The Missing Camera

By Isabel M.

      Eleven-year-old Elizabeth was sitting down, speechless. She was shocked. With her jaw dropped, she looked as if she was in a trance. She didn’t know what to say. She didn’t know what to do. Her camera was gone. It was missing.

      “I searched everywhere,” Elizabeth said to herself. “Everywhere! In every spot, in every corner of this house I looked! But yet, my camera wasn’t found. It wasn’t found!”

      With intensity, the words kept ringing in her head: it wasn’t found. Her two sisters helped her look. Her parents helped her look. All Elizabeth could do now was just sit there, and not move. Nobody quite knew how devastated the girl was. She was a passionate photographer. So much so that she couldn’t imagine life without her beloved camera.

      The camera was the most expensive one she had ever had. And it was her favorite one, too. She had some cameras before, but none of them matched up to the performance of this one. She thought it was irreplaceable.

      Life suddenly seemed very strange for Elizabeth, who sat there that afternoon, in the quiet house, in the living room.

      Elizabeth’s two sisters, 9-year-old Sarah, and 14-year-old April were each in their own rooms. Neither could really bare the sight of their sister. The parents, Claire and Gradgrind, were also gone, out of the room. There was nowhere else they could look for the camera.

      Nobody liked it this way. But more than anyone else, the youngest sister, Sarah, didn’t like the gloominess in the air. The house wasn’t the same without Elizabeth’s cheerfulness. Sarah wanted to change this. She moved about, and paced with doubt. Finally, she thought it was a good idea to see her sister, and try to make her happy again.

      Sarah walked into the living room. She sat down next to her sister. Elizabeth didn’t blink. She didn’t move.

      “I can’t believe your camera is gone,” Sarah said. “It’s a mystery indeed.”

      In her best encouraging voice, Sarah added: “But you know, Elizabeth, there’s a lot more cameras where that came from.”

      Elizabeth was deep in thought. “She doesn’t quite understand. My camera was the best,” she said to herself.

      “You know, it’s getting late Elizabeth. Don’t you think you should go to bed, and perhaps wake up without thinking of your camera?” Sarah attempted yet again, but nothing seemed to work. After trying, and trying, and trying, and trying to make her sister happy, it was 10 p.m. Sarah went on for about two hours. Her sister was pretty upset. The girls were told to go to bed by their mother, and Elizabeth, practically had to be forced to go to bed.

      Early the next day, everyone was at the kitchen table for breakfast. Nobody was really all that happy, besides April, the oldest sister.

      “I’ve got an awesome idea!” April said. “I’m going to help Elizabeth find her camera!” The family looked at her, wondering how she was so content, and so sure of herself.

      “April,” Gradgrind began, “I know things are sad right now, and you’re trying to help out. But, we don’t want anybody’s hopes getting high now.”

      “But daddy!” She continued. Believe me, it’s going to work!!! Look, here’s the plan! I’m going to give it specifically to my friends!” She gave her father a sheet of paper. It said this:

Just yesterday morning, my sister lost her camera. She’s very sad about it. We all are. You see, she was in the backyard, swimming. Mom was in the garage, working on something, and also watching Elizabeth. I was gone at my friend’s house, and so was our youngest sister. Daddy was at work. It was then when Elizabeth first realized her camera was gone. It could’ve been that she left her camera on the chair next to the pool, and it slid off on the hole that was next to the chair. Again, mom wouldn’t know, because she was only watching Elizabeth, and didn’t really pay attention to the chair. We don’t know. It also may be that she left her camera in the house somewhere, and it got lost, and she totally forgot about it. This is because she was really excited about swimming, and nobody else was thinking about her camera. Otherwise, we would’ve been able to detect where it last was. Again, she was pretty upset about it gone. Nobody ever found it, though. It’s a mystery where it is.
Anyway, I thought of an idea to find this camera. We’re all going to look super hard around our house, today, all right everybody? Sure, our family already did, but you all, my friends, could double check! Come on friends, do it for my sister! You never know where it is. It could be that when me and the rest of the family looked, we may have skipped something. Who knows. But today, at 3:00, I would like us all to gather and do this!

Gradgrind read this paper.

      “You know, April,” he began, “this may be impossible. Who knows where that camera really is. It’s hopeless. We already looked everywhere This plan wouldn’t work.”

      April was no longer all smiles. The table was sad again. Her father said it, and it was final. The plan wouldn’t work.

      It was a dark and gloomy day.

      And so was the next day. And the next. And the day after that.

      Finally, about a week past. Elizabeth was getting used to the idea of living without her one, irreplaceable camera. But she was still sad.

      Sarah had gone back to everyday life, doing what she always did before the camera was lost. Today, she was on a mission to look into April’s cabinets to read her diary!

      Sure enough, that day, April went to her friend’s house, and the rest of the family was busy doing things. This was Sarah’s chance. She was, indeed, successful.

      Coincidentally, the first page she randomly stumbled upon while opening the notebook was this:


My sister is devastated, because her camera is gone. Poor her! She looked all over the house for it. She acts like it’s the end of the world. “Waaaaaaaaaaa! I can’t find my camera!” Is what is sounds like she might as well say. Anyways, when she was absorbed in the pool, and mom was in the garage, I took my chance, snatched her camera, and hid it by the flowers. Deep in the dirt, too. They didn’t notice it. So much so that I had plenty of time to do it. She deserved it. She always wants to make fun of me. She always told me to “wash the dishes” if I want to earn a camera. “I did it myself!” She said. Whatever. Anyways, that’s what’s going on. Me? I’m enjoying the peacefulness in this house. But the rest of the family is feeling sorry for my sister. I’m just faking to feel sorry. In fact, I made a plan for me and my friends to “search” for the camera. To make it seem like I’m the great sister, mwahahahahaha 😉 However, my friends would act like they didn’t find it. When they actually could help me put the camera deeper in the dirt!
So I say again, MWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!

Amazingly written by,

— April the Cool One

      Sarah ran to the kitchen, where her mother was at. She ran. And ran. And ran! She was so content, so happy, because — finally — the mystery of the missing camera was solved.

      When she reached the kitchen, she screamed out loud, “MOM! MOM, LOOK AT THIS! DADDY!!! QUICK!!! COME HERE!!!” Hearing the screams, Claire and Gradgrind moved as fast as lightning.

      “What is it?” Gradgrind said. “What’s got you screaming your head off?”

      Sarah handed him Aprils’ diary and Gradgrind read the entry about the camera aloud. Both of the parents were shocked. Full of fury. They were angry indeed.

      “Wow!” Gradgrind said. He went outdoors, to grab the camera. He managed to dig deep, and took it out.

      April, was in the middle of painting her nails, across the street, upstairs, at her friend’s house. She was enjoying her time.

      Claire quickly walked across the street.

      “April!” She said to her daughter, looking up at the open windows upstairs. “You’re in trouble. I suggest you come down here. NOW.” She tried to say this calmly, but, you can imagine, she was really quite upset.

      April’s friend looked at April. April was totally embarrassed. But do you think her mother cared? No. (And she shouldn’t have cared either.)

      The mother of April’s friend opened the door.

      “What on earth is going on out here!?” The mother said. Her daughter, and April, were now behind her, at the door.

      “My daughter is in trouble. I’ll talk later. For now, I’m going to take her home.” Claire looked hard at April, but tried to stay polite in front of the neighbor. And, again, tried not to lose her temper. They walked across the street. April didn’t say a word. But she knew she was obviously in trouble.

      She was inside now. The whole family was at the kitchen table: the parents, and April, of course, and also Sarah and Elizabeth. They all looked at April. Still, she didn’t dare say a word, since she was picked up at her friend’s house. Everybody knew about the paper, and Elizabeth was all smiles, with her in-perfect condition camera in her hand. But of course, it had to be cleaned up a little bit because it had been buried in dirt.

      “You don’t want to do the dishes, I see,” Gradgrind said. “So, your jealously made you go, take your sister’s camera, didn’t it? Your jealousy, and lack of wanting to earn something. You stole, and you made your sister upset.”

      All eyes were on April now. And Sarah couldn’t help but to sneak in a laugh.

      “You’re going to do all these dishes,” Claire spoke up, “breakfast, lunch, and dinner dishes! All of them! Two months straight! Nobody will be allowed to help you! And did I mention, your use of Facebook? NO FACEBOOK! NOT AT ALL! For six months! Apparently, you’re not mature enough to handle it. Oh yes, and did I mention, you’re cleaning this whole house tonight? That’s right. All of it. Now explain, why did you do this?!?!”

      April looked around the table. She was still nervous, but then, more evilness kicked in. This wasn’t just about a camera now. Her younger sisters were ruining her reputation. And she did not want this to pass without protest.

      “Well mom,” April quickly said without much thought, “Sarah read my diary, did she not? What about her? Doesn’t she get any punishment?”

      Of all the crazy things she said in her life, that was the craziest! She shot herself in the foot.

      “Wow!” Elizabeth said. “You falsely accused my sister, my kind sister, Sarah!”

Now Claire piled on the punishment. Lots of dishes. And lots of cleaning. Claire was fuming. And the rest of the family was upset with April, too.
      
      The day came to an end. Everybody went to bed. Except for one. April had to do her math.

      The family went on and enjoying their time, while April suffered for what she did.

      Eventually, after about a few months, April went to apologize. And it was a sincere apology. April was honestly, truly feeling sorry. It was too bad, though, that she didn’t learn sooner, before causing a photographer’s nightmare.

      But at least it was over. And it ended well. Eventually, everybody, including April, were all on a happy high.

And April never did a foolish thing like that again.

The End

Everything You Need to Know About Google+, Part 1


      Google+ is a social website, similar to Facebook and Twitter. It’s also available as a mobile application for most phones. Google+ was launched by Google about a half a year ago, which makes it fairly new.

      Before, Google+ required you to have an invitation to join, but now anybody ages 13 and up can sign up, without an invitation from Google. Google required this invitation because they wanted to gather insights and thoughts from its first adopters before making it available to everyone.

      Google+ can be confusing to people. It’s different in many ways from Facebook, which has been around for years and is what many people are used to.

      Because Google+ is my favorite social media site, I try to get people to join. (Google does not pay me for my endorsement.) But people don’t usually have time to wait for me to talk on and on about the benefits of joining Google+ so, today, I’ve decided to write a four-part series on how Google+ works.

      Once you’ve signed up at the Google+ homepage here, you’ll see lots of things. A stream of posts, circles, games, local, hangouts, everything. You most likely will be lost at first, but don’t worry. That’s what this series of blog posts is for.
      The first thing I’m going to cover is the stream. Think of the stream as the Facebook newsfeed. Here you’ll see posts of certain people. The stream is the first thing you’ll see when you log into Google+, like Facebook. Here’s what my stream looks like (with certain parts blurred to protect my privacy):



      On the sidebar of your stream are the main things you’ll be able to do with Google+. There you’ll see the icons for your profile, circles, games, photos, explore, local, hangouts, pages, and more. By dragging these icons around the sidebar, you can decide the order of them. For example, if you’d like the game icon to appear at the top of your sidebar instead of the bottom, you would just have to drag and drop it. This, however, along with other features may not be available with the Google+ mobile phone app. Some features, though, are still available for mobile. This is like Facebook’s mobile phone app. Lots of features on Facebook’s website are not available for mobile.

      The posts you see in your stream is determined by the certain people you add to your circles (think of adding to your circles as those who you’ve “friended,” as Facebook would say). You can see those in your circles by clicking on the circle icon on your sidebar. You will see something like this:


      For someone to be in your Google+ circle, you’ll have to select “add a new person.” Then, search for the name of the person you’d like to add, to see if they’re currently on Google+. If they’re not, you can write their email address in that box, and send them a Google+ invitation.
      After that, you’ll have to organize those people the way you want. You can add your family into a “family circle,” and friends to the “friends circle,” and so on. I’m going to explain how this will really help out in my next blog post. So work with your circles, and delete the ones you don’t want, and create the ones you’d like to add.
      And you’re done for today! You’ve learned an overview of Google+, you’ve learned about the stream, about the sidebars, and your circles. Check back soon for part two of Everything You Need to Know About Google+!

Creating A Custom Error 404 Page

      What happens when someone types your website’s URL? What happens if they were to write something like this: yourwebsite.com/abou when they’re supposed to write this: yourwebsite.com/about? What happens when they type in a page that doesn’t exist on your domain? They would see a error 404 page, which tells them that what they wrote is incorrect. You most likely have seen one yourself, if you’ve mistyped a URL.

      Your website builder sometimes might automatically create an error 404 page for you, like this:


      Here’s another example:

      In Google’s case, there’s a robot who is sad because he’s broken into several pieces. The point is clear: Something’s wrong. You should create a custom error 404 page so that your website’s logo appears like Google.
      And here’s another website’s custom error 404 page:


      “So how do you create a custom error 404 page?” You might ask. Read on, to find out how to do so! Note, though, that these instructions may only work with 000webhost.
      First, login to your account at 000webhost. Once logged in, visit your website’s control panel. As shown in How Kids Can Build A Website For Free | Part 2 of 4 enter your file manager. In your public_html folder, create a new file. Name it .htaccess. Then, write this in the html box:

ErrorDocument 404 http://yourwebistedomainnamehere.com/error.html

      Obviously, replace “yourwebsitedomainnamehere” with your own website’s domain. Then, when you’re done, save your work, like this:


      After that, press the arrow next to the save button. Now create a new file. Call it error.html. Below is an example of code I created which you can copy and paste in the html box:

<html>
<body>
<style type=”text/css”>
body {
font-family: Arial;
}
</style>
<center>
<img src=”http://www.yourwebsitehere.files.wordpress.com/2011/11/downtown
.jpg” width=”800px”>
<br>
<h1>Whoops! 404! That’s an error. </h1><br>
That page you’re looking for might’ve been deleted, moved, or perhaps you mistyped it. Why don’t you go back to the <a href=”http://www.yourwebsitehere.wordpress.com”>homepage?</a><br&gt;
</center><br>
</body>
</html>

      Be sure to edit that code, using the help of Lissa Explains It All. You want your own logo, and a link to your own website, right? When you’re done, save your work.

      It’s that easy! You’re done creating your custom error 404 page!

      If you’re still confused, the 000webhost forum might be able to help you.

Creating Your Own Google Chrome Theme



      Google Chrome is one of the most popular browsers today.

      If you’re not in the know, a browser is a computer software that takes you to different websites on the web by entering the URL in it, and selecting “enter” on a keyboard.

      Once installed, Google Chrome automatically has a theme of colors which are often very plain, and dull.

      And who wants to browse the web using a browser with a plain, dull theme?

      A good solution would be to visit the Chrome Web Store, where you can get themes built by Google or various artists for your Google Chrome browser. You can use any image to completely personalize your browser’s theme.

      Here’s how to create your own Google Chrome theme.

      Creating your theme can be done simply by downloading “My Chrome Theme” from the Chrome Web Store. Google built the app that lets you do this.

      With it, you can do something like this.

      Here’s how everyone’s Google Chrome Theme looks like before you make any changes (to see this on your computer open a new tab):

      Here’s what it looks like after a simple change of color:


      You can do cool backgrounds, too.

      When clicking here and installing “My Chrome Theme” you can build a personalized theme very easily. A screenshot of a personalized theme being built using “My Chrome Theme” is the first image shown in this post.

      Remember, your theme is actually for your browser, not anything else like Google’s homepage. So when you select an image, it will not appear behind the logo at Google.com. You can see your image when you open a new tab or when you launch the browser, provided your homepage is not preconfigured to something like, say, your favorite news site.

      Although “My Chrome Theme” doesn’t let you choose from a wider variety of colors, or use lots of images, there’s also another app called “Theme Creator.”

      Theme Creator lets you have full control of theme personalization, but is not as easy to use as “My Chrome Theme.” It can be installed here.

      A screenshot of this “Theme Creator” app is shown below:


      If you need any help, have any questions, or want to learn more about personalizing Google Chrome, visit:

http://support.google.com/chrome/bin/answer.py?hl=en&answer=1053371
http://support.google.com/chrome/bin/answer.py?hl=en&answer=1054235
http://support.google.com/chrome/bin/answer.py?hl=en&answer=156190

GIF vs. JPG


      Did you ever post a photo online only to get frustrated because it was blurry? Maybe your problem was the file type.
      Knowing what file type to save your photo or web graphic as is very important.
      Who wants to see a pixelated, not very colorful, or maybe even blurry photo? It would make your website or social media site look cheap. And if you’re selling something, nobody’s going to want to buy from you if they can’t even see your product. So that’s why this post should be very important to you.

      Recently, I wrote PNG vs JPG, a post about the two most-used photo files on the web. Today, I’m writing about GIF vs JPG.

      A GIF is the third most-used file type I’ve seen on the web.

      As shown above, GIFs are primarily known for animated images. So whenever you see a moving animated image on a website that’s not a video, it’s a GIF. Animated images cannot be saved as anything else other than as a GIF.

      When you see a GIF, you’re actually seeing more than one image (or more than one layer) saved as one. Adobe Photoshop Elements 10 and some other graphic design softwares let you create GIFs, and have more information on animated GIFs. For some reason, animated GIFs can’t be uploaded onto certain websites, or added to your document in Google Docs. JPGs cannot turn into animated images like GIFS at all.

      JPGs also don’t have the feature of a transparent background. Similar to PNGs, however, GIFS do have the transparent background feature. By reading this earlier blog post, you can learn more about a transparent background.

      GIFs are made up of a small amount of 256 colors, but JPGs are made up of millions. JPGs also look clearer than GIFs, which look slightly pixelated sometimes.

      Here’s the difference between a GIF photo and a JPG photo:


      Due to the color and pixel GIF problem as shown above, many people use GIFs for small cartoon web graphics. JPGs are better for most things, like photos and web graphics. This is why GIFs aren’t used as much as JPGs.

      Here’s what happens when you save a large web graphic as a JPG, and when you save it as a GIF:


      Notice how the GIF seems to have missing colors in it. Some people still use GIFs for photos and even large web graphics, because they really do save lots of storage. The above GIF is 324 KB, whereas the JPG is 652 KB.

      You can learn more about GIFs and JPGs here:

http://stackoverflow.com/questions/419584/what-is-the-difference-between-jpg-jpeg-png-bmp-gif-tiff-i

http://community.adobe.com/help/search.html?q=jpg%20vs%20gif&lr=en_us&hl=en_us&l=0

PNG vs JPG

      There are many different types of files you can save your image as. The two most popular, JPG and PNG, are sometimes confusing to choose from. Today, I’ll explain the difference between a JPG and a PNG.

      The first major difference is the quality. As seen above, you can tell that when saved as a PNG, the photo looks clear, but when saved as a JPG, the photo is slightly fuzzy. The blurry fuzziness is particularly noticeable once words are added to a photo on a JPG. PNG’s are usually known to make photos look clearer than a JPG.

      PNG’s do take up more storage, and can take slightly longer to load on a web page. The JPG above is 24.2 KB, whereas the PNG is 270 KB. For some people, like me, I say a slight amount more of storage isn’t a big deal and is usually worth it. I also think it’s worth a few extra seconds waiting for a PNG to load.

      If you still think there’s a problem with the storage and web page speed, there are software programs such as Adobe Photoshop that let you change the size of a PNG. If you’re using Adobe Photoshop Elements 10, you can resize your PNG using this tutorial.

      For some people, photo quality isn’t a big deal. Those people might be thinking, “What’s the big deal with all of this? I can’t even tell the difference! If a JPG is slightly blurred, who cares?” If you’re one of those people who doesn’t care about this at all (but you’re still reading this somehow), there’s still another great feature to my favorite file type, the PNG.

      This is the feature of a transparent background. Let’s say for example, your website had something like a dark gray background. And let’s say you wanted to add text to that website with a dark gray background, except you wanted the text saved as an image. Here’s what will happen:

      With a PNG, you can have a transparent, invisible background if you wanted to, but with a JPG, you’re forced to stick with a non-transparent background.

      Think of these two images shown above with a gray background like a layered cake. A PNG with words only will only save that layer of words, but a JPG will save the layer with words, and it’ll also add one annoying white background. This can get really annoying sometimes.

      Here’s how Adobe displays it. This is a JPG:


      Notice the two “layers of cake,” the text and the forced-on-you background.
      Now look at the PNG:

      The PNG has only one transparent layer of text!

      So now you know about PNG vs. JPG, and that my favorite of the two is the PNG file type.

      Tomorrow I’ll write GIF vs. JPG. A GIF is the third most-used file type I’ve seen on the web.

How to Install A Blogger Theme


      It’s very important to have a nice theme for your blog. You can have the greatest content in the world, but this is still important. Who wants to see a horrible-looking blog? I know I wouldn’t.

      This is why I’ve written this post: How to Install A Blogger Theme. These instructions are for Google’s Blogger, and will not work for installing a theme on other website builders, such as WordPress.

      Although Google has a selection of free, pre-made themes to choose from for your blog hosted by Blogger, these instructions will not teach how to install those. I don’t think it’s the greatest idea to use one of those themes. SO many people across the web have already used them for their blog hosted on Blogger. These instructions will only work for certain websites that provide Blogger themes.

    Log in to your blog
    Make sure you’re viewing your dashboard using the new Blogger interface. If you’re using the old interface, you might be confused about installing your theme. So switch to the new one. You can always go back to the old Blogger interface when you’re done installing your theme.
    Select Template, as shown below:

    In the top right corner of your computer screen, you should see a button that says
    backup/restore. Click on it, as shown below:

    Select Download full template, as circled in red below:


You’re downloading your template, because if anything should go wrong with installing your new theme, you would never be able to get your old one back again. You don’t want that, now do you? That’s why it’s important to have a backup of your current template (template is another word for saying theme, both have the same meanings).
Now that you’ve downloaded your template, close that box. Now select Edit HTML, as shown below:


You’re going to get this message:

Because the code you’re going to put was written by someone who’s an advanced user, select Proceed. Besides, you already have a backup of your current template, so what’s the big deal if something should go wrong?

    Highlight all that code, and then delete it. Now highlight, copy, and paste the code from your provider in that box. If your provider is using old code, it will not work with the new Blogger interface. The old Blogger interface isn’t going to be available starting sometime in May, however, so it’s important to make sure your theme provider is using the new code.
    Now you’re done! Here’s an example of a theme with a pre-made blog theme made by Google on the left, and then with a unique blog theme on the right. It’s a major difference!