Re[2]: Don't you love farce?

Subject: Re[2]: Don't you love farce?
From: CHRISTINE ANAMEIER <CANAMEIE -at- email -dot- usps -dot- gov>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Mon, 1 Oct 2001 17:04:39 -0400

Re: creating a good PDF with screenshots...

For what it's worth, this is my standard procedure:
1. Grab the screen capture in SnagIt.
2. In the Preview window, select all (or part) of the image and press
Ctrl-C to copy to the clipboard.
3. In Photoshop, create a new file. (In my experience it opens at a
resolution of 96 dpi by default, which I assume is what it gets from
the SnagIt image waiting on the clipboard.) Important: Make sure the
background selected is white, not transparent.
4. Paste the screen capture into the new file.
5. Crop as necessary to highlight the relevant section. Add callouts
as needed. Tweak. (I've often added a slight drop shadow to the image
so it is easily distinguished from the surrounding material on the
page. Okay, and because it looks purty too... <sheepish>)
6. Save as a .GIF file using the Adaptive color table. (Using
Adaptive saves only the colors actually used in the image, thereby
reducing file size.)
7. In Word, do Insert > Picture > From File.
8. Before you output to PDF, make sure your Distiller job options do
NOT use downsampling/subsampling, and make sure that Zip compression
---not JPEG--- is selected. With screen captures you don't want JPEG
involved anywhere in the process because it will blur your screen
capture unless you set the compression so low that you wind up with a
very large file size. The straight edges involved in a screen capture
are not what JPEG compression was designed for.
9. After creating the PDF file, go into Acrobat and change the file's
default magnification (File > Document Info> Open) to 134%. (I believe
this is only right if you're at 96 dpi resolution, but I haven't
fiddled with resolution in so long, I've forgotten. I think 72 dpi
corresponds with a magnification of 100%, but don't quote me on that.)

These steps should produce a PDF with almost perfectly clear
screenshots. (Often there's still a tiny bit of distortion here and
there.) You'd have to modify the steps for your own particular set of
tools, of course.

One of these days I'll make a web page with a more detailed set of
instructions. If/when I get around to that, I'll post the URL to the



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