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Photoshop WebDesigner Toolbox: All the Resources You’ll Ever Need

If you’re using Photoshop daily it’s essential to have an asset library. Having a pre made toolbox or asset library can be extremely handy. Having the right toolbox can save you a whale of a time and provide you with nifty resources. If you’re a web designer, your asset library will probably differ from a photographers library, however there are things which should be found in every Photoshop user’s toolbox. While you could spend countless hours making your own resources, usually there’s no need to do that. Nowadays the web is full of pre made high-quality resources. I’ve collected various resources, sites and tools that can considerably boost your workflow, free up some time on your agenda and simply enhance your projects. If you don’t see your favourite resource/site/tool, please, feel free to mention it in comments because  maybe I’ve missed something great and noteworthy.

Brushes

1. Brusheezy

Brusheezy-photoshop-toolbox-enhance-work-productivity

Brusheezy is the place to share your free Photoshop brushes and other Photoshop related resources. Here you can explore and discuss the creations of other artists from around the world, or just find that perfect little freebie for your next Photoshop project. Brusheezy makes it easy to explore thousands of resources created by artists from all over the globe.

2. PS Brushes

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PS Brushes is another place where Photoshop brushes are gathered. With weekly brush updates this site is a place you should definitely check out if you’re looking for fresh and neat brushes.

3. Brush Lovers

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BrushLovers has one of the largest collections of exclusive and high-quality Photoshop brushes on the Web. They feature hundreds of Photoshop brushes that are free for both personal and commercial use. You won’t find this collection anywhere else.

Patterns

1. Colour Lovers

Colour-lovers-photoshop-toolbox-enhance-work-productivity

COLOURlovers is an international community of designers and artists of all kinds who visit the site to get color inspiration, ideas and feedback for both their professional and personal projects. In the ColourLovers pattern section you’ll find over 1,410,989 user-created seamless patterns to use in your creative projects.

2. Squid Fingers

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At Squid Fingers you can find over 100 creative patterns to use for your projects. They come as GIFs and are free to use.

3. BG Patterns

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BgPatterns is a tiny web app for making background patterns in a few clicks. It was created mostly for fun and was an experiment by Sergii Iavorskyi.

4. Background Labs

Background-labs-photoshop-toolbox-enhance-work-productivity

Background Labs feature a wide variety of Photoshop backgrounds, patterns, textures and graphics for use in customizing your Twitter profile, blogs and websites. Browse by color, by tags and styles. It can’t get any simpler to find graphics than on Background Labs!

Textures

1. CG Textures

Cg-textures-photoshop-toolbox-enhance-work-productivity

CGTextures strives to be the world’s best texture site. It can be quite difficult to create textures without good photo materials. Making textures should be about creativity, not about frustrating hours looking for images on the Internet. By supplying good quality textures in an organized manner, CG Textures makes your everyday work easier and more enjoyable.

2. Texture King

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Texture King is a resource for free stock textures. Currently the site has over 300 textures in 16 categories.

3. Lost & Taken

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Lost and Taken was created over two and a half years ago with one intention: to helps designers by giving away the best free textures available. To this day, Lost and Taken textures have been viewed tens of millions of times and has helped thousands of designers accomplish their jobs a little easier and with more beautiful results.

4. Mayang’s Free Textures

Mayang-free-textures-photoshop-toolbox-enhance-work-productivity

Mayang’s texture library has over 3800 free to download, high-resolution textures. The reason I included this site is because here you can find a lot of unseen and different kinds of textures you won’t find anywhere else.

5. Texture Lovers

Texture-lovers-photoshop-toolbox-enhance-work-productivity

The purpose of Texture Lovers is to archive some of the best free textures from around the web, and better yet, only archive the ones that are free to use in commercial and personal work without worrying about giving credit to the source (no attribution).

Stock photos

1.Stoxk.xchng

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Sxc.hu is the world’s best free stock site. SXC was launched in February 2001 as an alternative for expensive stock photography. The idea was to create a site where creative people could exchange their photos for inspiration or work. The site has evolved into the massive community you see today — there are over 2,500,000 registered users and around 400,000 photos online.

2.Everystockphoto

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Everystockphoto is a license-specific photo search engine. Currently they index and search millions of freely licensed photos, from many sources, and present them in an integrated search. It’s usually my second choice if I can’t find what I’m looking for in sxc.

3.Morguefile

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Morguefile is the third largest free stock photo site. The Morguefile contains photographs freely contributed by many artists to be used in creative projects by visitors to the site. The purpose of this site is to provide free image reference material for illustrators, comic book artist, designers, teachers and all creative pursuits.

Icons

1. IconFinder

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Iconfinder provides high quality icons for web designers and developers in an easy and efficient way. The site launched in 2007 as the first search engine focused on icons.

2. FindIcons

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FindIcons is an icon search engine helps you find free icons. They have the largest searchable free icons database in the world and both a sophisticated search filtering and result matching system make it possible for you to get an icon you need for every design task.

Fonts

1. Dafont

Dafont-photoshop-toolbox-enhance-work-productivity

Dafont is the largest free font library on the web. Nearly all free fonts make their way onto dafont and it’s definitely the first place to check if looking for qualitative fonts for your projects.

2. Font Squirrel

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Font Squirrel is your best resource for free, hand-picked, high-quality, commercial-use fonts. Even if that means they send you elsewhere to get them.

Cheat Sheets

1. The Photoshop CS5 How To Geek Cheat Sheet

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The Photoshop CS5 Cheat Sheet is a great tool for all Photoshop users, with keyboard shortcuts, graphs and graphics not only good for CS5, but also valid for most versions of Photoshop. The cheat sheet comes in PDF format, which you can easily print using your favorite PDF reader.

2. Photoshop Toolbox Reference

Reference-photoshop-toolbox-enhance-work-productivity

This is a comprehensive Photoshop toolbox reference. You can click on each tool to view its video-manual. It’s very handy if you’re just starting off with Photoshop though even experienced users can find something useful here.

3. Photoshop Etiquette

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The Photoshop Etiquette Manifesto for Web Designers is a list of helpful and subtle suggestions to organize Photoshop documents, making the transfer of them less painful.

General Resources, PSDs

1. Blue Vertigo

Blue-vertigo-photoshop-toolbox-enhance-work-productivity

Blue Vertigo is a huge design resources site established in 2003. You can find almost anything there – starting from stock photo marketplaces and ending with color scheme sites.

2. Premium Pixels

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Premium Pixels is a bunch of free design resources & tutorials created by Orman Clark. Oman Clark created Premium Pixels to share some of the resources and files he’s created in his quest to make the web a more attractive place.

3. Swift PSD

Swiftpsd-photoshop-toolbox-enhance-work-productivity

Swiftpsd offers stunning resources for web, iPhone and iPad. It’s created by Ed Cousins, and swiftpsd is his venture to supply high-quality resources to designers around the world. Launched only couple months ago SwiftPSD looks like a site I’m going to visit often.

4. Designmoo

Designmoo-photoshop-toolbox-enhance-work-productivity

Designmoo is a community for discovering and sharing free PSDs, vectors, textures, patterns, fonts, and more. Their goal is to build a great network of designers and community resources and provide a centralized location for finding great-looking free design resources.

5. Free PSD

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Free PSD offers bunch of free high-quality PSD templates for your use. You’ll find tutorials, brushes, patterns and other Photoshop resources there as well.

6. Design Kindle

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Design Kindle is an idea of Build Interactive, a small web design studio founded by Adrian Pelletier. Their goal is to provide the best free design resources on the web by keeping the file quality incredibly high. You can submit files for review too by sending us an e-mail with a preview of the download you’d like to contribute.

7. 365psd

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365psd is the world’s highest quality source of PSDs that are free for both personal and commercial use. That means any PSD you download can be reused in any project without worrying about licensing.

8. Little PSD

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Little PSD is a brand new (in fact it seems it’s launched only couple days ago) site to find high-quality PSD files.

9. PSD Home

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PSD Home is a web gallery for Photoshop PSD files. It collects PSD files, that’s designers give from everywhere to a single website. At PSD Home you can find PSDs pertaining to buttons, icons, text effects, themes, graphics and much more.

10. PSD Graphics

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Psdgraphics is one man show, launched as a hobby site.Here you can find a lot of free stuff for webmasters and designers. Enjoy fully editable Photoshop PSD files and high resolution stuff.

Plugins

1. Nik Software

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Nik Software, Inc. is a privately-held American company that develops software solutions for the growing digital-imaging and photography markets. Although their plugins are premium only, they’re really worth it. Particularly developed for photo retouching Nik Software is giving photographers the most powerful tools for precise and natural photographic enhancements and corrections without the need for complicated selections or layer masks. You can apply for their live training sections to see the power of this software in action.

2. Fluid Mask 3

Fluid-mask-photoshop-toolbox-enhance-work-productivity

Fluid Mask 3 is a very effective tool for separating complex objects from their backgrounds. Fluid Mask 3 lets you isolate difficult areas and apply alternative selections with all new edges find options – making the tough bits easier. It’s a premium plugin, though you can check out the demo version and tutorials to decide whether you want to purchase it or not.

3. Topaz Labs

Topaz-labs-photoshop-toolbox-enhance-work-productivity

Topaz Labs distills the latest in imaging technology into useful products that deliver excellent results at a reasonable price. Topaz plugins makes it quick and easy to create stunning and dynamic enhancements that will instantly make your images pop with detail, color and depth. Although they’re not free I consider these plugins the second best choice after Nik Software to enhance your photos remarkably.

Tools

1. Divine

Divine-photoshop-toolbox-enhance-work-productivity

Divine is a plugin that helps you convert Photoshop to WordPress in a few minutes instead of long hours. The idea of making Divine came to a young but talented designer who himself was fed up with wasting time on coding. As soon as you get a tool to convert PSD to WordPress, you save your time, effort and patience. You need no special extended knowledge about HTML, no special skills in coding, basics are completely enough to convert PSD to WordPress.

2. Script Arsenal

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Script Arsenal is a handy catalog allowing you to quickly find and apply the required script. It comes to you with 100+ ready-made scripts for creating various effects and streamlining your everyday work flow. Using most of them doesn’t require a substantial Photoshop experience.

3. Compare PSD

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ComparePSD compares two Adobe Photoshop PSD files for you and highlights the differences. Layer by layer. Effect by effect. Simple. Plus it is absolutely free.

4. Mr Stacks

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Mr. Stacks is a Photoshop script that rapidly generates storyboards, stacks, and PDF(s) for CD check-ins, client-ish presentations, and whatever else it is you do. Helping to nail some of the most monotonous tasks in art direction.

5. Modular Grid Pattern

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Modular Grid Pattern is an application for web designers, which helps you quickly and easily to create a modular grid in Adobe Photoshop, Adobe Fireworks, GIMP, Microsoft Expression Design and other. To use the app directly in Photoshop you only need to download and install the convenient extension.

6. foxGuide

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foxGuide is a firefox extension that displays horizontal and vertical guides. Guides will appear as thin lines that float over the webpage. You can move or remove them just the way you do it photoshop. Guides are useful for laying out elements symmetrically, structure a design and improving the overall layout.

7. Photoshop Touch Apps

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Touch, mobility, and Adobe Photoshop® CS5 software—how’ that for a creative combination? Adobe and the developer community can now create apps that communicate with Photoshop CS5 via a range of devices and platforms. Explore new Adobe Photoshop Touch apps for iPad, the first to tap into this new connectivity.

8. Pixel Proliferation

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Change is a constant. The device landscape is always changing and the device types are proliferating. With the increasing demand for unique mid-screen devices, it is becoming an even more arduous task to keep all of the device resolutions and screen sizes straight. This toolset includes Photoshop CS5 marquee tool presets for common screen resolutions, a collection of layered Photoshop CS5 PSDs each providing common devices for comping and design presentations and a reference chart for resolutions and device landscape.

9.960 Grid System

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The 960 Grid System is an effort to streamline web development workflow by providing commonly used dimensions, based on a width of 960 pixels. There are two variants: 12 and 16 columns, which can be used separately or in tandem.

10.GuideGuide

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GuideGuide is a tool for columns, rows and mid­points panel for Pho­to­shop CS4 & CS5. It works similarly to the grid tool in InDesign. With GuideGuide it’s incredibly easy to create columns, guides, gutters and midpoints with just a single click.

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Pure Browser QR-Code Generation jQuery Plugin

jquery.qrcode.js is jquery plugin for a pure browser qrcode generation. It allow you to easily add qrcode to your webpages. It is standalone, less than 4k after minify+gzip, no image download.

It doesnt rely on external services which go on and off, or add latency while loading. It is based on a library which build qrcode in various language. jquery.qrcode.js wraps it to make it easy to include in your own code. You can also try out QR-Code Generator.

qrcode-jquery

Requirements: jQuery Framework
Demo: http://jeromeetienne.github.com/jquery-qrcode/
License: MIT License

Sponsors

Using What Font is you can identify the font you are looking for!

Aactis Shopping Cart: easy, fast and reliable. Check for special offers.

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As The Full Implication of Paul Ryan’s


Port Moron Statement start to sink in.
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“Forgetfulness - a Gift of God”

Vanity_Fair
"bestowed upon debtors in compensation for their destitution of conscience."

-- Ambrose Bierce


Andrew Sullivan dips into the Orwell Goodie Bag.

Oh boy!
Thiessen, Santorum, And Orwell

...
"Enhanced techniques were not used to gain intelligence from detainees — they were used to compel their cooperation. While applying enhanced techniques, interrogators would ask detainees questions to which the interrogators already knew the answers, so they could judge when the detainees had made the decision to begin cooperating. Once they did so, the techniques stopped and the detainees moved into noncoercive debriefing."
- Marc Thiessen.

"'Do you know where you are, Winston?' he said. 'I don't know. I can guess. In the Ministry of Love.' 'Do you know how long you have been here?' 'I don't know. Days, weeks, months -- I think it is months.' 'And why do you imagine that we bring people to this place?' 'To make them confess.' 'No, that is not the reason. Try again.' 'To punish them.' 'No!' exclaimed O'Brien.

His voice had changed extraordinarily, and his face had suddenly become both stern and animated. 'No! Not merely to extract your confession, not to punish you. Shall I tell you why we have brought you here? To cure you! To make you sane! Will you understand, Winston, that no one whom we bring to this place ever leaves our hands uncured? We are not interested in those stupid crimes that you have committed. The Party is not interested in the overt act: the thought is all we care about. We do not merely destroy our enemies, we change them.'"
- George Orwell, Nineteen Eighty-Four.

"This idea that we didn’t ask that question while Khalid Sheikh Mohammed was being waterboarded, [John McCain] doesn’t understand how enhanced interrogation works. I mean, you break somebody, and after they’re broken, they become cooperative."
- Rick Santorum, on Hugh Hewitt's radio show.
...

Of course, when appropriate there is nothing wrong with a dip in the Orwell pool, although back in the Long Ago Olden Bad Times when Mr. Sullivan was making a buck excoriating us "Fifth Columnist", America-hating Liberals (just before he started making a buck aping us) I have a feeling that had any of us cheese-eating surrender-monkeys drawn any such direct and extended comparisons between anyone of Mr. Sullivan's then-running-buddies on the Right and the pure, noumenal evil of "1984", Mr. Sullivan would have machicolating "Moore Awards" down upon us from the Conservative parapets like boiling oil.

So I do not disagree with Mr. Sullivan's extremely obvious take on torture. I mean, who in their right mind could or would? But I will note for the umpteenth time the Primary Revelation from which Mr. Sullivan continues to flee every day of his professional life: the ugly fact that, behind his specific and damning invocation of Orwellian torture stands the gigantic machinery of constant, routinized memory-slaughter that made the world of "1984" possible:

From George Orwell, Nineteen Eighty-Four. (emphasis added and see if this reminds you of any Conservatives you know.)
“To know and not to know, to be conscious of complete truthfulness while telling carefully constructed lies, to hold simultaneously two opinions which cancelled out, knowing them to be contradictory and believing in both of them, to use logic against logic, to repudiate morality while laying claim to it, to believe that democracy was impossible and that the Party was the guardian of democracy, to forget, whatever it was necessary to forget, then to draw it back into memory again at the moment when it was needed, and then promptly to forget it again, and above all, to apply the same process to the process itself -- that was the ultimate subtlety; consciously to induce unconsciousness, and then, once again, to become unconscious of the act of hypnosis you had just performed. Even to understand the word 'doublethink' involved the use of doublethink. ”

“The power of holding two contradictory beliefs in one's mind simultaneously, and accepting both of them....To tell deliberate lies while genuinely believing in them, to forget any fact that has become inconvenient, and then, when it becomes necessary again, to draw it back from oblivion for just so long as it is needed, to deny the existence of objective reality and all the while to take account of the reality which one denies — all this is indispensably necessary. Even in using the word doublethink it is necessary to exercise doublethink. For by using the word one admits that one is tampering with reality; by a fresh act of doublethink one erases this knowledge; and so on indefinitely, with the lie always one leap ahead of the truth."

Yes, torture is horrifying, and those who defend it are moral plague-bearers -- no one needs Mr. Sullivan to tell them that. But for all of its repugnance, torture apologism is simply one particularly grotesque symptom of the widespread, insidious and never-to-be-acknowledged-on-teevee ideological infrastructure of lies upon which the entire Conservative Movement depends, and upon which Mr. Sullivan will never touch.

When you understand that the entire edifice of Conservatism is a massive, multi-generational, consensual hallucination -- an exercise in Strategic Forgettery...

...however much one may agree with some of the Conservative Expat crowd over specific issues such as same sex marriage and marijuana legalization, as long as they cling to their own, obsessive Strategic Forgettery, they will always be fools and clowns and chumps. Because as long as they depend on their own Big Conservative Lie to tuck them in at night and tell them that they're good little Reaganites, they cede any pretense of occupying any moral high ground from which to render judgment on the Palinites and the Beckians.

The homunculi who are left inside the Big Tent Batshit Thunderdome are either stupid, evil or nuts...or some cocktail of all three. And if the trend lines of the last 30 years have proven anything, it's that Conservatives are such willing collaborators in their own brainwashing that neither the Expats or the Palnites and their Elite Enablers are capable of retaining any political inconvenient fact longer than 13 seconds (or, in the case of the Palinites, reacting to anything other than what Rupert and Rush tell them to be angry about this time.)

There is absolutely nothing left sifting around inside their mushy, angry skulls except that sparkly aluminum sand that good people at Ohio Arts use to make the Etch-a-Sketch.

Shake-shake-shake...and Ronald Reagan never sold weapons to terrorists, funded an illegal war, raised taxes four times, or left behind the largest deficit in American history up until that time.

Shake-shake-shake...and Bush the Elder never hired Lee Atwater.

Shake-shake-shake...and what Southern Strategy?

Shake-shake-shake...and George W. Bush is the Greatest President Ever, you filthy, Liberal traitors!

Shake-shake-shake...and where did you ever get the idea that anyone in the Conservative Movement supported that "Progressive" George W. Bush?

Shake-shake-shake...George Bush who?

Shake-shake-shake...Sarah Palin never supported the bailout!

Shake-shake-shake...Deficits don't matter.

Shake-shake-shake...Deficits are worse than six Hitlers!

Shake-shake-shake...the Kenyan Usurper's deficits are destroying America.

Shake-shake-shake...why do you keep calling me a "Republican"? I'm a Conservative!

Shake-shake-shake...why do you keep calling me a "Conservative"? I'm an Independent!

Shake-shake-shake...why do you keep calling me a "Independent"? I'm a Independent/Conservo/Libertarian!
...
...on a cultural/industrial scale -- you begin to see that (to quote the Joker) someone like Newt "Anyone who quotes me verbatim is lying" Gingrich

is not crazy, but merely ahead of a clearly definable curve. Sullivan's Conservative depends completely on everyone agreeing to forget everything that happened before, say, 2006; Palinites and Teabaggers depends on blotting out everything before January 20, 2009; and Gingrich's lies depend on a sliding, three-day window.

Gingrich will probably fail, but he will not fail due to a lack of understanding of the Real Conservative Movement as it really exists. The beating heart of the Modern Right has always been a vicious, xenophobic one – often racist, often fascist and always giddy-drunk on rage and ignorance and fear, and bearing no relationship whatsoever to Mr. Sullivan’s Fantasy Conservative Movement that never was.

So at exactly the same time Mr. Sullivan was busy making a career for himself as the Useful Gay Idiot for a Movement that hated everything he stood for, the Movement’s real leaders – freaks like Falwell and Limbaugh and Ailes and Gingrich -- were busy, busy, busy in the lab, refining and growing the Party’s happily-brainwashed Orwellian Base and building the electoral and cultural monster that now controls the Movement entirely.

No one who saw where the Right was headed a generation ago could possibly be surprised that, after 40 years and hundreds billions of dollars of effort, the Right now exists in a parallel, Orwellian universe, complete with its own newspapers, magazines, teevee networks, book publishers, think tanks and Jebus.

All built on Doublethink.

Or, if you prefer Strategic Forgettery --
...the training of an entire generation of Conservatives to mindlessly attack!attack!attack! the "Left" while holding themselves willfully and belligerently ignorant of what their Movement is really doing and who is really running it -- is, in the end, Ronald Reagan's most potent and vile political legacy: Strategic Forgettery.

One of the most successful practitioners of which is Mr. Andrew Sullivan.






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Is Devin Nunes Really This Stupid?

We've had several fights about spending cuts, and while progressives feel we should prioritize the stability of the economy over the deficit, reasonable minds can disagree.  And while much of the argument is being rehashed with regards to the debt ceiling, again you could understand conservatives fighting for spending cuts.  It is bad policy, and seriously misguided, but you can kind of see where they are coming from.

But this morsel from Devin Nunes (R-Tulare) is really something that nobody with an elementary understanding of economics, something that a member of Congress should posses, should ever even consider saying:

Nunes says the debt cap must be raised at some point but not necessarily before the point of default.

"By defaulting on the debt, in the short and long term, it could benefit us to go through a period of crisis that forces politicians to make decisions" on major policies that affect the budget, he told POLITICO. (Wonk Room)

Either Nunes is posturing based on his base's obsession with ruining the economy, or he really is this stupid.  No, it would not benefit us to create a recession that would be as bad, if not worse than the one that began with the housing crash.  

If you thought that one was bad, imagine the scenario when there is no government to stop the backslide and the entire financial system creeps towards the abyss.  The dollar would be virtually worthless and we would have to essentially give up the majority of our military.  I don't think Nunes understands where our spending really goes.  If the military that he wants to lavish money upon does not get a big portion of the cuts, then there are no substantive cuts.

For his sake and ours, I hope this is just outlandish posturing meant to get attention.  If not, well, redistricting is coming up, and perhaps somebody who doesn't want an economic depression can take his job.


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Video: Step 1 – Measuring and Planning

The first Solaricious video is now online!  The series will take you through the process of designing and installing a solar PV system on your roof.

The first installment looks at how to take a survey of your roof so you can find the best configuration for your panels.  It also looks at potential issues to keep an eye on and has some helpful tips on array placement.

More videos will follow to document every step of the process from buying the components to connecting to the utility grid!

 

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Turning 1 Project into 3

Things have been hopping over here – the hardware has been arriving and I’ve spent more time climbing ladders than sitting at the keyboard. When I started my solar PV project I decided to make this website to both document the work I was doing and to help serve as a resource for other people thinking about a similar undertaking. In a sense I was turning one project into two!

Somewhere along the line I ended up turning two projects into three. I’m a visual learner; watching someone perform a task helps me understand much faster than reading about how to do a job. I’ve got a little bit of video experience and a camera that takes decent video so I decided to shoot a series about installing solar PV systems (and starting project #3…)

Now I’m working all three projects in at the same time – gathering resources for the website and taking video of the work while I’m actually doing the work! On the plus side, while I have to carry the camera equipment both up and down the ladder, all the PV hardware is only going in one direction – up!

The first video is finished (link to appear shortly), progress is being made on the roof (standoffs installed and flashed, rails next) and the panels arrive tomorrow (photos to follow, of course).

 

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Goodwin Liu Needs a Vote

UPDATE: And the right-wingers have their way. They have now blocked Prof. Liu's confirmation, and it is now likely dead.  My guess would be that he withdraws at this point. It is really a shame, as he would have been an outstanding jurist.  So much for the up or down votes that Republicans had been clamoring for just a few years ago.

For far too long now, the nomination of a very qualified attorney, Goodwin Liu has been held up in the Senate.  It appears the "We're not going to filibuster" gang that was formed during the Bush administration only really applied to conservative judges.  When a moderately progressive judge, and that's really what he is, gets nominated, apparently all bets are off.

And the LA Times called bullshit today, as they have done in the past:

Liu, who has been rated "well qualified" by the American Bar Assn., is widely regarded as a brilliant lawyer with a temperament that would well suit him to the bench. He is undeniably on the liberal end of the legal spectrum but is admired for his fair-mindedness by many conservatives. Nevertheless, he was approved by the Senate Judiciary Committee without a single Republican vote. Republicans complained that he was "outside the mainstream," which seems to be a synonym for liberal.

Republicans - and Democrats - inclined to oppose Liu's nomination are free to vote against it. But they would do an injustice to Liu and the Senate by refusing to allow his nomination to come to a vote. The Senate should make such a vote possible - and then approve Liu.(LA Times)

The thing is, Liu really isn't that liberal.  He's certainly no more out of the "mainstream" of legal thought any more than Thomas or Alioto on the Supreme Court.  The Berkeley professor is known for his moderate demeanor and generally being a decent guy, traits that would serve him well on the bench.  Though he is only 40, he has built up an excellent record of legal scholarship.

The 9th Circuit, which includes California, has a plurality of the Asian-American population, yet none of its members are of that community.  President Obama has nominated a well qualified (judged by the ABA) nominee, and he should be confirmed.


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Three Types of Friends Everybody Should Have: Mentor, Peer, and Protegé

Every writer, blogger, designer, developer, singer, actor, at some point started out confused in their chosen career. Not knowing where to go, what to do, and how to react to the things that happen. Look at where you are now: successful, or still working to become successful, but surely you owe what you are now to someone who went out of their way to teach you the basics and guide you whenever you needed a little bit of help.

As a break from the usual articles that give tips, resources, tutorials, and whatnot, why don’t we spend some time together and think of the three types of friends that helped (and are still helping) us through our chosen careers? I am certain that all of us have these people, at least two of them for now. So, are you ready?

Mentor

Mentor_

Everybody should have a mentor in life, not only in your trade. Someone who will share their wisdom when times are hard, someone who will teach you patience and things that you can never hope to understand alone. A mentor is someone who inspires you, someone whom you can hang out with anytime you need him/her. This can be your father, mother, godfather, boss, senior, you get the idea. Having a mentor is the best way to have your actions and thoughts kept in check.

Doing business online with people requires skills, and beginners need someone who will serve as a guide. The person whom I consider my mentor told me to pursue the things that makes me happy, as a result I’ve gained some pounds because I sit in front of my computer all day, typing and reading.

Everybody has one, it may be your middle school teacher, your college professor, or someone you met online. At one point in time you will certainly feel down, maybe because of a client who rejected all of the designs you presented, an article you submitted to a website got sent to the trash, the website you developed crashed, or even as simple as a hater’s comment on your blog post. This is when you need someone to turn to for advice, someone who has been there and survived the crash. Believe me, this is very important. As for me, I am not a great writer but I love writing. One time I was told that my writing is terrible, that I had no future in writing. Writing being one of the few things I genuinely love to do, the comment crushed my heart and I almost stopped. Good thing is I have someone who told me to “stop for a while and don’t start breaking the plates.”

Peer

Peer

Someone you consider your equal and who treats you as theirs. A fellow novice or master in your chosen craft. This is why forums and other support groups exist,so people that are on the same wavelength talk about the things they can’t tell others because, probably, others won’t understand. Having a friend who you consider to be of equal caliber is a great thing. You can spend all day talking about the last client you had, rant about the things that irk you, or even insult each other. This is actually healthy, because having a friend who is close to your age and skill (or slightly above you) is what will keep you evolving. Is it not obvious why self-obsessed people rarely make it to the top? It’s because they do not consider anyone to be above or equal to them, making things a little static.

I am a beginner when it comes to blogging, and I look up to my pals here at 1stwebdesigner. Most of the time, when I’m not procrastinating, I’m doing my best to learn from them and competing with them in a healthy way. That’s what keeps me going, someone whom I can run side by side with and talk about work and casual things. It’s not that hard, talking about private life too, since we’re almost of the same age. That is something you can’t remove in any age group, most people will always feel at ease when someone they work with is of the same age.

I’m pretty sure that everyone has friends either known personally or in the internet.

Protegé

Protege

Nothing beats having a younger friend to teach the important things in life and career to, someone you can guide along the path he/she really wants to take. Because you have been there once, you can easily guide someone who is about to follow a similar path. Plus young people have lots of wild ideas that may help you.

I am still far from this, but I am hoping that when the time comes I’ll take someone and teach him/her everything I know, be a mentor to a kid who’s just setting out.

For established writers, designers, developers, and others, I’m hoping that you have one or two beginners that you are teaching. Although I’m still far from being a mentor, I am sure that I will want to leave something behind with someone.

You’ve been there, you know what to do, make it easy (or hard) for them to do it. It is true that future generations are, most of the time, better than the previous. This is because the previous generation has taught things, things that should have been done and the should nots. Like leaving behind a living testament to what you were. It may seem grim to think that someday you’ll be gone, but isn’t it heartwarming to think that you’ve helped someone achieve their dreams even if you’ve already retired? But I’m not saying that you should take someone under your wing when you’ve retired already, you can start now, actually. So, who’d want to take me? I don’t bite.

For some this may be obvious, to others it might not, but you wouldn’t be where you are now if no one helped you somewhere along the way.

So, what is your story?

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FullScreen Background with Slideshow & Overlay Support

Vegas Background jQuery plugin lets you add beautiful fullscreen backgrounds to your webpages. It even allows Slideshows. Slideshows of different backgrounds, transition and callbacks can be easily set up.

Most of the time, backgrounds are stretched a lot to fit big screens. An overlay with a texture can be added to mask the image degradation effects. It also adds a stylish look to your backgrounds. You can easily add overlay pattern to your backgrounds with CSS.

background-jquery

Requirements: jQuery Framework
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License: MIT, GPL License

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