Categories
Resource/Misc

Check Your Internet Connection with SpeedTest.net

This is a newly discovered website for me that is pretty nifty – speedtest.net

Here is the full webpage:

The first thing it does is check your IP address and pin point you on the U.S. map. Then it locates a close server in its network to run a speed test. Here it shows me in San Diego (my office):

Click the ‘Begin Test’ button at the top and see what your connection speed is – both download and upload. Here I am pretty close to what my service is (20/5):

– Troy @ TLC

Categories
PowerPoint

Seach – Purchase – Insert Fotolia Images All Within PPT 2007

Fotolia is another resource for royalty free images. But this is the first one to have a PowerPoint add-in (also a Word version). Get details and download here.

The install requires being online and easily goes through verifying computer has needed components and installing if needed. I did discover if you run multiple versions of PowerPoint, PPT 2007 needs to be the default setting for installer to run. This is also a PPT 2007 specific add-in and will not install in earlier versions.

Once installed there is a ‘Fotolia’ tab.

If you click the SEARCH button an action pane opens that is basically a gateway to the Fotolia website content.

The search results show a thumbnail and one click options for purchase and download.

To purchase and use an image you need to use the LOG IN button and have a Fotolia account (with credits purchased).

This may be the first in a new wave of conveinence add-ins as the internet merges with applications.

– Troy @ TLC

Categories
Resource/Misc

Need a Flag for a Presentation?

In researching images for a recent presentation I discovered this great website – Flag Icons.

Every country looks to be represented. But the part I used was the “web 2.0” design styles for each. Just find the country you need a flag for and then select the flag style that works best with the presentation.

In addition there are options for saving as a .jpg (white background) or .png (transparent background) and sized from 50-800px wide.

– Troy @ TLC

Categories
Resource/Misc

123RF – International Flavor and High Quality Images

123RF is a smaller image site with a very international flavor. When I want a unique image such as a road, horizon or group of kids I always find something. Most of the images appear to be from international photographers – in international settings – and just offer a different perspective to even model shots. Image quality is great, rates are super, but the search offerings can be less than others.

Raster/Photo images: Yes
Vector images: Yes
Video: No
Audio: No
Pay Per Image: Yes – approx. $2 for standard PPT use (web, 600px)
Subscription Download: Yes (eg. 1 year 5 images day = $750)

Test Search Results:
1. “Fast Car” = 5,162 results
2. “Medical Consultation” = 840 results

– Troy @ TLC

Categories
Resource/Misc

StockExpert – Images and Video

StockExpert seems similiar to iStockPhoto when I do a search – lots of the same or similiar images. They are all good quality and the pricing is good (or looking better as sites like iStockPhoto slowly raise their rates). One new feature is the selection of videos – which will be more important with the release of PowerPoint 2010 and the whole world goes video crazy. The search engine is intuitive and gives more precise results than some others – this may be because StockExpert was acquired by Jupiter Images who injected much of there meta tagging and search technology.

Raster/Photo images: Yes
Vector images: Yes
Video: Yes
Audio: No
Pay Per Image: Yes – approx. $2 for standard PPT use (small, 800px)
Subscription Download: Yes (eg. 1 year unlimited = $1,500)

Test Search Results:
1. “Fast Car” = 4,449 results
2. “Medical Consultation” = 958 results

– Troy @ TLC

Categories
Resource/Misc

Photos.com (and Clipart.com)

Photos.com is venerable, being one of the few companies around before the internet. I have a collection of (costly) Photo CDs from them. And if you every purchased one of the bright boxes full of “4 Million Images of CD/DVD” you know photos.com. Of course, that long history means some of the images are a bit dated, or perhaps seen in many other layouts over the years.

But the images are good quality, the search is nice and the thumbnails easy to review and use. The subscription rates are some of the best, so another reason you see the images a lot. You can also get some things here not available at others: a sound effects library, custom fonts and Flash animations.

Raster/Photo images: Yes
Vector images: Yes
Video: Yes
Audio: Yes
Pay Per Image: Yes – approx. $5 for standard PPT use (‘multimedia’, 500-800px)
Subscription Download: Yes (eg. 1 year unlimited of photo images only = $450 OR photos+vector+Flash+audio+fonts = $1,200)

Test Search Results:
1. “Fast Car” = 4,670 results
2. “Medical Consultation” = 7,348 results

– Troy @ TLC

Categories
Resource/Misc

Getty Images – Real People, Royalty Free

Getty Images is an industry force, owning many of the other services, used by major media (newspaper, magazine, TV) and the place to get images of real (famous) people, real-life video and audio. This is the benchmark for professional quality images and breadth of search options. It does come at a price, but you definitely get what is paid for. Everyone should click the “Search Tips” button and read how to maximize search results (same tips apply to virtually all sites).

Raster/Photo images: Yes
Vector images: Yes
Video: Yes
Audio: Yes
Pay Per Image: Yes – approx. $35-150 ($35 = “web & Multimedia” 413px)
Subscription Download: Yes (this goes to photos.com – one of the many they own)

Test Search Results:
1. “Fast Car” = 5,301 results
2. “Medical Consultation” = 11,616 results

– Troy @ TLC

Categories
Resource/Misc

Dreamstime Images

Dreamstime has been around for a while, but I do not hear a lot of people talking about it. One reason may be their Royalty Free license has more options than most and the image price can vary quite a bit based on the options (which seem confusing and easier to find images elsewhere without the confusion). But the images are great, with lots of unique photography for topics not found on other sites.

Raster/Photo images: Yes
Vector images: Yes
Video: No
Audio: No
Pay Per Image: Yes – approx. $3 for standard PPT use (small, 800px, level 2 RF)
Subscription Download: Yes (eg. 25 images per day for 6 months = $1,250)

Test Search Results:
1. “Fast Car” = 12,918 results
2. “Medical Consultation” = 1,150 results

– Troy @ TLC

Categories
Resource/Misc

JupiterUnlimited – Lots of Getty Images in 1 Package

JupiterImages Unlimited is a Getty Images company – a central service that gives access to images from several Getty companies. The mid-level “Essentials” subscription shows images from photos.com, ablestock.com, liquidlibrary and photobjects.net. I spent a few months using this site for a project through a clients’ subscription. The images are great, quality top notch and selection wide. Doing a vector search brings up lots of great vector images, but also plenty that are dated and lackluster. Another highlight is the huge library of photo object images (photos shot on a white background).

Raster/Photo images: Yes
Vector images: Yes
Video: No
Audio: No
Pay Per Image: No
Subscription Download: Yes (eg. 1 year unlimied download Essential Plan = $1,500)

Test Search Results:
1. “Fast Car” = 4,077 results
2. “Medical Consultation” = 1,518 results

– Troy @ TLC

Categories
Resource/Misc

Stock.Xchng A Free Option!

“Stock Exchange” (Stock.XCHNG) bills itself as the leading FREE stock photo site- and I would have to agree. This is definitely one of my go-to resources as the quality is good, image size is great (near fullsize print quality) and it is a true image site, though the search can give limited results. It does have ties with pay sites, so note the 1st row of images on each page is not part of the free options (and that’s why they look perfect). Another consideration is everything is a .jpg image, even the vector looking images (because the vector version is available at the affiliated pay site).

Raster/Photo images: Yes
Vector images: No
Video: No
Audio: No
Pay Per Image: No – They are all free!
Subscription Download: No

Test Search Results:
1. “Fast Car” = 262 results
2. “Medical Consultation” = 0 results
* With alternate search terms I was able to located 100’s of images for each, just took more effort.

– Troy @ TLC