It’s 2002 Again

Hey, think back five or six years, when everybody was getting their first digital cameras and posting pictures on their shiny new blogs. The thing to do then was to offer up your spectacular images as free wallpapers for your blog visitors. You’d make them available in all the popular sizes; 800×600, 1024×768, 1280×1024, and 1600×1200. Obsessive people even offered 480×640.

I never did that.

Nice desktop!However, to celebrate spring, and because I’m feeling kind of nostalgic, below are a couple of wallpapers made by me, from photos of tulips in our front garden. Note that photos like these make perfect wallpapers because they are uncluttered, especially on the left and right sides, so your desktop icons don’t get lost in the background image.

Only available in one size; 1680×1050, because that’s what all the cool kids use these days. Not that it really matters any more, as you can use pretty much any image you like as your background and just stretch it to fit.

To use one of these tulips as your wallpaper, click the image below to open a full size version in a new browser window. Then right-click the full size image and select “Set as desktop background.” It’s that easy with Firefox (and you are, of course, using Firefox, right?).

The files are small so they won’t suck up a lot of your video RAM. (The red tulip is only 150K and the yellow one is 180K.) Files have been optimized for color and sharpness and minimal compression injuries. If you use them on a desktop with a resolution other than 1680×1050 there will be some distortion and loss of sharpness on the pistels and stamens.

Click for full size

Click for full size

By the way. These are wallpapers, not screensavers. Or if you really want to be up to date, “desktop backgrounds.” There is a difference. The image on your desktop is not a screensaver. It is a wallpaper or a background (generally speaking, a repeating graphic pattern is a wallpaper, and a single photograph is a background). Screensavers are the animations that kick in when you haven’t used your computer for a while. Hello, we’re back to 2008, so there is no reason to continue making that mistake.

In the meantime, feel free to enjoy this bit of spring, brought to you by the Blork Blog.

8 thoughts on “It’s 2002 Again

  1. Hey Blork, you forgot to put a big URL on them. That’s what we did in 2002.

    The files are small so they won’t suck up a lot of your video RAM.

    That sounds nice but is unfortunately complete bollocks. Any desktop picture will consume the same amount of video-RAM. The JPEG uses only a few hundred Kb on your harddisk but when viewed it gets decompressed to a much bigger file. Around 5 MegaByte for this size. Sorry for the nitpicking, but you started :-)

  2. I agree with Kate.

    “I’ll show you my pistols if you show me your stamens.”

  3. Hey, je cherche kill me (yeah), je m inquiète beaucoup (baby roll over yeah) car il ne répond pas quand on le sonne (yeah baby yeah), il est peut être coincé dans sa chaise roulante (yeah yeah) à cause de ses rhumatismes (yeah bab’) :)

  4. Kate, you perv! ;-)

    Mare, I wasn’t aware of that. And I’m not entirely convinced. I remember back in the days when a computer might have a meg or two of Video RAM, and I’d occasionally load up a big 5 MB BMP file as my background. Refresh rate dropped to a crawl. I reduced it to a 100K JPG and things went back to normal.

  5. I don’t know that much about early PCs, I used real computers.

    But BMPs often have an alpha channel which multiplies memory usage by almost a third. In order to show that image it probably also had to be downsampled to the number of screen colours (thousands/millions). And if a PC didn’t have enough video RAM available it started to use memory on the hard drive, then it had to reload the image because you moved the mouse and some parts needed to be blitted again etc etc. The loading of the image and the continous hard disk swapping would make the PC really slow. The JPG could be loaded more quickly so it had less overhead on hard drive usage.

  6. you are a class act; those are really gorgeous photos. thanks. :-)

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