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Screencasting

Screencasts are interesting to OpenSkills because they provide a means of explaining things that can sound complex when explained using text, but are quite easy to understand when demonstrated. A good example is the creation and use of OpenPGP keys.

Tools

Podhive has a list of software that can be used for Screencast production.

There is a wide (and constantly changing) range of tools to make screencasts. OpenSkills would prefer to use a tool which is Free and can produce screencasts in an open standard format.

There are Free tools out there (e.g. Istanbul) and there are open standards (e.g. Ogg Theora), but the main aim is to get our information to the widest possible audience. Here are some tools and comments on them:

Current Screencasts

Our first screencast is a crude but complete journey through the signing up process. There is an .mp4 and a .wmv version. Pick the one that works best for your platform.

Notes

At present the best approach to making screencasts would appear to be to make a movie using VMWare, and to then convert that movie into a screencast.

Converting VMWare movies to theora

The following is taken directly from the fedora news wiki. Written by Thomas Chung. (copied here because I don't want to lose track of it!).

How to convert vmware avi format to ogg theora format
=====================================================
by Thomas Chung 
on 2005-12-23

By default, an avi video format will be used to create a video on vmware.
To convert to ogg theora format, I had to convert it to a ms avi format first. 

1) convert vm avi to ms avi format:
$ mencoder -of avi -ovc lavc welcome.avi -o welcome2.avi

2) convert ms avi to ogg theora
$ ffmpeg2theora welcome2.avi -o welcome.ogg


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