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Screen Recording – An Enterprise Approach to Streaming Media Publishing

In my last article, Screen Recorders for Streaming, we began a general overview of screen recording technology. This week we'll take a detailed look at OPTx International's Screenwatch. Like TechSmith's Camtasia, which we covered in detail last week, it is aimed at streaming delivery of narrated screen recordings. Camtasia includes tools for users to do sophisticated post-production, such as timeline-based editing and numerous export formats.

Screenwatch starts with a different assumption – that one of the goals of live desktop capture should be to eliminate the post-production that so often sucks up far more time than the recording did. It's one of the common complaints about personal creation of video presentations and tutorials -– it takes too long to master the tools, prepare and record the material, and then post-produce and publish it so others can use it. Screenwatch is built to take some of the pain out of authoring and publishing presentations.

A Closer Look at Screenwatch
Screenwatch Producer runs on Windows systems and records screen activity with OPTx's own screen-optimized codec. This lossless codec provides a perfect copy of the recorded screen at surprisingly low bitrates. As low as 8kbps can be enough to faithfully reproduce slides, while 30-50kbps can make accurate recordings of busy desktop activity. Playback requires a plugin for both the Windows Media and RealONE players, but those players' AutoUpdate feature makes getting the plugin transparent to most users. Screenwatch also supports playback in RealPlayer on Windows, Linux, Solaris, and the Mac.

While Screenwatch can be used to record any kind of screen activity, it is also designed to make standard slideshows like those from Microsoft Powerpoint or StarOffice Impress a breeze to record and deliver. Select the "Record a Presentation" option from Screenwatch's record Wizard and it launches the selected presentation for you and sets up your record session. From that point forward, it records your presentation as you give it. You can also record audio or video camera inputs along with the screen activity, so your finished product can include video of the speaker as well as the screen video. When you're done, Screenwatch will read the titles of your slides and create a table of contents for your presentation.

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