Friday, May 13, 2016

Sophisticated Screencasting with Nimbus

Screen Shot 2016-05-17 at 9.14.20 AM.pngThere are several tools for capturing screenshots and screencast videos from your Chrome browser, but Nimbus has recently become a new favorite. This Chrome extension is easy to install and offers some extra features that similar tools don’t have. I really like that there are multiple capture options for screenshots, including the ability to “Select & Scroll,” which allows you to scroll while capturing so that you can grab pieces of the screen not immediately visible.  When using Nimbus to create a screencast (ie, a digital video recording of your desktop) you have access to several helpful tools, including the ability to resize and crop, a highlighter, speech bubble-style notes, and many font styles and sizes for adding text. Two very cool tools are the blur, which allows you to select a portion of the screen capture to blur out (ideal for ensuring student privacy in a photo) and automatic numbering of arrows that you add (ideal for showing multiple steps in a process).  Best of all, Nimbus provides a customizable countdown, so the recording doesn’t start until you are ready.  For an example, see the video below explaining new Google Slides features, which I created with NImbus.

The Nimbus extension integrates seamlessly with Google Drive, and has numerous educational applications. To name just a few: teachers can use it to demonstrate how to use an online resource, students can explain a concept to demonstrate understanding, or you can use it to record narration of a Google Slide presentation.  

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