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Make animated GIFs from videos with GifCam

When Yahoo acquired Tumblr for $1.1 billion ... was it because of the GIFs? In our media-saturated Internet landscape, the 5-second animated GIF may be the most essential entertainment currency. If a picture can paint a thousand words, the animated GIF can tell 10,000 stories in 10 frames or less. (Isn't Vine (for Android or iOS) mostly just video-based animated GIFs?)

Newbies who want to dip their toes in the GIF-creation waters no longer need fancy image-editing software like Adobe Photoshop--a freeware app called GifCam lets anyone easily produce animated GIFs from on-screen activity, i.e. streaming videos, … Read more

Review: Screen AVI CAM lets you make videos of your screen

Screen AVI CAM takes the humble screenshot to new levels by letting you capture an interactive, on-screen video. It's a little demanding and sometimes glitchy, but users who want to do a step-by-step tutorial will like it a lot.

This program comes with a 30-day trial while the full version costs $29 to unlock. When you're using the trial, it drops a screenshot on the final video. When testing, the program had to run at a reduced resolution and at Windows' basic color scheme. When it didn't, it caused the program to leave weird, white traces along … Read more

Review: Wondershare PowerCam offers myriad special effects for your photos

Wondershare PowerCam is an exception to many of the mediocre camera applications currently available on the Android market. It creates great photos and has an amazing array of special effects at your disposal.

Despite its eight megabyte size, installation was very quick, and required no registration or advanced settings. The brilliant user interface opens quickly and smoothly. Wondershare PowerCam is very intuitive to get you started. Basic pictures come out great but the majority of the app's strength comes from special effects. The hallmark of this app is its ability to simulate a tilt-shift photograph. The results are quite … Read more

Review: Display or save video from your webcam with EvoCam for Mac

Web site managers may want the ability to broadcast video directly to the Internet. EvoCam for Mac allows users to stream video or save it for later use, all in a well-designed interface that is easy to use.

EvoCam for Mac offers a free trial version with a 15-day usage limit. The full version costs $30 to unlock. The program downloaded quickly and came with a separate instruction file, which was relatively easy to follow. The program menu was clear and immediately brought up a screen for video capture. This had options for recording or streaming directly to a Web … Read more

10 alternatives to Apple's all-time most popular apps

Last week, Apple announced that its App Store is approaching 50 billion app downloads. In celebration of the milestone, Apple is giving away a $10,000 App Store gift card to the lucky person who initiates the 50 billionth download.

As part of the celebration, Apple listed the top 25 apps -- both free and paid -- for iPhone and iPad. None of the apps listed is particularly surprising (especially to someone who studies the most-popular list every day), but one thing that did strike me is that a lot of the all-time best sellers still sit near the top … Read more

Crave Ep. 111: Man vs. jetpack

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A German inventor has built a DIY jetpack, so we hop onboard. Also, we get a first look at "Star Wars" pinball for iOS and Android, and "Star Trek" fans win a major space battle when they vote to name a Pluto moon "Vulcan." All that and more on this week's episode of Crave. … Read more

Get a ball's-eye view with camera in football

Do you really have enough camera angles when you watch a football game? Come on, you want more.

Feed your desire to be omnipresent with the wacky BallCam. It puts a camera inside the spinning football.

You'd think that would make you toss that mix of pizza, hotdogs, and beer in your stomach, but boffins at Carnegie Mellon University and Japan's University of Electro-Communications have made it a rather pleasant viewing experience.

CMU researcher Kris Kitani and UEM's Kodai Horita co-authored a paper on how algorithms in their prototype football can recognize footage of the ground as … Read more

Capture screen views and more with HyperCam

Software that captures screen views, keystrokes, and other PC activity tends to be either freeware -- often beefed-up screenshot tools that are perfectly fine for social media -- or premium tools you can use to create manuals, instructional videos, tutorials, and presentations. Solveig's HyperCam definitely falls into the latter category. It's shareware that is free to try for 21 days, though output files have a digital watermark that is removed in the full version. HyperCam is compact and easy to use, but it can record an editable view of your desktop, windows, cursor movements, and other activity in … Read more

Best photo apps for iPhone

Camera+ (99 cents) Camera+ is a solid image-editing tool that makes creating cool-looking shots easy, and all the upgrades since its release mean it has tons of useful tweaks. You can use digital-camera-like scenes to apply common camera effects in specific situations like simulated flash, sunset, backlit images, and portraits. You also can crop your images to your specs or select from several standard sizes.

When you want to add filters and effects, Camera+ makes it easy with a gridlike layout you can touch to see nuanced or drastic changes to your original image. The filters are organized by category … Read more

Lookout locks down your cam, lock screen

If somebody tries and fails to access your phone three times, Android phones running today's update to Lookout Mobile Security (download) will be able to take a photo of the culprit.

Two new features today bolster the app's already robust security options. The Lock Cam feature -- which Lookout said in a blog post announcing the changes will be rolled out over the next week to free users -- takes a photo using your phone's front-facing camera, records the location data based on your phone's GPS, and then sends the package to your e-mail account.

If … Read more