Forget Adobe CS2, Get GIMP Instead

When I awoke yesterday morning there was a rumor bouncing around the internet that Adobe was giving away Creative Suite 2. Well, according to Adrian Kingsley-Hughes from Forbes, all that speculation was unfounded. I hope there aren’t a lot of people upset about this turn of events. If folks are heartbroken, they shouldn’t be. Although Adobe makes killer graphics software, there’s a great alternative to Adobe’s product that works on all computer platforms.

GIMP is the GNU Image Manipulation Program. It is a freely distributed piece of software.

 

GIMP (the GNU Image Manipulation Program) does amazing work. This versatile application is powerful, has a consistently helpful community of users, and is FREE. In fact, GIMP has been free from the beginning. Rather than moping about Adobe CS2. Download and install GIMP and get started making and editing graphics with the satisfaction of knowing you can do it without spending a cent.

Sounds Good to Me: Audacity 2.0

Audacity

I can’t believe I missed this. Audacity 2.0 (for Windows, Mac, GNU/Linux, and other operating systems) launched on March 13th! I’ve been so swamped with making a living that this long awaited development passed right by me and I didn’t even notice. Thank goodness thenextcorner over at Hacker News was kind enough to make a post about the topic. If you’re looking for a reliable (no-cost) means of audio editing. Audacity is well worth exploring.

I promptly downloaded and installed Audacity 2.0 and played with it for a little while. I was pleasantly surprised with how easily I was able to import different flavors of audio into the application. I also checked out the built-in help and related tutorials. I think users will appreciate all of the improvements.

Python Counterstrike: Squirrel Ambush

Kurt Grandis, a soft-spoken software engineer from North Carolina, delivered a humorous and informative presentation at PyCon 2012. PyCon is the largest annual gathering for the community using and developing the open-source Python programming language. During the course of his presentation, Militarizing Your Backyard with Python: Computer Vision and the Squirrel Hordes, Kurt describes how participating in citizen science (ala the Backyard Bird Count) led him to use Python to tap into computer vision libraries and build an automated sentry water cannon capable of soaking bushy-tailed backyard bandits.

Related Resources:

  • Kurt mentions OpenCV in his presentation. What is it? The Wikipedia entry for OpenCV (or Open Source Computer Vision Library) states that it “is a library of programming functions mainly aimed at real time computer vision.”
  • He also talks about support vector machines (SVM) as a means of analyzing images so as to recognize and distinguish bird shapes from squirrel shapes.
  • Canny edge detection also comes into play.
  • NumPy (also mentioned in the presentation) is the fundamental package for scientific computing with Python.

 

The League of (Extraordinary) Movable Type

The League of Movable Type

I was exploring Explore GitHub when the title of Adam Stacoviak and Wynn Netherland‘s auditory offering, The Changelog Podcast, caught my eye. I saw, with great delight, that the guest of Episode 0.7.4 was Micah Rich from The League of Moveable Type speaking about open source typography.

Related Resources:

  • Typophile.com is a must-visit site for anyone fascinated with fonts.
  • Be sure to check out Lettercase, Micah’s minimalist font manager.
  • During the podcast, Micha mentioned that he was in awe of the work of Jonathan Hoefler and Tobias Frere-Jones. Go to Typography.com and you can certainly see why he’s impressed.