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Sunday, September 30, 2007

Save money on tools you need for blogging

For simple blogs, you don't need much - a basic computer, a modem for access to the Intenet and a suitable blogging platform. I use the free Google Blogger and use sub-domains of and Blogger host my blogs for free. Very generous of them. I use free photo editors like Irfanview in conjunction with Paint that comes with Windows for screenshots and for editing photos and creating images. Photoshop would be better if you are prepared to pay for it.

For taking photos, I use my son's compact digital camera. We somehow lost the cable to upload photos to the computer, so had to buy a card reader to transfer the photos. However, I am not too happy with his camera so intend to get one for myself. However, I am just going to use it for putting photos on the web, so I don't need a high resolution camera. I am not falling for the megapixel trap.

I very occasionally make video to upload to Youtube and then use the script to embed into my post. For that, I use a webcam and a headset with microphone and the Windows Movie Maker that comes with Windows. You may want to take outdoor videos, away from the computer. For that, you will need a webcam.

You may already have all the items needed for blogging mentioned above, or you may not. Even if you already have them, you may need to upgrade or some of them may become unworkable. I do multitasking and have many browsers opened at the same time (see Why you should have more than one browser and in each browser, have many tabs opened. While I am typing this post, in addition to 4 browsers, I have 38 Notepad files, Irfanview, Paint, calculator, 4 Excel files opened simultaneously. I have recently upgraded to a dual core processor computer as it is said that such computer is better for multi-tasking usage like these. I need to get a digital camera.

Comparison shopping is easier online. Having a chance to save some money on the purchases will be great, and Coupon Chief says they can help you do that. There is a search box on their site. Since I am in the market for a digital camera, I typed "digital camera" into the search box and click Coupon Chief search button to search. I got the search result page for digital camera. There was a long list, and the last one was "Clearance Deals". Being a sucker for bargains, I clicked on that link and saw "Canon Sure Shot 65 35mm Point & Shoot Camera - Clearance! - $69.95 Now $32." That $32 was actually a discount and the final price was $37.95. That looked interesting and I proceeded to check out. There were a few choice of payment methods including "Begin Checkout", "Canadian Checkout", "PayPal Checkout", "Google Checkout" and "Bill Me Later® Checkout". Since I have a sizable PayPal balance, I selected "PayPal Checkout". Found out that shipping was "Ground, 3 - 7 Business Days, $16.90" and a message "Guam, Puerto Rico, Virgin Islands, military APO/FPO and PO Box orders are shipped via USPS only. Please note, not all items can be shipped via USPS to these locations, and in some instances, we may be unable to fulfill your order, based upon these restrictions." Based on these information, I did not proceed to complete the purchase, but those who are US residents or residents in one of the locations mentioned may find such deal attractive and a good way to save money.

There are other possibilities including Ritz Camera - Digital Cameras & Accessories which list many cameras and accessories and another page Ritz Camera Software for pictures. There is one software which may be f interest to bloggers, and that is "ArcSoft Slide Show Maker Digital Picture Software" selling for $19.99. The page says "Free Shipping (orders over $100*). No Sales Tax" but it will be unlikely I will be purchasing software totalling over $100 unless that statement include items other than software.

I will be writing to them to enquire about delivery to my country and hope to remember to update this post if I get a response.

Update: I checked their Help section and there was only a toll free line which I suppose is toll free only for US residents. Others will have to pay International call charges. But I found this:

We work with Access USA to allow our overseas customers to forward any order to their International address.

1. Sign up for your own U.S. mailing address through Access USA.

2. Use your new U.S. Address, provided by Access USA, when placing your order.

3. Access USA will forward your order to you. ANYWHERE IN THE WORLD, whenever you want!

Sounds like too much trouble for us non-US residents unless we find something irresistible or unobtainable elsewhere.


  1. HP M425could be a good choice for you ..........

  2. Hi ن التفكير,

    Thanks for the suggestion. HP M425 has 3x optical zoom plus digital zoom but is 5 MP (assume this means 5 megapixels). This is more than what I need. Unfortunately no one sells 1 megapixel cameras anymore. I am a cheapskate, and want to buy cheap camera.

    Peter (Blog*Star)
    Natural Remedies

  3. Hello Peter,
    I keep on bumping into you. You are all over the blogspot.
    You are erudite and experienced.

    I sent a comment on one of your blogs.

    I seek your valuable tips to increase my revenue.

    Dr. Ashok Koparday


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