10 May 2006

Screencast Demos with ARD

Similar to Win Office, Mac Office is developed in a number of sites around the world. We have our PowerPoint and Entourage crew in Mountain View, California, then Messenger, Word, Excel and Office Core teams in Redmond. Much of our Japanese work is done in, you guessed it, Tokyo, Japan, while our European localizations are done in Dublin, Ireland. When you have a team spread out like this, deploying a new tool to the organization isn't just a lunch time chat. Yesterday we tried something new and it turned out pretty well, so I thought you might find it interesting. We were giving a presentation and demo of a new automation tool in Redmond, but we want everyone to experience the demo. Folks on vacation, sick or simply sleeping in Ireland needed to see how the tool worked. Here's what we did: The presenter used a MacBook Pro with a QuickTime Pro license and the QuickTime player. During the presentation he stayed more or less in front of the MacBook Pro and this is how we got audio and video of the presenter. On my MacBook Pro I connected to the presenters machine via AirPort and "watched" the screens (ARD 3.0 has great multiple screen support, by the way) and then recorded the action with Snapz Pro X. Also, I recorded the audio of the presentation so it was synchronized with the screen. ARD 3.0 had some difficulty keeping up with the PowerPoint transitions, but when the actual demo was run, it was very watchable. The nice part about using ARD to record the screen is that when the presenter switches from on Machine to the next, in ARD you simply change the window that you are recording and that's it. Slick.


Anonymous said...

That sounds pretty neat. Timbuktu is another tool you can use to do this, it has a built-in control to record the actions on the screen you are controlling into a quicktime movie. This is good if you want to record a "how to" movie or something.

David Weiss said...

Good to know, but does Timbuktu mix that audio with the captured video for you like Snapz Pro?

Mitchell Scott said...

I really like ARD 3. I just wish I had a lot of Macs to use it with.