Let's face it, there's not a lot to do at this time of year. My prize Christmas present of a Nintendo Wii has lost its novelty value and now lives in the cupboard below the stairs, I'm already fed up with the cold and frosty weather (which at Christmas I thought was atmospheric) and, even if I wanted to brave the elements to go out, it's so dark that I'd need to don a miner's helmet and lamp just to get to my local
This article appears in the March 07 issue of PC Advisor, onsale now in all good newsagents.
So it must be time to break out a bottle of Youngs' Winter Warmer, huddle around my alarmingly warm laptop and carry on with those projects that were started last year and casually put aside just as the sun came out to play.
One such unfinished project is sorting out all my old 4x6in photos. These hold a real value. Unlike digital camera pics that are backed up and duplicated on numerous hard drives, CDs and free online storage sites, these older, precious pictures are kept on single, eroding, torn and scratched pieces of paper. Then they're stuffed in numerous drawers, shoeboxes and old albums.
So in this month's issue of PC Advisor I'm going to try to finish turning these torn and scratched memories into digitally cleaned, recoloured backed up files. That way they will hopefully last forever.
To take this task on you are going to need access to a scanner to digitise your images, and some photo-editing software. You could go for Corel's new PaintShop Pro Photo XI but the £90 price tag, though competitive, may put you off.
An obvious but rarely stated fact is that when new upgrades are released earlier versions become much cheaper.
Take for instance PaintShop Pro 8.0 which is more than capable of tackling this job and can be found on the internet at a mere £12, a slight dip from its 2003 release price of £99.
Now before I have Corel's lawyers on the phone all I am suggesting is that if you need to do only basic editing jobs then pay only for that. Get a basic editing program and, once you get used to it and feel you want to move on to more in-depth projects, upgrade to XI or something similar.
Oh and tell Corel that I sent you! That way I may just get out of them sending the boys round one dark evening to help me quite literally roll out of the Coach & Horses.