Sunday, July 4, 2010

2Thing #8 Screencast

I like this feature to Web2.0. If each student had a copy of the screencast on their desktop, they could follow instructions step-by-step at the needed pace. I can't think of the number of times I have used ActivBoard to demonstrate the steps to working on the class's wikispace, only to have students be at many different places at any given moment. It usually means leaving the board with an image and then rotating around the room according to students' hands in the air asking for help.

It appears at first blush that Camtasia could be used to create video texts that could be "read" to students and then annotated in a way where students could see and hear how to refer back to a text to capture information for a reading objective (main idea, summary, cause and effect, etc.). This would save teachers from repeating lessons on a topic and would allow a great lesson to be created and saved for future use. It could then be embedded into a wikispace (maybe?) or blog so that students could refer to it as a tutorial or review, if needed. This application has a 30 day free trial, then purchasing option. The option to download a free key isn't available either. The tutorial is not so user friendly that I would pursue this any further. However, it does look like a great application.

I think I will go with the FreeScreencast, which doesn't require a download and is supposed to be simple. This too isn't proving to be easy. I downloaded the Recorder (no downloads?), then attempted the also necessary Windows Media Encoder. This would not download because of Windows Logo testing failure, claiming the encoder incompatible with Windows XP. Windows is incompatible with Windows. I think I'm drowning and will search for a lifeguard.

I am going to jot some notes I appreciate from reading Sue Waters' blog.

1. Camtasia lets you record and edit your screencast without the use of another program. However
2. Recording entire desktop okay for PowerPoint, but a fixed region (640 wide by 480 high) will give a better image.
3. Set the screen recording to autopan, which will move the recording in response to mouse movements.
4. The video format is important:
Consider using the .mov format, with a medium setting, when uploading to video sharing websites.
5. These tips may be a medicine for your sanity.

Note to self: It takes a good focus to keep size under 100 MB for the blog's requirements.

Argg! I am unable to upload a video, although I have followed protocol.

So, now I am trying Jing...the download isn't even going well. By the time I do get something published I will probably be pretty good at making videos!

My problem was java related. My latest Camtasia production worked!


1 comment:

  1. I like your ideas about using one of the screencast programs. I've used the camtasia download with good results. You might try to free download of that and see what happens. I haven't tried the other one. Let me know how that turns out.