RE: Survey: "Screen shots"

Subject: RE: Survey: "Screen shots"
From: "Domaschuk, Rob" <Robd -at- datalogics -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Tue, 11 Dec 2001 11:20:37 -0600


I used to be the one moanin' and complainin' about the lousy quality of
re-sized screen captures. I could always find a way to make them work
(capture them at precisely the right size, save them with specific settings,
etc.), but each application caused its own set of annoyances, and I had to
fiddle and tweak every setting for each application. Suffice it to say that
the people around me could always tell when I had a new application to

And that was just for apps where I could set their properties once and leave
them alone (ie - their window size and location). If the app opened in a new
location and size each time, then my frustration grew a hundred-fold.

Then, from this list, I discovered how to capture any screen, save it as a
bitmap, take it into PhotoShop, re-size it, save it as an EPS graphic and
import it into FrameMaker. I get crystal clear screen shots in my PDF every
time, regardless of what percentage I reduce/enlarge the screen shot by (as
long as I keep the original proportion).

Here's why - I am a STRONG advocate for the end user, (as I believe all TWs
should be) and for me, that includes making thei reading as easy as I can.
To accomplish this, I want to ensure that what they see in the doc is what
they will see on screen. Sure, I have to assume that some people may change
their Windows color-scheme, but I'll leave it on the default for those who
don't know that you can change it. I ensure that the screen fonts that they
will see are used and so on. Basically, if they will see it on screen, then
they'll see it in my doc. I should say here that I often write for novice

Also, I am a strong advocate for continuity. I live in hope that one day
someone will offer me the dream job of designing interfaces for $1,000,000
per year from a Villa on the Mediterranian. When I leave this job for that
one, then I want to know that the writer replacing me will haveas easy a
time as possible getting onboard with my work. If I have "rolled my own"
then there is no way of telling how that will impact my successor.

Nope, FWIW, I have now discovered the secret of perfect screen captures at
any size I want every single time (using Frame and PDF) and I am happy to
stick with it. If a screen changes, I can re-capture it and convert it into
a usable format in less than one minute.

Rob Domaschuk | 312.853.8337 - t
Technical Writer | 630.430.4162 - m
Datalogics inc. | 719.623.7431 - f

"Give light, and the darkness will disappear of itself."
- Erasmus


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