webDotWiz talks Windows Live

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Seasons greetings video card and taking a walk on the wild side – webDotWiz Online column Dec 17 2009

Seasons greetings video card


You’ll need Windows Live Movie Maker (if you haven’t got it installed, download it from download.live.com – it’s free) and some photos and/or video clips. Optionally to save some time, you can download some title and credit pictures and music from Windows Live Wire.

Keep your video card to a length of about thirty seconds (each music track mentioned above runs for this length of time).

In Live Photo Gallery go through your photos to choose a dozen or so to include in your video card. Tag each photo you want to use with a tag such as Video Card. If you’re thinking of making several video cards for different groups of family and friends, tag your photos with Video Card 1, Video Card 2, or appropriate tags of your choosing.

Click the tag in Live Photo Gallery for the photos and/or video clips you want to use in your video card, go to Make on the top menu and click Make a movie… Live Movie Maker will load with your photos. Now you can add your choice of title and credit pictures from the Video Card Holiday package. Alternatively, you could use Paint.NET to create your own title and credit graphics.

In Live Movie Maker click AutoMovie to add transitions between your photos. When asked for music to add, decline – we’ll do that later. AutoMovie adds a black title and credit frame to your movie – we don’t want these so click each and then click Remove to take them out.

Use drag and drop to organise your seasons greeting title and credit pictures to the start and end of your movie respectively. As well you may want to shuffle some of your photos around to put them in some order.

Now you can add music to your video card. As mentioned, the tracks in the Video Card Holiday package are each thirty seconds in length. Check the time your video card will play for – you may have to remove a photo or two. Alternatively click on the Fit to music option on the Live Movie Maker’s Home tab. If you’ve included a video clip or two in your video card, you may have to use Live Movie Maker’s video trimming tool to reduce the length of your video card.

Allowing some extra time to make everything fit to your liking, you should be able to create a seasons greeting card in a few minutes.

You could take a few seconds longer to add some text to the credit picture at the end of your video and some captions to your photos.

The last job is to render the movie. From the Home tab, select the standard, 720p or 1080p definition output options and save your video in your Videos folder. Now you can attach this video to emails you send to family and friends and/or upload to YouTube or Facebook to share.

Taking a walk on the wild side – New Bing Maps

Go to Bing at www.bing.com and change your location to United States (check the top right of the Bing page). If your location is Australia or another country, click to bring up a page of country choices – choose United States – English. Now we’re ready to explore the new Bing Maps at www.bing.com/maps/explore.

To start, enter Rushworth in the search box at the top and click the search icon. Hover over the graphic to the right of the current temperature – this is a link that will take you to various Photosynth photo collections that the webDotWizards (and others) have located as being at Rushworth or nearby. Wait a minute or two and you’ll see green icons pop up to indicate Photosynths from the area.

Now let’s go for a walk. Firstly we need to find cities that have been photographed for the new Streetside feature. To discover cities that have Streetside view, click the blue figure down in the navigation panel at the bottom of the map. You can try Melbourne or Sydney but Bing Maps will inform you that our two largest cities haven’t yet been Streetsided (the little blue man changes to red).


So let’s go to New York and try there – there are plenty of streets to walk around once you click on the blue Streetside icon. Streets are indicated on the map with blue outlining.

Zoom and pan until you’re in Jersey City and you see a Streetsided section that will let us walk along the Hudson with a view out to Liberty Island and Ellis Island. Place the Streetside icon at the end of Morris Pesin Drive.

To walk along Morris Pesin Drive simply move the blue Streetside icon. Up at the top left of the map is a thumbnail view which indicates your angle of view. Now you can drag the view to look left and right or up and down. As well you can zoom in or out. To walk along further, place the Streetside icon further along the road and click. Looking towards the Hudson River, you might be able to just see the Statue of Liberty behind the trees. To exit Streetside view, click the map icon in the navigation menu at the bottom of the map.

Exit Streetside and move your map over to FDR Drive on the east side of Manhattan Island. Return to Streetside view and walk towards Brooklyn Bridge – watch out for traffic. Keep walking to the Manhattan Bridge and head over this bridge. Watch for traffic and trains. You’ll be able to look to your right for a good view of Brooklyn Bridge.

Other cities to take a stroll around include Los Angeles, San Franscisco and Chicago. Remember Bing Maps will show you where Streetside is available by bringing up a blue overlay when you click on that little blue man.


Seasons greetings video card
Taking a walk on the wild side – New Bing Maps

For all the links in this week’s webDotWiz Online column, see www.webdotwiz.com/sites-171209.html


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Posted using the 2009 version of Windows Live Writer.

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