Mark on November 23rd, 2011

A while back I posted about the new CS5 version of Photoshop. And around a year and a half later, we get the normal speculation about the contents of the next release. But this time there is a sting in the tail. Depending on how you feel about it, you may want to act very quickly.

The issue is that Adobe have changed their upgrade policy on the quiet. Instead of being able to wait a release or two and then being able to upgrade at a reduced cost, Adobe have announced that from now on you can only upgrade in this way from the previous release.

“With regards to upgrades, we are changing our policy for perpetual license customers. In order to qualify for upgrade pricing when CS6 releases, customers will need to be on the latest version of our software (either CS5 or CS5.5 editions).”

This comes embedded within an announcement regarding a new subscription model called “Adobe Creative Cloud“.

In practice, what this means is that you can only upgrade to the upcoming CS6 from CS5. So if like me you were going to wait and upgrade from CS4 (I was out of work for a while and needed to look after the pennies!), you can’t now do that.

There has been a bit of reaction, and Scott Kelby has gone out of his way to write an open letter to Adobe on the matter.

You may decide that the version of Photoshop you are on is good enough, and this action may convince you that you have spent enough with Adobe.

But there is another option if you do need the latest and greatest features – if you act in the next few days, you can get an upgrade from Adobe at a 30% discount in a Black Friday sale – valid from today (Wednesday 23rd November) until 11.59 on the 29th. Go to the Adobe Store offer page. You should see a link to Photoshop CS5, and the full price, after checking your country/adobe credentials (You have bought a previous version, haven’t you?!). Click that link and eventually you will get to the checkout – there you will see the discount applied, while valid.

If you miss the 30% offer, there is a 20% offer till the end of December.

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Mark on June 16th, 2011

…must be a very rich one.

I was in Hatfield Forest a couple of weeks ago, and I came across a family of grebes having breakfast. Well, it seemed like it to me, being very early in the morning.

Before we start, I must say that the “book” on Grebes tells you that – “The Crested Grebe feeds mainly on fish, but also little crustaceans, insects and small frogs.”. Also that the Mother feeds the young early on smaller items, with the Father taking over as they grow, and fetching the larger food.

I’m on the boardwalk by the lake, near the teashop (closed – too early!), looking out over the lake, when I hear a splash at my feet. Either I had disturbed it, or it had been in the process of killing it’s prey, I’m not sure, but I just managed to catch a Grebe making off with it’s precious catch, a Lobster.

Hang on tho’, you don’t get Lobsters in lakes! So it must a, err, Crayfish? But that’s a huge Crayfish. Did I read something about American Crayfish sometime ago? They must be from Texas.

As we see in a bit this is the mother, and that is not a “small crustacean” – this family have not read the book. So the Grebe swims off, and tries to feed it to it’s chick – right!

First of all the Chick seems interested, but for some strange reason, doesn’t know what to do with it. It can’t hold the food, and it drops in the water.

This is literally, rinsed, and repeated for some time.

Dad eventually hoves into view, to give the benefit of his advice, while Junior is beginning to get a bit fed up with being told he can’t have his dessert unless he eats his meat.

Grebe feeding young

Mum gets a bit fed up with Junior, while he complains to Dad about not getting the Turkey nuggets he normally has…

Mother Grebe gets fed up

Mother Grebe is not about to waste this food – down in a couple of gulps!


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Mark on November 16th, 2010

Up in the Lake District a couple of weeks ago, and of course it rains.

“Never fear”, my hosts says, “we’ll go for a short walk around the lake”, the lake in question being Derwent Water. But I have my camera, and despite the rain, the autumn colours shine through, and I make lots of stops. Not a problem – very leisurely does it.

Approaching the top end of the lake, with Keswick as the start point, and walking clockwise around it, we approach the Lodore Hotel, and behind it the Falls. We thought we were near when we could hear the roaring in the distance, but it took us a while before we got there, and I guess this was because of the spate it was in, thanks to the rain. Along the way my companion begins reciting a poem – and as we reach the falls everything drops into place – the rain, the sounds, the poem, the autumn colours, and of course, Lodore Falls.

The Cataract of Lodore

‘How does the water
Come down at Lodore?’
My little boy asked me

Thus, once on a time;Lodore Falls
And moreover he tasked me
To tell him in rhyme.
Anon, at the word,
There first came one daughter,
And then came another,
To second and third
The request of their brother,
And to hear how the water
Comes down at Lodore,
With its rush and its roar,
As many a time
They had seen it before.
So I told them in rhyme,
For of rhymes I had store;
And ’twas in my vocation
For their recreation
That so I should sing;
Because I was Laureate
To them and the King.

From its sources which well
In the tarn on the fell;
From its fountains
In the mountains,
Its rills and its gills;
Through moss and through brake,
It runs and it creeps
For a while, till it sleeps
In its own little lake.
And thence at departing,

Awakening and starting,
It runs through the reeds,
And away it proceeds,
Through meadow and glade,
In sun and in shade,
And through the wood-shelter,
Among crags in its flurry,
Here it comes sparkling,
And there it lies darkling;
Now smoking and frothing
Its tumult and wrath in,
Till, in this rapid race
On which it is bent,
It reaches the place
Of its steep descent.

The cataract strong
Then plunges along,
Striking and raging
As if a war waging
Its caverns and rocks among;
Rising and leaping,
Sinking and creeping,
Swelling and sweeping,
Showering and springing,
Flying and flinging,
Writhing and ringing,
Eddying and whisking,
Spouting and frisking,
Turning and twisting,
Around and around
With endless rebound:
Smiting and fighting,
A sight to delight in;
Confounding, astounding,

Dizzying and deafening the ear with its sound.

Collecting, projecting,
Receding and speeding,
And shocking and rocking,
And darting and parting,
And threading and spreading,
And whizzing and hissing,
And dripping and skipping,
And hitting and splitting,
And shining and twining,
And rattling and battling,
And shaking and quaking,

View of the the Falls of Lodore in spate

The Falls at Lodore

And pouring and roaring,
And waving and raving,
And tossing and crossing,

And flowing and going,
And running and stunning,
And foaming and roaming,
And dinning and spinning,
And dropping and hopping,

And working and jerking,
And guggling and struggling,
And heaving and cleaving,
And moaning and groaning;

And glittering and frittering,
And gathering and feathering,
And whitening and brightening,

And quivering and shivering,

And hurrying and skurrying,
And thundering and floundering;

Dividing and gliding and sliding,
And falling and brawling and sprawling,

And driving and riving and striving,
And sprinkling and twinkling and wrinkling,

And sounding and bounding and rounding,
And bubbling and troubling and doubling,

And grumbling and rumbling and tumbling,
And clattering and battering and shattering;

Retreating and beating and meeting and sheeting,
Delaying and straying and playing and spraying,
Advancing and prancing and glancing and dancing,

Recoiling, turmoiling and toiling and boiling,
And gleaming and streaming and steaming and beaming,
And rushing and flushing and brushing and gushing,
And flapping and rapping and clapping and slapping,

And curling and whirling and purling and twirling,
And thumping and plumping and bumping and jumping,
And dashing and flashing and splashing and clashing;
And so never ending, but always descending,
Sounds and motions for ever and ever are blending

All at once and all o’er, with a mighty uproar, –
And this way the water comes down at Lodore.

Robert Southey

With thanks to Vaughan.         More Lake District shots here.

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Mark on August 25th, 2010

A word of explanation really. I have a (newish) zenphoto gallery directly “beneath” this blog – zenphoto -this where you may have been directed if you were looking for events or wedding images. And there is was another site (Clikpic) where I have had images for a couple of years. This latter site is commercial, and since I built this blog site, I worked out it is better for me to store my images in the zenphoto gallery. For one thing I can password protect any albums I need to, and I can store many more images here. Plus it has search facilities etc.

So the sites are in transition at the moment, and as soon as I have put the images from the Clikpic gallery into my zenphoto one, I will close the clikpic one down.  But if you find yourself over on “Clikpic”, you will notice you can’t get back to zenphoto by clicking – you need to re-enter the url.

And “Catsnaps”, for those who know about it, will also go – I can put friends and family photos on zenphoto, and password protect. Then just the one site to manage – phew!

BBC News – Delight after missing vulture found safe and well.

Nice to have some good news to report.