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Picture-perfect video

PORTRAITURE for Video is video-editing software that allows enthusiasts to soften skin and remove blemishes and wrinkles.

If this sounds familiar to still photographers, there is a reason. Portraiture has been used in the professional still-image industry for years for softening and enhancing skin tones.

Now the company, Imagenomic, has brought the same award-winning features to the video world. A recent news release says Portraiture for Video is compatible with Adobe After Effects, Adobe Premiere Pro, Apple Final Cut Pro, Sony Vegas Pro and DaVinci Resolve.

Video clips are run through the plug-in software, and it automatically removes imperfections in the skin.

The software is ideal for touching up a scar, acne or other blemishes and runs on Windows and Mac operating systems.

DETAILS: The annual subscription rate for the software is US$99 (a free 15-day trial is available);

Cool mobile keyboard

THE ZAGGKeys universal keyboard functions with most smartphones, tablets and almost any operating system, as long as it can be paired with Bluetooth technology.

It's designed and built with features allowing it to work with any of those gadgets, making it a truly universal device.

It measures roughly 13.3 centimetres wide by 24 centimetres long with the cover attached and the curved keyboard is as slim as 6.35 millimetres, making it ideal for use while sitting on the sofa, working at your desk or tucking it in your computer bag for travel.

While many of the mobile operating systems have similarities, they have more differences when it comes to shortcuts and hot keys on keyboards. To help users switch between devices, there's a little switch on the back of the keyboard to switch between Apple, Android or Windows operating systems.

The keyboard is built with an ergonomic curved design for a more natural typing experience and includes a versatile protective cover that doubles as a stand for your tablet or smartphone.

Other features include a rechargeable battery, which can be good for up to three months before another charge is needed.

DETAILS: US$69.99; available in black, berry/aqua, charcoal/hot pink, lime/charcoal and orange/indigo combinations;

Modestly priced devices deliver

A FEW other cool and cost-friendly products from iFrogz (a ZAGG company) are the Luxe stereo headphones and the Tadpole.

Some headphones can cost more than a car payment, and very often you get an amazing product for your money. The Luxe headphones don't cost a lot (US$39.99), are comfortable to wear and deliver what I call "consistent sound."

You're not going to get the great sound associated with US$400 headphones. Instead, you get good sound with enough bass to keep you happy.

The headphones look good and are built with comfortable padded ear cups over 40 millimetres driver speakers, an adjustable metallic-looking headband and an in-line mic for hands-free calls.

The Tadpole (US$19.99) is as simple as a Bluetooth speaker can be. It's pocket-sized and comes with an attached carabiner clip.

Inside is a one-watt speaker and a rechargeable lithium-ion battery, good for about two hours of use before a micro-USB charge is needed.

DETAILS:; Tadpole is available in grey, blue, red, white and purple; the Luxe headphones come in black, with your choice of blue, black, grey, red and pink highlights.

VENMO is the quickest way to pay someone since cheques were invented. Simply download the free app to your phone, create an account, connect to your debit or credit card and pay the debts you owe.

The amount can be anything from 50 cents to $500 for paying back your friends for things such as dinners out, combined birthday gifts or weekend trips. Not only can you pay people easier, you also no longer have to send constant texts or email reminders when friends owe you money.

You can send a request for money straight to the person's app on their phone, which will be there every time they log on until they pay it. Venmo is free for Apple products with iOS 7.0 or later and Android.

-- St. Louis Post-Dispatch

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition August 10, 2014 ??65521

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