Spring is almost here

Finally the long winter has gone and the spring comes, almost. Here in Champaign-Urbana, the spring is pretty short and the summer will be arriving in a rush. We’d better enjoy the beautiful spring before it’s too late. :)

你侬我侬

晚上去听了香槟华人基督教会星期五家庭团契婚姻讲座《原生家庭》,学唱了这首歌。歌词源自元初大书法家赵孟頫之妻管道升为他所作之《我侬词》。

你侬我侬,忒煞情多,情多处,热如火。
沧海可枯,坚石可烂,此爱此情永远不变。
把一块泥,捏一个你,留下笑容,使我长忆。
再用一块,塑一个我,长陪君旁,永伴君侧。
将咱两个,一起打破,再将你我,用水调和。
重新和泥,重新再做,再捏一个你,再塑一个我。
从今以后,我可以说,我泥中有泥,你泥中有我。

姚苏容《你侬我侬》,WMA下载。

Research, research, …

Research is to see what everybody else has seen, and to think what nobody else has thought.

- Albert Szent-Gyorgyi (1893-1986, Hungarian biochemist).

But wait, how? //yawn

认真活在当下

 

认真活在当下
【转载】

北欧一座教堂里,有一尊耶稣被钉十字架的苦像,大小和一般人差不多。因为有求必应,因此专程前到这里祈祷,膜拜的人特别多,几乎可以用门庭若市来形容。教堂里有位看门的人,看十字架上的耶稣每天要应付这么多人的要求,觉得于心不忍,他希望能分担耶稣的辛苦。

 

有一天他祈祷时,向耶稣表明这份心愿。意外地,他听到一个声音,说:「好啊!我下来为你看门,你上来钉在十字架上。但是,不论你看到什么、听到什么,都不可以说一句话。」这位先生觉得,这个要求简单。于是耶稣下来,看门的先生上去,像耶稣被钉十字架般地伸张双臂,本来苦像就雕刻得就和真人差不多,所以来膜拜的群众不疑有他,这位先生也依照先前的约定,静默不语,聆听信友的心声。

来往的人潮络绎不绝,他们的祈求,有合理的,有不合理的,千奇百怪不一而足。但无论如何,他都强忍下来而没有说话,因为他必须信守先前的承诺。

有一天来了一位富商,当富商祈祷完后,竟然忘记手边的钱便离去。他看在眼里,真想叫这位富商回来,但是,他憋着不能说。接着来了一位三餐不继的穷人,他祈祷耶稣能帮助它渡过生活的难关。当要离去时,发现先前那位富商留下的袋子,打开,里面全是钱。穷人高兴得不得了,耶稣真好,有求必应,万分感谢地离去。

十字架上伪装的耶稣看在眼里,想告诉他,这不是你的。但是,约定在先,他仍然憋着不能说。

接下来有一位要出海远行的年轻人来到,他是来祈求耶稣降福他平安。正当要离去时,富商冲进来,抓住年轻人的衣襟,要年轻人还钱,年轻人不明就里,两人吵了起来。这个时候,十字架上伪装的耶稣终于忍不住,遂开口说话了。既然事情清楚了,富商便去找冒牌耶稣所形容的穷人,而年轻人则匆匆离去,生怕搭不上船。

伪装成看门的耶稣出现,指着十字架上说:「你下来吧!那个位置你没有资格了。」

看门人说:「我把真相说出来,主持公道,难道不对吗?」

耶稣说:「你懂得什么?那位富商并不缺钱,他那袋钱不过用来嫖妓,可是对那穷人,却是可以挽回一家大小生计;最可怜的是那位年轻人,如果富商一直缠下去,延误了他出海的时间,他还能保住一条命,而现在,他所搭乘的船正沉入海中。」

这是一个听起来像笑话的寓言故事,却透露出:在现实生活中,我们常自认为怎么样才是最好的,但事与愿违,使我们意不能平。我们必须相信:目前我们所拥有的,不论顺境、逆境,都是对我们最好的安排。若能如此,我们才能在顺境中感恩,在逆境中依旧心存喜乐。

人生的事,没有十全十美。但是,我愿认真活在当下。

Simple PS operation to recover underexposured photos

  1. Image->Duplicate
  2. Image->Mode->Grayscale
  3. Filter->Blur->Gaussian Blur, radius can be adjust from 1.5 to 8 or so, make sure details are blured.
  4. Go to the original picture, Select->Load Selection, check the Invert option.
  5. Edit-> Fill-> contents: use 50% Gray, blending Mode: color dodge, opacity 100%.

Step 5 can be repeated, can use ctrl-H to hide selection to view result.

Baby’s heart beat – 2

It’s 156 times per minute today, that’s 2.60 Hz. :cool:

Digital photo sharing solutions

Here are some programs or services can be used to share or publish your digital photos on the web. They are supposed to be the BEST of its kind among what I have tried and used. But please keep in mind that they are according to my knowledge and up to the date it’s updated. I am sure you can find more much better ones by yourself. In such case, I would highly appreciate if you can tell me by dropping me a line. Thanks a lot!

Gallery: The best online gallery software I have been using for three years. And best of the best, it’s FREE. It’s PHP based so you should have PHP installed on your system and your web server is also PHP enabled. Besides PHP, you also need some image manipulation software such as ImageMagick, netpbm, jhead, jpegtran and unzip etc installed. After they are correctly configured, Gallery rocks! It’s easy to use and very configurable, including the outlooking theme and security. Nowadays, many online commercial photo album providers are using Gallery.

Flickr: Another good online photo album and community with bunch of cool features. For me, the coolest features include various uploading tools and direct link of photos, and you can find out more. Especially for the latter one, I found it’s very convenient and secure to post images on web, blog and BBS, etc. It doesn’t have space limit so far but it does have a monthly upload limit of 10MB 20MB for free accounts. And for the uploading tools, I would highly recommend you try some of them because they are really impressive, e.g., uploading from your Windows XP Explorer, from the web page you are browsing (bookmarklet) or by sending the photos to a secure email address, and they will make your life much easier.

JAlbum: A powerful FREE web photo album generation software. It’s written in Java and uses templates, aka skins, to generate great looking photo albums. High customization is the best feature I like it. You can easily write your own skins with some HTML knowledge. You will need a web host to publish the generated photo albums.

ImageShack: A very unique FREE image hosting service. What you need to do is upload your image and copy the corresponding URL you want to use on the net, including direct link to the original image. You don’t have to register but to get registered does have some benefits, e.g., you can manage your uploaded photos and retrieve the URL’s easily. There’s no limit on image storage but each single image should not be larger than 1024 KB. You can pay to buy credits in order to use ftp access or other approaches to upload multiple images at one time, otherwise you need to upload one by one. ImageShack also provides bookmarlet to upload images from web pages directly. You can also generate simple albums as a registered user but the interface is not neat so I would rather use it as a storage to provide direct linking on web sites or blogs. ImageVenue is another similar provider.

BreezeBrowser: A very good image browser software I have been using for four years. Besides as an image browser, it’s also a powerful template based album generator, a handy RAW converter, and more. It’s not free. It has been written and developed by Chris Breeze and it’s originally for Canon digital cameras so it works with Canon users perfectly. Along with their free Downloader(v1.5 but not the pro version on their web site, I cannot find it there now so maybe it’s discontinued, oops), I find it’s a convenient combination for me to download photos from card reader and browser.

(to be updated…)

Free PS plug-in: Dreamy Photo

A handy FREE Photoshop plug-in or stand alone program to creat dreamy photos.

http://www.autofx.com/freeplugins/dreamyphoto.asp?id=1

Here is an examples from my testing.

Tulips

Blossom:

Test for image direct link

This is a test to directly link images from http://www.flickr.com.

Yes it works perfectly!