I'm a graduate of the University of California, Berkeley. I studied film, a humanities major in the College of Letters and Sciences. I've always wanted to tell stories with my own art and music on computers.
My favorite computer is the Macintosh. I use my G3 PowerBook (Pismo) for my day-to-day work. I do most of my final graphics and editing work on my desktop Macs, but I also use PCs running Windows 98, Windows 2000, Windows XP Pro. I've also dabbled with Linux for past employers and projects.
I've written several books about how to use Macintosh computers, one book about how to use Linux, and a bunch of books on computer graphics software. My latest books are about how to use Photoshop Elements 2 to do all kinds of amazing things with digital photos. All of these books are available through online and traditional retail bookstores, such as Borders or Barnes and Noble, as well as
But wait, there's more! I've written approximately 1,000 tutorials for (formerly known as and I worked with the co-founders to create the content format of the tutorials for their Web site. Topics I've written about include Macs, Linux, Palm handhelds, Visor, Pocket PC, DSL, Adobe Acrobat, After Effects, Macromedia Flash 5, Macromedia Director, Adobe Photo Deluxe, Fear Effect (a playstation game), WebTV, and digital cameras.
I was interviewed by John Nemerovski of in the summer of 2000. In that interview I talk about how I write my books. One thing I didn't mention in the interview is that I usually listen to music when I write. Sometimes I have the TV turned on, too.
Books I recommend... 
Books I've written...
Technical Editor

How to Use Photoshop Elements 2
April 2003- Que Publishing; ISBN: 0789728036
It's my pleasure to present my one and only full-color Photoshop Elements book! Not only is this my first color book, it's one of the first books to use the new design for Que's How To series of color, step-by-step series.
This 275 page book is divided into a total of 12 chapters containing anywhere from four to ten tasks, beginning with a quick tour of the desktop and jumping right into color and image editing basics. Each chapter explores different pixel-tweaking techniques, covering a broad range of photos, from long shots to close ups to nature, landscapes, and, of course people and pets. Most tasks are six steps in length with a few longer 14 step tasks. Enjoy!
Absolute Beginner's Guide to Adobe Photoshop Elements
October 2002- Que Publishing; ISBN: 0789728311
Adobe's Photoshop Elements 2.0 replaces the 1.0 version and is sold separately or bundled with digital cameras and scanners. At $99, it packs the punch of having some of the cool tools in Photoshop, plus a few new ones you won't find anywhere else. Best of all, you can purchase the Photoshop Elements CD from Adobe or any software store or mail order company. Adobe's Photoshop Elements CD includes both the Windows and Mac OS versions of Photoshop Elements. And if that's not enough, you can try it out for 30 days - download the software from Adobe's Web site!

Absolute Beginner's Guide to Photoshop Elements 2.0 is divided into four parts. The first half of the book reviews the work area and shows you how to acquire, scane, save, print, and open files. The second half of the book shows you how to apply effects, work with layers, remove red eye, repair photos, create complex images, animation, panoramas, and photo galleries. It covers the new tools and techniques you can perform with 2.0, as well as all the great tools in 1.0.
DSL Survival Guide
November 2001- Osborne McGraw-hill ; ISBN: 0072193107
Broadband networks are slowly entering homes and offices around the world. Digital Subscriber Lines (DSL) use existing phone lines to bring fast Internet connections into homes and offices located near a local phone company's central office (CO). The DSL Survival Guide explains how DSL networks work, and, after you've subscribed to a DSL provider's services, how you can set up a DSL connection or local area network in your home or office.
This book will show you how to setup, run, and troubleshoot your DSL network. It explains basic DSL concepts, with easy-to-follow diagrams, and step-by-step instructions for setting up and connecting Windows, Mac, or Linux computers to the Internet via a DSL modem and DSL service provider network. Learn how to run client applications, such as e-mail, instant messaging, and streaming media, set up a server, or extend your local network with a wireless access point, and wireless network interface cards. The troubleshooting section focuses on troubleshooting computers and networks.


Book Bytes Review - DSL Survival Guide
John Nemerovski
Columnist, The Nemo Memo, Book Bytes Book Reviews
Wednesday, 11/14/01
MacMice Rating: 5 out of 5 = AMAZING book, one of a kind, sensational
MacMice Rating: 4 out of 5 = OUTSTANDING book through and through
MacMice Rating: 3 out of 5 = GOOD book, worth every penny
MacMice Rating: 2 out of 5 = OKAY, but nothing special
MacMice Rating: 1 out of 5 = NOPE, forget it, and read something else
DSL Survival Guide
by Lisa Lee
Osborne / McGraw-Hill
ISBN 0-07-219310-7, 431 pages
$29.99 US

Lisa Lee is a "niche" author, meaning she writes books either on topics not covered by dozens of other authors, or with a fresh approach to mainstream subjects.

Her new DSL Survival Guide is one of the former. Digital Subscriber Line broadband service to the home is slugging it out against cable modem service for market dominance. Each has its advantages, but if Nemo was offered equal choice and reliability, DSL would be the winner.

Beginning with "What is DSL?" and "What is a Network?", Lisa explains what they are and how they work. These opening two chapters are burdened with terminology and acronyms, but don't despair, because the nifty illustrated diagrams convey everything you need to understand. My favorite section is the three-page chart comparing DSL with other options and alternatives. The techspeak can seem somewhat geeky, so ask your local guru or MUG (Macintosh User Group) buddy to explain the jargon, as needed.

Next come chapters appropriate for administrators of a DSL network (large or small), including check lists for Macintosh and other operating systems. Chapter Five, "Setting Up Computers," should be required reading for all of us, because it contains info we are expected to know but usually don't make the effort to comprehend.

Do you REALLY understand how to set up an email account in every imaginable configuration of Mac OS and client software? If not, Lisa Lee's "Setting Up E-Mail" tutorial will soon make you a seasoned veteran. Book Bytes considers this chapter worth at least half the $$$ cost of DSL Survival Guide.
Helpful user-oriented chapters covering Internet chatting and streaming follow, before we get to the serious stuff in Part Three:
* running a home network
* desktop, laptop, and handheld computing via DSL
* file sharing and web sharing.

This material is a bit over my head, but the content, screen shots, and check lists are consistently well-written and well-presented.

Most single-connection home users won't need to spend a lot of time troubleshooting their DSL service. This territory is the province of network administrators, who should scrutinize the final 90 pages in DSL Survival Guide before deciding if the book is appropriate.

If you have or need a one-computer working DSL connection at home, buy this book only if you care to understand the nuts and guts of your broadband service. Small and medium size networkers will find this multi-platform book a true "Survival Guide" worth its Book Bytes rating of:
MacMice Rating: 4 out of 5

Introducing Adobe Photoshop Elements
September 2001- Que Publishing; ISBN: 0789726297
Adobe's Photoshop Elements replaces Photoshop LE as a bundled application for digital cameras and scanners. At $99, it packs the punch of having many familiar tools from Photoshop, plus a few new ones you won't find in any other version of Photoshop. Best of all, you can purchase the Photoshop Elements CD from Adobe or any software store or mail order company. Adobe's Photoshop Elements CD includes both the Windows and Mac OS versions of Photoshop Elements. And if that's not enough, you can try it out for 30 days by downloading the software from Adobe's Web site.

The book is divided into five parts. The first half of the book reviews the work area and shows you how to acquire, scane, save, print, and open files. The second half of the book shows you how to apply effects, work with layers, remove red eye, repair photos, create complex images, animation, panoramas, and photo galleries. Photoshop Elements is a great mix of easy to use tools, and powerfully accurate graphics commands. Enjoy!


The Barnes & Noble Review
Photoshop is just too expensive for thousands of amateur photographers, hobbyists, and business users. For them, there's Photoshop Elements, which combines advanced image editing, flexible image capture, and versatile image delivery features for both Web and print. Not just a stripped-down Photoshop, Elements offers many new features: recipe palettes, Photomerge, automatic cropping, and photo uploads, to name a few.

Introducing Adobe Photoshop Elements is the complete, hands-on guide that Elements users need. Lisa Lee makes you comfortable with the Photoshop Elements interface, showing how to customize and personalize the software to reflect what you're doing most often with it. You'll find extensive coverage of scanning, acquiring, and creating images, as well as converting, sharing, and printing them.

Like Photoshop Elements itself, this book focuses heavily on correcting and combining images, and designing complex images. While easier to use than Photoshop, Elements features still require skill. Lee helps you master all of them: color correction, filters, effects, layers, repairing images, composites, GIF animation, panoramas, web photo galleries, and much more. Together, Adobe's software and Lee's book will help you achieve the results you want -- without the pain. (Bill Camarda)

Bill Camarda is a consultant, writer, and web/multimedia content developer with nearly 20 years' experience in helping technology companies eploy and market advanced software, computing, and networking products and services. His 15 books include Special Edition Using Word 2000 and Upgrading & Fixing Networks For Dummies®, Second Edition.


Book Bytes Review - David Weeks - Introducing Photoshop Elements
Book Review - Introducing Photoshop Elements
David Weeks
Columnist, Reviewer
Thursday, 12/13/01
Introducing Photoshop Elements
by Lisa Lee
Que Publishing
ISBN 0-7897-2629-7
$24.99 US ($37.95 CA)
First off, I need to admit to the world that I am not a graphics wizard. I can handle most word processors; hanging indents and tables of contents don't frighten me in the least. Communications software is no big deal.

But when confronted with the intricacies of RGB, CMK, layers, filters, and DPI vs. LPI, my eyes tend to glaze over.

So when I recently began to want to get more out of my Fuji FinePix 4700 digital camera than I could get with entry-level graphics programs, I got nervous.
Adobe Photoshop is the be-all and end-all to Macintosh digital image manipulation. Aside from the fact that it is costs much more than I wanted to spend, the learning curve is long and steep. I am not interested in slogging through manuals the size of the Manhattan telephone directory to learn to how to do basic color correction and intermediate-level image manipulations.

Last year, Adobe introduced Photoshop Elements. Elements is Photoshop without the steroids. It has perhaps 80% of the features, at 20% of the price, with 30% of the learning curve.

When I found that Adobe was running discounts earlier this fall, I jumped headlong into the Photoshop Elements pool.

Typically, the printed manual that Adobe included with Elements is adequate in that it describes the various functions of the program. But that begs the question of what you can actually DO with Elements. Simply knowing what the various menu options do will not spur the creative muses!

A well-written book on Photoshop Elements is a boon to those who want to learn more about what they can do with Elements. Author Lisa Lee has written just that book; Introducing Photoshop Elements.

The 500 pages of Introducing Photoshop Elements provides all the Photoshop Elements guidance you will probably ever need, unless you are really pushing the Elements envelope. If you are pushing the envelope that hard, you will probably be ready to move into the full version of Photoshop.

Like most all books that can replace the manual itself, Introducing Photoshop Elements spends plenty (perhaps too much) time rehashing the details of how to install and configure Elements. There is the usual blow-by-blow review of each menu option. Given that almost everyone who spends the $24.99 US ($37.95 CA) for this will have already purchased and installed Elements, the first 1/4 of the book is redundant. Adobe has quite succinctly told the Elements owner how to -operate- Elements. The main point of software instruction book like Introducing Photoshop Elements is to tell the reader how to take advantage of, and how to best use, the software.

Lee does this very well in the last 3/4 of her book. She provides highly informative chapters on scanning and acquiring images with emphasis on scanning techniques to provide good raw material for Elements work. A chapter on the basics of digital cameras is very useful for those digital camera owners who want to learn how to take images that are going to be easy to work with in Elements.

The section on printing was one of my favorites. For those who are generally comfortable with digital cameras, but can never seem to get the on-screen image printed correctly, this chapter will be very useful. There is a good balance of basic color theory and practical printing tips to help most users improve the quality of their prints.

Many pages are devoted to a discussion of color correction and image manipulation. Many users are not going to be doing much more manipulation than putting the head of Spot the dog on the wife's (or husband's) body. But if the resulting photo has a persistent green cast that spoils the effect, you need to know how to adjust the color balance. Lee provides good instructions on how to do basic and advanced color correction. There are several excellent tutorials covering a step-by-step correction of an image. Screen snaps provide visual backup for readers who want to see the process visually.

The last section is about designing complex images. I spent less time here, as I am not ready for the more advanced work than can be done with Elements. Suffice to say that the four chapters devoted to complex image design and editing will provide a good foundation for those interested in Elements exotica.

The one best tip that I liked in Lee's book was the detailed discussion of how to merge separate panoramic photos into one continuous photo with proper perspective. Her description of the process of merging panoramic photos (one of my favorite Elements capabilities) was much better than what Adobe provided.

Introducing Photoshop Elements is the best book I have read so far on how to best use Adobe Photoshop Elements.

MacMice Rating: 4.5 out of 5
. Deductions only for the duplication of material from the manual. Granted, that may not bother some readers who want to get it all from the book, and not open the manual.

Fireworks 4 Fast & Easy Web Development
February 2001- Prima Publishing; ISBN: 0761535195
Macromedia's Fireworks 4 is the latest version of Macromedia's popular Web graphics application that can be used with Dreamweaver 4 to create image-rich Web pages. I wrote this book for intermediate to advanced computer users who already have some familiarity with web development and graphics applications on Windows or Mac OS. If you're new to Fireworks, or new to Fireworks 4, this book is for you!
Like the previous edition of this book, you'll find task-based tutorials showing you how to use Fireworks 4 to prepare graphics for a Web page. Other chapters show you how to use layers, frames, and symbols to create buttons, rollovers and animation. Learn how to create automation commands, and work with Fireworks files in Dreamwever, too.
Almost a thousand screen shots were created with the Mac version (and a few screenshots of the Windows version) of Fireworks 4. The Mac and Windows user interfaces are almost identical (give or take a tool bar or docking mechanism). I've included all the files shown in the book in the CD-ROM bundled with the book. The book also includes 30 day trial copies of Fireworks 4, Dreamweaver 4, Ultra Dev 4, and Flash 5. I'll be updating my Fireworks pages, adding tutorials to supplement the tasks in this book.
Photoshop 6 Digital Darkroom
November 2000 - Prima Publishing; ISBN: 0761531637
Photoshop 6 Digital Darkroom is a full color, 271 page book that shows you how to take a digital picture, edit it with Photoshop, then put it on a Web page. I wrote this book to cover a core set of tasks to show the reader how to use Photoshop to do some basic to advanced editing techniques with digital photos. I explain how to use selection, drawing and gradient tools, combined with layers, masks and channels to complete simple tasks like correcting the color in a picture, to more complex tasks, like combining multiple images into one picture. Although professional photographers and computer newbies can use this book, I've written it more specifically for the casual digital photographer with some Windows or Mac experience and some familiarity with Photoshop or other graphics and web development applications. Download some of my digital pictures, or visit my digital camera and Photoshop pages. Use them to follow the tutorials in this book. Visit Adobe's Web site to read more about Photoshop 6.
This review is from Barnes and Noble's Web site (12/13/00).

Our Review

Take digital photographs? Want them tolook as great as they possibly can? Photoshop 6 is your tool, and Adobe Photoshop 6 Digital Darkroom by Lisa Lee is your book.

Lee starts with a handy overview of Photoshop's basic tools and preferences, perfect for photographers who haven't used the program much. But she gets that stuff out of the way in a hurry. By page 60, you're correcting images: replacing and balancing colors, adjusting contrast and tonal range, and getting to know your friend, the Channel Mixer. Lee presents start-to-finish coverage of enhancing digital images with filters and effects. She demystifies layers, masks, and channels -- and, having done so, shows you exactly how to make the most of them. For example, you'll find chapter-length explanations of creating custom masks and experimenting with channel operations (for instance, to create composite images).

There's a full chapter on combining images to create animations, another on adding text to your images, and three chapters on web-related topics (from file-size optimization to creating web photo galleries). A digital camera, a copy of Photoshop 6, and Adobe Photoshop 6 Digital Darkroom: together, they're everything the serious digital photography hobbyist could ever want. BOOK BYTES review by John Nemerovski - (12/20/00)

Regular readers of will remember Lisa Lee for reviews of her award-winning books, plus a Nemo Memo interview. She’s back with an unusual book published by Prima Tech. Book Bytes welcomes this new publisher, with encouragement for their future titles.

Why does a $600 application require a $50 third party book? Don’t you think the software developer of a world-class product would hire the best authors on the planet to develop printed manuals and online help guides? What’s wrong with this picture?

I can never get enough illustrated tutorials. Book Bytes will continue to review them as often as we can. Most of these graphics-heavy texts come from two or three of the major computer book publishers. Adobe Photoshop 6 Digital Darkroom breaks new ground, and sets a high standard.

FACTS: This book is big, heavy, expensive, and worth the effort. Author Lisa Lee itemizes the crucial steps in making Photoshop 6 the premier creative working tool for the next generation of talented digital photographers. Her lessons are informative and well-illustrated, and the book is designed, not merely assembled.

Four major parts contain 19 chapters, assisting readers on “Taking Pictures,” and learning how to manipulate them in Photoshop, through “Creating Complex Images” and publishing the results on the Internet. Lisa knows both photography and Photoshop, and incorporates them together seamlessly.

The oversized pages contain instructional material, brilliant color images, detailed steps, and hundreds of helpful hints. If you utilize only a few of the author’s lessons, Adobe Photoshop 6 Digital Darkroom will pay for itself.

My favorite aspect of this book is Lisa’s consistency. Her writing and visual styles are no-nonsense casual. She includes an ongoing visual conversation with readers, featuring a few versatile generic images given very different treatment as the book progresses. Here we have a book that is a delight to study and full of wisdom.

An invasion of Photoshop 6 titles from every computer book publisher is about to commence. Hey! Two more just arrived. You can’t own every one, so give Adobe Photoshop 6 Digital Darkroom serious con

Mac Mice Rating: 4 out of 5 (March 12, 2001)
In this well-organized, image-filled book, the author promises to show readers who have some computer experience but are new to digital photography (that is, neither computer neophytes nor professional photographers) how to take, touch up, edit, and publish digital pictures for the Web. As Lisa Lee puts it, "I start with a crash course about how to take a good picture, and then try to show off some basic and advanced tasks you can perform to create spiffy-looking Web-ready photographic images."

In a way, the whole book is a crash course--plenty of full-color screen shots accompanied by short but insightful explanations and step-by-step instructions that take you from opening screen to finished image quickly. Tips and cautions pop up frequently, and the pithy, concise text says a lot without taking up much space. For example, the author clearly and speedily explains why applying the sharpen filter to a blurry image won't make much of a visual change. And in just five pages, the section on image masks touches on RGB and alpha channels, the high pass filter, the magic wand and the lasso tools, and many keyboard shortcuts, as well as showing you a decent composited image. The discussions in the book are like recipes: you may not know why you should use baking soda rather than baking powder, but you'll eat a satisfying dish in the end.

The author writes, "I'm assuming if the image looks good to you, using your eyes as your guide, then it's okay for your Web site." Prospective buyers can check out the book's example images, as well as download a few of the .psd files, at her site ( This would be a good way to gauge your level of experience against what's covered.

With its detailed index, art-book shape, and lie-flat spine, the book is handy for finding quick fixes or creative ways to experiment with digital photos. One note: Macintosh users are favored since all the screen shots were made using that version of Photoshop, but all instructions are cross-platform. --Angelynn Grant

Fireworks Fast & Easy Web Development
July 2000 - Prima Publishing; ISBN: 0761530827
Macromedia's Fireworks 3 is a Web graphics application that can be used with Dreamweaver to create image-rich Web pages. I wrote this book for intermediate to advanced computer users who already have some familiarity with web development and graphics applications on Windows or Mac OS. This book contains task-based tutorials showing you how to use Fireworks to prepare graphics for a Web page. This book will not show you how to draw, or create professional graphics for Web sites. The step-by-step examples show you how the selection, drawing, and Web tools work. Other chapters show you how to use layers, frames, and symbols to create rollovers and animation. Learn how to create automation commands, and work with Fireworks files in Dreamwever, too.
Almost all of the 700 screen shots were created with the Mac version of Fireworks, but the user interface is almost identical on Windows. I've included all the files shown in the book in the CD-ROM bundled with the book. The book also includes 30 day trial copies of Fireworks 3 and Dreamweaver 3. I'll be updating my Fireworks pages, adding tutorials to supplement the tasks in this book, and links to fireworks community resources.
Easy iMac, Second Edition
April 2000, Que
I was really impressed with my DV iMac. I re-wrote Easy iMac to cover Mac OS 9... new features like the keychain and multiple users and file security. Of course, I also had to add new tasks to explain how to play a DVD movie, download and edit video with iMovie using FireWire and network wirelessly with AirPort. Finally, I managed to explain how to use each application in the software bundle... everything from the Palm Desktop software to the games, KidPix, the fax software, encyclopedia, and ClarisWorks 6. I wanted to make this second edition to be as impressive as the DV iMacs are to the original Rev A, B and C iMacs.
Easy iBook,
December 1999, Que
I re-wrote Easy iMac for the iBook; the iMac to go. Mac OS 9 is also covered, including Sherlock 2, Multiple Users, Location Manager, File Syncrhonization and Keychain Access control panels. I don't know what it is about writing about Macs for the Easy series, but I enjoyed writing Easy iBook as much as I did writing Easy iMac.
Easy Linux
September 1999 - Que
This is my first PC book - a true challenge! Easy Linux includes a CD-ROM with Caldera Linux 2.2. Pentium PC recommended. Installing with Caldera 2.2. is very similar to installing Red Hat 6.1. Caldera's installer has some auto-sensing features that make the installation much easier. In additon to all the KDE basics, this book covers some very simple features with the Bash shell, and the vi and emacs text editors, too.
Easy iMac
April 1999 - Que
I had a great time writing this book. My main goal was to create a book for someone who has never used a computer before, but wants to learn most of the basics. For more experienced users, I wanted to create a summary of all the iMac features - highlight the hardware features and Mac OS 8.5.
Teach Yourself Mac OS 8.5 in 24 hours1998 (co-authored with Rita Lewis)
Upgrading and Repairing Your Mac 1995
Update for Mac OS 7.6 book 1997
The Macintosh Bible1996 (Contributing Author)
Zen and the Art of Resource Editing: The BMUG Guide to ResEdit(1st & 2nd Editions) 1992 (Contributing Author)