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| DearWebby is actually Helmut Morscher, the CEO of Webby, inc.
Originally the "Tech Support Pits" were reports of the funniest tech support incidents, but over the years the
column gradually shifted to answering tech support questions put forward by the readers of the Dear
Webby Humor Letter.
This collection of computer and web advice was started partly because readers demanded an archive, and partly
because some questions were asked again and again. Each page has a different day's Tech Support Pits column.
Tech Support Pits column from Dear Webby's Humor Letter of
07/26/05: Sharpening pictures
Tech Support Pits:
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Why can't a picture that has been sharpened (increase
contrast) too much, be restored after saving? I found that
if I sharpen a picture and then save it, it often turns
blotchy, and softening it does not reverse the previous
sharpening. What is the story behind that?
By the way, I use Paint Shop Pro.
Always keep the file format in PSP until all editing is
finished, and then finally save a JPG copy. The PSP format
stores a reversible history, JPG doesn't.
When you increase contrast, you throw away mid tones.
Softening creates mid tones by averaging. Those mid tones
are not the same as the original ones.
When you save a picture as a JPG and use compression,
you throw away additional mid tones. You can't get those
back either. That is why it is so important to save an
original in .psp format.
Quite often, instead of sharpening, all you need is
clarifying. That reduces fuzziness or mist by throwing away
only the lighter mid tones, but leaving the darker ones.
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