Tag Archives: google

Google+ & Picasa = Free Photo & Video Backup

If you have ever talked to me about digital photography I will have told you that you need to have a back-up plan. I use the 3 – 2 – 1 back-up strategy. 3 copies, 2 different media, 1 off site. You can Google it, it’s a thing. It’s on Lifehacker! Auto Backup from Google and Picasa is a free and simple tool that will help you protect those irreplaceable photos and videos.

This recent update to Picasa, Google’s PC / Mac photo organizer (which I have been using for years and so should you) has added Google+’s Auto Backup to Picasa. So what’s the big deal? Google Auto Backup gives you 15GB (part of your Google Drive total) of storage for photos larger than 2048px on the longest edge, smaller than 50MB and videos longer than 15 minutes at 1080p resolution or higher. Now that pretty much covers almost everyone I know.

If you’re like me with over 110,000 photos and videos that’s just short of 900GB  the 15GB will be insufficient. So if you’re willing to have the photos downgraded to a 3MP image (2048px along the longest edge) Google+ Auto Backup will give you unlimited storage. I think that is a fair trade off to have an automatic incremental backup solution.

You need a Google account, so if you use Youtube, gmail or Google+ you already have one (as Google has unified their services under one log in). An Auto Backup application is installed running in the background and backs up your photos and videos. Keep in mind your monthly cap before starting the backup process, we don’t want those nasty overage charges.

Auto Backup Uploader

It will find the default places on your hard drive but if like me you a few internal drives you have the ability to chose and pick folders across multiple drives. All your photos and videos are stored in your Google+ account and are private until till you share them. If you have a modern mobile device Auto Backup will also backup your photos in iOS and Andriod devices using the Google+ app.

Auto Backup will also does Auto Awesomes. These include animated gifs, panoramas, HDR and a host of other automatically processed features and you can still revert to the original photo. Some basic photo editing tools and filters are included for good measure.

So try out Auto Backup, it’s free!

GMail Stickers Are Here

Due to mailing my self addressed envelop so close to the deadline and the usual while supplies last line, I was worried that I might have missed out on getting some GMail stickers. So I'm really happy they arrived.

Also having to get a $4 international reply coupon these free stickers started to get expensive.

As you can see I got the unicorn sticker (of course).

Having got EEEBuntu running on my EEE PC (more to come on that) I had to put the GMail logo on the lid.


I had every intention to put on the GMail keyboard shortcut stickers but unfortunately they don't come in netbook size.

Thanks GMail for the stickers.

Now I'll have to get some more stickers for my EEE PC.

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GMail Stickers

The deadline to get yourself some GMail stickers ends February 14th, 2009. I don't know where I was to have missed the news. I thought this was the kind of stuff Twitter was supposed to find for me. Fail Twitter, fail.

So this evening's project is to rush over to the Post office and get an international reply coupon for the good folks at GMail and hope they still have some left.

I just hope I don't get the unicorn one.

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Happy 2nd Voxiversary: Traffic

Thanks to tools like StatCounter and Google Analytics I'm able to see what the traffic has been like over the past year here at Grantalias.

Since the crazy traffic spike from last year it's been pretty quite around the old blog. Though it has been consistent numbers.

Unfortunately all the top visited posts are from 2007.

That a side, I did make the explore page three times for the following posts! That was pretty exciting!

Grantalias on VOX EntertainmentGrantalias on VOX MusicGrantalias on VOX Technology

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Google Chrome

Unless you have a life and could care less about computers you should just skip this post. For the rest of you, let's talk about the new browser from Google called Chrome.

It certainly has some positive facets to it. 
  • Each tab is it's own process so no more losing the whole browser when a tab takes a nose dive. Like when you've been writing a post on VOX for a few hours and haven't saved.

  • It's based on the open source Webkit browser so it's supposed to be fast and reliable.
  • Google has a comic to explain the benefits on Chrome. I know it doesn't have anything to do with Chrome itself, it's just cool.
  • There is a task manager so you can see what Tabs are stealing resources and kill that one Tab. There is also a "stats for nerds" where you can really drill down in memory usage. Nice touch.
  • Incognito mode to cover your tracks when surfing online.

And now the downside.

  • It upchucked when I tried to have a PDF open in a new window, totally freezing my machine. Hard reboot required.

  • It seems Firefox is not the only one to have some issues with playing embedded Flash video.
  • No plug-ins… for now. There are some Firefox extensions I can not live with out!
  • The Chrome logo looks like a Pokéball
  • One of two computers I installed Chrome on did not import my bookmarks. A very tedious task to enter them manually let me tell you.
  • It doesn't seem possible to add sites to a white list for the pop-up blocking.
  • I can't send a link to an email client by right clicking and saying send to email. I have to old school copy and paste.

EDIT – Additional

  • A real deal breaker for me is that the Google search box that is present in both Firefox and Internet Explorer is absent in Chrome. You have to open a new window or tab, but on the other hand you can do a Google search in the address bar.

So all in all a good first release, I mean it's still a beta. And yes I know with Google it could stay in beta for years. I'm confident thought they will work out the bugs regarding video playback and the other hiccups I experienced in the near future.

But I'm really looking forward to seeing where Chrome goes and what new features Google implements in subsequent revisions.

EDIT – Additional
According to StatCounter, Chrome reached 1% of browser use on sites they track (I use them here on grantalias.vox.com) on it's first day of release. That's quite some numbers. I'd like to see the numbers over a longer period of use.

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Things Are Getting Out of Hand

The downside of doing a post a day here on VOX (besides the time drain and eye strain) is that having so many posts it's getting more and more difficult to find stuff on it. I'm very into referencing my old posts but I've been less than consistent in my tagging and organization of my posts and assets.

I now find myself using Google to search my VOX because I know that there's a post somewhere but I just can't find it.

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9 More Years

Nine years ago I was in Cegep, the Ice Storm hit, the Winter Olympics were help in Nagano Japan, Titanic won 11 Oscars, the G3 iMac was released, terrorism was something that happened "over there" and Monica Lewinsky  was a household name. And oh yeah this little search engine called Google started up.

If Google is known for their clean interface, you should have seen what it looked like in November of 1998.

Happy birthday Google. I'm feeling lucky.

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