Power Downloader makes screenshots Jing-le

Helping others with their computer problems is all in a day's work for Power Downloader. This week, he shows users an easy way to make and upload screen captures using the Jing Project.

One of the most effective computer crime-fighting tools in Power Downloader's arsenal is the screen capture. When Power D grabs a cap and uploads it to the Web for the world to see, he knows he's presenting advice to computer users in a very unimpeachable way. Effective screen-capping used to be a tedious multistep process, but the Jing Project streamlines it all for both Windows and Mac users.

Jing streamlines screen capture creation and uploading. (Credit: Jing Project)

From the team behind the screen-recording utility Camtasia, Jing is able to capture still images as well as videos. Once you've downloaded and installed the program, click the Capture button to begin recording. The program asks you to choose whether you want to capture a video or an image, and then after you're done it lets you preview recording. If you need to edit it, this would be the time.

The coolest part of this experiment--in theory--is Jing's integration with Screencast.com, a hosting service for videos recorded off your computer. The Share button lets you upload the video directly, and offers an embed code, too, but the Web site is jittery and poorly laid out. The site charges $6.95 after the free 60-day trial, but you can still use Jing to record screencaps.

Power Downloader thinks it's more than a bit inelegant to not be able to use its video-hosting upload button, but even that doesn't stop the Jing Project from being a flexible and fun utility worth considering.