WINDOWS XP IS DEAD, LONG LIVE WINDOWS 8

We all know that Windows XP was the best Microsoft OS ever; it was stable and worked well. There was very little in comparison to its predecessors in the way of functionality, security and the overall usefulness. However since its death Microsoft has replaced it three fold with Vista, Windows 7 and now Windows 8 (and even this is going to be replaced with Windows 8.1), so why this article…?

If you’re reading this post then take a look at your PC, tablet, laptop or netbook; is it up to the job, can it handle the latest technologies that are out there, would you be struggling to find replacement parts for it? All very good questions I think but customers are not thinking about these things when they approach us for advice, instead they become sentimental about their wonderful and sometimes working XP machine, and no matter how we deliver the news the simple answer is you are going to have to upgrade and move on.

The computing market is like no other (except maybe the car industry); it is constantly growing, changing and evolving. Last time I checked a burger was just a burger and a washing machine was just a washing machine. However the PC market changes and when it does we can both embrace and move on, or simply sit back and let it pass us by.

The key point is Microsoft no longer support Windows XP and therefore it makes it difficult for us in the industry to support something that no longer exists.

“It’s like someone calling out the AA because their horse and cart has broken-down or taking it into a car repair centre and asking for the horse to have new shoes fitted”

The solution is simple, if your PC is not too old and has the ability to take the latest Windows then upgrade it. We would have to test to see if it can take it, but that’s a matter of fact. If it can’t, then a new PC it is and we will make sure that your software can still run or we will organise replacements and we will transfer all your data across to your new one.

There is nothing wrong with a little nostalgia, however if you hang on to the past it is only going to make the pain heavier.

For more on the life cycle of Microsoft Windows please visit http://windows.microsoft.com/en-GB/windows/products/lifecycle

Rob Lucas MSc MBCS

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DIGITAL CAMERA RESOLUTIONS: STORAGE VS. PRINT

Summer is here and it will soon be the school holidays. But before you pack yourself off to the Costa-del-sol I recommend you read this article so that you don’t run out of storage space on your memory cards.

The amount of detail that the camera can capture is called the resolution, and it is measured in pixels. The more pixels a camera has, the more detail it can capture and the larger pictures can be without becoming pixelated or blurry.
When taking pictures with your phone or camera it is important to consider 3 things:-

1. Whether you want to do with them (print or store)?
2. If printing what size prints (4×5, 6×4, etc.)?
3. If just storing how much space (Megabytes) will it take up

This chart will give some idea on the typical pixels available on most cameras.

Resolution Diagram 1

From this you can see that you would need at-least a 2megapixel camera with a setting of 1600×1200 to take a picture for a 4×5 print or a 4 megapixel camera with a setting of 2240×1680 for a 6×4 print.

Also, a consideration is what size memory card you need to store the amount of pictures you want, at a resolution good enough for printing.
As a guide, you can use this chart to work out how many pictures you would get on what size memory card.
An assumption is made on the size of each picture in megabytes (MB), as seen in the second column and that images are stored in JPG (compressed) format.

Resolution Diagram 2

Happy Holidays 🙂

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