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Designing Resilient Video Tutorials: Tools

Advanced Screencapture/Editing Tools

Camtasia Studio is a video editor and screen-capture suite. We use it to build our tutorials. It's pricey, but has a number of features that can take your tutorials from amateur to professional.

Adobe Capitivate is a similar product and is part of the Adobe Creative Suite.

Power Point

Power Point almost goes without saying. You can download your slides as images or record them as a screencast. It also syncs with Camtasia.

Microphones

It is essential to have a good microphone for recording voice-overs. We use both the Blue Snowball and the Blue Yeti, which connect easily using a USB and work well with Audacity and Camtasia. 

It is not necessary to spend a lot of money on a mic, but it's important to get something other than a built-in computer microphone. It can be very difficult to fix bad audio and it will never sound as good as getting a decent recording at the start.

Document Camera

A document camera can be very handy for taking stills and video of external documents. We used one to create our stop-motion tutorials. It can also be used to demonstrate mobile devices.

Editing

Windows 7 and newer:

Windows Live Movie Maker is a solid editor that will let you put together a movie. Here's a handout to get you started.

Windows Vista and older:

Windows Movie Maker is not as easy as Live Movie Maker, but it will get the job done.

Mac:

We recommend using iMovie, which should have come with your machine. Here's a handout to get you started.

Web:

Looking for something online? Wevideo is a nifty web-based video editor. The free version is limited to 15 minutes of video/month and it leaves a watermark in the top right-hand corner.

Audacity

Audacity is a free, open-source, multi-track sound editor. It is also available on the public computers in the library. You can use it for podcasts, music, or creating soud files to add to video projects. The program comes with the ability to export to a .wmv file. If you would like to export as an .mp3, you need to download a separate file (follow the prompts given by the program).


Account: None needed, but you must download the program to your desktop. Available for Macs and PCs.

Here's a handout to get you started.

Screencasting

Screencasting is taking a video of your computer screen while you work. A screenshot that moves.

Screencast-o-Matic is a free screencasting software that works from your browser. You can make an account, but you don't have to. You can make a video and publish it immediately to the web or download it and edit it further.

Jing is a free, downloadable software that will capture videos or screenshots. You can download images, but the videos go directly online with a link to them. Jing opens automatically when you start your computer and will appear as a yellow "sun" on your desktop. It's excellent for making "quick and dirty" tutorials.

Prezi

Prezi is a presentation software that lets you zoom in and out of content.

Account: Required. Sign up with your oswego.edu email and you can upgrade for more features.

Web Based Editors

PicMonkey is a simple photo editor that works right in your browser (so you don't have to download anything). It's excellent for beginners who just want to make photos a little prettier or have a little fun. No account needed. You just drag and drop your photo, edit it, and then save it back onto your computer.

Pixlr Editor is a more advanced photo editor. It's also free and works right in your browser. It also has iOS and Android apps available.