Saturday, July 13, 2019

Another exciting way to play the Lottery.

Do you believe that winning the lottery requires you to be at the right place at the right time?
If you do then you’re gonna love this new method.

We turned the place (GPS coordinates) in and current time (down to the minute) into seed values to feed a random number generator.
Then we can lottery get numbers from that.
And so we have numbers derived from place and time.

Many people enjoyed seeing such a tool when I shared it to a Vietnamese Lottery Facebook Group.
They think it’s fabulous.

I think it’s a another unique way of playing.
Since you can pick any location (or your currently location),
and it’s to the minute so you have to be at the exact location and exact time (within the minute) to get same numbers.
The chance of you selecting a location and witin the same minute as someone else picking that same location is very unlikely.  So if You don’t have to worry too much about sharing the jackpot.
That’s the idea, anyways.

I have created pages (that simply run in your browser) that you can get numbers for a place and time for the following lotteries: American Powerball, American Mega Millions, Pick 2, Pick 3, Pick 4, Pick 5, Canadian Lottery 6/49, Canadian LottoMax, Vietnamese Mega 6/45 and Vietnamese Power 6/55,
You can access these pages here -> Lottery Numbers from Place and Time

Tuesday, July 9, 2019

Adding Subtitles/Captions in OpenShot is choppy/jerky but still usable

I looked online for how to solve the choppy/jerky problems with OpenShot when editing videos,
but didn’t find anything.

But the I discovered that it’s only choppy/jerky when it’s rendering the video on the timeline without it being cached.
As it plays you can see a blue line over the tracks to show what’s cached (then if you replay these parts that have blue line/bar, it’ll play smoothly).

So to edit, all I had to do was let it play through one time.
I upped the cache to 1250 MB (Edit/Preferences/Cache).

Then I would play about 10 seconds of the part that I’d like to add subtitle to, so that it plays smoothly next time I run it.
Then go back add the subtitle and then play it once through again to let the cache to get it cached.
Then test replaying that part (that has blue bar /line over top on top of tracks).

This way, it takes longer but it’s still usable.

I hope later version of OpenShot will be better.

OpenShot is open-sourced and free, so I can’t complain.

Other the lag/choppy issue during time-line playback I think Openshot is great in terms of User Interface (very friendly).

Here’s a video of me showing how to add subtitle/captions with closed captions using Openshot:

Sunday, July 7, 2019

Scrolling Animation in GIMP

A while back, my friend’s boss needed his company’s logo to be animated.

He wanted the logo to be animated scrolling from the right to the left so people can read the logo.
So I wrote a plug-in for that.
But you can use it for any scrolling animation (it doesn’t have to be a logo but it can be).

Then a user on Youtube asked me a month ago if I could updated it for GIMP 2.10.
I didn’t see that comment until today though.

So I updated for GIMP 2.10.X and made it faster too (just now).

Here’s a sample of what it can create:

You can find the plug-in at this link.

Hope you like it or find a use for your scrolling animations.

Details about the plugin:
The plugin can accept 2 layers as input.
One stationary background layer
and one foreground layer to be animated by script.

Or it can accept 3 layers as input.
The very top layer is just used as a stationary cover which can reveal portions of viewing area as the foreground layer is animated/scrolled.

That’s it for now.
Thanks for reading!

I contributed to OpenShot Video editing software

Yeah so...  Last night, I looked up on how to add subtitles to videos using OpenShot and found a video tutorial that was helpful.
But it seemed too hard to try to use the default title templates that comes with OpenShot.

So to make it easier, I created templates (.svg files) that OpenShot would accept as title templates.

I create a couple of different versions for when you want to create a single-line subtitle and a couple of different versions for when you want to a 2-line subtitle.

It was easy, a little time consuming, since I am not all that experienced with Inkscape.

But I did it and they work.
I am quite happy with them.
Fore more details on these title templates for adding subtitles to your videos using OpenShot you can go here -> Adding subtitles/captions to video using OpenShot

Saturday, July 6, 2019

How to export to .pdf in GIMP (2.10).

About a month ago, I was designing a cross-stitch pattern to sell on Etsy.

I wanted to sell the pattern as a digital .pdf pattern.

I have never exported to .pdf document from inside GIMP before.
But I was sure it could do it.

Which it can.
I noticed that GIMP allows you to check the export layers as pages which is what I wanted.
Buy my design pattern was one huge image.
So I needed a way to chop up the large image into multiple layers such that when exported to .pdf would be consecutive pages.

And I didn’t want to have to manually cut my image into layers.

That’s when I decided to write the "Image into layers" plug-in.

It’s really simple to use.
All you do is select the layer/image you want to export as mutliple page .pdf document.
Run the plug-in and enter the dimensions of the layers that you’d like each page to be (take up).
That’s it.

Then after you run it, it’ll chop your image into layers based on the dimensions you’ve entered.
At which point, you then can export to .pdf document as a multi-page document.

I hope you find my plug-in useful (if you’re in need of a similar process, I hope).

A live example of someone who's transitioning over to GIMP world from Photoshop

So last week, I decided to write a guide to aim at showing non-GIMP users how to generate cross stitch patterns for free.

I then posted a link to the guide on Facebook.

A friend of mine saw that post and expressed her interest in the topic, in a comment.

She said that she sees pattern designers on Etsy and they do really well.

I was just excited that someone was interested in my guide. So, I sent her a free copy of the guide.

My friend is from Photoshop world. She said she’s looking for something that’s cheaper.
Well, GIMP is FREE.

After reading my guide she said that my guide was easy to follow. So that’s great.

And we have a live example of someone who’s never used GIMP before.

She managed to follow the guide and install GIMP and the plug-in to generate cross-stitch pattern.
She tried with an image of a dragon-fruit.

She she said that she’s had a lot of fun. Quote: “Oh, this is too much fun!”. And she also mentioned that now, she has a summer cross stitching project to do. She’s never cross stitched before in her life.

After using my guide she asked me for the amazon link to my guide so she can go and support it.
Which, I then gave to her. And she ended up buying the guide just to leave a good review.
So I thank her for that.

It means a lot to me.

I think GIMP is such a great program.

You know, people can contribute to GIMP by writing plug-ins for it and release it for free.
Like the cross-stitch plug-in was written by me. And that’s part of my contribution to the GIMP’s Free World and maybe the cross-stitching world too.

My friend also thought the plug-in was great.
It’s so cool to have a live person saying this to you.

It’s great encouragement.

If you’re interested in the plug-in: Cross-stitch Plug-in.

If you’re interested in the Guide: A Detailed Guide to Generating Cross Stitch Pattern for Free.

My hope is that for those that have read my guide, either finds GIMP useful/fun and hopefully an use it to start a cross-stitching project on their own (like my friend).

Friday, July 5, 2019

Want your blog to show summaries/excerpts and “read more” button?

If your blog currently shows full posts on the main page, then there’s no real reason for the viewers to click on individual posts.

And it doesn’t look neat. If you could show just a short excerpt for each posts and show a “Read more” button then users can quickly at a glance, pick out which post they like to “read more” on.

Then they click on it. This way, you’ll get more page views.

Also if your post has related posts, you might get a few more page views.

Your stats would look better. Users are more likely to dig further into your blog.

So yesterday my blog was showing full posts.

In WordPress you can easily show summary/excerpt and show a “read more” button/link with minor code changes that works. I already did this on my GIMP Learn WordPress Website.

But searching for some thing that does the same on blogger proved harder than I thought.

I had to search everywhere and most of the solutions didn’t work. Either Blogger changed or I was too stupid to get them to work.

Until I found this page: Display excertps rather than full posts, which then linked me to the actual tool (called bxA2). It’s a gem.

All I had to do was ad an HTML/Java-script widget and pasted the code in there.
And boom, it works.

Of course, the default of the method just says “more >>” which I went in and changed to “Continue reading >>” and changed a few colours here and there to my liking.

Now, I think my blog is beautiful displaying excerpts and "Continue reading >>" button.

So if you have a blog and would like to do this, I highly recommend this method.

It’s the best method I found so far. Although, now that I have found this method I don’t know if I’ll be actively looking for other methods or not (most likely not).

That’s it.