Geotechlab The site of the Geotechnical Lab

How to

General software troubleshooting tips

1) Avoid spaces and punctuations in file names… many times they are not allowed.

2) Most of the codes use the English numerals notation: . (dot) as decimal point and, (comma) to separate each group of three digits. Please modify the international options of your OS before starting to use any kind of program.

This is a list of my popular  “How to…” classified by program:


  • How to save xy image coordinates from selected points?
    open ImageJ, open the selected image, press “Point or Multi-point selection” button, press and hold down the Shift key and click on the image. Select Analyze -> Measure (sometimes is necessary to check the measurements properties in Analyze -> Set Measurements and disable all options). Edit -> Select All and paste in Excel (check the international options for the floating-point conversions)
  • How to save xy image coordinates from a selected polyline?
    Prepare the macro List XY Coordinates as:
macro "List XY Coordinates" {
     getSelectionCoordinates(x, y);
     for (i=0; i<x.length; i++)
         print(i+" "+x[i]+" "+y[i]);
  • and save it as a txt file.
    open ImageJ, open the selected image, select the icon “segmented lines”. Select the line on the Image. Plugins -> Macro  -> Run… and select the previous file. You can also save the polyline as a ROI. Analyze -> Tools -> ROI Manager… -> Add it (or simply press “t”)  then More>> Save… and save the ROI as a txt file. The same ROI can be imported using Analyze -> Tools -> ROI Manager… More>> Load…
    Check the option “Show All” for multiple ROIs.
  • How to create a gif movie from a sequence of images?
    open the images as a stack: File -> Import-> Image Sequence;
    File -> Save as…-> Animated gif;
    (to change the frame rate select Image -> Stacks -> Tools -> Animation Options)


  • How to crop/rename/resize images in batch mode?
    open IrfanView, File -> Rename/conversion in batch…  On the right Add the photos to elaborate; on the left select the function that you want to use. Option and Advanced for image resizing and cropping.
  • How to crop an image with a fixed aspect ratio?
    Draw the rectangular selection on the image or go to Edit -> Create Custom selections…  Holding the CTRL key, expand/reduce the selection to the size that you want, and move it with the right mouse button. Then crop the image.


  • How to crop a video?
    open the movie. Video -> Filters… -> Add… -> null transform ->Ok -> Cropping…. Then select the cropping offsets -> Ok
    File -> Save as AVI
  • How to crop a video? (2)
    open the movie. Select the starting frame and click on “Mark in”. Select the final frame and click on “Mark out”.
    Edit -> Crop to selection
    File -> Save as…
  • How to save the image sequence?
    open the movie. File -> Export -> Image Sequence…


  • What is the best plugin/tool to insert citations and reference in a WordPress site?
    I think Zotero, it is a really open-source tool. Install ZotPress (the Plugin of the Zotero tool) and follow the instructions for the login.
  • How to insert inline citations?
    somewhere in the text, simply insert a shortcode like [\zotpressInText item="{XQ7K4YAQ}" etal="yes"]
    without \ after the [. For more options see the menu Zotpress -> Help
  • How to insert references of inline citations at the end of the page
    at the end of the page insert the shortcode [\zotpressInTextBib style="apa" sortby="date"]
    without \ after the [. For more options see the menu Zotpress -> Help
  • What is the best plugin/tool to insert latex math expression in your WordPress web page?
    I think MathJax-LaTeX, it is open-source. To install the plugin: unzip the downloaded .zip archive to the /wp-content/plugins/ directory and then activate the plugin through the ‘Plugins’ menu in WordPress. In order to use it you have to simply use shortcode like $ latex d \left ( s , V \right ) = \frac{ s }{ 2 } \left ( -1 + \sqrt{ 1 + \frac{ 2 V }{ \pi R s^2} } \right) $
    /without space between $ and latex to obtain:
    d \left ( s , V \right ) = \frac{ s }{ 2 } \left ( -1 + \sqrt{ 1 + \frac{ 2 V }{ \pi R s^2} } \right)

Power Point

  • How to change the Language settings of all slides at once
    Use this macro
 Sub ChangeProofingLanguageToEnglish()
    Dim j, k, m, scount, fcount, gcount As Integer
    scount = ActivePresentation.Slides.Count
    For j = 1 To scount
        fcount = ActivePresentation.Slides(j).Shapes.Count
        For k = 1 To fcount
            If ActivePresentation.Slides(j).Shapes(k).HasTextFrame Then
                ActivePresentation.Slides(j).Shapes(k) _
                .TextFrame.TextRange.LanguageID = msoLanguageIDEnglishUS
            End If
            If ActivePresentation.Slides(j).Shapes(k).Type = msoGroup Then
                gcount = ActivePresentation.Slides(j).Shapes(k).GroupItems.Count
                For m = 1 To gcount
                    If ActivePresentation.Slides(j).Shapes(k).GroupItems.Item(m).HasTextFrame Then
                    ActivePresentation.Slides(j).Shapes(k).GroupItems.Item(m) _
                    .TextFrame.TextRange.LanguageID = msoLanguageIDEnglishUS
            End If
                Next m
            End If
        Next k
    Next j
End Sub