February 05, 2008

Vegas Baby! We will be in Las Vegas for the annual ARA show the last week of February. I will be in the LaserBits/LaserUniversity booth - Booth 331. I hope to meet many of you. Please stop by and introduce yourself.

Technology free for you!

We are currently branching in several different directions to ensure that the LaserU name is out in cyberspace.

YouTubeWe have added a few LaserU videos to YouTube - mostly showing what LaserU can do. We have our Preview video and videos of finished products. You should be able to get a list of our videos by clicking here.

MySpaceI have created a MySpace page. I have never had one before nor have I ever really frequented the site but as we know online social networking communities are not only popular but great ways to extend information. My page is here. Visit and add your name to my "friend" list. This is really in its infancy and so far I don't have a lot of content - just images of my family that I have laser engraved.

SkypeI have also become a Skype user! If you are unfamiliar with Skype it is FREE (yes, free) phone service over your computer. All you need are speakers and a microphone and to download the software. If you use Skype (on your computer) to call a land line or cell phone it costs roughly 2 cents a minute. My brother-in-law recently used it when he went to China for work for 3 weeks. He talked to his wife everyday. He used his laptop and called her cell phone for $6.00 total! Cell phone service on these daily international calls would have been costly.

Why Skype? Our intention is to use it for conference calls with LaserU subscribers! Hopefully in March we will begin a monthly call to discuss laser engraving. There can be 10 users in each conference call. I would send out an email in advance and the first 10 respondents would be in the call. You need to have Skype installed and I would need your Skype name.

Seriously, test this amazing free software out! It is so cool! Here is the website.

DogI often have subscribers ask where they can get images of real items as opposed to cartoon versions or other hand-drawn sketches. Some uses include making engraved examples for their showrooms or creating websites for their engraving businesses.

The best advice is to purchase a volume of CDs from an office supply store that is copyright free/royalty-free. Using images you find on the internet can get you into a lot of trouble since you do not own them and are then turning around and using them in a commercial venture. The owner/creator of the image can sue you. Yikes!

I purchased a set of 10 CDs for around $70 (about 5 years ago) and now when I need an image for my website (outside of LaserU) I do not have to worry about violating copyright. This not only eases my mind but saves time and gives me a great quality image. I no longer need to waste time searching online and finding a product of iffy quality.

Note: I just did a search of an office supply store and found a CD catalog with over 800,000 images for $80. I also found another (here is the link) at Staples of 300,000 on sale for $25 then do the $10 mail-in rebate and the price is $15. It looks like 50,000 of the images are "real" graphics and not clip art style. Our in-house graphics person here says she used this product extensively in her previous grahics jobs. I am not endorsing this product or Staples - it just popped up in my search and thought $15 was a good deal so I am passing this info along to you.

Anyway, our 'free for you' this month is 4 zip files that will open in Corel PHOTO-PAINT. Each file contains 5 - 10 images. I selected popular image types that I often receive calls or emails regarding.

You will find the links to download the images on the next page.


Laser Spotlight

Each month we showcase an item, product or skill from LaserU. We give a summary of the item and provide links for more information. This month we will look at the Corel Center's Stitching Images.


Sedona Sedona



Desk set Cardholder


Desk Combo



For more information on stitching images see the Corel Center Lesson under PHOTO-PAINT under Experienced titled Stitching Imges.

Please send questions and comments to laseru@laserbits.com

See you next month with our next The Laser Engraver Newsletter.