Archive for April 28, 2015

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

How to Eliminate Drop Shadows in Screenshots

Josh Centers:

You probably know about the keyboard shortcut to take a screenshot of a portion of the screen: Command-Shift-4. […] Less well known is the fact that if, instead of dragging out a rectangle, you press the Space bar, your cursor becomes a camera, and placing it over a window, dialog, or dropped-down menu highlights that object. Click the highlighted object and you get a screenshot of just that object, complete with drop shadow, on your Desktop.

But what if you don’t want the drop shadow? Easy. Instead of clicking the highlighted object, Option-click. That produces the same screenshot with no drop shadow.

What if you never want a drop shadow on your screenshots (like us)? In that case, you need to fire up the Terminal app.

He also presents a Quartz Composition filter for adding borders to screenshots that don’t have drop shadows.

Adobe Photoshop Lightroom CC 2015 Review

Jeff Carlson:

Lightroom CC now takes advantage of your computer’s GPU (graphics processing unit) for image-intensive tasks, so the main processor isn’t shouldering as much of the load. Computers with discrete GPUs see the most improvement, but machines with integrated GPUs (soldered onto the motherboard, such as many Intel processors) also see improvements. […] Want to see the difference yourself? In Lightroom’s preferences, you can turn off the Use Graphics Processor option in the Performance screen, an option no doubt included in case compatibility issues arise with graphics cards.


Lightroom 5 offered a way to create HDR (high dynamic range) photos by selecting two or more shots of the same scene captured at different exposures and shuttling them over to Photoshop CC’s HDR Pro module. Instead of taking that round trip through Photoshop to merge the shots into one, Lightroom CC now includes its own HDR Merge feature.

I think I will eventually switch to Lightroom and adjust to it, but I’m not looking forward to that process.

Microsoft’s LLVM-Based Compiler for .NET

Russell Hadley (via Slashdot):

The LLILC project (we pronounce it “lilac”) is a new effort started at Microsoft to produce MSIL code generators based on LLVM and targeting the open source dotnet CoreCLR. We are envisioning using the LLVM infrastructure for a number of scenarios, but our first tool is a Just in Time(JIT) compiler for CoreCLR. This new project is being developed on GitHub and you can check it out at


This new JIT will allow any C# program written for the .NET Core class libraries to run on any platform that CoreCLR can be ported to and that LLVM will target.


Nate Cook:

An Unmanaged<T> instance wraps a CoreFoundation type T, preserving a reference to the underlying object as long as the Unmanaged instance itself is in scope. There are two ways to get a Swift-managed value out of an Unmanaged instance:

  • takeRetainedValue(): returns a Swift-managed reference to the wrapped instance, decrementing the reference count while doing so—use with the return value of a Create Rule function.

  • takeUnretainedValue(): returns a Swift-managed reference to the wrapped instance without decrementing the reference count—use with the return value of a Get Rule function.

In practice, you’re better off not even working with Unmanaged instances directly. Instead, take... the underlying instance immediately from the function’s return value and bind that.

Amazon Sues Fake Review Site

Joe Mullin (via Slashdot):

The giant of online retail has filed a lawsuit (PDF) in King County Superior Court against Jay Gentile, a California man who Amazon says created websites offering to sell verified Amazon reviews for between $19 and $22 per review. The websites sell varying packages of reviews, allowing users to buy as few as three reviews and as many as 100.

The offerings include “drip-feed delivery” and a “100 percent stick guarantee” for reviews, promising to replace any that Amazon deleted or filtered out.