All Sort of Tidbits

I’ve had a number of items on my To Do list for a few weeks and today was a great catch up day for making some miscellaneous videos.

Item Number 1: I’m going to once again BEG all of you to change a particular setting in Windows which hides your files extensions. Trust me… your “computer life” will be improved if you can see those little letter combinations which follow the name of a file. Sometimes, in a folder, you might find 5 files or more ALL with the exact same name! But they are vastly different files and even though you can usually figure out the type of file by looking over at the Type column, it’s MUCH faster to just see that file extension in the file name! In a prior post from almost two years ago, I explained how to do this in XP. But it’s a little bit different finding the setting in Vista or Windows 7, so I’ve made videos for both:

Showing File Extensions in XP

Showing File Extensions in Vista or Windows 7

Item Number 2: For those of you who haven’t back up your ACS/KNK/DM/GE license files, here’s a quick video to show you how to do it. For those with a dongle, it’s a good idea to have them backed up on a flash drive and even on a different computer, although you should be able to pull them from your installation CD. However, on ACS Studio, I believe the license files are now stored on the dongle itself. For those with dongle-less versions of the software, backing them up to another location on your C Drive is important in case you install an updated version of the software, which will wipe out your license files!!! If you don’t have them backed up, then it could be a 1 – 3 day wait (more over the winter holidays) before they can be regenerated if you lose them! So, make sure you copy them into a back-up folder. Again, I have made videos showing this for the different Windows operating systems:

Backing Up License Files in XP

Backing Up License Files in Vista or Win 7

Item Number 3: Now for something more fun! I recently read about a way to freeze raster images so that they cannot be inadvertently selected or moved. This is useful when you are manually tracing an image or editing a vector image that it still on top of the original raster. I made a quick video showing how to do this:

Freezing a Raster Image

Item Number 4: This is something I’ve been aware of since writing the first KNK User Manual, but somehow then forgot about it. In many of my videos you’ll see me select all images of a particular color by double-clicking the color on the Job Palette. It works fine… most of the time! But sometimes, for whatever reason, I will double click and it will just not select anything. There’s another short cut key which does the same thing: hold down the Shift key and click on a color on the Job Palette… same result. All images of that color will be selected. This is the new way of selecting by color I plan to always use.

Item Number 5: Another recent discovery that I think I already knew but had forgotten. Most of you know the usefulness and, in my opinion, the necessity of using a mouse with a middle scroll wheel for zooming in and out in the software. However, you may not have realized that pushing that middle scroll wheel will put you into the Panning mode so that you can pan around on your screen as necessary. Pushing it again will turn panning off. VERY handy!

Designing a Clock Face

Colleen S. posted this request on the Klic-N-Kut Yahoo group and I jumped on it because, as always, I love new and different design challenges!  She’s planning to install a clock directly onto a wall in her home and use vinyl for the numbers on the clock face.  Her question was this: Is there an easy technique that will evenly space the numbers around the circle?   So, I made a video showing the way I would do it:

Designing a Clock Face

But the project has another challenge to it.  Because Colleen is designing this clock to be 18″ in diameter AND her KNK Groove-E can only cut up to 13″ wide, there’s the issue of how to get the cut lettering transferred to the wall and be line up just as she designed it in the software.  I came up with the method I would use and made this video:

Transferring the Clock Design to the Wall

Now, I also wanted input from the other members and I did receive some great alternative ideas, so I’ll share them here.  As usual, there’s more than one way to do just about anything, so it’s nice to have choices and pick the one that works best for you!

Michele’s suggestion (Thanks, Michele!) :

Here is my method.  I make 2 circles and center them to the sign blank, then I make a line to bisect the circles.  I center this to the sign blank as well.  Next, I duplicate the line, center it to the sign blank and rotate it 30 degrees.  I repeat this until I have all of the lines on my clock.  I then create my numbers and use the center square (when the number is selected) to place it at the intersection of the line and the inner circle.  When I’m done, I remove the lines.  Then I make a very small circle and center it to the sign blank to identify the location for the hands of the clock.

Sharon’s suggestion (Thanks, Sharon!):

You could turn on your grid, Make a Square 18 x 18 and place your clock image in side, then you could take half and cut that, and cut the other half. And that should work to give you the correct spacing when you place on the wall.

If you have parts connecting in the image, just use the ginsu knife to separated.

Alisa’s Input (Thanks, Alisa!):

I did this recently.  I used a circle, of the minimum diameter I needed and marked with a small circle at 12, 3, 6 and 9 as well as the centre.  I actually did not even set it out in my software.  I just cut my numerals and then using my circle, drew around it, directly on to the wall with a pencil.  I then marked 12, 3, 6 & 9 and the centre.  Then I adhered those numerals in place.  Then using a ruler, I marked with the remaining numbers needed to be, making sure that the opposite number was in line with the middle.