I just heard about an online, free screen recording application called ScreenToaster so I thought I’d test it out.  It works pretty well.  The best thing is it doesn’t require any software to be downloaded to your computer, it’s totally online.

What is it?

ScreenToaster is a free web-based screen recorder designed to capture screen activity in real-time to rapidly create and share tutorials, demos, training, lectures and more.”picture-1

Pros:

  • Fully online, no software to download
  • Accounts are free
  • Compatible with Windows, Mac OS X, Linux
  • Can add audio, video and text captions to your screencasts
  • Easy to share online
  • Can download as .swf or .mov file format
Cons:

  • Requires Flash to be loaded on the computer
  • The smoothness of the video capture depends upon the speed of the network connection (at least it appears to be)

Why use screen capture software?

  • Create demonstrations
  • Great for teaching math or science equations
  • Create video “talking head” with PowerPoint slide
  • Record lecture

These are only a few.  If you have others please add them via the comments area.  I’m always looking for input.

Compared to Jing

Some of you may have heard of or are using Jing which is a screencast program created by TechSmith.  I’ve been using this program for awhile and really like it.  However, the problem I have is that it only saves the files in .swf format and that is not easily converted for further editing.  Jing is an application that runs from your computer so it may produce smoother video captures since network speed isn’t an issue (although I’ve not tested this).

Jing ScreenToaster
Cost Free but fee-based if want all the features Free
Account Required No Yes
Software Required Yes – must download Jing Yes – Flash is required
Allows for audio voiceover Yes Yes
Allows for video voiceover No Yes
Allows for text captioning No Yes
Allows for easy upload Yes to Screencast.com Yes to YouTube and ScreenToaster.com
Allows for easy download Yes to .swf only Yes to .swf and .mov
Editable later No Yes
Allows you to append a recording No Yes
Allows audio voiceover after the initial recording No Yes
Takes still screenshots Yes No