Upwardly mobile graphics

Upwardly mobile graphics

What do you sell the person who bought that bright new home PC before Christmas? the $119 Picture It! software package from Microsoft. It should appeal to just about every home PC user because it works well, it's almost foolproof, the results are slick and it combines a number of technologies very smoothly.

The trouble with most graphics software is that you're still left to get your images in under your own steam, so to speak. Picture It! recognises any input device you have, such as digital camera or scanner, and uses these to gather images.

But because most home users don't have these yet, the pack includes a special offer from Kodak to get your film or existing negatives, slides or prints transferred onto Photo CD or diskette.

While not a high-end photo editor, Picture It! has some very clever and almost foolproof editing tools, such as a smart cutout tool that lets you accurately select an area of your picture for manipulation, for example a colour change or montage building. Once you've built your fancy calender or greeting card, the choice is to print locally, or send the file off via the Internet so that Kodak can print it out on photo-quality paper. The net can also be used to send your creations to friends, or download new templates from Kodak. Other features include image correction for red-eye, tint, contrast and poor exposure.

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