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  1. #1
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    Default Inserting Pics Into Reports

    My reports are narratives which I convert to PDF format when completed and I provide pictures from the inspection in a separate zip file. I've recently tried playing with my report and inserting the pics into the actual report and it works fine but the pics are adding an inordinate amount of memory size to the report. Just putting 20 pics in is putting the total memory of the report at 30-40 MB which is way too much for e-mail servers to accept and transmit.

    Here are some particulars:

    - my report is one I made myself using Omniform 5.0 (a text only version of the report only amounts to about 110-120 KB)
    - I take all my pics during inspections in PC image mode (it takes up the least amount of memory and the pics still come out very clear)
    - I normally resize my picture batches down to 800x600 when I just send a separate picture file which is not imbedded in the narrative report
    - when trying to imbed the pics into my actual report, I resized the entire batch down to 320x240 (even at this size, the pics are somehow blowing the memory size of the report through the roof)

    To what size do most of you resize your pics? Do any of you run into memory issues with pictures taking up too much space?

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  2. #2
    John Arnold's Avatar
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    Default Re: Inserting Pics Into Reports

    Nick - I use palmtech (not crazy about it). Typical 20 page report runs around 2MB, after converting to pdf. Typical photo runs around 200KB. I set my camera on the lowest resolution for most photos.

    "There is no exception to the rule that every rule has an exception." -James Thurber, writer and cartoonist (1894-1961)
    www.ArnoldHomeInspections.com

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Inserting Pics Into Reports

    First off your camera settings should be on VGA/email. That will make them alot smaller. You can also print your pics to a PDF. Once you do that you can optimize them. All PDF converters should allow this. Just changing your report to a PDF does not automatically optimize it for emailing. That thirty meg should be brought down to a couple meg at the most.

    Whether you put them in the report or print them into a PDF you have to optimize your PDF before emailing.

    Ted Menelly, Castle Home Inspection Services
    www.inspectmycastle.com
    Fort Worth, Keller, Southlake, Plano, Flower Mound, DFW, TX

  4. #4
    A.D. Miller's Avatar
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    Default Re: Inserting Pics Into Reports

    Nick:

    I use a template in Word for Windows, so it's easy.

    1. Select a picture in the document.
    2. Right click on the picture.
    3. Choose "format picture".
    4. Choose "compress".
    5. Choose "all pictures in document".

    If your software does not have such a function then you may want to use any picutre software to do a batch compression of the files. Photoshop will certainly do this. The software that came with your camera will likely also work. Google's Picasa 3 is free and will likely do this. Windows Paint will resize them one at a time.

    Lots of options,

    Aaron


  5. #5
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    Default Re: Inserting Pics Into Reports

    Quote Originally Posted by Ted Menelly View Post
    Whether you put them in the report or print them into a PDF you have to optimize your PDF before emailing.
    Ted, how would I go about this? My PDF converter is PDF Coverter Professional 3.0.

    My camera has a TV image setting on it which is a bit more than 1/2 the memory size of the PC image setting so that's a start.


  6. #6
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    Default Re: Inserting Pics Into Reports

    I use 3D and then convert to a PDF. I use the second smallest size photo my camera will allow and that is 640x480. The email setting works well also. Plenty large enough for what I need for it to do.

    Yesterdays report had 5 photos in it, was 21 pages long and was 190KB.

    I did one last week that had 19 photos in it and was 26 pages long. The file size for that report was right at 1MB.

    I would set my camera on the lowest setting possible. We just do not need high resolution photos for normal home inspection work. Also if you are writing your report in WORD and placing photos in it, then the file size will be huge. WORD creates large files when you add photos.

    Scott Patterson, ACI
    Spring Hill, TN
    www.traceinspections.com

  7. #7
    Ron Bibler's Avatar
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    Default Re: Inserting Pics Into Reports

    Quote Originally Posted by Nick Ostrowski View Post
    My reports are narratives which I convert to PDF format when completed and I provide pictures from the inspection in a separate zip file. I've recently tried playing with my report and inserting the pics into the actual report and it works fine but the pics are adding an inordinate amount of memory size to the report. Just putting 20 pics in is putting the total memory of the report at 30-40 MB which is way too much for e-mail servers to accept and transmit.

    Here are some particulars:

    - my report is one I made myself using Omniform 5.0 (a text only version of the report only amounts to about 110-120 KB)
    - I take all my pics during inspections in PC image mode (it takes up the least amount of memory and the pics still come out very clear)
    - I normally resize my picture batches down to 800x600 when I just send a separate picture file which is not imbedded in the narrative report
    - when trying to imbed the pics into my actual report, I resized the entire batch down to 320x240 (even at this size, the pics are somehow blowing the memory size of the report through the roof)

    To what size do most of you resize your pics? Do any of you run into memory issues with pictures taking up too much space?
    Its the settings on your camera that are to big... adjust your camera. and that will fix everything.

    I did the exact same thing when I started out working with digital cameras

    Best

    Ron


  8. #8
    A.D. Miller's Avatar
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    Default Re: Inserting Pics Into Reports

    Quote Originally Posted by Scott Patterson View Post
    I use 3D and then convert to a PDF. I use the smallest size photo my camera will allow and that is 640x480. Plenty large enough for what I need for it to do.

    Yesterdays report had 5 photos in it, was 21 pages long and was 190KB.

    I did one last week that had 19 photos in it and was 26 pages long. The file size for that report was right at 1MB.

    I would set my camera on the lowest setting possible. We just do not need high resolution photos for normal home inspection work. Also if you are writing your report in WORD and placing photos in it, then the file size will be huge. WORD creates large files when you add photos.
    Scott: I must respectively disagree with the idea that one should take low resoultion photos. The higher the better in my estimation. I take all of mine at 10 megapixels. Low resolution is fine for the reports, but one needs the high-res version on file for future reference.

    Aaron


  9. #9
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    Default Re: Inserting Pics Into Reports

    Quote Originally Posted by A.D. Miller View Post
    Scott: I must respectively disagree with the idea that one should take low resoultion photos. The higher the better in my estimation. I take all of mine at 10 megapixels. Low resolution is fine for the reports, but one needs the high-res version on file for future reference.

    Aaron
    Well one could have 2 cameras in hand at the time of inspection

    I just take low resoultion photos. Works fine for what we do.
    Thats my estimation.

    Best

    Ron


  10. #10
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    Default Re: Inserting Pics Into Reports

    Quote Originally Posted by Nick Ostrowski View Post
    Ted, how would I go about this? My PDF converter is PDF Converter Professional 3.0.

    My camera has a TV image setting on it which is a bit more than 1/2 the memory size of the PC image setting so that's a start.
    After you finish your report hit print, print as a pdf. Then bring up the PDF. You should have a tool button on that software. Under tools you should see "optimize" once you optimize it it should ask you to save as. Pick another name or change it up anyway. If you optimize it and don't save you original PDF it is hard to work with later.

    Anyways. Your software should have an optimize or compress feature.

    I have the same scansoft product, just version 4. It has the optimize under tools.

    Ted Menelly, Castle Home Inspection Services
    www.inspectmycastle.com
    Fort Worth, Keller, Southlake, Plano, Flower Mound, DFW, TX

  11. #11
    A.D. Miller's Avatar
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    Default Re: Inserting Pics Into Reports

    Quote Originally Posted by Ron Bibler View Post
    Well one could have 2 cameras in hand at the time of inspection

    I just take low resoultion photos. Works fine for what we do.
    Thats my estimation.

    Best

    Ron
    Ron:

    There are several cameras on the market that will do both simultaneously. They will take one hi-res as a RAW format and one JPEG at the resolution of your choice at the same time.

    Aaron


  12. #12
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    Default Re: Inserting Pics Into Reports

    Quote Originally Posted by A.D. Miller View Post
    Scott: I must respectively disagree with the idea that one should take low resoultion photos. The higher the better in my estimation. I take all of mine at 10 megapixels. Low resolution is fine for the reports, but one needs the high-res version on file for future reference.

    Aaron
    Why would you need it for future reference? What could you see in a photo of that size that you could not see in one that is 640x480. Dust particles?

    Heck, if I can't see it with my naked eye and a magnified photo picks it up I need to find a rocking chair and a good jug of wine.

    I stopped worrying about what if a long long time ago and I only worry about the job at hand. I guess all the years of my EW work has me a little numb to some of the liability issues that others worry about.

    Scott Patterson, ACI
    Spring Hill, TN
    www.traceinspections.com

  13. #13
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    Default Re: Inserting Pics Into Reports

    Quote Originally Posted by Scott Patterson View Post
    Why would you need it for future reference? What could you see in a photo of that size that you could not see in one that is 640x480. Dust particles?

    Heck, if I can't see it with my naked eye and a magnified photo picks it up I need to find a rocking chair and a good jug of wine.

    I stopped worrying about what if a long long time ago and I only worry about the job at hand. I guess all the years of my EW work has me a little numb to some of the liability issues that others worry about.
    Scott: What numbs one guy excites the next. But, I do like the idea of the rocking chair and good jug of wine.


  14. #14
    Ron Bibler's Avatar
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    Default Re: Inserting Pics Into Reports

    [quote=Scott Patterson;67517] I need to find a rocking chair and a good jug of wine. quote]


    To the good life.

    Best

    Ron


  15. #15
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    Default Re: Inserting Pics Into Reports

    Quote Originally Posted by Ted Menelly View Post
    After you finish your report hit print, print as a pdf. Then bring up the PDF. You should have a tool button on that software. Under tools you should see "optimize" once you optimize it it should ask you to save as. Pick another name or change it up anyway. If you optimize it and don't save you original PDF it is hard to work with later.

    Anyways. Your software should have an optimize or compress feature.

    I have the same scansoft product, just version 4. It has the optimize under tools.
    I don't seem to have the optimize or compress feature with my version Ted. It either didn't become a feature until the 4.0 version or I'm not looking hard enough. But there is no option to optimize or compress under TOOLS.


  16. #16
    Ron Bibler's Avatar
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    Default Re: Inserting Pics Into Reports

    Quote Originally Posted by Nick Ostrowski View Post
    I don't seem to have the optimize or compress feature with my version Ted. It either didn't become a feature until the 4.0 version or I'm not looking hard enough. But there is no option to optimize or compress under TOOLS.
    Nick save the report to you dest top or where ever. then do a right click on it. then go down to send file to: then look for ZIP FILE.

    That will do ya.


  17. #17
    Kevin Luce's Avatar
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    Default Re: Inserting Pics Into Reports

    Picasa 3 is good software that is free. A picture that is around 800 KB is reduced down to 70 KB. Then use the PDF software to convert the report into a smaller file.

    For me to reduce my reports down to around 1.5 MB works for me due to my report not being simple in any way.


  18. #18
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    Default Re: Inserting Pics Into Reports

    I shoot at 4Mb, archive that (disk is cheap), copy the archive directory content into a work directory, batch convert to 800x600 using BETTERJPG2, and use those for the report. The whole process takes two or three minutes. If I need to enlarge for detail for some reason, I pull in the hi-res version from the archive directory and work from that.

    Michael Thomas
    Paragon Property Services Inc., Chicago IL
    http://paragoninspects.com

  19. #19
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    Default Re: Inserting Pics Into Reports

    Quote Originally Posted by Kevin Luce View Post
    For me to reduce my reports down to around 1.5 MB works for me due to my report not being simple in any way.

    I know what you mean ... My reports reduced down to 50-120 MB after printing to pdf files, sure saved a lot of file size.

    Still to big to e-mail out, but my reports were downloadable from my website, so e-mailing was as simple as e-mailing the username and password with the link to my client access page.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
    Construction Litigation Consultants, LLC ( www.ConstructionLitigationConsultants.com )
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  20. #20
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    Default Re: Inserting Pics Into Reports

    Quote Originally Posted by Michael Thomas View Post
    I shoot at 4Mb, archive that (disk is cheap), copy the archive directory content into a work directory, batch convert to 800x600 ...

    For HI reports, you really don't need anything better than 640x480 resolution. Saves a lot of memory right there (re-sizing photo files down to 640x480) before inserting the photos in your reports.

    A typical 640x480 photo file is only 30-80 kb each.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
    Construction Litigation Consultants, LLC ( www.ConstructionLitigationConsultants.com )
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  21. #21
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    Default Re: Inserting Pics Into Reports

    Go to this Microsoft site and download the imageresizer.exe file in the right column. Its good for resizing batch pictures with one click of your right mouse button. It keeps the orginal size picture and makes copies with the smaller size. Microsoft PowerToys for Windows XP


  22. #22
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    Default Re: Inserting Pics Into Reports

    Quote Originally Posted by John Badger View Post
    It keeps the original size picture and makes copies with the smaller size. Microsoft PowerToys for Windows XP
    .

    Or you can resize the original.

    That's the resizer I use too.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
    Construction Litigation Consultants, LLC ( www.ConstructionLitigationConsultants.com )
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  23. #23
    Bruce King's Avatar
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    Default Re: Inserting Pics Into Reports

    PrimoPDF will convert a large 21M Word doc report into a 700k pdf file and it is free on the internet.


  24. #24
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    Cool Re: Inserting Pics Into Reports

    I use a digital with settings of 640x480 as the lowest setting. When I get back to the office I do a resizing with Irfanview IrfanView - Official Homepage - one of the most popular viewers worldwide
    This allows batch processing of all the photo's at the same time. It is a free utility and takes all the photo's down to under 50kb. You can set the size and more and save the settings. It also names the photo and puts them in number sequence. All takes about 2 minutes for the process.
    I hope this helps...


  25. #25
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    Default Re: Inserting Pics Into Reports

    Once again, I must show my ignorance. I use a Word format for my reports. When I import a picture, it is larger than the page. I then resize each picture to a size appropriate for the report, usually 3" wide. I am unfamiliar with the pixel sizes you have been mentioning in this thread. Is there somewhere on my desktop or in Word that I can adjust the picture size to a smaller standard size? This would save me many hours of report creation time.

    Thanks,

    Darrel Hood
    DILIGENT PROPERTY SERVICES


  26. #26
    Ted Menelly's Avatar
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    Default Re: Inserting Pics Into Reports

    Quote Originally Posted by Darrel Hood View Post
    Once again, I must show my ignorance. I use a Word format for my reports. When I import a picture, it is larger than the page. I then resize each picture to a size appropriate for the report, usually 3" wide. I am unfamiliar with the pixel sizes you have been mentioning in this thread. Is there somewhere on my desktop or in Word that I can adjust the picture size to a smaller standard size? This would save me many hours of report creation time.

    Thanks,

    Darrel Hood
    DILIGENT PROPERTY SERVICES
    Ouch Darrel

    Save you many hours in report writing time. Shoot you could by an inspection software that does all that for you for a few hundred dollars and save you more time than that cost would be to you. I have no idea what programs you have on your computer but most picture managers have resizing capabilities. Again that still takes a little bit of time. I am about to make my final decision on what new software I purchase with the new updates for TREC. There are several out there that do not cost an arm and a leg and they do not keep you paying for reports or upload costs for reports and resize your photos when added into the report. They also do not rely on other programs such as windows or a PDF software to operate them. They are a completely self standing self functioning software. I have always been one to minimize what ever I can and take as few steps as possible but still complete the task.

    Why walk a zig zag line from the outer edge of the parking lot to get to the store when you can park up front and walk a straight line??????

    Ted Menelly, Castle Home Inspection Services
    www.inspectmycastle.com
    Fort Worth, Keller, Southlake, Plano, Flower Mound, DFW, TX

  27. #27
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    Default Re: Inserting Pics Into Reports

    Darrel,

    Make your life easier. Get an application that is built for inputting data and images.

    You are making your inspection much harder, more difficult and are likely spending far more time than you need to with the mechanics of the report generation.

    Rather ... focus on the "inspection" and the proper verbiage for the report.

    There are many good applications out there to choose from. I have my favorites and will share with you 'offline'.

    Cheers - Nolan E. Kienitz
    Dallas Home Inspector
    www.NolansInspections.com

  28. #28
    Jerry Peck's Avatar
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    Default Re: Inserting Pics Into Reports

    Quote Originally Posted by Darrel Hood View Post
    Once again, I must show my ignorance. I use a Word format for my reports. When I import a picture, it is larger than the page. I then resize each picture to a size appropriate for the report, usually 3" wide.
    While I used Word Perfect as a base which my in$pection report program sat on, I am sure that Word will allow something similar.

    Resizing the photos (resolution size) is not to make them fit on the page, resizing the photos (resolution size) is to reduce the memory required for the report with the photos in it.

    Your problem, making the photos sized smaller (actual size) so you can fit the photos on the report page according to your size preference. Make a macro which inserts the photo and resizes it to your preferred size. Simply put, all you would do is click to operate the macro, which then brings on an insert window, select the photo you want to insert, then click insert, the macro with then make the photo the size you want it.

    My program made the photo act as a "character" regarding placement and handling, and then made the photo the size I set in my program. My program would batch insert photos (up to 600) in a table it created as it inserted the photos, automatically stopping when the last photo was inserted. I could make a table, insert the photos, and have them ready for me to make my comments, automatically, taking maybe 30 seconds to create the table and insert 300 photos, sized as I wanted them, making the table show 4 photos per page, with a cell under each photo for my comments. All with one click.

    Last edited by Jerry Peck; 01-11-2009 at 06:23 PM. Reason: to replace the 's' with '$' in 'in$pection'
    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
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  29. #29
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    Default Re: Inserting Pics Into Reports

    The macro route JP describes is pretty handy. I used one for awhile (not a slick as that one sounds but it did re-size the pics pretty quickly).

    I then found that for some reason Cannon cameras automatically insert the pictures at a width of 3.56" which works pretty good. All of the other camera brands that I used insert them about twice as big and they must be re-sized or run through a macro. I'm not sure why Cannon's are setup different but I've just always stuck with them. I think it's just a default setting that the camera manufacturer's build into the cameras.


  30. #30
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    Default Re: Inserting Pics Into Reports

    Quote Originally Posted by Nick Ostrowski View Post
    To what size do most of you resize your pics? Do any of you run into memory issues with pictures taking up too much space?
    If you are using MS Word, you likely have MS Office Picture Manager as an accessory which I use to resize the entire file to 600 x 450 which fits nicely side by side on the page of my reports and is small enough to email without too much trouble. The resize takes about 2-3 minutes working in the background while I open my report software. I save the entire file of photos and import only pertinent ones into the report.

    Once the report is complete, there is a free "power toys" tool that opens inside MS Word that can further compress the images in the entire report at once. I rarely use this anymore, but it is handy for reports with large numbers of photos.
    Converting to pdf document with PDF995.
    I keep my camera settings at a medium size and resolution for reviewing roofs, etc. and save the entire file in the smaller format once the report is finished.

    Jim Luttrall
    www.MrInspector.net
    Dallas, Texas

  31. #31
    Don Belmont's Avatar
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    Default Re: Inserting Pics Into Reports

    I like to take my pics in high resolution so I can zoom in for a detail if I njeed to. But in the report the large files are difficult if your emailing or piosting your report online.

    I like a piece of software called Irfanview (cost is right- FREE). You can batch process your pics down to whatever bit density you like. I go with 100 px per inch as that is both compact but higher then a computer display will show. That reduces file size from Megs down to 100K or less.

    Here's the link for the Irfanview download.

    IrfanView - Official Homepage - one of the most popular viewers worldwide


  32. #32
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    Default Re: Inserting Pics Into Reports

    I use HomeGauge. Just dragging the photo into the report resizes it from 3 MB down to about 12KB.

    Works for me.

    Erby Crofutt, Georgetown, KY - Read my Blog here: Erby the Central Kentucky Home Inspector B4 U Close Home Inspections www.b4uclose.com www.kentuckyradon.com
    Find on Facebook at: https://www.facebook.com/B4UCloseInspections

  33. #33
    Richard Stanley's Avatar
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    Default Re: Inserting Pics Into Reports

    I just click on the pic and it goes into the report as a thumbnail 9size adjustable). I can add text, arrows, etc. to it. Client can click and enlarge it if desired.
    Click another button and the report is a pdf. Ready for e-mail and away it goes. Currenty about $300. Whisper. I imagine there are others.

    Last edited by Richard Stanley; 01-13-2009 at 03:58 PM. Reason: change sumthin'

  34. #34
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    Default Re: Inserting Pics Into Reports

    Quote Originally Posted by Richard Stanley View Post
    Currently about $300. Whisper. I imagine there are others.
    Richard,

    You need to look at upgrading to Whisper Reporter. It is leaps and bounds advanced over the original Whisper PI.

    I really like it. Does all I need and then some. Easy to make new templates for other inspections, etc.

    Cheers - Nolan E. Kienitz
    Dallas Home Inspector
    www.NolansInspections.com

  35. #35
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    Default Re: Inserting Pics Into Reports

    Nolan,
    I have been using Reporter for nearly a year. It is actually more than I need. I am considering going back to the PI version - when they get the 7A1 updates in it. Both versions are in my computer - so I can use either one.


  36. #36
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    Default Re: Inserting Pics Into Reports

    Richard,

    I thought Eric would have had the 7A-1 template out for PI already.

    I'll bug him about it.

    Cheers - Nolan E. Kienitz
    Dallas Home Inspector
    www.NolansInspections.com

  37. #37
    Richard Stanley's Avatar
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    Default Re: Inserting Pics Into Reports

    They have the reporter version out. They were going to write a new version for pi, but, decided to write updates instead - suppose to be out this week??? per the whisper forum.


  38. #38
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    Default Re: Inserting Pics Into Reports

    Richard,

    I got a reply from Eric late last night. It will be there soon for the PI version.

    Cheers - Nolan E. Kienitz
    Dallas Home Inspector
    www.NolansInspections.com

  39. #39
    Bob Harper's Avatar
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    Cool Re: Inserting Pics Into Reports

    I shoot high resolution for my records. Understand much of what I shoot is close up high detail stuff. Back at the office, I first save the originals in the case file. I then copy the ones I need into a temporary resizing folder. Using MS Picture Mgr, I compress the photos as much as I feel for that shot--some larger, some smaller. I then simply use the Insert function in Word. If it comes up too big, I can click and drag the corners to size it to fit. I get two pics side by side. When I'm done, I save the report then dump the resize folder.

    It works for now but I'm always looking for a better mousetrap.
    Bob

    Keep the fire in the fireplace.

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