• wdburt1



    Viewing 15 replies - 1 through 15 (of 356 total)
    • in reply to: Some interesting links #2530465

      Correction: The computer’s processor is an i7-6700, not i7-3770.  I pulled the wrong invoice out of the file.

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    • in reply to: Some interesting links #2530353

      An update:  I was able to install the TT-Dynamic Range applet on Linux Mint using Play on Linux.  I then installed dBpoweramp also, and they both work great.  This addressed a small concern I had.  dBpoweramp must go online to compare the CD rip against its crowd-sourced database of other rips.  Since there is no browser other than Internet Explorer installed on the factory-installed HDD running Win7, dBpoweramp would have to use IE, which of course is well beyond its EOL.  I would prefer to have no excuse for the Win7 drive to go online, except possibly software downloads and updates.

    • in reply to: Some interesting links #2530323

      Regarding the colored box, I do not currently have Okular installed, but if I remember correctly the color in the box obscures the text to some extent–more if the opacity tends toward 100% and less in the other direction. It is not the same as highlighting, which does not obscure the text.

      Please correct me if I am remembering this wrong. Thanks.

    • in reply to: Some interesting links #2530320

      I spotted that a couple of days ago and plan on installing those fonts.  Thanks.

    • in reply to: Some interesting links #2530079

      I have been keeping notes of how I set up the “new” internet computer (an unused HP desktop computer manufactured in late 2016, based on an Intel i7-3770 processor, and running Windows 7 Pro) by adding an SSD and installing Linux Mint 21.1 Cinnamon on it.  This chart might be of interest.  Light green indicates that the new software has been installed.


      CD ripper dBpoweramp works well with WINE.  I would have preferred to install it there, but the TT-Dynamic Range applet apparently does not work with WINE, and they need to be on the same drive.

      The number of programs that can be discontinued is quite gratifying.  Firefox extensions are not listed in the chart, but the new installation resembles the old in that respect.  I was aiming to end up with an internet computer that is reasonably secure but lighter on its feet.

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    • in reply to: Some interesting links #2529882

      Thanks.  It’s kind of a workaround, but I appreciate knowing about it.

      I installed Wine and Foxit Reader 12 (the current version) today and it all works.  The PDFs transfer fine between computers,with no difficulty in recognizing the format.  The fonts change, which suggests that this might have more to do with the leap between operating systems than between Okular and Foxit.

      I expect it will be a horserace to see whether Okular matches Foxit’s key features before Foxit develops a version suitable for Linux.

      By the way, Foxit Reader version 10.0 is the last version listed on the compatibility analysis here:


      Thanks again for your help.

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    • in reply to: Some interesting links #2529810

      Thanks.  I currently have Okular version 21.12.3 installed and have tested it a bit.  It was downloaded a few days ago using Linux Mint’s Software Manager.

      Foxit Reader lets me write annotations in a transparent text box that appears on the PDF where I click.  This text box can be resized and repositioned, which is often necessary.  (For hard to reach places Foxit also offers an opaque “callout” text box with an arrow that can be resized and repositioned.)  Okular makes me write the annotation in a popup, but when the popup is closed the annotation appears in a transparent text box that can be resized and repositioned.  I have formatted for blue boldface but the result is blue non-boldface every time.

      Okular–at least the version I have–highlights text but does not do area highlighting, by which I mean drawing a box that will be filled in with transparent yellow or another color, without a border.   Version 12.2.3 has the red-outline box feature shown on your screenshot.

      My previous tests consisted of annotating and highlighting a PDF in Okular running on Linux Mint and transferring it to Foxit Reader running on Windows 7.  In two tests, when the PDF was opened in Foxit the annotations were immovable, no text boxes were apparent, and the annotations could not be edited.  The highlighting could not be deleted.  The font had changed to some sort of condensed boldface text.  Another time, the text boxes were apparent but not editable.  Foxit did not recognize the file format in some tests.

      Just now I re-ran the test.  This time, the transparent text boxes are apparent in Foxit and can be deleted, resized, moved, and edited.  The highlighting can be deleted.  The font is still that highly condensed boldface.

      Assuming the font problem and lack of area highlighting can be corrected, Okular comes close to Foxit for me.  The larger question is reliable compatibility.  I would have to re-run the test several times to assess whether Foxit will reliably pick up the file format and other aspects of a PDF edited in Okular.  I cannot risk having a bunch of PDFs that cannot be opened, read, or edited, especially if the problem is intermittent.

      Given the observed differences between your (later) version and mine, a reasonable conclusion might be that Okular is a work in progress, so there’s hope for it.

    • in reply to: Some interesting links #2529691

      With Foxit Reader, I can annotate the PDF by clicking on Comment > Typewriter and writing in a transparent text box.  Comment text can be formatted as I wish (I like blue boldface; it draws attention as I scroll through a document).  The comment remains visible, as if typed on the document.  I do not need to click on something to reveal the comment.  Even after the document is saved, the text can be edited–and in my field, often is.

      Foxit allows “area highlighting” as well as “text highlighting.”  With area highlighting you can quickly draw a box around the desired text and highlight the whole area, which is much easier to see afterwards than highlighted text.  Paging through 1,200-page historical documents, that becomes important.

      So what PDF programs bundled with (or even available with) Linux Mint can do what I describe above?

    • in reply to: Some interesting links #2529626

      I share some of Dedoimedo’s angst about this.  I think I will probably convert 100%, eventually, but the main hangup for me is Word and Excel.  That’s not to say that they cannot be replaced by LibreOffice–I haven’t explored that yet.  The issue is the distraction and disruption of dealing with changing the programs that are at the heart of my work.  So for the time being I’ll continue to assume use of Windows on one computer, and Linux Mint on the other.

      For the last few years I have had Office 2010 on the internet-facing computer.  It’s now beyond EOL and therefore presumably a magnet for malware.  The breakthrough for me came when I realized that I hardly use Office on the internet computer.  Without it, there was little reason to remain married to Windows on that machine.

      The last couple of days I have been exploring Linux alternatives to Foxit Reader and Adobe Reader, and have reluctantly concluded that they do not meet my needs.  I transfer PDFs all the time from the internet computer to the offline computer, which has both Foxit and Adobe Acrobat installed.  I make heavy use of Foxit’s simple-to-use highlighting and annotation capabilities and Acrobat’s ability to add, delete, and reorder pages and combine documents.  In addition, there is the issue of introducing a third PDF program.  I have found that Adobe and Foxit play nice.  However, when I annotate a PDF in Okular (the best program I could identify for Linux Mint) and transfer it to the offline computer and open it in Foxit, the fonts are changed and the annotations are in some cases not editable, which is a killer.  I have managed to avoid installing WINE so far, but I may have to in order to use Foxit Reader seamlessly on the internet computer.  It was after I had come to this conclusion that I discovered that Dedoimedo went through the same evaluation and came out the same way.

      Someday, Foxit will come out with an up-to-date Linux version of Reader, and there will be one less reason to stay with Windows.

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    • in reply to: “What can I use my old computers for?” #2526119

      I wanted to have a flatbed scanner in my home office, but not obstructing the work space around the two desktop computers I use regularly.  I wanted an Epson V700 (this was a few years ago) for quality reasons, and I didn’t want to replace my printer, so buying an “all-in-one” printer/copier/scanner was not an option.

      To run the scanner I repurposed a Dell laptop running Windows XP.  It sits on a shelf just above the scanner, where I can see the screen and reach the keyboard on those rare occasions that something requires it.

      Regarding Randy’s discussion of Linux on older machines: The idea that I could run Windows 7 on the Internet died when Microsoft recently ended all support for Win7 and Chrome announced that it would follow suit.  I don’t use Chrome, but when leading browsers pull the plug, as it seems they must sooner rather than later, warnings from web sites cannot be far behind.  The security issues multiply.  I considered converting a nice Win7 computer to Win10, Chrome OS Flex, or Linux Mint, and am now in the middle of setting up Mint (Cinnamon) on that machine.  I like what I see–a sensible, no-distractions OS eerily resembling Win7.

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    • in reply to: Saving history #2525933

      The V700 (of which I own two) and V750 (same thing except with a wet plate capability, IIRC), is a good alternative.  My recollection is that the V800/850’s only significant change was to substitute an LED lamp.  I found my second V700 on Ebay, intending to drag it around to those research libraries that will let me scan onsite.  It looks beat up but I have been using it at home on a big scanning project recently and it performs well.

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    • in reply to: Saving history #2525533

      In 1994, I co-ventured with the Erie Lackawanna (Railroad) Historical Society to pay the Pennsylvania State Archives to microfilm much of the corporate records of the Erie Railroad and predecessors in their collection. I received one set of duplicate microfilms and worked with them using an ancient second-hand Kodak Recordak “teepee” reader located near my computer. I had to read, then turn and transcribe on the computer. Quite the test of short-term memory, and tiring work.

      About ten years ago I noticed that some rolls were starting to fade, so I had them digitized. Now I could put the PDF on the screen next to my Word document.

      The microfilm rolls were numbered in an opaque fashion, which made it difficult to understand the sequence of things like board of directors minutes. I was ready to digitize the microfilms because I realized that the material would remain all but inaccessible otherwise. In order to keep the task simple for the scanning service, each page was saved as a separate PDF. I saved all of them as a separate file and socked away the original scans on the external hard drive they came on. I then combined the PDFs in Adobe Acrobat and created working copies sorted by type of material and date. The working copies can be highlighted and annotated. (I live in fear that future changes in the PDF reader or related technology might render some or all of these PDFs unreadable, but that’s just something to keep an eye on.)

      Similarly, I have thousands of digital newspaper clippings, with the originals saved in folders reflecting the newspaper’s location. File names start with the year-month-day, so they sort themselves chronologically. Working copies are organized in subject folders.

      And this is the point: Digitizing makes the material useful, where otherwise it would just be overwhelming. My subject folders for clippings are often specific enough that they contain maybe 25 to 50 clippings, a number small enough to absorb and keep in mind when I start writing.

      The same holds true for family photos and similar material. The ability to organize it digitally is a big advantage.

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    • in reply to: Does Linux Mint require antivirus? #2525399

      I would again like to thank everyone who has contributed to this thread.  It is an interesting discussion.

      I’ll take this opportunity to share my pleasure that I have finally successfully installed Linux Mint 21.1 Cinnamon on an unused six-year-old HP desktop computer, in preparation to replace a ten-year-old computer still in use on the Internet.  Mint will run in dual boot (either-or, not simultaneously) with Windows 7, but the latter will not go on the web.  I have set up the included Thunderbird program this afternoon, and tomorrow I’ll work on Firefox.

      Practically nothing about this has been without bumps in the road, but I won’t dwell on those today.  The result appears to be what I hoped for: An OS with a dignified, elegant interface and no distractions, no cajoling, no ads, no crapware, no pointless changes to familiar procedures and all the rest of today’s Windows experience.  I’m liking what I see.  And I am glad to have the Win7 EOL monkey off my back.

      6 users thanked author for this post.
    • in reply to: Saving history #2524209

      Some observations from scanning Kodachromes, Ektachromes, and other slides and black and white negatives from the 1950s and 1960s:

      My first pass at it, in the early 1990s, was to take selected slides from a certain collection to a commercial prepress house that used a room-size Scitex drum scanner.  The slides were taken out of their cardboard frames and taped under cellophane to the drum.  The scans were detailed and color and contrast were good.

      I scanned many of the same slides on an Epson Perfection V750 flatbed scanner about ten years ago.  The results were not sharp enough.  While the scanner performs well with documents laid directly on the glass, it must guess at how far away the surface of the slide is in the holder, and that distance varies across the image due to warp.  When I look at photos in magazines that publish images in this genre (railroad history), I can easily spot slides that have been scanned on a flatbed scanner.

      Slides or negatives laid on the glass, and B&W negs in holders, will often exhibit “Newton rings.”

      I scanned using both Epson and VueScan software.  Color casts varied significantly, with VueScan tending toward blue-green.

      Many of the slides were scanned a few years ago by a friend using a consumer grade scanner.  The results were mediocre–not sharp and color off.

      After some research I bought a used Nikon LS9000 slide scanner.  I also have a friend who owns a somewhat smaller model, the LS5000.  Neither has been manufactured for years; they use a Firewire connection to the computer and the software is designed for Windows 7, but these are reputed to be the best slide scanners around.  The results on my LS9000 were sharp with good color and contrast.  My friend’s LS5000 actually was a hair sharper.

      Some reviewers suggested that Nikon discontinued these scanners because the customers essentially tended to use them once and then sell them.  There was thought to be no long term market.

      Concerning B&W negatives: I have found that simply scanning the negative tends to result in an image with poorer midtone contrast than a print.  Count me skeptical if good quality is the goal.  Of course it is getting difficult to find anyone to print B&W negs using the traditional process, rather than using the process designed for color negs.

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    • in reply to: Does Linux Mint require antivirus? #2523333

      Yes, in my online reading I see Clamav mentioned, and not many other options.

      Thanks to all who responded above.  The situation is as I suspected.  People say Linux does not need AV mainly because its market share is so small that it does not attract malware.  But of course that will gradually change as its market share increases.

    Viewing 15 replies - 1 through 15 (of 356 total)