Last week saw the release of Flock 1.0 beta, a Firefox engine that's been built out with extensive social-networking tools. Is it a flash in the pan, taking advantage of the latest fads, or does it herald a sea change in top-tier open source software? The changes from Firefox to Flock are hardly the work of one extension. The new sidebar includes features that let users add photos to their Flickr account by dragging and dropping, creating new posts to their self-published blog on the fly, and much more.
I've played around with a variety of online image editors, but "played" should be the operative word. For any serious image-editing work, I've always used traditional software methods. I hadn't found a Web service that could replace my usual standby apps (Photoshop at work, and Paint.NET at home) ... until I tried the new Web-based rsizr this weekend. I was blown away by its speed and ease of use in resizing and cropping digital images.
Even cooler than those basic-yet-essential functionalities are the app's flexible image-sizing features. Rsizr uses an algorithm called "seam carving" to expand or contract images in any direction while maintaining focus on the areas rich in detail. In essence, it lets you stretch or condense pictures without making them look blurry or smooshed. With a bit of practice, you can also perform the trick of removing people or objects from photos.… Read more