Friday, January 18, 2013

When To Go Soft

Urn With A Fern, Charleston, SC  -  2012
(Click on photo to enlarge.)

For many, if not most photographers, the holy grail is sharpness. We want crisp, clean, sharp photos. No blurriness caused by camera motion or poor focus allowed. Only the most precise lenses with the finest glass that modern technology can produce will do! I, too, often fall prey to this never-ending quest for sharpness.

Then why do some photos seemingly beg me too soften them up a little when I get them up on my computer screen? This photo of an urn in the courtyard of a synagogue in Charleston was one such photo. As a sharp, contrasty B&W it just wasn't working for me. A little softening added in Virtual Photographer, and a little toning - now that's better!
Last month, My Viewfinder was attacked (I don't know a better term to use) by hackers who somehow inserted malware onto my site which could be picked up unknowingly by visitors. Lacking the know-how and time to root it out, I decided to shut down the site rather than expose my visitors to malicious content. So far, My Viewfinder 2 has not experienced any problems, although I'm sure I lost quite a few viewers in the switch-over.

This month, my Facebook page was hacked. Somehow my "Likes" section was invaded by sites I had never visited or heard of, much less "liked". The sites started spamming my entire Friends list. Many contained only gibberish for content, although some appeared to have Russian Cyrillic characters in their text. I spent hours trying everything I could Google to get rid of it with no results. In fact, it only got worse. Giving up, I deactivated my Facebook page. The next day, I created a new Facebook page. Within two hours the same trash was showing up on the new page, leading me to conclude that the criminals had somehow put something on my computer that affected Facebook. I scanned my computer with several different anti-virus and anti-malware products, and they all showed me clean. Again, I had no choice but to deactivate the second site to avoid spreading this mess to my friends on Facebook.

Long story short, I'll be out of the Facebook loop until I can find out how to get this junk off my computer. It doesn't appear to have affected anything but Facebook, but I'm being cautious. I'll miss Facebook. It was a good way to keep up with some family members back in Louisiana, and friends, both old and new. It was also a great way to call attention to new posts on this site. Hopefully, some of my past visitors will find their way here anyway.

1 comment:

  1. I have missed you on FB John. I saw all those likes and strange things that came on my FB too. I clicked on each of those and said they were Spam. Haven't seen any since. I knew they were musicians and people you would not be promoting.
    Hope this blog-site stays clean.
    I love seeing your work and finding out what's going on in your neck of the woods.
    Hang in there. I really hope you can get back onto FB in the future.