Now I already knew how to take a one-frame screenshot, but I did not know how to make one of those super cool screen capture demo videos, and this was something I wanted to do to add to my Library Classroom Web Page. This assignment gave me the perfect opportunity to look into the process and to actually make a couple videos. On one hand, I was delighted to discover that the process itself is not overly complicated, although I did find it to be extremely time consuming.
I started my research by doing a couple basic Google searches for screen capture videos, and ended up finding a great 6 minute video on YouTube that went through the basic process. I watched it all the way through once and then went back step by step so I could recreate the necessary environment. First I had to download Microsoft Expression 4 (free) and Microsoft MovieMaker (also free). Expression includes a very user friendly screen capture component in addition to an encoder component. MovieMaker is what you use to publish the encoded video.
So, I chose my topics and went through a couple dry runs first to make sure my demo would successfully show all the features I wanted to present. Once I had a mental plan for my demo, I was ready to record! My first video is a demo of how to search using our online catalog, OPALS. For you and I, this is very easy. For my teachers at school, this apparently is like learning Greek :-)
My second video demonstrates how to use the various search features of one of our Gale databases, Kids InfoBits.
The OPALS video was just over 5 minutes long and the Kids InfoBits video was just over 7 minutes. It easily took twice that long to encode each of them, and probably closer to 45 minutes each to prep the videos for publication. Again, I would like to point out that the process itself was not difficult - just time consuming.
So while my videos were encoding, I opened a new tab and made a YouTube account so I would have somewhere to publish my videos when I loaded them into MovieMaker. And here are the results: