Last Updated: Friday, 11 January 2008, 15:28 GMT
Kate Russell
By Kate Russell
Click Webscape-r

Kate Russell gives us her latest selection of the best sites on the World Wide Web.


The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites.

We have mentioned free photo editing software on Click before but I want to draw your attention to one in particular - and it is thanks to a guy called Irfan from Austria.

IrfanView is one of the most popular graphic and photo editing suites on the web and it has just had an upgrade.

At 1MB it is a tiny download which is both powerful and efficient so it runs smoothly on older or slower machines too.

As well as the usual cropping, rotation and colour correction - IrfanView sorts out red eye and offers a variety of creative effects.

A couple of features caught my eye. Load an image and press enter - the programme's screen furniture disappears to offer a full screen display.

Now left click to go back and right click to go forward - an easy way to show off your photos at your own pace. There is a slideshow option too.

Another great feature is the ability to create a panoramic photo by stitching your snaps together. Many cameras are now sold with this sort of software but if you do not have it yet this is an easy way to make great vistas quickly.

Although IrfanView only works on PCs and not Macs at the moment, it does support a wide range of file formats. And this is where it performs another great trick! If you want to change a whole folder of pictures - say from Tiff to Jpeg - you can batch convert them all in one go.

The update offers lossless image cropping, support for flash video and adding text to your creations.

You can also import up to three other image-editing packages to work within the IrfanView programme.

It is worth noting that Irfan has kept this app small and effective - so if you want some of the fancier features you will need to download a plug-in from his homepage.


The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites.

Now once you have amazed yourself with what you can do with IrfanView, it would be rude not to amaze your friends. Why not send them a link where they can download your creations or any other large files for up to three months after you save them.

The site you will need is GigaSize and it lets you upload up to 10 images or other files at a time of up to 300MB each in size - that is almost half a CD.

If you sign up for a free account that limit goes up to 600MB per file. You just browse to find what you want to send - add the files - one at a time unfortunately - and then click upload and share.

You are limited to 1.5GB in total for the free account and upload speeds are limited too so an average photo will take about one minute to send.

But once the files have uploaded you can blog the contents - make it findable in a number of social networking and recommendation sites like Delicious and Digg or send your mates an e-mail which contains the magic link allowing them to download your files at any time over the next 90 days.

If you get the people you send to regularly to sign up to a free account too - they will find your links easier to download with less waiting time and fewer ads which pay for the service.

The premium edition offers a permanent folder so your files never disappear. Check the sites terms and conditions for use - and please note: copyrighted material is not supposed to be shared using this site.

The Machine is Us/ing Us

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites.

Do you know what web 2.0 actually is?

The media is often guilty of bandying the phrase around like everyone is on the same page - but there are so many elements and influences to web 2.0 that it is often difficult to pin down what we mean. My final pick this week is a short video that explains all.

I first found it on YouTube where it had had more than a million views - but the definitive version - is at

Click on the left hand blue box and it is the video entitled The Machine Is Us/ing Us. What follows is a simple four-minute brainteaser made by Michael Wesch - a professor in anthropology at Kansas State University in the US.

He uses montage of different computer screens to take us on a journey from the written word to the birth of the web and on to how we got to the linked-in nature of ideas, people and things making up web 2.0.

I will leave you to watch that in your own time but do not miss out on the rest of the site which hosts a wealth of content not only by Professor Wesch but also his undergraduate students discussing how the net has changed the way we relate to each other and our understanding of reality.

If you prefer YouTube just search under mwesch and you will get a list of videos from his students with their thoughts on the subject too.

You can take part in the debate online or just sit back and watch.

Kate's downloading advice
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