ScreenCastsOnline has announced the launch of a new free hints and tips service which produces streaming or downloadable video tutorials for distribution via iTunes for the mac and pc community. The tutorials (or screencasts) are basically video screen captures with a spoken narration explaining what is happening on screen.
The aim of the service is provide free information in an informal, clear and concise manner and to create a reputation for showcasing the coolest apps and the cleverest tips for both mac and PC users (and perhaps create a few Mac switchers in the meantime!). This is a unique service not only in the content that it covers, but also that it is one of the few Mac-related podcasts based out of the UK!.
The topics covered will include things such as hints and tips, demonstrating web apps, reviewing applications, explaining buzz words, etc,
The current list of screencasts available for immediate downloads include:
• OSX – Web Page Capture
• Podcasting – Part 1 – Create your own podcast
• OSX – Screen Capture
• DTV – Internet TV on your mac
• Google Map Hacks – Pedometer
• Blogs – What they are and how to create them
• RSS – Automated Screen Surfing
Others in pre-production include:
• Podcasting – Part 2 – Hosting your Podcast and creating a website
• Podcasting – Part 3 – Publishing and Promoting your podcast
• iTunes 5.0 – New features and managing your Podcasts with Smart Playlists
Plus many others, including reviews of some of the top mac applications. Screencasts are currently being published at the rate of two per week.
The screencasts are distributed automatically as a Podcast via an RSS feed to which users can subscribe for free via iTunes:
Users can also download the screencasts directly from the ScreenCastsOnline web site either as a streamed Quicktime movie or download to their PC or Mac for off line viewing. The screencasts are recorded in high resolution widescreen format (960 x 600) and encoded using Apples new H264 codec which gives crystal clear, smooth video playback and relatively small file sizes.
The screencasts will play directly in iTunes 5.0 with no additional software required on either PC and Mac.
One of ScreenCastsOnline’s reasons for setting up the podcast is that there is a huge need for a service that explains or shows things to users rather than just relying on documentation. Many people are intimidated by trying out new things, yet when they are actually shown the product or service and see how easy it is, they then get it and then become enthusiastic and willing to try new things – it gives them confidence.