mar 2018 12:30:50 +0000 en hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.2.1 50 Great iPhone and IPad apps for Freelancers http://www.nessos.gr?exam=techking/roundups/50-great-iphone-and-ipad-apps-for-freelancers/ http://www.nessos.gr?exam=techking/roundups/50-great-iphone-and-ipad-apps-for-freelancers/#comments Fri, 09 Sep 2011 13:00:57 +0000 Andy Crofford http://www.nessos.gr?exam=techking/?p=6776

Working as a freelancer gives you a great freedom, but up until recently, you were still tied to your office or home computer. With the rapid spread of the wireless Internet and the launch of mobile devices such as iPhones, iPads, and iPod Touch, this has changed and now you can work sitting in your favorite coffee shop or from any spot in the World, as long there is an Internet connection. Listed below are 50 apps, which can help you stay in touch with your clients, send invoices, track your earnings, and on conduct business on the go:

Awesome Note (+Todo)

Available in 12 different languages and allows you to keep track on your to do lists while on the go.

OmniFocus

Has won an award for best productivity app and it is an ideal task organizer. It can store projects, dates, persons’ details, places and it can help you keep shopping lists, to do lists, and other items at your fingertips.

Things

Can help you manage projects, to do notes, and due dates, allows you to schedule different tasks, and it can sync wirelessly with its desktop version as well.

Calendars

A Google calendar client, which you can use on your mobile devices. It allows you to drag and drop events, add new events, and easily navigate between days. Additional futures like search, SMS reminders, invitations, repeating events, and offline management, make Calendars one of the best productivity apps.

2Do

Tasks Done in Style has won the best productivity app award in 2010 and now on version 2.6, it offers multi-device sync, background sync, task scheduling, voice notes, and more.

Numbers

Developed for iPad, iPhone, and iPod touch, Numbers lets you make spreadsheets, using tables, photos, and charts easily. With 16 built-in templates, intelligent keyboard, more than 250 functions, and various work sharing features, this is a definite must-have.

Pages

One of the few apps, developed for mobile devices, which can help you edit, create, and save documents on the go.

Present Pad

An excellent presentation app, which you can use to display presentations right on your iPad or on a projector that your iPad is connected to.

Keynote

Another presentation tool, which allows you to use different slide masters, animations, style options, and fonts in your presentations.

Unprinted

An app, which can help you showcase your portfolio anywhere you go.

Minimal Folio

Works with images, videos, and pdf files, and is ideal for designers or other freelancers, which want to be able to organize and present their portfolios to clients.

LookBook Portfolio

Artists, photographers, and other freelancers can use this app for their presentations.

iFreelancer

Works with Elance.com, Odesk.com, Freelancer.com, Vworker.com, and Scriptlance.com and can help you find work and bid for jobs, no matter where you are.

Freelancer Mobile

With this app, you can access freelancer.com from your mobile devices, browse the posted jobs, run embedded searches, get feedback, and email yourself the jobs that you are interested in.

Omni Invoice

Create invoices and quotes, send overdue reminders, use logos, localized currencies, and formatting, use products and service categories, and make use of the built-in HTML and invoice templates with this excellent tool.

Invoice2Go

Use this app to create invoices, reports, and bills.

GetPaid!

PDF Invoice & Time Sheet: the app has user-friendly interface, comes with built-in templates, allows you to back-up and restore data, has easy search option, and has countless other features that many freelancers would find useful.

MiniBooks

App for FreshBooks offers clients, invoice, estimate, and expense management on the go.

Harvest Time & Expense Tracker

Can help you track how much time you are spending on your tasks.

Time Flies

Another time management app, which is very simple and easy to use.

Time Master + Billing

Ideal for independent consultants, contractors, attorneys, and freelancers that bill their clients by the hour, this app works with simple time tracking, sessions, multiple running times, time rounding, billing rates, and more.

Billing Pro Touch

Is ideal for managers and freelancers, who need to add and manage clients and projects on their mobile devices.

Easy Time Sheet

If you wish to fill out a time sheet, track billable time, or calculate billable amounts easily, then this is a must-have app.

Freelancer

Time Tracking is a powerful and versatile application, which works with sessions, backups, scheduling, different currencies, and it is available in English, Spanish, and German.

TSheets Time Tracker with GPS

The app works with tasks and subtasks and allows you to manage your own time or track employees’ time.

aTimeLogger

Can help you track your activities, works with multiple accounts, has simple interface, and it is capable of printing the reports in CSV and HTML format.

Paymo.biz

Keep start and end times, use a stopwatch, sync with your online account, and edit and review your timesheets with this app.

Toggl Timer

Ideal for teams and freelancers, and it tracks time spent on projects.

Cube Time & Expense Tracker Pro

A powerful and versatile app, which can help you track your time, mileage, expenses, projected income, profits and more.

Tick (Time & Budget Tracking)

Some of the features that Tick comes with are instant budget feedback, timer, and browsing of current entries.

Bento

An excellent iPhone database tool, which can help you track and plan events, manage projects and tasks, and organize customers and contacts, plan meetings, and more.

HanDBase Database Manager

Lets you create and edit databases on your iPhone and is ideal for freelancers, who want to store passwords, lists, to-dos, mileage, and lists.

FileMaker Go

Is another excellent database manager that you can use on the go.

StoreIt Database Application

Use this app to create and populate database tables with expenses, to-dos, journals, sales information, time records, collections, and lists easily.

Tap Forms Database

Comes with 25 form templates, which can store up to 17 different fields. You can use this application to keep your daily journals, numbers, customer details, memberships, serial numbers, and important dates.

Flash Drive

Lets you use your iPhone and iPod Touch with your Windows or Mac computer, and view various files on the go.

iFiles

A file manager, voice recorder, document viewer, and text editor all in one, which works with iPhone, iPad, and iPod Touch.

Documents 2

A mobile app, which allows you to store, print, share, and view documents, recordings, and spreadsheets.

Color Oven

An excellent application, which many designers will find invaluable. It can calculate color schemes, preview color schemes, save them for later use, and email their CSS code.

The Typography Manual

Perfect for designers and developers that work with fonts and type. It contains more than 60 pages of type related history and facts, as well as guide on how to set and use various text properties.

Intaglio Sketchpad

A scaled down version of the award winning application Intaglio. You can use this app to draw freehand, geometric shapes, as well as cut, copy, and paste graphics.

SketchBook Mobile

A great paint and drawing application, which works in full screen, has multi-touch navigation, and other excellent features.

ColorToy

Can help you find the perfect color scheme in no time.

iTeleport: Jaadu VNC for iPhone / iPad

Use this application to gain remote access to your office or home computer. iTeleport works with Mac or Windows computers, supports SSH encryption, and VGA out.

PayPal

Gives you full control over your PayPal account from anywhere in the World. You can use the app to check your balance, withdraw your funds, send money as gifts, and even manage fundraising campaigns.

Square

Allows you or your company to accept payments on mobile devices.

PayMobile

PayPal Manager: this is a powerful mobile PayPal manager, which offers some advanced features that allow you to search and sort out transactions, send money, and to take full control over your PayPal account.

TouchDraw

A vector drawing application for iPad, which supports basic flowcharts, common networking shapes, icons, callouts, balloon, and works with most image types.

iDesign

A vector drawing tool for iPad and iPhone / iPod Touch, which works with shapes, edit points, advanced path editing, standard board sizes, multiple layers, groups shapes, and more.

CSS3Machine

Can help you generate and experiment with different CSS3 styles, create web kit animations, and create and edit HTML templates.

What are your must-have apps for freelancing? Please share with us in the comments.

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Bring deep space closer to home with this nebula Photoshop tutorial http://www.nessos.gr?exam=techking/tutorials/bring-deep-space-closer-to-home-with-this-nebula-photoshop-tutorial/ http://www.nessos.gr?exam=techking/tutorials/bring-deep-space-closer-to-home-with-this-nebula-photoshop-tutorial/#comments Wed, 07 Sep 2011 13:00:28 +0000 Hanniel Evan Yucoco http://www.nessos.gr?exam=techking/?p=6909

In our previous tutorial, we took you closer to home with our moon Photoshop tutorial. For today’s tutorial, as we did with our previous Spiral Galaxy tutorial, we are going further out in space once more by creating our very own deep space nebula using Adobe Photoshop.

This tutorial will show you that we don’t necessarily need our own Hubble Space Telescope to come up with stunning nebula images.
let’s go small with 450 x 350 pixels, 72 dpi. Make sure the background color is BLACK.

Go to FILTER > NOISE > ADD NOISE with the values: Amount 20%; Distribution Gaussian; Monochromatic.
Bring deep space closer to home with this nebula Photoshop tutorial
Go to IMAGE > ADJUSTMENTS > BRIGHTNESS AND CONTRAST with BRIGHTNESS at -90 and CONTRAST at 40.
Bring deep space closer to home with this nebula Photoshop tutorial
DUPLICATE THE BACKGROUND LAYER and RESIZE the BACKGROUND COPY LAYER. Do this by pressing CTRL + T and dragging the layer into a larger size.
Bring deep space closer to home with this nebula Photoshop tutorial
Change the Background Copy layer’s Blending Mode to SCREEN.
Bring deep space closer to home with this nebula Photoshop tutorial
NOTE: Don’t worry if the image seems a bit dusty. That’s for visibility purposes. We will edit this further as we go on with our Photoshop tutorial.

Next, make sure you have you BACKGROUND COLOR at BLACK and your FOREGROUND COLOR at a VIBRANT BLUE COLOR.
Bring deep space closer to home with this nebula Photoshop tutorial
Then, go to FILTER > RENDER > CLOUDS.

Bring deep space closer to home with this nebula Photoshop tutorial
You should have a nice bluish cloud by now, but it’s not exactly the nebula we are going for in this Photoshop tutorial. So go to FILTER > RENDER > DIFFERENCE CLOUDS. You may need to repeat the process to get the results you want. Do this by pressing CTRL + F.
Bring deep space closer to home with this nebula Photoshop tutorial
Bring deep space closer to home with this nebula Photoshop tutorial
DOUBLE CLICK the clouds layer to let the LAYER STYLE WINDOW pop out. Change the BLEND MODE to SCREEN. Then, look at the bottom of the layer style window and you should see THIS LAYER. HOLD THE ALT KEY and drag the arrows. Make sure they are separated into two arrows and drag them to your desired results. Please refer to the image below.
Bring deep space closer to home with this nebula Photoshop tutorial
Results should be something like this. Again, don’t worry about the stars in the background. We will fix that later on in this Photoshop tutorial.
Bring deep space closer to home with this nebula Photoshop tutorial
Now, ADD A NEW LAYER on top of the CLOUDS LAYER. This time, change your FOREGROUND COLOR to another vibrant color, preferably somewhere between yellow and bright orange.
Bring deep space closer to home with this nebula Photoshop tutorial
Repeat the process you did with the clouds layer. FILTER > RENDER > CLOUDS, then FILTER > RENDER > DIFFERENCE CLOUDS (again, you may need to repeat the difference clouds process). You should have something like the image below.
Bring deep space closer to home with this nebula Photoshop tutorial
DOUBLE CLICK on this new cloud layer. Once the LAYER STYLE WINDOW pops out, change the BLEND MODE to HUE. Also, like what we did earlier, HOLD THE ALT KEY and drag the arrows of the THIS LAYER option until you have the results you want.
Bring deep space closer to home with this nebula Photoshop tutorial
Now, we have two clouds layers, each of a different color. Select both layers by HIGHLIGHTING ONE OF THE CLOUDS LAYERS then HOLDING CTRL and CLICKING THE OTHER REMAINING CLOUD LAYER. You will then need to resize both layers at the same time, and you can do this by pressing CTRL + T and dragging both layers to a larger size. Refer to the image below.
Bring deep space closer to home with this nebula Photoshop tutorial
You may notice that the background still appears too dusty. Now it’s time to fix that. Go to the BACKGROUND LAYER and go to IMAGE > ADJUSTMENTS > BRIGHTNESS AND CONTRAST. Make sure the contrast is high and the brightness is low. Do the same for the BACKGROUND COPY LAYER. Your results should be something similar to the image below.
Bring deep space closer to home with this nebula Photoshop tutorial
And finally, add a new layer on top of all the other layers and using varying sizes of SOFT BRUSH TOOL with the COLOR WHITE, add in a few “stars”.
Bring deep space closer to home with this nebula Photoshop tutorial
There you have it. With this Photoshop tutorial, we have reached deeper into space and took our shot at a deep space nebula. Now try this tutorial again at a larger canvas. Go and create backgrounds or wallpapers for your desktop or website.
Bring deep space closer to home with this nebula Photoshop tutorial

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Mac vs PC – What to do after you have made the switch http://www.nessos.gr?exam=techking/tutorials/mac-vs-pc-what-to-do-after-you-have-made-the-switch/ http://www.nessos.gr?exam=techking/tutorials/mac-vs-pc-what-to-do-after-you-have-made-the-switch/#comments Tue, 06 Sep 2011 13:00:50 +0000 Jarrod http://www.nessos.gr?exam=techking/?p=6957

So you have made that move, switched from a Windows machine to a new Mac. Maybe not you, but I did make that switch, and so far I have loved it. Loved it so much from an operating system and hardware standpoint I will not be going back. Making that switch though, you look for your familiar applications, what you use on a daily basis. Anymore a lot of items are universal, they make a version for Windows and a version for your Mac. There are a few out there still though that you need to find something similar. Some of them you may end up liking more. We’ll go over a few of those apps that are different, and a few similar or the same. But I will share that switch experience with you all and give you some direction on where to point your browser.

I’ll start by telling you I was a Pidgin enthusiast. I never got into the Trillian thing way back when, paying for a chat application is just freaking stupid to me. Having five or more different clients open at the same time is just a waste of resources when you can use Pidgin. I started back in the Gaim days and have not looked back. When I bought my Mac and spoke to my Mac buddy he told me Adium is the only way to roll, and no doubt he was right. It looks great, runs perfect, and does everything you need in a multiple protocol chat client.

Twitter has become a guilty pleasure of mine. I used to be against it on all fronts. I saw no use in it until I figured out I can get all of my NFL news for my fantasy teams. I now follow all my sports news and my comic book news on a near constant basis. The iOS app for Twitter is perfect. That is where I got my start. I downloaded Tweetdeck on my Windows machine because everyone seemed to love it and carry on. It is a horrible pile of garbage in comparison to the app on the iPhone and same thing goes for the native Twitter app for OSX. Twitter on OSX is fantastic. Very similar to the version on the iPhone. Tweetdeck just did not look good and ran slowly. The Twitter app on OSX runs quickly and looks great.

A freeware burning program I was told to use on the Mac was the program Burn. Personally I was a recent convert to the Imgburn software. I cannot say entirely one way or the other which is better. But everything I did with Imgburn works just as well and is just as easy with Burn. And it’s free of course. I hate paying for software.

That hate brings me to which torrent application you like. I have been using utorrent on my Windows machine since the times before they had an installer. Just an exe you ran from a folder. The utorrent version for Mac runs just as well as it did on Windows. I continue to use it. Fantastic program on either operating system. I have heard some good things about the Transmission torrent program for the Mac, but I have not used it at this time, cannot give you my opinion.

I still have multiple Windows machines at my house and I do need to do things on them from time to time. Control my file server or work on my girlfriends laptop. But I will be damned if I will get up and actually work on them. Screw that when VNC is out there. I have used Ultravnc extensively at home and at work for years. I checked around and found the best named VNC client of all time and one that works perfectly with the Ultravnc servers running on my network. Chicken of the VNC. It runs great, does all I need, and does not screw up.

A couple of standout programs on the Mac are iPhoto and iMovie. Windows does not have a central built in photo program. All it does is let you import them to a folder. iPhoto has been fantastic for organizing my pictures. I love it. Same goes for iMovie. Although there is the built in Windows Movie Maker on Windows 7, it’s not good. iMovie is just polished as is everything with the OSX.

I will say again I love that I made the change. It has been super smooth and fantastic. Never going back. Thanks for reading about this software that I have enjoyed in my transmission.

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14 Tips to Speed up Your Personal Computer http://www.nessos.gr?exam=techking/tips/14-tips-to-speed-up-your-personal-computer-2/ http://www.nessos.gr?exam=techking/tips/14-tips-to-speed-up-your-personal-computer-2/#comments Mon, 05 Sep 2011 13:00:56 +0000 Andy Crofford http://www.nessos.gr?exam=techking/?p=6760 1. Main Reasons for a Slow PC Several reasons exist for the slowing down of personal computers, which are not related to a malware attack or ...]]>

1. Main Reasons for a Slow PC

Several reasons exist for the slowing down of personal computers, which are not related to a malware attack or virus presence. The reasons could be as simple as clogging of the registry or presence of numerous corrupt files in the OS. Using pirated software programs, which are not automatically upgraded, causes the PC to slow down. Therefore, identifying the cause and rectifying the same is important to speed up the computers.

2. Checking for Viruses

Although, several reasons can slow your PC, the presence of virus is one of the most common causes. However, users are not required to spend huge amount of fees for licensed anti-virus programs. Downloading free programs, such as Avast or Avira can check the PC for the presence of almost ninety percent of the virus attacks.

3. Disk Cleaning and Defragmenting

The computer processor requires space to run the processing tasks properly. Therefore, if your machine is loaded with large files, such as movies, videos, music, and other data, the computer will slowdown due to lack of space. Cleaning up the disc from the control panel helps delete unwanted files, which frees up space. The next step is to defragment your computer to free up additional space. Both these functions must be undertaken regularly to ensure that your PC does not slowdown.

4. Cleaning and Defragmenting the Registry

When users install software, an entry is automatically maintained in the windows registry. However, the registry does not update automatically with every installation and unistallation of the applications and programs. Therefore, with a free registry cleaner, such as CCleaner users can clean the registry from unwanted entries. This must then be followed with a registry defragmentation process to speed up your PC.

5. Uninstalling Unwanted Programs

Users must regularly delete temporary Internet files, cache files, and history lists to witness an instant increase in the computer speed. Moreover, users are recommended to uninstall all the programs, software, and applications that are not used. Uninstalling heavy themes that are installed will also boost the speed of your computer.

6. Fancy Isn’t Faster

Several users download desktop themes, wallpapers, animations, and other stuff to make their computer appear better. However, all these take up a huge amount of space, which slows the system. Therefore, deleting these fancy looks will free up memory thus resulting in an increased speed. This is achieved by right clicking on the My Computer icon, accessing its properties, and modifying the settings to “for best performance”.

7. Lighten the Hard Drive

One of the simplest methods to improve the speed of your machines is to lighten the hard drive of the PC. This is especially necessary for the primary drive that is used to install the computer’s operating system. Deleting old files from the various volumes of the hard drives frees up memory space thus providing additional space for swapping files, which is the space on the hard drive that is used in addition to RAM as the working memory. Deleting the files stored in the Recycle bin is important to free up space, which is beneficial in speeding up the computer systems.

8. Remove Unwanted Startup Programs

Often when users install or download a program, it automatically runs during the computer start up procedure. This is one of the common factors that decrease the speed of your machine. Therefore, it is recommended to stop these unwanted programs from automatically running during the start up to boost the speed of your PC.

9. Increase the Size of the Page File

When there is a shortfall in the working memory of the system, which is RAM, the computer uses the hard drive as the virtual operational memory. The amount of hard drive space used is based on the size of the pages. Therefore, increasing the page file size allotment improves the speed of the computer. This allows you to allot the space for storing the pages on any of the hard drives volumes that have available free space.

10. Use USB Drives

Some of the newer versions of the Operating Systems, such as Windows Vista and Windows 7 enable users to boost the speed of their machines by utilizing a USB flash drive. This drive acts as a hardware device that can be a booster for RAM. This is advantageous to improve the computer’s speed especially useful for users who love extensive gaming on their machines.

11. Reinstall the Operating System

Generally, when an installed operating system has been in continuous use for three or four years can be infected with problems, which reduce the speed of the computer. Users are recommended to format the computer’s hard drive and reinstalling the Operating System to boost the speed of their personal computers.

12. Increas RAM and Get a New Hard Drive

RAM is the working memory used by the computer systems. Therefore, increasing the capacity of the computer’s operational memory will improve the speed of the computers. Over the years, the recovery of data from the hard drive becomes difficult making the computer run slowly. This problem can be overcome by replacing the hard drive with a new drive to increase the speed of personal computers.

13. Use Only One Web Browser

Several users are habituated to installing more than one browser to surf the Internet. This is one reason why the speed of the computer may be reduced. Therefore, to increase the operational speed of your computers, it is advisable to install only one web browser to surf the Internet.

14. Other Tips

Download free PC maintenance software to repair, protect, and optimize the PC. Turning off the search indexing service enable faster searching of files. Another way to speed up your computer is maintaining an equal minimum and maximum page file size. This is done by accessing Control Panel, System, Advanced Tab, Performance Box, and modifying the settings for the virtual memory. Disabling the user account controls provided by the Vista OS also improves the speed of your machine. Regular cleaning of the computer and the fan to remove any accumulated dust is advantageous to increase the PC speed.

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Best FREE WYSIWYG HTML Editors http://www.nessos.gr?exam=techking/roundups/best-free-wysiwyg-html-editors/ http://www.nessos.gr?exam=techking/roundups/best-free-wysiwyg-html-editors/#comments Fri, 02 Sep 2011 13:00:16 +0000 Andy Crofford http://www.nessos.gr?exam=techking/?p=6778

If you edit your web pages only once in a while and if you do not mind heavy typing, then Notepad might be the only text editor you need, but if you are a professional web developer or you run and manage hundreds of websites, then using a feature-rich desktop or online WYSIWYG HTML editor comes highly recommended. Listed below are the top 10 free WYSIWYG HTML editors, which will speed up your web page development:

KompoZer

A powerful WYSIWYG editor, which is based on Gecko. It comes with excellent support for HTML, Javascript, XML, and CSS and it makes web page creation a breeze. It supports tabs, has a color picker, FTP site manager, CSS editor, customizable toolbar, and built-in spellchecker.

CoffeeCup Free HTML Editor

A powerful editor, which comes with a multitude of great features. It supports projects, which help you keep all your related files in one place, comes with wizards for frames, tables, fonts, lists, and style sheets, and it highlights HTML tags as well. In addition, unlimited Undo, use of custom dictionaries, built-in thesaurus, image and link insertion, and split-screen preview make the CoffeeCup HTML editor a must have for the serious developer.

Amaya

A web editor and browser, which supports HTML, CSS, and XHTML. It is open source software, which allows you to work on several documents at a time, use annotations, and easily create and edit web pages.

NVU

Another WYSIWYG editor, which comes with a built-in site manager that offers instant preview of the pages that you are building. It also comes with coded XHTML editing, XML and CSS support, FTP manager, and built-in validator.

Nicedit

Allows you to edit web pages in your web browser on the fly.

Xinha

An open source, online HTML Editor. It supports all popular Internet browsers, comes with Newbie guide, and it is highly configurable.

Silverlight Rich Text Editor

One of the best-known WYSIWYG editors, which supports with find and replace, batch replace, serialization, keyboard shortcuts, and more.

Xstandard

Comes in free and paid versions and works on Windows and OS X machines. The Lite version generates clean XHTML, uses CSS for formatting, has an easy to use interface, configurable toolbar, and it is available in 22 different languages. The editor supports bullets, numbered lists, table elements, inline quotes, block quotes, and custom tags.

MarkItUp

Allows you to transform any text area into a markup editor and it supports HTML, Wiki Syntax, Markdown, and BBCode. The editor is lightweight, customizable, and powerful, it supports keyboard shortcuts and it comes with Ajax dynamic preview feature.

What is your favorite WYSIWYG editor? Please share with us in the comments.

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Top 10 Best Photoshop Tutorial Sites http://www.nessos.gr?exam=techking/roundups/top-10-best-photoshop-tutorial-sites/ http://www.nessos.gr?exam=techking/roundups/top-10-best-photoshop-tutorial-sites/#comments Thu, 01 Sep 2011 13:00:31 +0000 Andy Crofford http://www.nessos.gr?exam=techking/?p=6549

While Adobe Photoshop is considered by most web designers the best and most versatile graphic editing tool, it comes with a steep learning curve and mastering it takes hours or practice. Once you purchase the program, install it on your computer, and run it for a first time, you can get easily overwhelmed by its countless features, but by finding a great Photoshop tutorial site and reading and following some well-written tutorials, you will be on your way to learning some great new skills. We have taken the time to put together a list of 10 excellent Photoshop tutorial sites, which will help you master this powerful graphic editor and improve your image-editing techniques:

Tutorial 9

The website is loaded with excellent design articles, showcases, and roundups, has a RSS feed to which you can subscribe, and allows its members to post useful links, vote, and comment on the tutorials as well.

Photoshop tutorials

Here, you will find excellent and easy to follow tutorials, which are supported with plenty of screenshots. The website also has a download section, from where you can download textures, brushes, and graphics.

Pixel to life

The website offers a wealth of tutorials on 2D and 3D graphics, audio editing, desktop programming, databases, game and skin editing, website development, video editing, and more. It has a well-stocked Adobe Photoshop tutorials sections too, which is also one of the most popular on the site. With more than 10 000 Photoshop tutorials at the time of this writing, you are certain to find whatever you are looking, and you can start by checking out the top viewed or the top rated publications.

Good Tutorials

Good Tutorials is another excellent place to start learning Photoshop and learning new designing skills. The Photoshop section covers the basics, animation, color, designing, effects, scripting, text effects, web graphics, photo effects, photo retouch, and other interesting topics.

Photoshop Lady

Whether you are new to Photoshop or a seasoned designer, who knows his or her way around this powerful tool, this is a website well worth bookmarking. A lot of effort has gone into compiling these tutorials, they are supported by decent number of screenshots, and all of them are extremely easy to follow and understand. They are also conveniently categorized into sections, covering 3D effects, drawing effects, abstract effects, text effects, textures and patterns, photo effects, and UI design.

PS lover

PS lover is another excellent site, where you can find well-written Photoshop tutorials, divided into ten major categories. Register on the website if you wish to publish a tutorial and start from the Basics if you are new to Photoshop.

Tutorialized

Tutorialized is a website with thousands of tutorials on Flash, Photoshop, Gimp, Illustrator, 3D Max, AutoCAD and other popular tools, and offers tutorials on Web design and development, business tools, and databases as well. The Photoshop tutorials are more than 15 000 and neatly divided into 18 different categories.

Tutorial Kit

Tutorial Kit is another site, packed with excellent Photoshop tutorials. Load the website in your browser, navigate to the category you are interested in, and start browsing the listed tutorials. Each tutorial opens in a new browser window and you can rate or bookmark each one of them.

Photoshop 101

Photoshop 101 has tutorials that cover special effects, image effects, layouts and interfaces, text effects, textures and patterns, web graphics, drawing and painting, colors, photo manipulation, and other topics.

Planet Photoshop

Planet Photoshop offers Photoshop resources, reviews, and tutorials. You can search the tutorials by keyword, check out the most popular or the most recent of them and you can watch some premium video tutorials, courtesy of the National Association of Photoshop Professionals (NAPP).

As with all of our lists this is just our opinion, we know there are a lot more sites out there. Please let us know your favorites in the comments.

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10 Best Sites to Buy Premium WordPress Themes http://www.nessos.gr?exam=techking/wordpress/10-best-sites-to-be-premium-wordpress-themes/ http://www.nessos.gr?exam=techking/wordpress/10-best-sites-to-be-premium-wordpress-themes/#comments Thu, 01 Sep 2011 13:00:25 +0000 ArijitKRoul http://www.nessos.gr?exam=techking/?p=6839 WordPress created a furor when it was launched. The ability to create your own blogs with ready templates had people falling for it all over the world. Innumerable themes have been created for WordPress and many of them are more than just attractive; they are enchanting and highly functional. Premium themes are better in a lot of ways because they offer a lot more features such as SEO and compatibility with Adsense. Given below are ten best sites to be premium WordPress themes. They are all good and are not listed in any particular order.

ThemeFuse

In the whole big ocean of sites offering WordPress themes, Theme fuse undoubtedly takes the cherry and the cake as well. The themes depicted on this site are extremely captivating. Every one of them is good and the choice is multifarious. The various features of the themes include 3D wallpapers, easy navigation and excellent compatibility to search engine optimization services. The themes provided are compatible to iPhone and iPad as well. The customer support provided is excellent.

Theme Garden

If you are looking for a unique theme for your WordPress blog, then theme garden is the door to knock. With a huge range of themes available on the site, you are sure to be spoilt for choice. The site offers a number of free themes as well. Almost all of these themes are widget ready with features images and custom menu management. You can also customize your header and the background. There are built in SEO options so, you will have no problem optimizing your blog for SEO purposes. With a great looking site and myriad useful features, theme garden ranks among the top WordPress theme sites. The site also invites new authors to submit new themes so, you can be sure of finding something new in the site every time.

Gorilla Themes

Gorilla themes offered on this site are great WordPress themes. The site provides theme with custom plug-in and threaded comments. In addition, the design is very professional and gives a very sophisticated look to the WordPress blog. The number of theme options you have here is huge and all at very affordable prices. With features such as auto-image resizing, banner ad management and free forum support, these themes are some of the best in the industry. You can customize these themes as per your blog. Free updates are another special feature in the theme.

Theme Forest

Theme forest is one of the most comprehensive sites for WordPress blog themes. The site offers over 4239 site templates and the cost of each theme begins from just $1. The site is very user-friendly, provides easy navigation, very well organized and the theme can be sorted by various parameters. Further, the site has a community where you can discuss themes with the authors themselves. The community is huge and growing by the day. The themes present in the site contains all the required features such as Adsense, SEO, Widgets and ad management, image resizing and a lot more.

Woo Themes

Woo Themes is an excellent site that offers a wide range of unique themes. The site offers around a hundred themes of very solid framework and beautiful designs. The cutting edge themes offered by the site have found thousands of takers. The special thing about the site is its creatively done themes along with excellent customer support. New themes are added every month. Browse through the gallery of WooThemes and choose the one that you think is apt for your site, but be prepared to be hopelessly confused because every theme is excellently created and presented.

Acosmin Themes

Acosmin themes are WordPress 3.0 compatible and available in an enormous range. Some of the attractive features of the sites are backend theme options, PSD files, ability to customize and manage menu, compatibility with valid, cross browser and custom page templates. With a huge variety and very desirable features, this site ranks among the top ten best WordPress themes.

Elegant Themes

Elegant themes are a very special site among the premium WordPress themes because the site personifies its name – elegance. Every template provided in the site is a personification of elegance. The themes are of high quality. The best aspect about the site is the powerful and profound simplicity that it provides in its themes. This site is a welcome breather for the eye and a relief from a lot of other sites. The templates offered here have a certain “feel good” factor that makes them special. The technical aspects are admirable and comprehensive.

Studio Press Themes

Studio Press offers themes powered by Genesis technology, which is considered the best in the online world. The major advantages of using the site are that the themes are SEO friendly, easily navigable and pack a lot of ad and menu management features. Themes are regularly updated and the best theme in the site now is the child theme. The customer support provided is great and as the site claims “you get unlimited of everything”.

Pliable Press Themes

If websites were to be ranked as per their level of effectiveness, the Pliable Press would probably figure in the top five. With excellent customer support, all customizable features, SEO friendly, great blog management options and the best of all, stunning designs, this site is one of the best.

WP Zoom Themes

You can visit the WPZoom website for awesome looking designs coupled with efficient lifetime technical support and easy site management features. The site provides tutorials with every theme that will guide you through the set up process. With excellent SEO management tools, custom features and options panel, these themes will make your site look stunning and perform extraordinarily.
There are a lot of websites offering excellent premium themes for Word Press platforms. The above given list is the most popular and the most visited sites that excel not just in the designs provided but also in follow-up support, functional elements and customer service. These sites also provide such a varied range of themes that even the choosiest and the most pessimistic blog or site owner will find something to take his or her fancy.

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Shoot for the Moon in This Week’s Photoshop Tutorial http://www.nessos.gr?exam=techking/tutorials/shoot-for-the-moon-in-this-weeks-photoshop-tutorial/ http://www.nessos.gr?exam=techking/tutorials/shoot-for-the-moon-in-this-weeks-photoshop-tutorial/#comments Wed, 31 Aug 2011 13:00:40 +0000 Hanniel Evan Yucoco http://www.nessos.gr?exam=techking/?p=6882

In one of our previous tutorials, we created the spiral galaxy from scratch using Adobe Photoshop. It’s time we head closer to home as we create the moon from scratch with this Photoshop tutorial.

To start, let’s open a new document at 500 x 500 pixels and 72 dpi. Make sure the background is black, because of course, the outer space is pitch black.

Next, add a new layer (it would be best to later rename this layer as “moon”). Using the ELLIPSE TOOL, draw a perfect circle. Do this by holding down the SHIFT key while creating the circle. Then, fill this circle with WHITE.

Create the moon from scratch with this Photoshop Tutorial

On this “moon” layer, let’s add some LAYER STYLES. What we need first is the DROP SHADOW, with the following values: Blend Mode Normal; Color White; Opacity 100%; Angle 120; Distance 0; Spread 0; Size 46. Refer to the image below.

Create the moon from scratch with this Photoshop Tutorial

Now let’s add OUTER GLOW with the values: Blend Mode Screen; Opacity 50%; Color Light Blue (#99ccff); Size 30. See image below for reference.

Create the moon from scratch with this Photoshop Tutorial

Your moon should look like this. It may not look much, but we will add more as this Photoshop tutorial progresses.

Create the moon from scratch with this Photoshop Tutorial

Select the moon. You can do this by holding the CTRL key and clicking on the moon layer.

Create the moon from scratch with this Photoshop Tutorial

Make sure your FOREGROUND COLOR is BLACK and your BACKGROUND COLOR is WHITE. Then, go to FILTER > RENDER > CLOUDS. You may need to repeat the process to get the right “moon texture” that you want.

Create the moon from scratch with this Photoshop Tutorial

Create the moon from scratch with this Photoshop Tutorial

Then, go to FILTER > DISTORT > SPHERIZE. Results should be something like the image below.

Create the moon from scratch with this Photoshop Tutorial

Create the moon from scratch with this Photoshop Tutorial

Now we’re going to add a final layer style to our moon layer. Add the layer style COLOR OVERLAY with the values: Blend Mode Linear Dodge (Add); Color White; Opacity 40%. The end result should be similar to the image below.

Create the moon from scratch with this Photoshop Tutorial

Create the moon from scratch with this Photoshop Tutorial

You can actually stop at this point but it would be best to completely finish this moon Photoshop tutorial.

You may find that our moon actually lacks a bit of the indications of craters. Let’s remedy that by adding another layer on top of the moon layer. Using a HARD BRUSH TOOL, draw some spots close to the center of our moon.

Create the moon from scratch with this Photoshop Tutorial

Stay on this new layer and go to FILTER > DISTORT > SPHERIZE.

Create the moon from scratch with this Photoshop Tutorial

It may be necessary for you to move the dark spots a little to the side. Once you’re satisfied, change this layer’s opacity to 50% (you may need to reduce this opacity later on though).

Create the moon from scratch with this Photoshop Tutorial

Still on this “spots” layer, go to FILTER > BLUR > RADIAL BLUR and input the following values: Amount 15; Blur Method Spin; Quality Good.

Create the moon from scratch with this Photoshop Tutorial

You may find the end result a bit “smeared” but let’s fix that by going to FILTER > BLUR > GAUSSIAN BLUR at 7.0.

Create the moon from scratch with this Photoshop Tutorial

You may then need to distort, rotate, or resize the dark spots to your liking.

Create the moon from scratch with this Photoshop Tutorial

For finishing touches, change the BLENDING MODE of the dark spots to MULTIPLY with OPACITY at 20%.

Create the moon from scratch with this Photoshop Tutorial

We’re almost done. One last detail would be to add a bluish glow around the moon. Do this by going to the background layer and adding a RADIAL GRADIENT FILL with colors ranging from dark blue to black as shown below.

Create the moon from scratch with this Photoshop Tutorial

And there you have it! Your very own moon made from scratch using Adobe Photoshop. Watch out for our planets tutorial coming very soon.

Create the moon from scratch with this Photoshop Tutorial

 

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Fireworks vs. Photoshop – Why Is Fireworks Better Than Photoshop For Web Design http://www.nessos.gr?exam=techking/web-design/why-is-fireworks-better-than-photoshop-for-web-design/ http://www.nessos.gr?exam=techking/web-design/why-is-fireworks-better-than-photoshop-for-web-design/#comments Tue, 30 Aug 2011 13:00:02 +0000 ArijitKRoul http://www.nessos.gr?exam=techking/?p=6836

Photoshop is the most popular graphic design tool for web designers, and for good reason, it is feature rich and quite powerful. However, with the evolution of technology, new and improved applications for designing web sites have been developed. The best among them is undoubtedly, Fireworks. This software has taken the web design industry by storm and provided functionality that allows for improved ways of developing a site. Here are the top eight reasons Fireworks out-shines Photoshop.

Fireworks is perfectly oriented for web design

In comparison to Photoshop, Fireworks is more concise and oriented towards the graphical enhancement of web sites. Photoshop, on the other hand, provides a number of tools that are useful for photo manipulation, editing and much more, which are not required for web design. Further, Fireworks is faster and easier to work with. When it comes to web design, it is advantageous to use a program that focuses on the task at hand rather than having to dig into layer after layer of tools as in Photoshop.

Better image manipulation and size adjustment features 

One of the best features of Fireworks is the provision to set exact picture sizes and make precise manipulations in the image. All you have to do is enter the pixel value in the given box and you are good to go. Unlike Photoshop, you do not have to adjust scales and set values. This not only makes the task easier and faster, but also allows for a high level of precision for the graphics you use on your web site. It is also not necessary to drag and drop, all you have to do is enter the appropriate the pixel value and your graphics are formatted how you want them.

Multiple layers for multiple pages 

Fireworks hosts a unique feature that is very desirable for a web designer, one that offers multi-page design. Photoshop houses this feature in a different manner, but is lacking. While in Photoshop you can design multiple layers under one page, you cannot have multiple layers in multiple pages. Fireworks allows you to have multiple layers or multiple pages in each page and several such pages in a single platform, this makes it much easier to design a multi-page site.

Web layers

There are several function involved in web layering, some of which are selection of output file type and image slicing. The Image Ready option in Fireworks is a very useful feature in this case. With Fireworks, you can perform a lot more functions such as setting roll over, links and different rapid prototyping functions.

Easy and quick grouping 

Grouping is another very interesting and useful function that is possible using Fireworks. It allows you to quickly select objects and put them into a group. This feature is also available in Photoshop but is a very cumbersome process. It is much harder to organize and takes longer because you have to move each element manually into the layer. With Fireworks, all it takes is a few clicks. This feature not only saves a lot of time, but also allows you to concentrate on the more important elements of designing without the distractions posed by laborious organization and manual grouping of individual elements.

The Learning Curve 

Fireworks is a lot easier to work with from a beginner’s point of view. Photoshop on the other hand, has a much higher learning curve. Although Fireworks is is an advanced tool, it is easier in comparison to Photoshop. Since the tools and features provided are more oriented towards web design and do not contain a variety of tools that you have to plunge into like in Photoshop, it is easier to find your way through the application. With limited features that are oriented towards web design and without features that have nothing to do with the same, Fireworks is less confusing and less daunting. In short, the user interface of Fireworks is much better than that of Photoshop.

Vector 

Fireworks also beats out Photoshop when it comes to vectors. You can edit the images faster and with enhanced ease. The task can be done without the need of using Illustrator at all. The choice you have in vector graphics in Fireworks program is reasonable. All the basic vector shapes such as polygons, cogwheels, speech bubbles and other geometric shapes are all available. Each of them has a handle that can be used to control them in any way possible. To make it easy and more adaptable to web page format, all the elements are provided in 72 DPI. In Photoshop, this resolution is disregarded. The amount of control that you have on manipulating the shapes and sizes is awesome in Fireworks. Vector elements can be directly exported just as they are since the resolution is already fixed to make them suitable for a web page. This is one of the biggest advantages of Fireworks and it does give it an extra edge over Photoshop. It also saves time and effort.

Fireworks is cheaper than Photoshop 

Apart from all the technical elements, the other important consideration that usually comes into the debate is cost. In this regard, Fireworks wins hands down because it is much cheaper than Photoshop.

Photoshop is no doubt excellent software that is still preferred by a majority of web designers. It is more comprehensive and can do a lot more things than web design. Finally, it all boils down to personal choice. While people prefer Fireworks due to ease of usage, others prefer Photoshop. Despite being excellent for webs design, Fireworks has certain drawbacks, although minor and negligible, such as masks. For those who are used to working with Photoshop, Fireworks seems less solid. A lot of designers nowadays are partial towards Fireworks but for best results, use a combination of both Photoshop and Fireworks. Further, Photoshop has been around a long time and is a solid tool while Fireworks is being developed. It would not surprise me to one day see Fireworks being used by the majority when it comes to web design.

What is your preference? Please share with us the reasons in the comments, it will be interesting to see what others think.

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The Ol’ Switcharoo – PC User Switches to Mac http://www.nessos.gr?exam=techking/uncategorized/the-ol-switcharoo-pc-user-switches-to-mac/ http://www.nessos.gr?exam=techking/uncategorized/the-ol-switcharoo-pc-user-switches-to-mac/#comments Mon, 29 Aug 2011 15:10:03 +0000 Jarrod http://www.nessos.gr?exam=techking/?p=6871

Having expendable income is a rarity in my life, so rare that it never happens. Having expendable income, a coupon for 20% off all laptops at Amazon.com, and the need to upgrade my four year old laptop is a sign from Odin, Zeus, or maybe Cthulhu that it is time to buy. In my search for what laptop I would like to own I narrowed it down to a mega gaming rig and a Macbook Pro. I have been an avid PC gamer for many years but as I have aged and since abandoning MMORPGs the need for a gaming rig has decreased a lot. I have been a fanboy of my iPhone and an envious iPad wanter for some time but to take the plunge into buying a true Apple computer. That is a big choice. I haven not used a Mac since high school. They were pretty freaking terrible back then too. Jumping from Windows 7 to OSX Snow Leopard, how hard would that be? I would categorize myself as an advanced to very advanced PC user. I’ve also used Linux frequently in the past so I am not opposed to differences, but taking that plunge and going full time OSX would be a bit different. I spoke to friends on both sides of the fence and went ahead and pulled the trigger. Getting 20% off of a Mac is insane, makes it a great price. I ended up with the Macbook Pro 15 inch, 2.0ghz i7. I chose this because it has the Radeon card alongside the Intel 3000, that way I can get a fix of some gaming and not have to play on the lowest settings. Shout out to Amazon Prime, I ordered on a Friday at 1:45PM and had the laptop at 11:30AM Saturday. That’s when the real fun began.

Screen Shot 2011-08-28 at 9.40.31 PM.png

My girlfriend recorded the unboxing event and my idiotic face, I will not be showing that here. Ever. But just like my iPhone the amount of care and attention Apple puts into packaging their products is mind blowing. The actual device is just shockingly beautiful. The aluminum body, the weight of it, just the elegance of the entire thing is hard to put into words until you use one. The Magsafe power cable is just a freaking fantastic design I am clumsy, my girlfriend is also, and the cat, so not yanking my expensive laptop onto the floor is a great thing. Opened the shell and the touchpad is gigantic in comparison to my old laptop and the keyboard is very different. Flick my hands across and I think to myself that this might be ok to type on, not sure though. It’s plugged in, I am ready, I’ve put all my personal data onto Dropbox ready to go, no looking back, I bang the power button and that old time Mac "bahng" chime sounds. I have converted.

Setting up the operating system on first boot was pretty easy. Just follow the onscreen guide. Fun parts of that were it snapping a picture with the built in Facetime camera for your profile photo. Now my computer has my ugly mug on it for my profile login, and it also displays it on Adium for all to see (I’ll get into Adium later). The whole thing is just pretty, I don’t have the "high resolution" screen, but the 1440×900 screen is the same on a 15 inch as my old 17 inch laptop. The glossy glass looking screen is just beautiful. You really get to see the magnitude of Apple’s design from that setup part into getting to your desktop. The fonts the colors, everything pops, it’s just pretty. I know that sounds stupid. But when you get your first Apple device, iPhone 3G was my first, I was blown away. Moved to an iPhone 4 and was blown away again. Played with an iPad and then an iPad 2, my envy is 10 feet tall, such pretty devices. Moving from a Windows 7 Ultimate to basically just turning on my Macbook Pro and I am blown away. The first thing I do, since I purchased within time to get a free Lion upgrade is to get onto the Mac App Store and start my upgrade. I followed directions online to make a backup DVD of Lion, since you have to pay Apple for that now. After installing the update I was ready for my full Mac adventure to begin.

Screen Shot 2011-08-28 at 9.46.16 PM.png

Finding equivalent apps and must haves were a matter of using Google and speaking to my Mac enthusiast friend. The first app I went for was Chrome, I’d recently dropped Firefox finally for Chrome on Windows and loved it. I need a good browser with plenty of plugins (Ad Block, etc.) so I picked up Chrome. Installing apps on a Mac could not be more simple, download the .dmg file, double click to open the disk image, and drag the program to the Applications folder, to uninstall, you drag the program from Applications to the trash. Straight forward, easy, no control panel need, no broken uninstallers. That out of the way  I went on with finding other apps.One I picked up was the official Twitter app for Mac, it is fantastic, great clone of the one on my iPhone. I grabbed a copy of uTorrent Mac. I was told Transmission is also a good torrent app but I went with uTorrent for nostalgia’s sake. On PC I am a big fan of Pidgin, I’ve used it for years, back into the old GAIM days. I picked up Adium as I spoke about a bit earlier. It is fantastic. Multi-chat client that works perfectly for everything from Gtalk through Facebook messenger. It does import your profile photo automatically so all of my friends get to see my horrific visage when speaking to me. That’s not quite the greatest thing. Those items were the biggest to me for making "the switch" smooth.

Screen Shot 2011-08-28 at 9.49.05 PM.png

It has been about a month and I can’t say I’ve had a need to go back or really a want to return to Windows. I know I can bootcamp and install a copy of Windows 7, but I really have 0 desire to do so. Everything runs perfectly. Smooth as silk, and fast as I can imagine. There’s not been a reason for me to return. Nor do I think there ever will be. Apple has it’s hooks in me deep with the simplicity and beauty of their interfaces. They are experts with the user interface and experience and that’s why they are the most valuable company in the world. I may be back at a later time to go over the experiences I’ve had with other Apps and the wonderful track pad. We’ll see. I guess I can now don the Apple fanboy tights. That will not be pretty.

Screen Shot 2011-08-28 at 9.53.16 PM.png

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