Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Hooray: Picasa 3 supports Pentax raw files

I just realized that Picasa 3 supports Pentax raw (.PEF) files. Earlier versions of Picasa were able to display the PEF files generated by my Pentax K10D and K20D, but Picasa could not read the EXIF info. Now it can. This is good news. All important photos go through Adobe Lightroom, but this requires some effort, because I have to attach the big hard drive to my laptop. But I take a lot of unimportant photos - lots of test shots, for example, but sometimes just quick shots while I'm working or driving around - and I'd like to look at 'em without having to mount the big drive and launch Lightroom. Now I can just copy those quick shots on to my laptop's internal drive and look at them in Picasa 3, then decide whether to keep 'em or not. Hooray!

Chrome 1 no threat to Firefox 3

I've been using Google's new browser - named "Chrome" - ever since the day it was released a couple of weeks ago. Chrome is cute, but that's about all I can say in its favor. I'm going to stick with Firefox 3 for now.

Firefox is a very mature and capable browser with a terrific feature set; Chrome is an immature application with a very limited feature set. One key difference: Firefox supports themes and add-ons, Chrome doesn't. This is a big deal for me, as I make great use of a number of Firefox themes (today I'm using a theme that makes Firefox look kinda like Chrome!) and add-ons. Ironically, thanks to add-ons, Firefox does a better job of letting me access Google's online applications than Chrome does.
  1. I keep all my bookmarks in Google Bookmarks. There's an add-on for Firefox called GMarks that lets me access my bookmarks in a side panel or via a special Gmarks menu. In Chrome, on the other hand, my only option is to go to the Google Bookmarks web page.
  2. Another add-on for Firefox 3 ("Better Gmail") improves the look and features of the Gmail user interface, which is important because I use Google's Gmail application for all of my mail.
  3. A third Firefox add-on (Surf Canyon) helps me wade through Google's search results more efficiently. 
  4. Finally, I'm using the ScribeFire add-on for Firefox 3 to write this blog post. I find the user interface for Scribe Fire much nicer to use than the web interface for Blogger (which publishes my blog).
In short, Firefox does Google better than Google does.

And I've had some significant problems with Chrome. Although it's supposed to be the fastest browser available right now, it's clear that "fast" has a technical meaning that I don't care that much about. For me, Chrome is not fast, in fact, very often pages seem to load much more slowly in Chrome than in Firefox.

So I'm sticking with Firefox now. Chrome isn't yet in the same league.

About Me

I am an event photographer living in Dallas, Texas.