In2edu I.C.T. Resources Enhancing Education & Learning

Portraits and Prints Review

Just recently posted from the authors of Chronosync (backups for Macs) is a range of programs that they have just updated for Snow Leopard. They ( have decided to release Portraits and Prints, Imagecaster (webcam solution) and Daychaser (calendar tool) applications as freeware, deciding to instead focus on their backup business. I will be reviewing Chronosync and the other freeware in upcoming blog entries, in the meantime here is a quick look at Portraits and Prints.
This program allows you to take images from folders or directly from iPhoto and manipulate them further by simple graphical adjustments, putting them into templates (catalogues) and printing them.
Templates Art ICT iPhoto

System Requirements
A Macintosh computer running Mac OS 10.3 ("Panther") or later, a minimum 400 MHz G3, and a color printer. It is a universal application.
First Look
If you have a general familiarity to Macs it is fairly easy to get started when you open the program. Within a few minutes you can have a page of identical or different photos entered into a template ready to print, pdf or publish to disc.
Similar Programs
Comic Life - amazing comic layouts, commercial software with significantly more options.
iPhoto- Supplied with iLife package on new Macs. More graphical manipulations, less catalogue templates.
Education Suggestions
Create simple photo captioned sequences.
Publish a visual report.
Create invitations or simple photocards.
Create a photoboard of a class activity or trip.
Create visual poetry.
Best Tips
You can add multiple photos using command+click in the finder dialogue.
Drag n drop a template to change photos in an existing template to a new or updated template.
Add plain text to photos by dragging in (the hard to see) blue dot handles on the speech bubble.
Simple and Free.
Red Eye - works quickly on a basic "turn my eyeball black" scheme.
Good range of basic templates.
Not So Hot
Can't paste other titles or images (layer) from other programs to enhance presentation, unless you do this on the template itself.
Can only crop in oblong/rectangular/square shapes, otherwise you use the built in bitmap masks or create your own extra masks available in template mode only.

Final Word
Taking in the balance this softwares status of "freeware" verses our Not So Hot comments we award this software three stars. Worth placing in your collection for specific photo printing purposes! 3stars award software mac apple

iCal, To-Dos and iPhone Syncing

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I have just spent half a day, a number of dollars and found the solution was already on my iPhone. The desire I had was to sync my iCal to-dos that are scattered over a number of different calendars with my iPhone. At this stage the iPhone calendar or mail will not sync your to-do's. A number of solutions proposed the use of google docs to sync to-dos, but the problem with these is that the tasks in in Google are just one list, not categorised like I need. I searched Googled, bought a new To-Do app (Toodledo - which has a nicer interface than my final choice).
After virtually giving up having a solution that really suited me I was trolling through the 13th page of a Google term search and then followed a link to the Appigo site... hmmmm I thought to myself ... this software looks familiar and realised I already had it (but had not got into using it as lack of synchronisation with my laptop iCal put me off).The winning combination came from ToDo 3.2 ( combined with a free utility Appigo Sync / To Do is a list manager and does a pretty good job of this as you can see from the screen shots. But the winner for me, was the two minute install of the sync utility (easy to follow videos or screenshots) and I was away. The sync utility basically runs a server program that pulls the data from iCal and pushes it to "ToDo". Done and dusted. You have to run the sync from within ToDo itself on the iPhone (it doesn't happen when you connect the iPhone) and need a wireless connection to do it over.
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