I wasn’t quite sure what to expect from a session on screencasting. I have screencast before using different software programs and edited videos for Youtube. And I was a bit puzzled as to how all this could be used by an editor for the purposes of editing. Or as part of a business.
Part One of the presentation was telling us what screencasting was. And what is wasn’t. Screencasting is basically like taking a screenshot but instead of an image, ending up with video as the result. Video of whatever may be on your screen at that time.
I am aware of people using screencasting for gaming purposes to showcase what playing a game is like when they review it or run a walkthrough. I have done this myself.
But I used different software. Malini and Hilary had found Jing – a free tool from the people at TechSmith for making 5 minute screencasts. They walked us through the simplicity of creating such screencasts and uploading them somewhere where they could be shared with others via a link.
Part Two was a list of dos and don’ts for the most efficient use of screencasts. These were a list of simple things: don’t ramble, be short and succinct and repeat information, keep it to about two minutes max if possible and so on.
Part Three was really interesting. This was where they got everyone to discuss with each other how they would use screencasts. People got very excited. They felt they could use screencasting to explain to clients why certain changes had been made or use screencasting to train people on using certain parts of software. Malini and Hilary even suggested using screencasting to create e-courses with short snippets of video inbetween for demonstrations or to spice up a blog post.
I will spice up my blog posts in future but not this one just yet. I have plans for my first such non-gaming screencast.
Part Four was telling us about the next step up where you could pay a bit of money and invest in a good microphone and different editing and screencasting software so that you could embed a second screencast of yourself or add in music and effects.
They ended with a screencasting challenge to all of us: to create and post a screencast within the next week of something, anything in a particular online group and that the best one would win a picture of a trophy.
All in all, it was quite an entertaining session. And I have another idea for screencasting: social media promotion. But you will have to wait to see what I mean. I have a trophy to win.