Digital camera PC help for you :-)

Computer Help + Video Photo Web

Affordable Independent Services
South Bay, Los Angeles

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SERVICE NOTE - August 2013 (Updated 2014)

I've added setup and support for Android tablets, like Google's new Nexus 7 by Asus. The 2013 Nexus 7 (Android 4.3, 7.02” 1920x1200 HD display at 323 ppi, 16GB, WiFi) sells for $229 at Staples. A "hot" product with excellent reviews. Read the manual for more information.

[In 2014 Acer introduced the new, larger Nexus 9 tablet. On Amazon the Nexus 7 now sells for $199.]

SERVICE NOTE - July 2013 (Updated 2014)

I've added installation and support for Chromebook computers. The Acer 11.6" Chromebook C710-2457 (4GB RAM, 16GB SSD, 1366x768 display) sells for $229 at Staples. Tag line: "Get the basics done, hassle-free. Fast, simple and easy to share."

[Update 2014: The Acer Chromebook C720-2848 sells for $199 on Amazon.]

If you have a high-speed Internet connection and can "live" in the "Cloud," then this "CloudBook" Acer ChromeBook will not disappoint, providing a clean, simpler computing experience with 10-second boots, 3-second shutdowns, instant awake from sleep, without worrying about updates, anti-virus app's, etc. Guest access is quite cool. Works with wired and (Logitech paired) wireless mice and keyboards, as well as large external monitors / TVs. Built-in screen has limited viewing angle. Battery life is good when screen brightness set below 100%.

Update: Chromebooks sold well in 2013, PC World noted in an article titled "Chromebooks' success punches Microsoft in the gut" (12-27-2013): "... called out a pair of Chromebooks—one from Samsung, the other from Acer—as two of the three best-selling notebooks during the U.S. holiday season."

Update 2014: South Bay school districts are investing in Chromebooks, with some schools doing field testing or pilot programs for classes in selected grades.

Update November 2014: See The Beach Reporter's article "Chromebooks open up the world to students, teachers and parents" (11/13/2014 p. 16):

More than 7,000 Redondo Beach students now have revolutionary educational technology at their finger tips.
With last week’s final roll out of 2,600 Chromebooks at Redondo Union High School, the district has issued the devices to all students in grades three through 12. While there were initial grumblings from parents, mostly the devices are being applauded after the district held meetings to ease concerns.

Update December 2014: Another PC World article "Why Chromebooks are schooling iPads in education" (12/5/2014) discusses the advantages of Chromebooks.

Chromeboxes also are supported. The ASUS Chromebox is popular. The ASUS M004U is selling for less than $180 on Amazon. Still own an old Windows XP desktop PC? Tired of all those updates every month? Well, if you mainly do just email and Web browsing, then try a Chromebox. It's good for photos and video as well. Or, connect one to your HDTV, add a wireless mouse and keyboard, and enjoy the Internet from the comfort of your favorite sofa. :-)

[Update 2014: The ASUS M004U Chromebox sells for $159 on Amazon.]

SERVICE NOTE - 9/14/2010

I've added installation and support for Ubuntu (Linux) systems. Old PCs can be speedy again with a Ubuntu makeover.

SERVICE NOTE - 7/19/2010

I've added full high-definition (HD) video production and editing. If you rent or purchase Blu-ray discs, you've already experienced the benefits of HD quality.

SERVICE NOTE - 4/17/2006

As a new value-added service to local customers, I've added microfiber cleaning cloths. For your computer, these are the best dust cloths you will ever use! Quickly grab and remove dust, rather than push it around. Clean chemical-free! Good for those with allergies or odor sensitivities. Laptop cloth, car cloth, or all-around Swedish deluxe microfiber cloth.

SERVICE NOTE - 4/18/2005

Want a self-managed photo gallery? Adding support for another Web-based product, I've added a picture content management system for customers. Yes, the latest Gallery 1.5. You manage the content yourself -- no need for a webmaster or HTML programming skill. Upload and manage your pictures anywhere, anytime, on any computer, even directly from your digital camera. Even syndicate it (RSS). Get a gallery today!

SERVICE NOTE - 3/29/2005

Want to blog? In order to provide expanded and enhanced Web site development service and support, I've added WordPress-based blog development for customers. Yes, the latest WordPress 1.5. Blogs are a great way to share information -- get your message "out there" and even syndicate it (RSS). You manage the content yourself -- no need for a webmaster or HTML programming skill. So, when you need a "lighter-weight" solution for your Web presence, get a blog today!

SERVICE NOTE - 7/30/2004

In order to provide expanded and enhanced Web site development service and support, I've added XOOPS-based site development for customers. XOOPs is a modular dynamic content management system, which may be used to create robust online informational communities, shared interactive cyberspaces, blogs, discussion groups and forums, etc. "Mere mortals" can manage site content -- no Web programming skill is required.

SERVICE NOTE - 2/16/2004

In order to provide expanded and enhanced online video streaming service and support, my site is hosted by DreamHost.

SERVICE NOTE - 6/7/2002

I've added content delivery on DVD to my line of affordable multimedia services for small businesses, nonprofit organizations, and educators. Now the quality of your delivered video matches that of the digital source! If you rent DVDs, you've already experienced the benefits: no more fuzzy VHS, quick access, no rewinding!

SERVICE NOTE - 7/6/2001

I've added content delivery on VCD to my line of affordable multimedia content delivery services for small businesses, nonprofit organizations, and educators. Video CD (VCD) is a format popular in Asia and some other parts of the world.

VCDs can be played in most new model DVD players, as well as on Windows PCs and Apple computers. VCDs provide many of the advantages of DVDs at less cost, since they can be made using standard desktop computer CD-R burners and inexpensive CD-R discs.

While VHS tape and VCRs provide an easy, almost universal way of exchanging media content, video cassettes are linear access devices, requiring winding and rewinding. They experience tape transport damage and loss of quality over time, especially with heavy use. Also, copies of a copy (that is, tape copies not made from an original digital master) will be of lower quality.

* Flexible presentation

Using a DVD player's remote control, VCDs provide standoff presentation, random access to content (chapters/tracks or by time), digest overview, crystal clear pause, CD quality audio, user-selectable track or point A to point B repeat, up to 60x fast forward and backward play, up to 1/32x slow play, and auto resume after stop.

* VHS comparison

VCD quality in general is comparable to VHS. Titles and stills actually may look better. High motion scenes may exhibit some compression artifacts (more so than a DVD).

VCDs can store approximately 70 minutes of video and audio.

Unlike VHS tape, once a VCD is mastered, copies may be produced rapidly in non-real time. A typical new model CD-R burner records at 8x or faster, making copies less expensive.

In addition to being able to be played on a computer, a VCD's digital files may be stored on a computer's hard drive as part of a video gallery or Web site. (Playback from a Web page is practical only for those with high speed Internet connections.)

* What to look for in a DVD player

Major brand basic models are selling for around $150 [2004 update: ~ $50]. Look for a player which handles DVDs, VCDs, SVCDs, Audio CDs, MP3's, etc.; and which accepts CD-R/CD-RW discs created on a PC/Mac.

* Technology note for the curious

Standard VCDs use MPEG-1 compression versus the higher quality MPEG-2 for DVDs.

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Copyright © 2010 John P. Healy [7/26/2010]