health medication

June 2008


Technology23 Jun 2008 01:01 pm

Doing anything productive with a multi page tiff document is difficult. Windows Picture Viewer does a great job at displaying and printing the multiple page tiff but that is where the productivity ends. I had scanned an article using a multi function copy/san/print machine which scans documents to email. This one happend to scan the document to a multiple page tiff. Some quick looking on the interwebs found a few tiff splitting programs. One of which I found for free on download.com and which crashed with no functionality.

Here is my hack for splitting a multiple page tiff into single images. Warning, this is ugly but functional. First off you must have Adobe Acrobat PDF Creator and some kind of image editor.

1) Right Click on the Multi-Page .Tiff Document and Select Convert to Adobe PDF
2) Open the created PDF File.
3) Using the Graphic Select Tool Draw a Square around one of the Pages
4) Select Copy from the Edit Menu or press Control-C (Apple-C on a Mac)
5) Paste this into your graphic editor of choice
6) Rinse and Repeat for the other pages in yoru Multi-Page Tiff

I am not sure why Adobe Acrobat Creator understands Multiple Page Tiffs and Adobe Photoshop doesn’t but this hack at least worked for me. If you know how to get to the extra pages using just Adobe Photoshop or even the CorelDraw suite then let me know.

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Software and Technology20 Jun 2008 12:01 pm

Recently Lifehacker turned me on to an awesome hulu browser written in one of my favorite platforms Adobe Air. My Media Player works very well and as a great way to watch hulu on the desktop.

For those who haven’t had much exposure to hulu (as I really haven’t had yet) hulu offers free high-quality tv shows and movies streamed over the wire. Hulu was setup by NBC and News Corp (FOX) and is rockign the online video world. The content is pretty extensive and has many popular shows such as The Colbert Report, The Daily Show, and tons of others.

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Software and Technology19 Jun 2008 12:38 pm

The Windows Media Encoder 9 application available free from Microsoft is a great free application for those needing to encode Windows Media Video (.WMV) videos.

Windows Media Encoder 9 supports many set encoding profiles as well as allowing custom settings and is available in 32 or 64 bit versions. It is pretty limited on input video file formats (avi, asf, mpg) it will encode from but the output is excellent and the application is free.

Microsoft’s newly released Microsoft Expression Encoder 2 is a much more powerful encoding program but alas is not free. They do offer a generous 30 day trial of Expression Encoder 2 so if you have a project you must get done on the cheap give it a try.

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Programming and Technology18 Jun 2008 12:32 pm

I was recently working on a new gallery display using a flash interpretation of the Apple Cover Flow view. The problem I had was the flash movie swf content was displaying infront of the css drop down on the site. The css dropdown was built using divs and the flash content was in a div but it didn’t seem to matter the settings on those divs.

To get the flash to display behind the css drop down menu you just have to set the wmode property to transparent. This setting must be made both in the AC_FL_RunContent call and in the Flash Object or by choosing Transparent Window in the Publish Settings menu in flash.

[tags]flash,css[\tags]

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Technology17 Jun 2008 09:50 am

Firefox Website Down During Version 3 World Record Attempt

Today 6/17/2008 was supposed to be the huge download day for the Firefox web browser’s newest version, 3.0. The only problem has thus far been … their website is DOWN! I can only assume this is from too much interest but no matter it isn’t looking too good for that world record attempt.

UPDATE: Looks like Firefox finally got their act together around 11:30AM PST and were able to get that record with a whopping 8million plus downloads. Congrats Firefox!

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Software and Technology10 Jun 2008 11:48 am

For a project I have been working on I needed to incorporate videos. I found perfect videos at my favorite stock photo site iStockphoto (although much more pricey than the good old days). Here is where my complete lack of video knowledge starts to come into play!

The videos I found I wanted to use said they included an Alpha Channel Mask or Alpha Matte which I had found from a few great tutorials would cut out the video from the background and allow me to use the videos as overlays or talking heads with the rest of the video background being completly transparent.

I downloaded the video and proceeded to import it directly into Flash (it was a FLV already after all) but alas not only was it just a normal video without the Alpha Channel effect there was this black and white cutout section after the video. Going back to my complete lack of video knowledge I was really lost. I figured it was just because I didn’t have the actual file and just a proof. So, I downloaded an original file and imported that using the Flash Encode Alpha Channel setting. Still no Alpha Channel and Video Transparency (just now better quality and without the iStockPhoto watermark).

Below is the final workflow I arrived at to turn iStockphoto Video comps with attached Alpha Masks into Quick Time (.mov) movies with alpha channels and ultimately Flash Video (.flv) files with the alpha channel. I will be using Sony’s Vegas Movie Studio Platinum Version 8 and FLV to AVI MPEG WMV 3GP MP4 iPod Converter to make the magic happen. I will also go through how to transform the Green Screen (Chroma Key) videos into videos with alpha channels along the way.

STEP 1: Find your video on iStockphoto. You can search for “Alpha Channel” “Alpha Mask” or “Chroma Key” to find videos that contain the attached Alpha Masks or were shot on a Green/Blue Screen.
STEP 2: Click on the Video and then Select The Download a Comp link.
MPEG Converter
STEP 3: Follow my previous tutorial on converting Flash Video files to MPEG or MOV files.
STEP 4: Open Sony Vegas Movie Studio and Create a New Project. In the project setup select to match the project a video file and select the video file you created in Step 3.
Drag Video to Stage
STEP 5: Using the Explorer Window (one of the tabs at the bottom of the screen) find the movie file you created in Step 3 and drag the video file to the Video Timeline (The 3rd One Down).
STEP 6: If your Video has an Alpha Mask at the end of the video we next need to pull that out to use it. Drag the PlayHead to the last frame that has the video and the frame right before the Black and White Alpha Mask Section. Then Press the “S” key or select Edit – Split. You now have two clip pieces.
Split Mask From Video
STEP 7: Drag the Alpha Mask Clip (the one on the right) Up to the Video Overlay Stage Layer (one above the Video Layer).
STEP 8: Click on the Double Green Box and Change the Mode to “Mask”
Luminance Mask Selection
STEP 9: Click on the Video FX tab at the bottom of the page. Select “Mask Generator” From the list box on the left. Drag the Luminance Mask Effect up to the Alpha Mask Clip (the one in the Video Overlay Stage) then close the Popup Window
Luminance Alpha Channel Mask

At this point you now have your Alpha Mask and background of your video is transparent. If your video was shot on Green Screen sometimes the mask is off a bit and the Green Screen can show through. At this point you can through in a Chroma Key to get rid of the Green Screen

Chroma Key Green Screen
IF YOU HAVE A GREEN SCREEN: On the Video FX tab Select “Chroma Keyer”. Drag the Pure Green Screen Chroma Key effect to the Video Stage (the one with the main video … and the green screen)

STEP 10: Render the Video. Select “Render As” from the File Menu. I extracted it as a Quick Time 7 (*.mov) and set the quality to best. NOTE: You need to make sure that your CODEC supports Alpha Channels before you export otherwise … you are back to where you started.

The video now includes the Alpha Channel and you can use it in your Project. I imported my videos into Flash. If you are importing them into Flash you need to make sure you select Encode Alpha Channel in the video import properties.

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Technology04 Jun 2008 11:53 am

For a recent project I have been working on I needed to include videos in it. I found lots of great stock video at iStock Photo. Their selection is fairly extensive, high quality, and reasonably priced. Once you find a video you want to use you can click on it and download a comp. If you are like me you need to work with this comp to create your comp lest you spend tons of money buying videos that don’t end up making the final version. The problem is the iStockPhoto video comps are FLV flash file formats that don’t work in video editing programs.

I found a program called “FLV to AVI MPEG WMV 3GP MP4 iPod Converter” from AONE Software that works great to take those FLV iStock Video comps from the flash video format to multiple other more usable formats such as MPEG, WMV, AVI. Once you have your video comp in a usable format you can place them into your project.

Check out my follow-up post to see how to work with the iStockPhoto Video Alpha Channels and Chroma Keys.

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Sipe Family News04 Jun 2008 11:33 am

I finally have posted a few new videos on the site. Until I have a chance to put them into the picture gallery here are links to the new movies!

Movie of Kayla meeting baby Richard IV for the first time in the hospital (January 21,2008) [yes about 4 months ago]

Movie of Kayla and the Family playing on the Washington beach near Long Beach, WA. (February 2008)

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