Sons are useful for… making icons

Calendar in Chrome icon

Or: Mothers and sons learn together

Can I?…

My calendar is in Google calendar. A shortcut on my desktop lets me open it in Chrome with one click.  Of course, then I decided I wanted a special calendar icon for it.  I wanted a calendar in the middle of a chrome icon. Yes a calendar icon would have been simpler but I had a notion of it needing to look similar to the shortcut I have at work.

Would you?

This is where my digital-media-trained and his Photoshop skillz comes in.

That’s great but …

Unfortunately his beautiful combinations looked fine in photoshop, but the first opened at my end with a black background, another had a white background, and when we tried to save as .ico in bmp or png formats (because Photoshop CC did not seem to be able to save to .ico) some showed no image at all.

Trial and error

Some of the clues we tried:

  • Ryan at StackExchange suggested that we must first save the .png files to the computer, and then open them with Photoshop (during copy paste techniques Photoshop converts the transparency to black).
  • Although my issue does not involve WordPress as did Mike Lee’s 2012 issue with the black turning up when he resized images, I wondered from his problem statement whether I might eliminate resizing as a possible cause by using images that were already the desired size. That appeared to help, but we were working through ideas so quickly I am not sure if it was required, because for the one below Mr 17 did resize one of the source images.  I’d have preferred a blue calendar, but could not find one the right size licenced for reuse.
Calendar in Chrome icon
Image (pre-iconised) I use for shortcut to Calendar in Chrome

Source images are from Wikipedia: (Calendar) and (Chrome).

Targetting a home to rent in Ballarat

Perhaps its not so bad that I must find a new home.  After all, the search has already resulted in showing me a tool I had not seen before.

Desiring to live within a short walk of work, I wondered how might most easily circle the desirable area on a map.  Not having a paper map or compass to hand I looked online and found:

Map Radius
On arrival at the webtool, the map is centered on London. I saw no option to identify a new town but easily zoomed and panned to center on my home town. Then I just entered the desired radius and clicked where I wanted the centre of my circle.

Somewhere in this 1.3km radius circle around the University of Ballarat is where I would like to find a new home to rent.

The house we would like will have:

  • 3 bedrooms (2 of them large)
  • 2 living areas – the lounge large enough to contain two computer stations in addition to usual furniture.
  • Kitchen with space for both fridge and tall freezer
  • Interior laundry
  • Undercover parking
  • Quiet location preferred


Pied piper of Ballarat 1956 (Opa Meerbach) +Trove newspapers plugin

1956 Argus newspaper image
In The Argus, May 22, 1956 (via Trove): Anthony Meerbach on the flute, with children

Today I (re?)learned Opa Meerbach had been called the “Pied Piper of Ballarat” (in 1956).

Pied Piper has a way with kids

Pied Piper has a

way with kids

Mr. ANTHONY MEERBACH - "The Pied Piper of Sebastopol" brings the children running

WHEN the "Pied Piper of Ballarat" starts to play his flute, children

race from their homes to be enchanted by his playing.    

To them Mr. An thony Meerbach, a music teacher, who

arrived in Ballarat from Holland 10 months ago, is a real virtuoso.

There's a little bit of   Holland at the end of Drummond st., in Sebas topol.  

From three houses come a total of 28 chil dren, and from Mr. Meerbach's house come his eight.

There are the Meer bach's eight, then next door the Damen's nine children. On the other side of the Meerbach's       live the deKroon's, with nine, and across Drum mond st., the Coppens top the list with 10 healthy children.

Mr. Meerbach, who has earned the title of the Pied Piper of Bal larat, is a part-time music teacher at the East Ballarat High, and other schools in Ballarat.

The students learn   musical appreciation, singing and music from   Mr. Meerbach, who plays eight instruments with   equal facility.

They include wood- wind instruments, piano, percussion instruments and "the old squeeze box," as Mr. Meerbach described his piano ac cordion.  

Source: Trove

It is an amusing little window into the past – amusing, but also somewhat sad: I never met Opa, I can never know what it was like to grow up in that neighbourhood at that time.

Slightly more entertaining for me if not my family is the little electronic adventure at the end of which I dug up the article:

  1. After a morning of reading a somewhat disappointing account of library 2.0 endeavours I finally sat at the computer, determined to move forward in my study.
  2. Coincidentally ellenforsyth’s rebelmouse page was the tab topmost from yesterday’s browsing.
  3. Her tweet of 18 hours ago caught my eye – linking to David Armano’s urging to focus on mobility as lifestyle rather than mobile as device
  1. In the process of saving to delicious via Diigo and synchronously tweeting it, Twitter suggested I follow Diigo’s twitter stream (I did).
  2. Twitter then suggested Trove’s in which I found a retweet of Bradley Headland’s about Paul Hagon’s Trove newspapers plugin for WordPress:
  1. Although I don’t normally search the newspapers, if I did want to share something, Paul Hagon’s rationale for attribution – and use of the text – made me curious.
  2. Upon finding the above article, had the opportunity to correct the OCR, before giving the plugin a try.

Not bad – a little irritating that some paragraphs reunite lines while others do not – I wonder how that happens?