Patty Goes Geeky

A techno odyssey

Archive for December 2010

The book — Margaret’s book — is done

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There are probably dozens of pent-up tech posts related to this project, most of which I’ve forgotten over the months. I learned so much, much of it self-taught and the rest due to the kindness, or at least tolerance, of the cadre of tech-sperts I call on when I’m stuck. One of them, John the Metro bus driver, wishes I would quit describing my relief that if I get hit by a bus, at least this book is done. Isn’t there some other way I could phrase my demise, my offended driver-brother wonders. But as usual, I digress. I must credit my sister, Becky, with the lioness’ share of getting our mother’s memoir out of the computer and into print.

I have broken a cardinal rule of blogging, which is to keep putting up fresh posts. I have a lot of items to catch up on, and plan to. “Much Abides” was more important. If I get hit by a … Segway, I doubt my last thought would be, “Damn, I hadn’t posted on Patty Goes Geeky recently.”

So, let’s get started. Most fresh in my mind is a recommendation of Sir Speedy as the printer. I wanted perfect-bound (like paperback books) rather than the cheaper-looking coil or tape binding I could get at FedEx, formerly known as Kinko’s. Steve Michael at the Georgetown Sir Speedy was very patient with an amateur placing an order for 35 copies, when by the looks of things Sir Speedy is much more oriented to business publications. He explained that I wanted my photo scans at 600 dpi (dots per inch) for best reproduction (an item is coming about that), that I should upload the book in three segments so the photos would fall in the middle (which I couldn’t do because I could not figure out how to break Word’s automatic page-numbering function — another item) so they did it by hand, how to design the front and back covers to allow for binding, etc. The print quality was first-rate and the delivery was timely. I have a newly reinforced respect for the designers who were my colleagues at The Times. I never heard any of them swear as much as I did over layout (several more items coming on that).

The cost was about $14 per book, just a few dollars more than the cheaper binding. Worth it.

There is something about holding Margaret’s printed book in my hands that seems immensely more right than posting the text online, even though that might happen at some point. She was a remarkable woman. And now it’s been documented.


Written by geekypatty

December 31, 2010 at 11:58 am

Posted in Blog, Resources

PDQ item on PDFs

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I have a ton of stored-up items about skills I have acquired, or sort of acquired, from the deadline-driven race to finish my mom’s book. Until I get that book done, I wasn’t planning to post all the tech things I’ve learned. But this is fast.

If you need to transfer an image from a PDF, here’s the how-to from Adobe Reader Help:

“Use the Snapshot tool to copy pictures from a PDF.

1. Choose Tools > Select & Zoom > Snapshot Tool Snapshot tool.
2. Drag a rectangle around the image you want to save, and then release the mouse button.

The selection is automatically copied to the clipboard, and you can choose Edit > Paste in another application to paste the copied image into another document.”

That’s assuming you’ve installed Adobe Reader. But that’s an item for another time.

Written by geekypatty

December 1, 2010 at 12:06 pm