Microsoft HD Photo Format (Beta) Plugin

Microsoft has released a Photoshop CS2/3 beta plugin for a file format that they are hoping will replace jpeg.

There is native support in the Vista shell and Windows Photo Gallery to display WDP format (but sadly, none in Windows Media Center).

I actually have been testing the plugin with Adobe Photoshop Elements 5.0. Using the default setting of .9 lossy, the file size is about half of saving to a non compressed jpg. Hit the slider and go up to 1.0 on this new format and the size is bigger.  The plugin allows files to be saved as WDP or HDP. HDP is not working for me in the Windows Shell or Photo Gallery (x64 Vista). The files save, but no file association is created. I can open them in PSE 5.0, however.

Screen capture below shows support in PSE 5.0, Windows Photo Gallery, and the explorer shell.

MS Excel 2007 Compatibility Stupidity

About a year ago, I used a beta of Excel 2007 to save a bunch of worksheets in Excel 2003 format to avoid compatibility issues. Never gave it a thought in spite of some warnings later on about not being able to open in later versions of Excel 2007.

This morning, I tried to open several of these in RTM version of Excel 2007. Got a nastigram display box that these xls files were incompatible and I needed to install the beta version of Excel 2007. WTF?

I have Excel 2003 on my corporate laptop. Took a USB flash drive with the files in question over to that laptop. Absolutely no complaints from Excel 2003 and they opened just fine. I resaved them in Excel 2003 and replaced the ones that wouldn’t open. Mission accomplished.

Excel 2007 is pretty dumb if you ask me.

WPA hack for the MN-740 game adapter

I’ve been struggling with whether or not to post the link to the information that enables you to add WPA to a Microsoft MN-740 game adapter by turning it into an unsupportable quasi D-Link DGL-3420.

As a Microsoft MVP I pursued every channel available to me for an extended period to attempt to convince MS to do the work (or contract it out) to upgrade this device to WPA-PSK. It would not have taken a huge amount of work or effort.

As a near militant proponent of WPA to replace laughable WEP encryption, I’ve decided to post the link to the information.

Here are the disclaimers:

1. I don’t condone this hack

2. You will void your warranty

3. Microsoft won’t support you

4. I won’t support you

5. You could brick your device and have to throw it out (if you do, buy the real D-Link DGL-3420, it’s awesome)

6. Reverse engineering is illegal according to many EULA’s

7. It may not work

8. Anything else I can’t think of at the moment

9. I’m not taking responsibility

If you read this far, here’s the link,13360873

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