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ATPM 7.09
September 2001






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Desktop Pictures

Israel and Long Island’s North Shore


These photos were taken by Michael L. Bovee. He writes:

Setting and Equipment

This selection of photos is just a tiny sample of the hundreds I took in February 2000, on my first trip to the Holy Land and Israel. It was also my first excursion with a brand new Nikon CoolPix 950. I tried to hold out for the announced 990, but that didn’t happen. Nevertheless, the maximum “real” resolution on the 950 (1200x1600) is more than adequate for high-quality prints and full-size 8x10s! I used the camera basically straight out of the box, without any fancy filters or lenses.

Since I also took a PowerBook G3 along, I simply used a PC card adapter with the 32 MB CompactFlash camera card and loaded pictures onto the hard drive as the card filled up! This worked flawlessly. I find that the pictures look great straight out of the camera, but they can be dramatically improved in Photoshop, usually by enhancing the brightness and contrast, as well as by increasing the color saturation. (But color correction is not an issue except for artistic reasons; I think the Nikon still has the highest endorsements for color accuracy and overall quality.)

The Photos

Anyway, I have included many “tactile history” photos (a couple of floor mosaics that date back tens of centuries; Tabgha was discovered by monks poking around a field about the 6th century, I think. King Herod’s aqueduct is over 2000 years old and much of it is buried in sand; the exposed “tourist” portion is right on the Mediterranean Sea. Geographical vistas including the Tiberius area at the north of the sea of Galilee, and also the temple ruins at Capernaum, are datable to around the first century. (Please don’t anyone flame me if my dates are wrong, I can check my notes later!) Nazareth today in one picture; the unfinished homes can sometimes be decades-long family generation projects. St. George monastery is a spectacular sight that’s invisible from a winding mountain road between Jericho and Jerusalem (Wadi al Qelt). Our guide stopped the bus so we could walk to see it. We had some ice cream on Ben Yahuda street, a favorite night spot in Jerusalem. There's a picture of one of the stations along the Via Delorosa in Old Jerusalem, colorized by yours truly. Last but not least, the obligatory Western “Wailing” Wall, which is the most holy site remaining for Jews, who will not go up on the adjacent Temple Mount for fear of accidentally standing on the spot where the Holy of Holies once stood within the long-destroyed temple (70 AD).”

Long Island’s North Shore

Jens Grabenstein brings us pictures from the wetlands on Long Island’s North Shore, close to the Marine Sciences Research Station of the State University of New York at Stony Brook. The pictures were taken with a Canon EOS 300 using a 28-80mm zoom lens and a 200 ASA 35mm Kodak Gold film. They were developed as 4" reprints and scanned with a Umax PowerLook II, which produced a raw scan of each image with a resolution of 300dpi. Re-sampling and re-touching were performed with Adobe Photoshop 5.5 for Macintosh.

Previous Months’ Desktop Pictures

Pictures from previous months are listed in the desktop pictures archives.

Downloading all the Pictures at Once

iCab and Interarchy (formerly Anarchie) can download an entire set of desktop pictures at once. In iCab, use the Download command to download “Get all files in same path.” In Interarchy, use HTTP Mirror feature.

Contributing Your Own Desktop Pictures

If you have a picture, whether a small series or just one fabulous or funny shot, feel free to send it to and we’ll publish it in next month’s issue. Have a regular print but no scanner? Don’t worry. E-mail us, and we tell you where to send it so we can scan it for you. Note that we cannot return the original print, so send us a copy.

Placing Desktop Pictures

Mac OS X

Switch to the Finder. Choose “Preferences…” from the “Finder” menu. Click on the “Select Picture…” button on the right. In the Open Panel, select the desktop picture you want to use. The panel defaults to your “~/Library/Desktop Pictures” folder. Close the “Finder Preferences” window when you are done.

You can also use the pictures with Mac OS X’s built-in screen saver. Choose “System Preferences…” from the Apple menu. Click the screen saver button. Then click on Custom Slide Show in the list of screen savers. If you put the ATPM pictures in your Pictures folder, you’re all set. Otherwise, click Configure to tell the screen saver which pictures to use.

Mac OS 8.5-9.1

Go to the Appearance control panel. Click on the “Desktop” tab at the top of the window. Press the “Place Picture…” button in the bottom right corner, then select the desired image. By default, it will show you the images in the “Desktop Pictures” subfolder of your “Appearance” folder in the System Folder, however you can select images from anywhere on your hard disk.

After you select the desired image file and press “Choose,” a preview will appear in the Appearance window. The “Position Automatically” selection is usually fine. You can play with the settings to see if you like the others better. You will see the result in the little preview screen.

Once you are satisfied with the selection, click on “Set Desktop” in the lower right corner of the window. That’s it! Should you ever want to get rid of it, just go to the desktop settings again and press “Remove Picture.”

Mac OS 8.0 and 8.1

Go to the “Desktop Patterns” control panel. Click on “Desktop Pictures” in the list on the left of the window, and follow steps similar to the ones above.

Random Desktop Pictures

If you drag a folder of pictures onto the miniature desktop in the Appearance or Desktop Pictures control panel, your Mac will choose one from the folder at random when it starts up.


An alternative to Mac OS’s Appearance control panel is Pierce Software’s DeskPicture, reviewed in issue 5.10 and available for download.


Also in This Series

Reader Comments (2)

Robbie · March 11, 2010 - 03:13 EST #1
I wish there was an explanation with each picture ...where it is located, etc.

For example, Herod's Viaduct it still being used today.
ATPM Staff · March 11, 2010 - 10:48 EST #2
Robbie - ATPM provides desktop photos for personal aesthetic enjoyment. Since they are provided free of charge and come from volunteer staff or from readers, ATPM chooses to not require detailed information about each photo. If we did require such information, we'd likely not be able to bring you new photos every month. Moreover, requesting detailed information implies that someone wants to use the photo for more than just enjoyment as a desktop wallpaper or screensaver photo, which is not permitted under the free use ATPM grants for these photos. Our suggestion, if you'd like more information, head to Google and type in "Herod's Viaduct"

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