Skitch is a free screen capture tool owned by Evernote that you can’t help but love. It’s not only free but it’s good at what it does and it’s integrated with Evernote although it works fully independently of Evernote if you want. However, Skitch is only for basic screen or image capture with modest annotation capabilities.
If you’re someone who does a fair bit of screen capture with annotation and you want your annotation to be very flexible and powerful, Snagit is the best program for the job. However, Snagit also provides Screen Recording something which more people are employing to relate how to do things with a program or their Mac or relate a more detailed view of a problem being experienced.
Lots to choose From
There are a lot of good screen capture programs to choose from. There’s the basic, built in screen capture provided by OSX that provides no ability to annotate or grabber which is a slight step up.
Then there are the screen capture utilities that are purely that but they provide some level of annotating capability from the very basic but essential through to the more sophisticated. Some do some tasks better than others.
However, for screen capture at a general and powerful level I like Snagit. It provides a lot of capture capability that is automatic such as grabbing an entire window to a piece of a window to the entire screen.
You can annotate with a variety of tools which not only makes the image look better but it also allows you to get the message across more clearly.
Screen capture and annotation is frequently used for system troubleshooting. Rather than just trying to describe the problem in words, people are using screen capture and annotating the areas to pay attention to that are the problem areas.
This approach is far more effective in problem solving than trying to just describe the problem in words. What sometimes proved unsolvable has become very solvable through the use of a good screen capture utility that includes a variety of annotating tools.
Screen Recording to go the step Beyond
When a problem gets a little too complex for screen capture, screen recording is proving incredibly useful to outline a problem. It is also a great teaching tool and is finding use in this area.
I recall trying to grasp a concept to do with an AppleScript I was building. A very advanced Applescripter stepped up to the plate to help me with my problem. I actually didn’t realize he was doing a full screen recording tailored to my specific problem but he was. I was quite surprised to get this and was delighted.
The solution to the problem I was having didn’t become immediately obvious to me but it did reveal itself after I watched the recording a couple of more times. This was great. Something that probably would have proved very difficult for me to learn the parameters of via screen capture became doable with a screen recording.
Snagit has a more than Adept Screen Recording Facility
I’ve used Snagit’s screen recording function on more than one occasion and as a screen recording helped me in that AppleScript scenario I’ve been able to help others via screen recordings done with Snagit. What I like about Snagit’s screen recording function is it sits right next to the screen capture function so it is easy to access and I find it is very easy to use. Sound and video recording worked at the get go without my having to install additional tools.
The program is also very easy to use. A few can be a touch convoluted and although I’ve been able to use them in the end, I find Snagit’s just works. It’s not designed to do screen editing mind you. For that you’d have to go to a higher end package such as Screenflow or Camtasia. But, I’ve rarely had a situation I’ve needed to do this. I have both Screenflow and Camtasia and like them both. I’d say Screenflow’s is the best of the bunch. However, I always end up using Snagit’s recording function in the end.
Building a Library
Snagit has a great feature in that you do not need to toss out any screen capture or recording. Rather, you can add either to a library of recordings or captures and reuse them. This is tremendously useful. Voila, another good screen capture utility, has this function also making it a valuable program like Snagit. As with anything, compiling a library allows you to build on knowledge you’ve previously acquired and might have forgotten.
I often review past screen captures or videos to see how I might have done it better. So it is not just a builder of information and knowledge. Snagit becomes its own learning tool based on what I did. The library function though is very nice as opposed to the simple screen capture function of capture the image, relay it then destroy it for the next image.
A Step a long the Way
At one time, we simply just used email to describe our problems. Then came the online chats. This is certainly a lot faster and more effective for resolving problems than simply sending an email.
Now however, people are getting more accustomed to requesting and sending screen shots to show the problem. One of the best tools on the market that is fast and provides a wealth of annotating tools is Snagit. The better the tools you use to solve your problem the more likely the problem is going to get resolved and this one thing can fully justify the tool.
However, Snagit doesn’t stop at just screen capture. It also does excellent screen recording with great sound quality. This tool is slowly getting utilized to resolve problems. It is showing up as a teaching aid to show people how to use features of a program.
However, for problems hard to describe and still difficult to portray with a screen capture, a screen video demonstrating the problem is beginning to be utilized also. Good tools that make this process easy but clear are invaluable not only to resolve the problem but so too not to expend unnecessary time trying to operate the screen video. Snagit is a great tool all around at an excellent price point for what it does.