Typing under pressure from a screen recorder is really hard. Kudos to everyone who makes educational screencasts to help people learn programming.

But LICEcap really is the best screen recorder I’ve ever used. Definitely the simplest. The best example of doing one thing and doing it well.

Turn your screen into a GIF.

That’s it. That’s all you can do with LICEcap. It won’t help you create the next Railscasts or Coursera, but if you want to make something move in your slides when giving a talk, you need a GIF. If you want to simply embed some moving parts into your blogpost – GIF.

For example, I used LICEcap to make those gifs of Super Mario playing with himself for Week 2 of the 52papers challenge.

Naive Super Mario

Naive Super Mario

It also came in handy for the talk I gave about d3.js a few weeks ago where I wanted to show people animated graphs, but didn’t want to keep jumping in and out of the presentation and fumbling around with a thousand windows. That never goes well.

My favourite part of using LICEcap is that it’s simple. You open the app, put it over the content you want to record, click a button and away you go. The app will automatically save an animated GIF file when you’re done recording.

No fumbling around with selecting regions and hidden control windows. No worrying about sound or converting the recorded video into GIF form.

LICEcap in use

LICEcap in use

Sure, it sucks that video on the web and in presentation is still not a very well solved problem and takes more fumbling around than necessary. But with today’s broadband speeds, GIFs have become perfectly viable.

Love it.

My surfing wipeout

My surfing wipeout

Although you might still want to use Photoshop to convert real videos into good GIFs …

Enhanced by Zemanta

Learned something new? Want to improve your skills?

Join over 10,000 engineers just like you already improving their skills!

Here's how it works 👇

Leave your email and I'll send you an Interactive Modern JavaScript Cheatsheet 📖right away. After that you'll get thoughtfully written emails every week about React, JavaScript, and your career. Lessons learned over my 20 years in the industry working with companies ranging from tiny startups to Fortune5 behemoths.

PS: You should also follow me on twitter 👉 here.
It's where I go to shoot the shit about programming.