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JERAMI"S Down and Dirty 1hour getting started with Mturk Tutorial(Basic)

Discussion in 'MTurk Help & Resources' started by Jerami, Jan 16, 2019.

  1. Jerami

    Jerami
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    So, I've got a lot of requests to get let into an old conversation where I taught someone the basics of Mturk and MTS, and getting started. I've copy/pasted it here. I'm speaker 1. They're speaker 2. I've tried to keep the conversation intact so you can see questions and responses and see how it organically came about, as lots of people tend to have the same questions.

    Here it is.

    Below the first tutorial, you'll find an in-depth look(In Blue and Grey) at HitCatcher and PPM(Proper Panda Management) The eight P's of Mturk. :pProper Panda Programming to Promote Prosperity and Prevent Pesky PRE's







    Me(1): How can I help? First, slow down on scripts.:)

    Them(2):Well I've already slowed down as I just decided I was wasting too much time installing them and not doing
    HITs. Now I don't know what to do with them all haha.


    1:Turn off all scripts before we get started. We'll go from there.Also, what scripts? Do you need them? Which browser, too? I only use a few key scripts.Are you new to turking too? I'm assuming yes. No worries. We'll get you there.

    2: Chrome, and...
    [MTurk Worker] Dashboard Enhancer 2.0.4
    [MTurk Worker] Display Total Available HITs 1.0
    Block Individual Requests 0.0.5
    Block Requesters (Fixed) 1.0.0
    HIT Scraper WITH EXPORT 4.1.4
    HIT Scraper WITH EXPORT (CHRISTURK TEMPORARY FIX, UNINSTALL AFTER FEIH FIXES ORIGINAL VERSION) 4.1.3
    JR Mturk Panda Crazy 0.6.3
    JR Mturk Panda Crazy Helper 0.3.9
    JR Mturk Panda Crazy Queue Helper 0.3.8
    mturkeybacon Save Automatic Approval Time 1.54
    mturkeybacon Today's Projected Earnings 1.1
    Mturk - Expanded header info. - UPDATE 1.5
    MTurk Dashboard Change Notifier 1.1
    MTurk Dashboard HIT Status links 1.1
    Mturk Engine 1.5.0
    MTurk Great HIT Export 1.28
    MTurk HIT Database Mk.II 1.2.1
    Mturk Hourly 2.1.3
    Mturk ID Copy/Paste 2.94
    Turk Requester Bookmarks 0.2
    Status Page Chart 1.6
    MTurk Time Tracker 0.3.5
    MTurk Wage Reporter 0.7.5b
    Pending Earnings 1.0
    Preview, Accept and Hoard 13.0
    Requester ID && Auto Approval Time (Formatted) 1
    Turkmaster (Mturk) 1.5.11
    turkopticon

    Sorry for the text vomit....


    1: First, add MTS extension. https://chrome.google.com/webstore/...lf?utm_source=chrome-app-launcher-info-dialog

    It's made by a guy from here, and the place we were before. It'll get rid of the need for a few scripts. It combines a bunch of stuff, including a HitFinder(HF) and a Hit Catcher (for PandAs)
    Key scripts to start with, for me...
    loading..................................one moment
    Holy hell! lol. Get rid of anything made by Amazon, first. All garbage. Not recently updated and they don't have a clue what we do for work. Dumb asses. Give me a minute. Trying to work too.:)
    I asked for it.:D


    2: I've deleted them all to start from scratch.

    1: Good plan. Get Mturk suite, made by kaduchi, a forum member.

    2: Check!

    1: mmmturkeybacon Auto Reload Google IFrame On Error **** Not sure about this any more let me know if you have any idea 1/15/2019
    Automatically reloads the iframe of a Google HIT if the "Please refresh the current page in your browser." error occurs.

    This comes in handy on broken HITs. :)

    https://greasyfork.org/scripts/1044...on Auto Reload Google IFrame On Error.user.js


    2: Check and check

    1: Tons of forum members use this for PandAs.

    Panda crazy

    https://greasyfork.org/scripts/19168-jr-mturk-panda-crazy/code/JR Mturk Panda Crazy.user.js

    I don't. Maybe rarely. Made by another forum member. :)

    I use Hit catcher, built into MTS


    2: I wanted to use that but had no idea how to set it up optimally.

    I also have mTurk Engine. But don't know how to take advantage of either


    1: No idea what that engine is. :(

    PandA crazy has a whole thread dedicated, I think. That can help. As I said, I don't need it. If you haven't, it may not help to confuse the issue. To begin, that is.


    2: Check, and again I have no idea how to take advantageof HIT gathering

    1: mmmturkeybacon Unclick Radio Button
    https://greasyfork.org/scripts/8716...e/mmmturkeybacon Unclick Radio Button.user.js
    This will help if you mess up on a survey that doesn't allow "unchecks" (it happens) :)


    2: Check!

    1: First thing you're gonna want to do, when you get started, is click the MTS thing in the upper right corner. That will allow you to turn on Hit finder, Hit catcher (Irun both at all times) And hit tracker, to remember what you've done. :)

    2: All open!

    1: TO (turkopticon) where we rate requesters, so we know who sucks.
    Can't remember if kadauchi included it in MTS but, better safe than...

    https://greasyfork.org/scripts/16475-to/code/TO.user.js

    2:Check!

    1:Upper left of HF check settings and see what you want to do (minimum pay, etc)
    You can only hit them( AMT) up about once a second or they give you page request errors, which are a pain. I run HF on 1200 ms, min pay .24, min # HITs 0 or 1, doesn't matter.
    Then click 'Find HITs' and watch it go. You can set how often it polls AMT (Mturk)

    You'll find what works for you. May want to slow it down to 3000 ms, so you can keep up
    Now, you should be seeing HITs? :)


    2: That I do!

    1: The way Hit catcher works is, you set the time there too. Remember not too fast or AMT PRE's(Page request errors)
    If you try and click accept on a HIT in HF and miss it, there should be a bar at the top of the screen
    "There are no more of these HITs available"
    After that, 'Once' and 'Panda' once will accept the HIT once, then turn off. PandA just keep accepting them until you turn it off. The more PandA's you run, the less likely to catch them. because it runs them consecutively.

    You can try it now and see what appears in HC


    2: So when do I know to do "once" and when to do "Panda"?

    1: Surveys, once.

    Batches, PandaA. (remember too keep it slow if you use PandA, if you have it set for 1000ms, it will grab one every second. If you aren't doing them in a second, you will be overwhelmed)


    2: Survey once...batches Panda....alright I think I get it.

    1: I use HIT Tracker a few times a day to see everything I've done. I would start it and 'update'
    'Last 45 days'
    So it's current and ready.


    2: Projected Earnings Today 44 $13.22
    Projected Earnings This Week 193 $36.73
    Projected Earnings This Month 194 $36.93

    Pending Earnings 50 $12.66
    Approved Waiting Payment 20 $4.60


    :D

    1: And, that's how I work. :D
    I run HF and watch it. I start grabbing stuff.

    If I miss it and want it, I 'Once' (still a "PandA" really. That is just short fot 'preview and accept' "PandA")

    From another tab/window/screen, open your 'Assigned HITs'

    Just start at the top and it will keep loading from Queue as you submit.

    I use 2 screens, two tabs or spit screens works too. I run HF and look at it with my right eye, while I do HITs on the left. YMMV whatever is comfortable. It will all suck until you find what works.:)

    Are your HITs in HF coming up in different colors? Red yellow green?


    2:Yes they are


    1: If you click the person icon at the beginning of the row, you can see their scores, given by turkers.
    Red sucks, you can filter them I think. **UPDATE Make sure to check for yourself. These are suggestions not rules. Follow at your own risk.
    Yellow is, so-so.
    GREEN means go, baby!


    2: So all green all the time? :D

    1: The top half of HF has the current HITs that are up. It moves a lot and annoys me. I close it and work from 'logged hits' below.
    You can close it with the little arrow in the corner.
    The logged HITs always had the most recent HIT on top. Make it a little less jumpy. :)


    1: Basically stay away from red(Or investigate before you do it). Green is okay without having to look.(You may still not like the HIT but, it's fair)


    Yellow is mediocre. I do mostly green with smattering of yellow.


    2: How do I filter out the reds?

    1: Change settings.
    "minimum rating" Set it to 3 or 3.5 or even 4. Your choice. :)I leave the reds on, cause I like to know what I'm not doing. :p


    2: Done!

    1: Sooooo, I just shoved you through a lot of info really quickly. Sorry. I learn fast and teach faster .
    Where are we at? How are you feeling?


    2: Feeling pretty good. Everything you are saying is making sense thus far. Let's keep going :D Setting the filter to 3.5 and I don't get a lot of HITs now haha

    1: I would bring it down but, it is getting late too. It comes in waves. As I said, I don't filter by min rating. I just look at the colour and go from there.
    TBH, that's pretty much Jerami's Advanced Expedited Training.
    I don't do much more than that. There will be a few hiccups and new stuff that comes up but, we'll burn that bridge when we get there. :D

    Unless there's something specific and extra, you ca think of you're golden. That's exactly what I do all day. I grab HITs on the right, while I'm doing them on the left. If I try to grab it and miss, but really want it, I 'once' it. That will grab it in the background for me. Don't run too many once's in HC. You can turn them on and off under each HIT. You can try it now, if you want. You can always return a HIT. So, I do those 3 things, I run the forum on a tab to keep current.
    And, I just work the HITs, (from queue "Assigned HITs")

    I can guarantee, myself, $40 to $XXX by doing that.
    I've got it down but, I would start doing some work and see if you have any more Qs

    If you donate( I don't work here OR get any of it) the forum will 'Auto-update' which comes in handy. (There's no minimum) ***May be $10 minimum FOR LIFE(HINT: IT"S WORTH TWICE THAT! I'll explain later.)

    You can grab HITs from the forum but, you have more luck if the forum is current.(AutoUpdate..Contributor perk)
    Any other questions now?


    2: Nope I think I'm good. I'll try to be active to keep up. Thank you!
    How do you know what surveys you actually want?



    1: On HF, on the right, you can see the pay. In the middle, you have a short description. If it pays well and I qualify, I do it. Buuuut, this is important, everyone likes different ice cream. I have no dislikes or hang ups. Some people don't like to write, you won't know until you get there. I'm a money hungry hippo.:p I do 'em all. Especially when you're new. I can't tell you what you're going to like.


    2: I'm open minded and willing to try anything :D

    1: That's the right attitude. You'll be fine. It'll take a few days, and you'll know what you like. I like long surveys, that pay well, because I can bang them out and stay busy. Some people don't do any surveys. Trying anything once is the perfect way to go. :)_

    2: Also! Qualifications. Which ones should I try to get?

    1: ABQ

    Always be qual'ing. :)
    I have 195 pages of quals, lol.
    Definitely do the Mturk demographic ones, though.
    At the beginning, those will get you started. Then, when it's dead on Mturk, I do quals.

    2: What's the best way to start getting quals?

    1: https://www.mturkcrowd.com/threads/qualifications-how-do-i-get-them.12/
    : Disclaimer:
    This is just how I turk. There are as many ways as turkers. This will get you going though.:)

    Hope I helped.


    So, the former was written about a year ago. If anything is outdated, feel free to let me know.

    Below, you'll find a more in depth explaination of HitCatcher and Pandas and PRE's(Page Request Errors) ***Be warned, slightly more technical ahead.

    I don't use PC or HForker. So, you'll have to translate this to work with the tools that you use.

    TL: DR I don't rely on PandAs. I rely on catching the HIT when it posts. Too many people turn on the forum and grab a bunch of old PandAs for stuff that posted before they started. I never do this. They pop up on HitFinder if they come up again.


    I pretty much start my day by clearing out all of the PandAs I was using the day before, from HC.
    Then I turn on HFinder and start. NOTE: I could have HitCatcher trying to catch a million HITs without a PRE, first of all, since it looks for them consecutively. But, it will only try each HIT once every (#of running PandAs x #ms[speed])/1000 seconds. So, 60@ a second gives you once a minute, it will try to accept each HIT. So, my limited number of PandAs is not to prevent PREs. It's to increase my chances of catching the HIT I want by trying more frequently.
    If I try to accept a HIT and don't catch it, I immediately add it to my running PandAs.(HC)
    Once I get up to 3 or 4, I go into HC and turn 1 or 2 off. I prioritize which I'd most like to catch, and try to figure, as best I can, the likelihood of catching it. If it's a $40 HIT, I may not put it at the top of my priority list because I'm less likely to catch it over a $4 HIT. Because more people are trying for it. They are trying harder.(more often) And, there are probably less to go around.
    Then, I start working HITs.
    If I see a HIT pop on HFinder, I grab it or PandA it, while working my HITs.
    If I hear HC say it caught something, I quickly open it to see what it caught, and turn on the next PandA in my mental list, while deleting the one I caught.
    Rinse.
    Repeat.


    Couple of tips;

    Don't worry about deleting something because it may not be dead.(You can always put it up again, if you change your mind) You could try and set an alert, I guess. But, after a bit, I feel it's not the best use of my time trying to catch something old, when there's always new stuff coming. When it starts to slow down at the end of the day, If a PandA has run for a while but, some other ones haven't I'll switch it up, realizing that every minute that goes by, there is less of a chance that it's still around. If its ultra slow, I'll just refresh HFinder and then it will let me know if any HITs come back around, as if they were new.

    Also,
    don't worry about preventing PREs. I mean, you don't want them but, the goal is to catch the HIT. So, we aren't trying to prevent PREs by running less PandAs, per se. We are trying to increase our chances of catching the HIT. The only way to do that is to try more often. Since we are limited by 2 things, the fact that we can only try about once per second, and that we can only try and catch a single HIT each time we try. With both of those limitations, the only logical solution that I can find is to limit the number of HITs we are trying to catch at any one time. Since we also know that good HITs don't last more than about 2-3 seconds, at best, we can't run more than 2 or 3 PandAs.

    In conclusion,
    I catch most of my HITs straight from HIT Finder. That's really the key to catching HITs. Proper PandA management helps but, having your HIT finding tool(Forker,Scraper,Finder, etc) visible at all times is essential to the way I work. I can see a HIT post almost a second before it beeps to alert me. I grab everything that there's a remote chance I'd like to do. I toss back about 1 or 2 of every 10 but, I don't miss much. I know exactly where the top of my Hit Finder window is. I can get to the accept button within a second. That's how I catch HITs.:) I don't really rely on PandAs to catch anything. That's just a second chance if I screwed up and missed it.

    This is just the way I do it. It works for me. Ymmv


    ** I haven't had a chance to make sure this(above) is meta at the moment. Still trying to get this all in one place for everyone. Bare with me.:)
     
    #1 Jerami, Jan 16, 2019
    Last edited: Jan 16, 2019
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  2. Jerami

    Jerami
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    <!-- Placeholder for MTurk Glossary -->
     
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  3. rsmath

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    some of my comments/Q's...

    Guess it's a good thing I have only installed the Mturk Suite script. I'd hate to think I'd have to be running about 20 scripts. :wink:

    AMT ID cut and paste - there is a click button next to your worker ID that automatcally cuts and pastes your worker ID so I don't know why there is a script needed today for it. I keep the AMT dashboard open in a tab next to Hit Finder (HF) so it's no biggie for me to click to the tab, click the c&p button when a survey requests my worker ID.

    Also don't understand why the need for the "Make Accept Button Visible" script. When I am on a HIT preview page, there is a place to click "accept" above the preview window in the text and then an "accept" button at the bottom of the HIT preview page.

    HF questions:

    What do full row colors mean in HF? Some of the HITS in the list (both current and logged) are colored full line rows instead
    of just the colored box you'd see next to the requester's name.

    I've seen some people mentioning sending a hit from HF to Hit Catcher (HC) - how is that done? I see buttons for HIT info, HIT sharing, gray dash boxes that seem to indicate if I've done something for that requester or that HIT before (turns from gray dash box to green checkmark box) but I haven't figured out sending things to HC yet.

    HC questions:

    This is the biggie for me as it's the least documented of the HTS. In HC, I see individual boxes for requesters or HITS and you can see the "searched" number incrementing, but I've never had a "caught". I cut and pasted a requestor's ID into the add new item box in HC and had catch and sound are turned on and I didn't see the HIT he posted trigger HC (show as a caught or activate whatever sound you get when HC finds something). That's why I think I'm doing something wrong with HC even though HC seems to have been designed to be as simple as possible.

    What is "PRE:" in the box for each item in HC? I've never seen that read more than zero either.

    Thanks.
     
  4. Jerami

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    I've numbered your questions, which makes my life easier when trying to formulate a coherent answer when fielding so many at once.

    1: I use it everyday, all day. I use 2 screens, one for completing HITs, which usually has the study link on top, as I'm completing the study. The other screen has HF on top. My ID was never on top, where I needed it. This fixed that. Scripts fix annoyances and make you more efficient. This did both. :)There is no way I'm wasting 3 seconds every time I need my ID in a study. If you don't care, no problem.:) We turk differently. We have a saying around here, "Prefs, yo!:p" @Jaded@Jaded, it means everyone has different preferences. Nbd. Also, if you need your AMT ID in a study, MTS with the right click(MTS and @Kadauchi@Kadauchi in general, are good with right clicks:D) has a copy feature. It doesn't work well for me but, ymmv and you may as well know it's there. Also, having it on the study window(not the HIT window) makes it real quick to drag and drop. Less than a second with muscle memory.

    2: There isn't a need. It's an old conversation. Thanks for mentioning, I'll have to make sure I don't include it above.

    3: They're the same. The 'fill' didn't populate the box with the colour.

    4: The easiest way from the HF window is to right click on any HIT and use the little MTS command that's in your right click menu. Otherwise, when you try and accept a HIT, which you should be doing by clicking the price, before creating a PandA, if you get the HIT, great. If you miss it, there will be the 'Once' and "Panda" buttons available from the "There are no more HITs avail..." page.

    5: You can't do requester searches in HC. You can only Panda HIT ID's. For requester searches, which I don't use, you'd need PandaCrazy(PC).
    For Pandas to produce on a hard to get HIT(limited number, high paying), they need to be set at between 900 and 1200ms. You can't run more than 1 to 3(4 without HF on) and have them reliable produce, as the run consecutively and as often as once per second, on down the line. The more you run, the longer it takes to get back to the first one. If it's more than a second or 2 to go through all that you have running, it'll be gone again.

    6: Page Request Error. Explained above(Ctrfl+F PRE) You can only 'ping' AMT about once per second, give or take. Do it more and you'll get a PRE which will screw up your next few HF scans and any PandAs running because once you get one, you get a "cooldown" time of a few seconds, if you keep hammering them, you get no results.


    That should have covered everything you asked. Most of it is described a bit better in the OP, and I tried not to restate things. Good luck.
    :)
     
    #4 Jerami, Jan 16, 2019
    Last edited: Jan 16, 2019
  5. Jaded

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  6. Jerami

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    :eek:

    Also, that's all you took from that?:p
     
    #6 Jerami, Jan 16, 2019
    Last edited: Jan 16, 2019
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  7. rsmath

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    that seems to help quite a bit (and also gave me another realization that I hadn't figured out in 12 days yet). :wink:

    HC finallly caught a hit (using the "panda" button on a HIT I missed and I hit panda hoping it might come around again and it did).

    I guess I'll have to send up a panda for the daily HIT I want since requestor searches aren't available in HC and one day I'll probably get it.

    I've also done the most tasks I've ever had in an hour (4 this past hour!). so I can see how panda helps to catch things so you do less waiting around. I think I've also made my highest daily amount -- enough to buy a value meal if I wanted (grin) - but i'm still getting there through the learning curve of how the use MTS and help from you on those less documented things..

    Last thing that is unclear to me at this moment (and may not matter much) is do I let a panda expire or do a return a panda if it's a duplicate one like the survey I got last hour that I got two pandas on and I only worked on one because I don't think it is intended to be answered twice). If I let it expire, it probably goes to my HIT abandonment stat, and if I return it, it probably goes to my HIT return stat and I get the impression from one mturk FAQ I read (yours?) that requestors don't seem to set HIT worker exclusion criteria to either stat.
     
  8. Jerami

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    Well, a Panda is just a preview and accept link. I don't think you mean what to do with the link. The result is the HIT. I'm guessing you mean a HIT(which was caught with a PandA:)). Either is mostly the same(I prefer returning) but, best practice is to return it once you know you aren't going to do it, so someone else can, and the requesters get their data in a timely manner. Also, on your end, it's to your benefit to keep your queue(where your HITs are located while waiting to be done. You can store 24 or 25) as clean as possible. If you work from queue, once again best prectice, you start at the top. Once you finish one HIT, the next in queue(next to expire, not taking time to complete into account at all) will load next. When I work, I have one screen just grabbing HITs, and the other, I click the first in my queue, and don't exit from there for hours, if all goes correctly. As I keep doing new HITs and the next in queue loads, I'm also "back-filling" that queue, by accepting new HITs while working, making a never-ending supply, like a bottomless Pez dispenser..


    I'm glad I'm helping. I hope this bit makes sense. Someday when I want to get video editing software, I'll make a video of what I do in practice with 3+ screens and whatnot. It ends up getting pretty intense, as weird as that may sound. If you're batch on one screen like crazy, but, other micro batches are dropping at the same time, interspersed with studies that I already have in queue waiting to be done. Music blaring, I'm speech to texting on one screen, doing HITs on another, posting HITs to the forum, and trying to help out when I can. It can be a flurry of activity.:p
    But, I sorta enjoy it.
     
    #8 Jerami, Jan 16, 2019
    Last edited: Jan 16, 2019
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  9. rsmath

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    I'm talking about when HC catches a HIT I go to my AMT HITS Queue and the caught HIT (or HITs) are waiting for me. I work the one that has the least time remaining before expiration. I've had HC catch two of the same survey from the same requestor. In case of duplicate surveys, after I finish one I wonder what do with the HIT in my queue of the other one and it sounds like you prefer return rather than let expire just so someone else can work on it quicker.

    As for video editing, if it's only trimming and removing bad takes and not needing on-screen titles (sort of like if you recorded a tv show and removed the commercials and trimmed up the ends so you don't have part of the program before and after), I could consider doing that video editing that for you. There is a free powerful video editor called VSDC but I'm not 100% comfortable editing with it so I don't feel like I could do titles, trim clips, sync audio to those clips but I am comfortable with trimming the ends and trimming out the messed up parts when you had to stop a section of a video and had to re-film it to the way you wanted it.
     
  10. rsmath

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    It would be nice if HC could monitor requestors in a future version. There is one that seems to have good rankings but his HIT titles are similar but not exact so I am not sure panda is going to get it because of the incrementing number in the title of his HITs
     
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  11. Jerami

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    You are correct. It would be nice. It won't PandA a different HIT ID, regardless of how close the name is, unfortunately. Some requesters, like CSats, have multiple batch ID's and, if you were to use HC, you would need an individual PandA for each. It's not the same but, you can use the 'include list' with the 'include Req' button' and at least you'll be alerted.

    It would be nice to get that functionality but, for all intents and purposes, MTS is in it's final form, per the developer.(@Kadauchi@Kadauchi )
    If you like the format of MTS and want requester searches, unfortunately you'd have to upgrade to Turkernator, which is like MTS on steroids. It is a paid program though. Maybe something to think about for the future.:)
     
  12. Jerami

    Jerami
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    The Last Starfighter

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    As far as video editing, I think my real issue is being able to blur certain personal information, with black bars or blurred out. (AMT ID, email address, etc.) Thanks for the offer. I may take you up on it. I have a bunch of things going on, at the moment but, videos are on the list. Unfortunately, I don't make anything for doing it so, getting paid has to come first.:)
     
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  13. Kadauchi

    Kadauchi
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    It is open source and I do accept pull requests, so someone coming along and adding that stuff could happen (I know some people have their custom edits and I tell them to submit them). Though the easier way would be adding some way to go from Finder => PC since PC is already so complicated.
     
    Nikoratos and Jerami like this.