Stay focused with CinemaDrape

Black out unwanted screen areas with this free tool.

Today's desktops are as wide as the prairie, but nowhere near as lonesome. In fact, they can seem downright crowded, and never more so than when you're trying to concentrate on a particular window, such as an embedded video surrounded by flashing banner ads.

Hellogramming's CinemaDrape can help you with that. This simple portable freeware is sort of like a negative screen capture tool, but instead of copying the selected area of your screen, it blacks out all the rest, leaving only your Focus Area visible. If you like watching movies online but hate seeing the controls or window edges, CinemaDrape can drape your cinema, obscuring the distractions and allowing you to focus on the show, or on any window, for that matter. It's quicker than minimizing or closing all your open windows one by one, and your workspace remains untouched; when you pause CinemaDrape, everything is where you left it. The latest version of CinemaDrape is ready for Windows 8.

CinemaDrape starts by blacking out your screen and displaying an optional Quick Start guide that you can stop from loading when you're familiar with the program's features and controls. Right-clicking produced a menu in white font containing all of CinemaDrape's controls and settings, including Extras like the ability to save and load Layouts. CinemaDrape has several modes, but the quickest and easiest way to use it is to simply click your mouse and drag the cursor over the area you want to see. Simply release the cursor to keep the rest of your desktop masked, and then click or use hot keys to quit or pause the program, open the menu to set the options, or change the view. You can display multiple Focus Areas, too, or set CinemaDrape to restore Focus Areas when it starts.

CinemaDrape may not be the killer productivity app that the Ford Model T was, but it's better in this respect: you really can have any color you want, not just black, by changing CinemaDrape's background color. We also liked changing the transparency to let a little desktop peek through. This interesting tool has a lot of potential uses.

CNET Top 5
Companies Apple could buy with their billions
Apple's sitting on a massive pile of cash. Here are five interesting ways they could spend it.
Play Video
 

Member Comments