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BUSINESS
By JIM COATES and JIM COATES,CHICAGO TRIBUNE | June 29, 2006
I recently bought a laptop with a wide- screen display. When I run certain programs on it, games in particular, the content of the display is squashed vertically or stretched horizontally. How do I cause the display to be standard, non-wide-screen dimensions, with black bars on the left and right? - Jim Fentress @excite.com First of all, wide-screen monitors built into laptops, or those attached to desktops, use a default aspect ratio of about 16 units wide by 9 tall, called letterbox mode, but a great many programs and machines use the much more square 4:3 aspect ratio.
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BUSINESS
By MIKE HIMOWITZ | January 10, 2008
When we bought a 42-inch high-definition television set six months ago, I didn't realize I was getting a twofer. It's not only a great medium for movies and football games, but also the biggest computer monitor I've ever used. And certainly the most fun. The notion of using the TV this way surfaced when I looked at the mind-boggling array of video and audio connectors on the back of the set and noticed a standard VGA port - the same kind a computer uses to connect to a monitor. The port on the TV was even labeled "PC."
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ENTERTAINMENT
By Sean Gallagher and Sean Gallagher,SPECIAL TO THE SUN | May 25, 1998
Digital television isn't just an evolution of today's standard for television broadcasting - it's a revolutionary change.It requires completely new transmitting and receiving equipment and will require changes to everything related to TV, including videocassette recorders and cable TV systems - even the shape and size of TVs themselves.The first difference is in how the signal is broadcast.The current standard for TV transmission, developed by the National Television Standards Committee, uses the same principles to transmit pictures and sound that radio uses: Separate radio signals within a band of radio frequencies (or channels)
BUSINESS
By MIKE HIMOWITZ | September 20, 2007
It's no secret that many printers are sold as loss leaders. A manufacturer can give away great hardware if he can sell the ink at $35 a cartridge and paper for 25 cents a snapshot. That's where the profit is today. Given that business model, I've always been suspicious of printers equipped to print photos directly from a camera's memory card without going through a computer. For me, editing photos is the whole point of digital photography. A perfect shot is rare. With a computer you get a chance to adjust the exposure, crop the image, lighten the shadows, eliminate red-eye and smooth out the occasional wrinkle.
FEATURES
By Chris Kaltenbach and Chris Kaltenbach,Sun Movie Critic | March 16, 2007
Letterboxing has made it possible to see the entire frame of a film on television, regardless of its aspect ratio (width to height). Maybe they need to start letterboxing in theaters as well. Too many times I've gone to screenings where the tops and bottoms of the frame are missing. Sometimes, the effect has been innocuous - for instance, the Web site being cut off the studio logo that appears before every film. But sometimes it's detrimental. It's hard to imagine that directors are making movies where they want their characters' heads out of the frame, but that has been the effect.
BUSINESS
By MIKE HIMOWITZ | November 23, 2006
If you're shopping for technology this holiday season, you may have reason to celebrate. Sony has released the hot PlayStation 3 (although it's in short supply). Nintendo has introduced its Wii game console (with a nifty 3D controller), and Microsoft has released its Zune digital music player to compete with Apple's iPod. But the real excitement this year is in high-definition television. HDTV sets can produce far more detailed pictures on larger screens than standard TVs. Thanks to competition and better manufacturing, the price of HD has fallen far more quickly than anyone expected.
BUSINESS
By Mike Himowitz | May 5, 2005
I DRIVE A BUICK. Before that, I drove a Dodge Caravan. These are not exactly the hottest cars on the planet, but each served my purposes at the time I bought it. So there you have it - the confession of guy who likes boring cars. Given this character flaw, what would I do if someone asked me to review a new Maserati? Sure, I could report that it went like a bat out of hell when I stomped on the gas, but would I know whether it's faster than a Lamborghini or handles better than a Porsche?
ENTERTAINMENT
By Michael James and Michael James,SUN STAFF | April 9, 2001
The latest DVD movies look great on Ron Morman's 55-inch television - except for one glaring flaw. "It's those awful black bars above and below the movie," says Morman, a 57-year-old building maintenance technician from Essex. "Everyone proclaims what a great technology this is and how you get a wider picture. But the way I see it, I'm losing visual. It looks like what they're doing is smashing the image and spreading it out." Morman is learning the hard way that more than 80 percent of movies released on the new DVD medium are in "letterbox" format.
BUSINESS
By MIKE HIMOWITZ | September 20, 2007
It's no secret that many printers are sold as loss leaders. A manufacturer can give away great hardware if he can sell the ink at $35 a cartridge and paper for 25 cents a snapshot. That's where the profit is today. Given that business model, I've always been suspicious of printers equipped to print photos directly from a camera's memory card without going through a computer. For me, editing photos is the whole point of digital photography. A perfect shot is rare. With a computer you get a chance to adjust the exposure, crop the image, lighten the shadows, eliminate red-eye and smooth out the occasional wrinkle.
BUSINESS
By MIKE HIMOWITZ | January 10, 2008
When we bought a 42-inch high-definition television set six months ago, I didn't realize I was getting a twofer. It's not only a great medium for movies and football games, but also the biggest computer monitor I've ever used. And certainly the most fun. The notion of using the TV this way surfaced when I looked at the mind-boggling array of video and audio connectors on the back of the set and noticed a standard VGA port - the same kind a computer uses to connect to a monitor. The port on the TV was even labeled "PC."
BUSINESS
By Mike Himowitz and Mike Himowitz,Sun Columnist | June 7, 2007
Last week I talked about the principles of buying a laptop computer for your college student (or yourself). Today I'll cover the specific components of a portable PC. Like automobiles, computers have "stickers" that tell you what's inside. It will be posted on the retailer's shelf, on a technical specifications screen if you're shopping online, and usually on a real sticker attached to the computer itself. Here's what to look for: The screen The size and shape of the liquid crystal display (LCD)
FEATURES
By Chris Kaltenbach and Chris Kaltenbach,Sun Movie Critic | March 16, 2007
Letterboxing has made it possible to see the entire frame of a film on television, regardless of its aspect ratio (width to height). Maybe they need to start letterboxing in theaters as well. Too many times I've gone to screenings where the tops and bottoms of the frame are missing. Sometimes, the effect has been innocuous - for instance, the Web site being cut off the studio logo that appears before every film. But sometimes it's detrimental. It's hard to imagine that directors are making movies where they want their characters' heads out of the frame, but that has been the effect.
BUSINESS
By MIKE HIMOWITZ | November 23, 2006
If you're shopping for technology this holiday season, you may have reason to celebrate. Sony has released the hot PlayStation 3 (although it's in short supply). Nintendo has introduced its Wii game console (with a nifty 3D controller), and Microsoft has released its Zune digital music player to compete with Apple's iPod. But the real excitement this year is in high-definition television. HDTV sets can produce far more detailed pictures on larger screens than standard TVs. Thanks to competition and better manufacturing, the price of HD has fallen far more quickly than anyone expected.
BUSINESS
By JIM COATES and JIM COATES,CHICAGO TRIBUNE | June 29, 2006
I recently bought a laptop with a wide- screen display. When I run certain programs on it, games in particular, the content of the display is squashed vertically or stretched horizontally. How do I cause the display to be standard, non-wide-screen dimensions, with black bars on the left and right? - Jim Fentress @excite.com First of all, wide-screen monitors built into laptops, or those attached to desktops, use a default aspect ratio of about 16 units wide by 9 tall, called letterbox mode, but a great many programs and machines use the much more square 4:3 aspect ratio.
BUSINESS
By Mike Himowitz | May 5, 2005
I DRIVE A BUICK. Before that, I drove a Dodge Caravan. These are not exactly the hottest cars on the planet, but each served my purposes at the time I bought it. So there you have it - the confession of guy who likes boring cars. Given this character flaw, what would I do if someone asked me to review a new Maserati? Sure, I could report that it went like a bat out of hell when I stomped on the gas, but would I know whether it's faster than a Lamborghini or handles better than a Porsche?
ENTERTAINMENT
By Michael James and Michael James,SUN STAFF | April 9, 2001
The latest DVD movies look great on Ron Morman's 55-inch television - except for one glaring flaw. "It's those awful black bars above and below the movie," says Morman, a 57-year-old building maintenance technician from Essex. "Everyone proclaims what a great technology this is and how you get a wider picture. But the way I see it, I'm losing visual. It looks like what they're doing is smashing the image and spreading it out." Morman is learning the hard way that more than 80 percent of movies released on the new DVD medium are in "letterbox" format.
BUSINESS
By Mike Himowitz and Mike Himowitz,Sun Columnist | June 7, 2007
Last week I talked about the principles of buying a laptop computer for your college student (or yourself). Today I'll cover the specific components of a portable PC. Like automobiles, computers have "stickers" that tell you what's inside. It will be posted on the retailer's shelf, on a technical specifications screen if you're shopping online, and usually on a real sticker attached to the computer itself. Here's what to look for: The screen The size and shape of the liquid crystal display (LCD)
NEWS
By Peter Hermann | December 29, 2011
The Maryland Transit Administration just released this flier on an armed robbery that occurred earlier this month on a light rail train in South Baltimore's Cherry Hill:
ENTERTAINMENT
By Sean Gallagher and Sean Gallagher,SPECIAL TO THE SUN | May 25, 1998
Digital television isn't just an evolution of today's standard for television broadcasting - it's a revolutionary change.It requires completely new transmitting and receiving equipment and will require changes to everything related to TV, including videocassette recorders and cable TV systems - even the shape and size of TVs themselves.The first difference is in how the signal is broadcast.The current standard for TV transmission, developed by the National Television Standards Committee, uses the same principles to transmit pictures and sound that radio uses: Separate radio signals within a band of radio frequencies (or channels)
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