Something which never occurred to me when I took up the challenge laid down by my fellow-blogger Richard Kefford, to write a blog for everyone on a list of seventy-three suggestions he had come across, something which never occurred to me was that I would actually learn as much as I have about blogging.
I could have made a list comprising some of the suggestions, current events, controversial subjects, case studies or reviews (I’ve done all these!) others have been an interesting but doable challenge, industry news (I chose writing as my industry) problems and solutions (I wrote about a charity I support, Practical Action) and some I’ve had to scratch my head over – vlogs for example! I wrote about vlogging rather than actually producing a vlog, which maybe cheating!
There have been a couple of things which I have had to look up even to know what they are – and then much head scratching over how to write about them! Slideshare for example, I had to find out what that was knowing that it wasn’t going back to the time when people took ‘slides’ of their holidays and then had a ‘slide-show’ to share their pictures and experiences with their friends. Slideshare is in essence that but with extras, and little did I know that I had been doing it fr years when I used PowePoint in my teaching.
The blog topic I am now being challenged by is screencast… what the heck is that? I read a definition on Wikipedia:
A screencast is a digital recording of computer screen output, also known as a video screen capture, often containing audio narration
I was no wiser… does it mean it’s a recording of a computer screen with a commentary? What is the point of that? I am baffled.. I must read on….
Screencasts can help demonstrate and teach the use of software features… (which can) helps software developers show off their work. Educators may also use screencasts as another means of integrating technology into the curriculum.
Screencasts are useful tools for ordinary software users as well:… filing report bugs (to) take the place of potentially unclear written explanations… showing others how a given task is accomplished …
OK, I think I get it… how would it be useful for me? I can think of a couple of ways. Sometimes I have difficulty with some technological procedure, and explain in words to my technicians (my children) I no longer have the relevant vocabulary to explain what the problem is – a screencast would be a great example of show don’t tell!
I’ve successfully published books on Amazon and a screencast would be really useful for me to show others how I did it and how I overcame some of the glitches I encounters. Rather than having a computer there and us sitting in front of it and me going through the procedures (and possibly getting muddled, pressing the wrong thing etc) a scripted and prepared screencast which I could share would be very useful.
In a similar way, lots of my friends and people in my writing groups are interested in blogging; I’ve told them about it, they’ve looked at my blog… but wouldn’t a screencast be so much better!!
I wonder how I do it… I think I need to consult my technicians and then I will have a go at it – I might not necessarily share the result, but I will certainly write about how I got on!
… and here is a link to my books: