3 Tips to Optimize Your Screencasts!

Have you ever watched a screencast video where you where thinking “What the heck am I looking at?!”. The items on the screen where so small they were nearly unreadable and where did that mouse pointer jump off to this time?? These are common annoyances for anyone who has ever watches a video tutorial online. Luckily there are a couple of easy things you can do to make this a little better!

Increase Your Mouse Pointer Size

This might seem a little awkward in the beginning, dragging around a massive mouse pointer, but your viewers will love you for it. On your Windows PC go to the Control Panel > Hardware and Sound > Devices and Printers > Mouse.

Select the Pointers tab and check the Scheme section. You’ll find a range of possibilities and you want to select one of the ‘Extra Large’ schemes. As you can see below I’ve selected the Windows Aero (extra large) (system scheme).

mouse pointer

When I started using this trick I used to switch back and forth between regular and extra large scheme because I felt the uncomfortable with the large mouse pointer turned on all the time. After forgetting to increase the size for several screencasts and having to re-record them again I switched to the extra large scheme permanently and actually have come to love my large mouse pointer.

Whenever I get behind a computer now, the first thing I do is increase the mouse pointer size because it is so much clearer when doing my day to day stuff.

Give it a try, you just might like it!

Increase Your System Text (And Other Items)

Another way to increase the readability of what you are recording is to increase the size of system text. Go to your Control Panel > Appearance and Personalization > Display > Make text and other itmes larger or smaller. By default it is set to Smaller -100%. Now switch it to Medium – 125%. The system will ask you to log off and on to take this into effect.

Once you’ve logged on again everything will be slightly bigger and thus more readable for your viewers. It’s a slight difference but worth the effort wouldn’t you say?

textsize

Again this is something that takes a little getting used to and as the screen mentions ‘Some items may not fit on your screen if you choose this setting while your display is set to this resolution’. Be sure to check if your display shows what you want to record properly.

I’ve been using this for a short time and have not encountered any problems as of yet but it’s a good habit to check before encountering an issue halfway.

Add zoom regions to your screen (for Articulate Storyline Users)

If you are using Articulate Storyline to record your screencasts and use them as a single slide video you can add Zoom regions on your video to help the viewer focus on the area you’re discussing.

Zoom regionYou can add multiple zoom regions on a single slide by going to the Insert tab and selecting the Zoom Region button in the ribbon. You can spread your zoom regions over the time line to zoom into the various areas you want to highlight.

 

That’s it. If you have any questions or comments drop me a line in the comments area below. I love to read your feedback!

How I Get Things Done with Jeff Kortenbosch

As part of the ongoing Articulate e-Learning Heroes challenges David Anderson asked to record a Podcast or Vodcast explaining how we we get things done. He provided a nice list of interview questions and the result of my very first Vodcast (video podcast) can be seen below.

What’s your job title? What title do you think really captures your roles and responsibilities?

What software tools do you love?

What’s your workspace setup like?

What is your creative or design philosophy?

How do you stay fresh and keep building your skills?

How do you avoid burnout?

How do you save time and boost your efficiency day-to-day?

How do you manage your workflow? Do you have a project management tool you love?

What kinds of tasks do you love to do? What gets you excited to sit down at your desk?

Subscribe to our YouTube channel!

I’ve been creating videos for quite some time now. I’ve started making public video tutorials about 5 years ago in screenr but since the the release of Articulate Replay I’ve been creating videos and uploading them on YouTube. I’ve even uploaded most of my old Screenr videos so now everything is collected in a single spot.

If you’re not a subscriber already, go ahead… check out my YouTube channel and, if you like, subscribe so you’ll get informed whenever I post a new tutorial.

Jeff

Webinar: Wat is er nieuw in Articulate Storyline 2?

Na de release van Articulate Storyline 2 in oktober 2014 ben ik gevraagd door de Courseware Company, de officiële reseller van Articulate producten in de Benelux om samen met hen een webinar te doen waarin ik als Articulate Superhero en Bétatester de nieuwe features van Storyline 2 laat zien en wat vragen beantwoord van bestaande en mogelijk nieuwe gebruikers.

Aangezien ik nog vaak de vraag krijg wat er nieuw is en ik veel vragen hoor die in het webinar aan bod komen biedt ik graag de opgenomen webinar nog eens aan via mijn blog.

Heb je nog vragen of opmerkingen? Laat het me weten in de comments!