Sunday, 21 December 2008

Sicuro Delayed, Happy Holidays Etc.

Well it's that time of year again. I've just got back from setting up the Spanish offices for a customer of mine: Tailored Marine Supplies.

Much as I enjoyed the work, the climate, Sotogrande, the company and especially the last meal at the Argentinean restaurant - this has unfortunately meant that work on Sicuro has been parked for the last couple of weeks, hence this product is now scheduled to be released in January.

I'd like to wish happy holidays to all my customers, friends and everyone really. I'm not going to be working over Christmas although I will be answering emails.

Happy Holidays and a Prosperous New Year :-)



www.artenscience.co.uk
Commercial and Custom Software Development

Friday, 12 December 2008

Tailored Marine Bedding and Supplies, A Happy Customer

A customer of mine has recently setup a new business dealing with tailored supplies for yachts and boats. The guys who have setup this company are all extremely successful businessmen who I have known for years.

The initial and primary focus of the company is on tailored bedding. Obviously the shape of the cabins in a yacht mean that the beds are not the traditional rectangular shape and so it is difficult and expensive to procure fitted bedding. Given the track record of the founders, the quality of the products and the effort that has gone into this I believe this is going to be an extremely successful venture.

The company is Tailored Marine Supplies and their website is at www.tailoredms.com.



My involvement with this venture is from the IT and software perspective. My ArtenSUITE Framework has been used to develop a suite of modules specifically for TMS.

All the products information, pictures and prices are setup and stored on my hosted database. ArtenSUITE is a Mac OSX and Windows Client running locally, it is only the database that is remote. This works extremely well as TMS are based in Spain, I am in the UK. They need to run the software, I need to maintain it and back it up. The online ordering website also pulls all it's information from this hosted database and save quotes and orders back to this database.



www.artenscience.co.uk
Commercial and Bespoke Software Development

Thursday, 11 December 2008

DataClean 1.0.0 Released

Version 1.0.0 of DataClean has been released for Mac OSX, Windows and Linux.

DataClean is a Cross Platform Utility designed to make it straightforward to ‘clean’ large amounts of data. Data can be imported from a CSV or TAB delimited file, modified (any column, any row) and then saved back in several different formats including native Excel (XLS), TAB Delimited and Comma Separated. You can also save the modified file using your own Custom Delimiter.

DataClean supports the following Actions: Remove / Replace / Find / Insert and Format. Within each Action DataClean provides Tasks that you can apply to the data grid.

Tasks include:

Remove Leading Spaces
Remove Trailing Spaces
Remove Leading and Trailing Spaces
Remove Text
Remove Selected Row(s)
Remove Text from Start of Column
Remove Text from End of Column
Remove Text Before ...
Remove Text After ...
Replace Text
Find Text
Insert at the Beginning of the Column
Insert at the End of the Column
Insert Blank Row
Format as Uppercase
Format as Lowercase
Format as Capitalised

www.artenscience.co.uk
Commercial and Bespoke Software Development

Wednesday, 10 December 2008

DataClean Preview: Download for Mac / Windows and Linux



http://www.artenscience.co.uk/artenscience/DataClean.html

Download Links:

http://www.artenscience.com/autoupdate/latestversions/dataclean_osx.zip
http://www.artenscience.com/autoupdate/latestversions/dataclean_win.zip
http://www.artenscience.com/autoupdate/latestversions/dataclean_lin.zip

DataClean is a Cross Platform Utility designed to make it straightforward to ‘clean’ large amounts of data.

Data can be imported from a CSV or TAB delimited file, modified (any column, any row) and then saved back in several different formats including native Excel (XLS), TAB Delimited and Comma Separated. You can also save the modified file using your own Custom Delimiter.

DataClean supports the following Actions: Remove / Replace / Find / Insert and Format. Within each Action DataClean provides Tasks that you can apply to the data grid. Tasks include:

*Remove Leading Spaces
*Remove Trailing Spaces
*Remove Leading and Trailing Spaces
*Remove Text
*Remove Selected Row(s)
*Remove Text from Start of Column
*Remove Text from End of Column
*Remove Text Before ...
*Remove Text After ...
*Replace Text
*Find Text
*Insert at the Beginning of the Column
*Insert at the End of the Column
*Insert Blank Row
*Format as Uppercase
*Format as Lowercase
*Format as Capitalised



We are looking for feedback as to what additional features and / or tasks you think should be available within DataClean. All suggestions are welcome.

www.artenscience.co.uk
Commercial and Bespoke Software Development

macVCR 1.2 Screen Capture Software Free with MacFormat Magazine Issue 203

A special version of macVCR, version 1.2 is available for free on the cover CD of MacFormat Magazine, issue 203, available from 10th December 2008.



In addition any user of version 1.2 is entitled to an upgrade to the latest version of macVCR for only £11, a saving of over 20%. Contact me for further details. steve@artenscience.co.uk

www.artenscience.co.uk
Commercial and Bespoke Software Development

Wednesday, 3 December 2008

DataClean Preview: Cross Platform Utility for Data Controllers

The Preview Edition of DataClean is available for download. Although the release version will be a Cross Platform Utility, the Preview Edition is Mac OSX Only.

http://www.artenscience.co.uk/artenscience/DataClean.html

DataClean is a Cross Platform Utility designed to make it straightforward to ‘clean’ large amounts of data. Data can be imported from a CSV or TAB delimited file, modified (any column, any row) and then saved back in several different formats including native Excel (XLS).

DataClean supports the following Actions: Remove / Replace / Find / Insert and Format. Within each Action DataClean provides Tasks. For example; within the Remove Action there is the Task ‘Remove Trailing Spaces’.
The Preview Version of DataClean is Framework complete, but at the moment has few Tasks. I am looking for feedback as to what you think should be available within DataClean.

All suggestions are welcome.



www.artenscience.co.uk
Commercial and Bespoke Software Development

Wednesday, 26 November 2008

R10Cipher 1.0.1 Released

Following customer feedback we have just released 1.0.1 of R10Cipher.

The changes are detailed below:

Email button. This button opens an email message in your default email client with an appropriate subject and with the body of the email containing the Cipher Text.

Clipboard button. This button copies the entire Cipher Text to the system Clipboard.

‘Show’ checkbox for the Shared Secret. Allows you to view the Shared Secret to ensure you have not made any typing errors.

In addition the graphics have been tidied up on Windows and Linux.

The help System and the Manual have been updated appropriately.

www.artenscience.co.uk
Commercial and Bespoke Software Development

Useful Tools 2 of ?

2nd Post in my series on tools that I find extremely useful and form part of my everyday development environment.

My MacPro can, and regularly does, run four operating systems consecutively. OSX 10.5, Windows Vista, Windows XP and Ubuntu Linux. This is essential for the testing of my Cross Platform software. You can see this in the screenshot below:



This is possible due to the virtualization technology from those clever guys at VMWare.

VMWare Fusion. http://www.vmware.com/products/fusion/

There are other alternatives to Fusion, but since I discovered it I have never looked back. Essential.

www.artenscience.co.uk
Honest Expert Independent Technology Advice for Business

Tuesday, 25 November 2008

Useful Tools 1 of ?

Your choice of development software is only one step towards creating a workable development environment. To supplement your language and compiler you will accumulate a wealth of tools and utilities that will make your life easier and your development more fun.

This one, for me is invaluable.

http://bradrhine.com/pages/maskextractor.php

PNG Mask Extractor by Brad Rhine. It's Freeware, it works and it works well.

Using this utility I can drop an icon on the window and automatically create the mask for any icon quickly and easily making me a very happy coder.



Cheers to the author :-)

www.artenscience.co.uk
Honest Expert Independent Technology Advice for Business

Idea to Product in 30 Days ? Realistic ?

Many months ago just for fun a bunch of developers got together for a '30 Day Challenge'. Take an idea to a product within 30 days. I participated as best I could as I was half way through a product but also needed to setup my new company, website etc. It was a lot of fun and made interesting reading, seeing the problems that were faced and overcome was very enlightening.

The concept itself received a lot of (in my opinion unwarranted) criticism from certain people who basically said that it was impossible to finish a successful project within 30 days. This is, being blunt, crap.

I suppose different people have different ideas about what makes a successful product. I have come up with the following possible definitions for a 'successful software project':

Completed On Budget, On Time
Achieved the Defined Objective
Makes a Profit
Quickly gains customers
No Show-stopping Bugs
Positive Independent Reviews
Gains Industry Attention

Based on those definitions of 'successful software project' I have to say that I have released several projects this year that have all been done in under 30 days, and have all met most if not all of those criteria. Non of my projects will set the world on fire, none of them are 'killer applications', none of them are the most complex applications ever and I am not the worlds greatest programmer.

All of my software though has been profitable and has happy customers. Really, is there much else needed ? Is it possible to take an idea from inception to product in 30 days. Yes, of course it is.



NOTE: Just after posting this original post I saw this over on Bob Walsh's 47hats.com :
'Does Steve Cholerton sleep? Guess not: his microISV Arten Science just released another product: R10Cipher - a cross platform encryption tool for Mac and Windows.'

The truth is that yes I do. I also ride my motorcycle, watch TV, read books and magazines, do bespoke development and security work and lots of other stuff. It is perfectly possible to work hard but still live a good life AND develop a product in 30 days :-)

www.artenscience.co.uk
Honest Expert Independent Technology Advice for Business

macVCR 2.1.7 Released



Today we released macVCR 2.1.7.

2.1.7 features a new Volume Information Screen which shows total and free space on all attached volumes. There is also a revised and expanded 20 page manual.



2.1.7 is a free upgrade for all macVCR customers.

www.artenscience.co.uk
Honest Expert Independent Technology Advice for Business

Monday, 24 November 2008

R10Cipher Released Today by Arten Science



We have released R10Cipher today.
R10Cipher is a simple Cross Platform Encryption / Decryption tool.

R10Cipher basically takes text and encrypts it using up to 128 bit Blowfish encryption. This Cipher Text can then be copied into an email, saved as a file and attached to an email or just copied elsewhere and the recipient can use R10Cipher to open the file and view the encrypted contents, assuming they are in possession of the Shared Key that was used to encrypt the document in the first place.

Many people do not realise that sending an email is the equivalent of sending a postcard, it's contents are easily visible. For many companies, individuals and markets this is totally unacceptable and with the potential complexity and setup issues with the Public Key Encryption systems it makes sense to encrypt using a utility such as this.
R10Cipher can also be used in conjunction with Sicuro my 'Data Vault' software that will be available before Christmas 2008. I have added the functionality of R10Cipher to Sicuro, so a user of Sicuro and a user of R10Cipher can share encrypted documents with no problems.

Below are some examples of Usage:

Example 1: One to One Private Communications

Bill and Ted want to discuss plans for their next Excellent Adventure. Knowing that their email can be easily read they decide on a Shared Secret ‘Bill+Ted=Wyld”. They type their discussions into R10Cipher and save the encrypted text as a file which they attach to their emails. They are now secure in the knowledge that no-one can foil their plans.

Example 2: One to Many Private Communications

Bill and Ted decide they want to involve the Historical Babes in some of their plans, but not all. The four of them agree a Shared Secret and now Bill and Ted can communicate between themselves using their own Shared Secret and if they wish to include the Historical Babes they use the second Shared Secret agreed between the four of them.

Example 3: One to Many Private Communications over a Public Medium

Frodo is setting off on his next adventure and as is the fashion nowadays he wants to update the world with his travels via an online blog. With his new Macbook Air this will work great but there is some information he wishes only to be read by Merry and Pippin who are holding the fort for him back in Hobbiton.

Before he sets off the three of them agree on a Shared Secret and as Frodo updates the world via his blog he uses R10Cipher to append an encrypted entry on the end, knowing that the world can see but not understand his instructions, which are only for the eyes of Merry and Pippin.

Example 4: The benefits of Cross Platform

Unfortunately, small and sexy though it is, the Macbook Air is just a little bit too big (and lets face it - expensive - to take across Middle Earth, what with the Orcs and all. At the last minute Frodo switches to a Dell Mini 9 running Linux which came free with his mobile broadband card. Luckily R10Cipher works as well on Linux as it does on the Mac so Frodo has no need to change his plans.

Example 5: R10Cipher Not Just for Men

While Frodo is off on his travels his wife, feeling lonely, takes a lover. Knowing that the local Hobbiton ISP takes quite an interest in the emails to and from the villagers, they both use R10Cipher to arrange their rendezvous. Even hobbits need loving, besides it was rather selfish of Frodo to disappear like that for months at a time - and who knows what he got up to with Sam on that first journey to Mordor ?



www.artenscience.co.uk
Honest Expert Independent Technology Advice for Business

Saturday, 22 November 2008

R10Cipher Final Screenshots

R10Cipher will be released in a few days, below I have the final screenshots from Mac OSX, Windows XP, Windows Vista and Ubuntu Linux.









www.artenscience.co.uk
Honest Expert Independent Technology Advice for Business

Thursday, 20 November 2008

R10Cipher Released Soon ...



I'm just doing the final testing of R10Cipher, ensuring that it runs well and looks nice on Linux. Mac OSX was easy as that is my preferred development platform, Windows XP and Vista was also straightforward with just a few modifications. Linux has proven a bit more troublesome but I'm happy with the results so far.

R10Cipher is a simple Cross Platform Encryption / Decryption tool. It is aimed at a specific market who have a great need for this, and a mix of hardware, hence I had to make it work across all viable platforms, but I will be releasing this as a general purpose tool as well.

R10Cipher basically can take text and encrypt it using Blowfish encryption. This file can then be emailed or sent elsewhere and the recipient can use R10Cipher to open the file and view the encrypted contents, assuming they are in possession of the Shared Key that was used to encrypt the document in the first place.

Many people do not realise that sending an email is the equivalent of sending a postcard, it's contents are easily visible. For certain markets this is totally unacceptable and with the rumoured hijacking and potential complexity of the Public Key Encryption systems it makes sense to encrypt using a utility such as this. R10Cipher can also be used in conjunction with Sicuro my 'Data Vault' software that will be available before Christmas. I have added the functionality of R10Cipher to Sicuro, so a user of Sicuro and a user of R10Cipher can share encrypted documents with no problems.

I'll produce the documentation tonight and tomorrow and R10Cipher will be available for download over the weekend.





www.artenscience.co.uk
Honest Expert Independent Technology Advice for Business

Wednesday, 19 November 2008

iPhone Developer Program



Today I joined the iPhone Developer Program. I paid my $99 and can now test applications directly on the device and also upload to the app store :-)

This happy event coincided with the day that I have just taken on a large bespoke project ... so I guess I am going to be busy for a while as I have Sicuro being launched in December and R10Cipher being launched in a few days.

I've been severely lax in my blogging for a while and I can't see the situation improving anytime soon unfortunately, still it's nice to be busy !

www.artenscience.co.uk
Honest Expert Independent Technology Advice for Business

Arten Science Dedicated Server

I’ve just moved Arten Science onto a dedicated server. Within the next day or so all the DNS changes will be replicated and performance will increase. There shouldn’t be any problems but if the worst happens and you do experience a problem, please contact us as support@artenscience.co.uk

www.artenscience.co.uk
Honest Expert Independent Technology Advice for Business

Monday, 17 November 2008

Give Good Food To Your Mac - Now Live !

http://www.givegoodfood2yourmac.com/store/

‘Give Good Food to your Mac’ is back and kicking !
More than 60 apps for your Mac.


Montpellier, France – November 17th, 2008: Aquafadas is pleased to announce the launch of the Third Edition of ‘Give Good Food to Your Mac’. This promotion is organised by Indie developers from all over the world.

Diversity and quality are main features of this community action. Every Mac user can download and « taste » more than 60 apps and enjoy discounts ranging from 20% to 50%.
This year’s edition will allow every Mac user to find the software they need amongst : Comic Boom, Cheetah 3D, PulpMotion, RapidWeaver, Tangerine! GhostReader, DEVONthink, HoudahSpot, Renamer4mac and many more great apps.

Claudia Zimmer, Aquafadas CEO explains, « We are pleased to introduce the Third Edition of ‘Give Good Food to your Mac’. It’s a chance for us to build a community among developers and together, create opportunities that would not be possible alone . Mac users benefit from it as they can discover our software at great prices. »

From the 17th to the 30th of November 2008, Mac users can create their own cocktail of apps and enjoy increasing discounts starting at 20% for 3 apps and up to an amazing 50% for 5 apps or more.

Website
http://www.givegoodfood2yourmac.com

Discounts are as follows :
- 20% off for 3 apps
- 30% off for 4 apps
- 50% off for 5 apps and more

Contact Info :
To learn more about the Third Edition of ‘Give Good Food to Your Mac’, please contact Fatima AMGHAR, famghar@spicy-distribution.com



The available products are :
- AlienConverter from AlienCrypt
- Amigos Number Puzzles from Amigos Software
- Amigos Spanish from Amigos Software
- BannerZest from Aquafadas
- BannerZest Pro from Aquafadas
- Bee Docs’ Timeline 3D ├ędition 2.2 from BeeDocs
- BeFit – Get Fit, Stay Fit, BeFit ! from Jon Brown Designs
- Blue Crab from Limit Point Software
- Cheetah 3D from MW 3D-Solutions
- Comic Boom from Toon Boom Animation Inc.
- DejalNarrator 2.0.3 from Dejal
- DEVONagent from DEVONtechnologies, LLC
- DEVONthink Personal from DEVONtechnologies, LLC
- DiscLabel from SmileOnMyMac
- dJay 2.1.3 from Algoriddim GmbH
- Dossier from Vortimac
- Dragoman from Dare to be Creative Ltd.
- FastCut 3.0.6 from TimesForFun
- Flip Boom Classic from Toon Boom Animations Inc.
- Fluffy’s Log 1.1.1 from Shallot Patch
- French Verb Game from Amigos Software
- FunBooth 0.9.3 from SourceBits
- Geoaze Pro from SilverLint Creative Software
- Geoaze Standard from SilverLint Creative Software
- GhostReader English Version from ConvenienceWare
- GhostReader French version from ConvenienceWare
- HoudahGeo from Houdah
- HoudahSpot from Houdah
- Hydra 1.6 + Aperture plug-in from Creaceed
- iArchiver from Dare to be Creative Ltd.
- iDive from Aquafadas
- iKanji 1.0 from ThinkMac Software
- JABMenu 2.0.1 from JNSoftware
- Kameleon From Option-6 Products
- Librarian Pro from Koingo Software
- MacCleanse from Koingo Software
- MacPilot 3 from Koingo Software
- Mail Attachments iConizer from Lokiware
- Mental Case from MacCoreMac Software
- Money 3 from Jumsoft
- Nutritionist from Dr. Frank Kowalewski
- PearNote 1.0 from UsefulFruit Software
- PulpMotion from Aquafadas
- Pulpmotion Advanced from Aquafadas
- RapidWeaver 4 from Realmac Software
- Relationship from Jumsoft
- Renamer4Mac from Dare to be Creative Ltd.
- ResizeMe 1.2.0 from Dare to be Creative Ltd.
- RubiTrack from Toolsfactory software inc.
- Scorecard 1.4.1 from CynicalPeak Software
- ScreenAudit 1.5 from ArtenScience
- Scribbles from Atebits
- Secret of the Lost Cavern From Coladia
- Share Tool from Yazsoft
- ShoveBox from Wonder Warp Software SP
- Speed Download 5 from Yazsoft
- SplitFuse 1.3 from LikelySoft
- SWF&FLV Player from Eltima Software
- Syncmate from Eltima Software
- Tangerine! from Potion Factory
- Today 1. 3 from Second Gear LLC
- Together from Reinvented Software
- Toon Boom Studio From Toon Boom Animation Inc.
- VideoPier HD from Aquafadas
- Voice Candy from Potion Factory
- VoltaicHD from Systemic pty Ltd. Trading as Shedworx
- You Control: Desktops 1.3 from You Software
- Yummy Soup from HungrySeacow Software

www.artenscience.co.uk
Honest Expert Independent Technology Advice for Business

Friday, 14 November 2008

Sailing in November

A customer and friend of mine is moving to live on the coast of Spain very shortly and will undoubtedly need some IT work doing over there :-) When I was invited to go over and see the new villa and then spend four days on his yacht sailing in the Mediterranean with him and some friends, spending the evenings in the bars in places like Puerto Banus - what's a guy to do ?

It's a tough job but someone's gotta do it :-)









www.artenscience.co.uk
Honest Expert Independent Technology Advice for Business

Sicuro: Release Roadmap



I've published the Release Roadmap for our next product, Sicuro: http://www.artenscience.com/artenscience/SicuroRoadmap.html

Sicuro is a Cross Platform application designed to gather together, store securely and make available quickly the plethora of information that todays lifestyle makes necessary to keep close at hand. Sicuro will help organise your digital lifestyle.

The MacOSX version of Sicuro should be available before Christmas.

www.artenscience.co.uk
Honest Expert Independent Technology Advice for Business

Friday, 31 October 2008

Pointer+ for Mac OSX



I released Pointer+ for MacOSX earlier this week.

Pointer+ is a simple, very focused application for your Mac that adds additional functionality at the press of a key. Functionality that is invaluable if you are using your computer to demonstrate software to a third party, or if using any sort of screen recording software.

When running Pointer+ it installs itself in the Status Bar Menu, to the top right of the screen near the Clock and Spotlight. Pointer+ is shown as P+ in the Status Bar.

Once running Pointer+ gives you three extra 'Hotkey' options:

Shift + Ctrl + P: This key combination adds a small black circular surround to the middle of the screen. Once you click the mouse this enhanced pointer will overlay your mouse cursor and follow it's every move, providing much greater visibility to the cursor. Every time you click the mouse the circle pointer is made larger and bolder for a second and a cross-hair target is overlaid on the mouse position. To switch off the pointer use the same key combination.

Shift + Ctrl + Return: This key combination creates a large circle in the middle of the screen and magnifies the contents of that circle. Click in the circle to drag it to a new position, when you release the mouse the new position will be magnified. This facility is again very useful when demonstration something to another. To close the magnify cursor, use the same key combination. The default size in pixels can be set from the Preferences screen and the size can be between 200 and 800 pixels. The screenshot below will explain better than words.



Shift + Ctrl + S: This key combination saves the contents of the magnify cursor to the desktop as a Jpg.

Selecting the P+ Menu from the Status menu gives you mouse access to the above functionality and also the ability to access the About window and to Quit the program. From the about window you can use the 'Check for Updates' facility and also access the Preferences, which is where you can set the default magnification pointer size and also enter your name and serial number.

www.artenscience.co.uk
Honest Expert Independent Technology Advice for Business

Thursday, 23 October 2008

ScreenAudit Marketing, Dipping a Toe in the Water ...

I'm trying some marketing for my ScreenAudit product next week. This will be my first attempt at marketing this product, although I did release it with a press release from the excellent PrMac.

Initially I'm sponsoring the The Digital Lifestyle show with four 20 second video ads per day for the next month, and a link on the sponsors page.

Here is a link to the video that will be shown.

ScreenAudit is an application for MacOSX that performs timed snapshots of your screen(s) and / or webcam. It can operate in 'Full Stealth' mode, meaning that it cannot be seen in the dock, has no menu and cannot be seen in the 'Force Quit' list. Ideal for installing on your childs computer to monitor their activities. ScreenAudit also features the ability to convert the snapshots to a movie and archive them. More information here: http://www.artenscience.co.uk/artenscience/ScreenAudit.html



www.artenscience.co.uk
Honest Expert Independent Technology Advice for Business

Saturday, 18 October 2008

ScreenAudit 1.5 - Screen and Webcam Capture - Full Stealth !

This update comes with SASHelper, (Screen Audit Stealth Helper) which is effectively a version of ScreenAudit that runs invisibly. No Dock Icon, No Menu, Nothing in the 'Force Quit' list, no evidence that it has launched and is running.

For this to work you must set the 'Hide Window' preferences within ScreenAudit, these preferences are also used by SASHelper. If running ScreenAudit and the preferences are set to Hide Window' you can use the Tools menu to show the window and from there you have access to the ScreenAudit preferences and the standard ScreenAudit tools.

http://www.artenscience.co.uk/artenscience/ScreenAudit.html

www.artenscience.co.uk
Honest Expert Independent Technology Advice for Business

Friday, 17 October 2008

macVCR Update to 2.1.1 - Even Better OSX Screen Recording



macVCR now supports annotations which are called in turn from a text file you have created whenever you press the key combination Option + Shift + D. The location of the text file is set within the macVCR preferences. Annotations are displayed on your screen for four seconds as large translucent overlays, ideal for software demonstrations etc. See image below:



We also have a new Icon and Logo for this version courtesy of Zack Weigand:
http://zwei.gotdns.com/zweisoft.

www.artenscience.co.uk
Honest Expert Independent Technology Advice for Business

Monday, 13 October 2008

macVCR Update to 2.1 - Better OSX Screen Recording

The 2.1 Version of macVCR was primarily to optimise the function of the pointer, how it is shown on the screen during recording, how to switch it on and off quickly and how to make it more intuitive and slicker.

Now you can use the hotkey combination of Shift + Option + P to turn the pointer on or off. When the pointer is on it will follow the mouse and be recorded on the video output. Mouse clicks will be shown as a ‘Target’ crosshairs. This is a more intuitive and convenient method of recording the pointer. Note: The pointer will not follow the mouse when macVCR is the foremost application. This allows you to control macVCR without it being recorded and without switching the pointer off.

2.1 has slightly tidied up the interface with all the options now being shown on the Settings drawer. In addition you now have two additional options which are just for fun. You can Invert the colours of the recorded movie and you can Mirror the movie so that it appears upside down ! See the Screenshots below, it’s iTunes Inverted, Mirrored then Mirrored and Inverted :-)







There is also a bug fix in 2.1 which was caused by checking for a Microphone when one was not available. macVCR 2 does not yet support sound so the code should not have been active.

macVCR v2 has been very popular so far and I’d like to thank all my customers for their patronage. - Steve

www.artenscience.co.uk
Honest Expert Independent Technology Advice for Business

macVCR and ScreenAudit Bundle - Movies & Pictures !

macVCR and ScreenAudit are now available at a bundled price of £20. That’s a saving of 20% if bought separately. Go on, treat yourself :-)





www.artenscience.co.uk
Honest Expert Independent Technology Advice for Business

Friday, 10 October 2008

macVCR Screen Recorder v2 Released for OSX

macVCR Version 2 has now been released. macVCR 2 contains the following new features:

Live Camera Feed Option
Resolution Presets
Date and Time Overlay Option
Performance Adjustment
Enhanced Area Selector with Snapshot
Magnify Area at Cursor
Unlimited User Presets

It’s a significant upgrade from version 1 and is free of charge to existing customers.

macVCR can be downloaded from here: http://www.artenscience.co.uk/artenscience/macVCR.html





www.artenscience.co.uk
Honest Expert Independent Technology Advice for Business

Sunday, 5 October 2008

macVCR Preview Part 3

An overlay can now be placed on the screen thats shows you a continually updated date and time. This overlay can be dragged anywhere on the screen and will be captured by the screen recording.

macVCR Trial Version available here: http://www.artenscience.co.uk/artenscience/macVCR.html



www.artenscience.co.uk
Honest Expert Independent Technology Advice for Business

macVCR Preview Part 2

Part 2 of my preview of some of the features that will be available in macVCR Version 2, which will be available from next week.



Record Mouse Pointer
There is a new ‘Pointer’ menu. From this menu you can turn the Pointer on or off. The Pointer is designed to be used when you are recording screen activity for training or demonstration purposes.

When the Pointer is switched on, it appears in the centre of your screen. It is a small circular loop with targeting cross hairs. It does not follow the mouse automatically. To move the pointer grab the edge of the circle and move the Pointer to where you wish to perform a mouse action. When you release the mouse button the Pointer is ‘zeroed’ on the object you wish to manipulate, ie: a menu, folder, a button etc. You can then select or click the object through the middle of the loop.

By making the movement of the Pointer with the mouse a conscious decision, it leaves you free to use the mouse on the screen without it being seen in the resulting video, maybe you wish to move the mouse to a second monitor and perform some action, or you wish to manipulate the screen environment without being seen to do so. Using this method that movement will not be seen in the final video.

Use of the Pointer does introduce some additional CPU overhead.

Resolution Presets
The default screen record area is determined by the resolution of the selected monitor. This can be changed manually by overwriting these figures. Now in version 2 you can select from four presets. These are 50%, 25%, 16:9 and 4:3. These presets all work on the currently displayed resolution figures. For example if your default resolution on your Primary monitor is 2560 x 1600 then pressing the 50% button will set this to 1280 x 800. Pressing the 50% button again will reduce this by a further 50%. To reset these figures to their defaults just reselect the radio button for your Primary or Secondary monitor.

www.artenscience.co.uk
Honest Expert Independent Technology Advice for Business

Wednesday, 1 October 2008

A Preview ... macVCR 2 - Usability Testing Facility !

macVCR Version 2.0 is due for release next week, all current customers and those that purchase before 10th October will get a free upgrade to Version 2, the introductory price for macVCR ends on the 10th and a price increase will be announced.

One of the major new features in version 2 is the ability to display a live feed from your webcam on your desktop. Ideal for usability testing as the subsequent screen recording records both what they did on the computer along with their facial reactions as they are doing it. A screenshot from a demonstration movie is shown below.



Another new feature is the enhanced Area Selector with the ability to capture a high resolution (300 dpi) snapshot, as well as determine the portion of the screen that is subsequently recorded.



I'll release more information soon.

www.artenscience.co.uk
Honest Expert Independent Technology Advice for Business

Tuesday, 30 September 2008

ScreenAudit 1.3 Released

This version introduces a Tools Menu. From this menu you can choose to create a QuickTime Movie / Slideshow of all your archived images in chronological order.

Once the movie is created, it along with the images that make up the movie are moved into a new folder called Archive_Date_Time within your ScreenAudit destination folder. The movie can be used to easily view the captured activity.

Download Here: http://www.artenscience.co.uk/artenscience/ScreenAudit.html



www.artenscience.co.uk
Honest Expert Independent Technology Advice for Business

Monday, 29 September 2008

macVCR 1.1.3 Released

Another update for macVCR featuring some functionality requested by customers and potential customers.

Todays update adds the following features:

Feature: The ability to record a selected area only, of any of your monitors.
Feature: Speech feedback for certain actions
Feature: The user manual has been refined and updated.

The trial version allows 60 seconds continuous recording.



www.artenscience.co.uk
Honest Expert Independent Technology Advice for Business

Friday, 26 September 2008

macVCR 1.1.2 Released



Another update for macVCR featuring some functionality requested by customers and potential customers.

Todays update adds the following features:

Feature: Export Quicktime Movie, from the Tools Menu (Many Movie Format Options).
Feature: Compression is now shown as nn% as well as showing the Slider
Feature: Check for Updates menu now available.
Tweak: Refined the AutoUpdate Procedure.

The trial version allows 60 seconds continuous recording and cab be downloaded here: http://www.artenscience.co.uk/artenscience/macVCR.html

This Sample Movie was recorded with macVCR using the settings shown below, it was 16Mb in Size. It was then exported as MPEG4 using macVCR and is now 2.1Mb in size.



www.artenscience.co.uk
Honest Expert Independent Technology Advice for Business

Wednesday, 24 September 2008

macVCR 1.1.0 Released

Following the release of macVCR yesterday evening I have received a deluge on emails. Most complimentary, some critical and many with suggestions on how to make the product better, or more useable for a particular purpose. I also had quite a few sales as well which suggests I did something right :-)

Todays update adds the following features:

Adjustable Resolution for the saved movie. The default is for the original resolution of your screen but this can now be changed.
Multiple Monitor Support, record from either of your first two monitors.
New Tools Menu with the option to calculate the Theoretical Maximum Frames Per Second.
FPS and Frame Interval (ms) shown prior to recording.
The settings screen has been re-designed to support the new options.

I have also resolved a small timing issue.



The latest version can be downloaded from here: http://www.artenscience.co.uk/artenscience/macVCR.html

The trial version allows 60 seconds continuous recording.

www.artenscience.co.uk
Honest Expert Independent Technology Advice for Business

Tuesday, 23 September 2008

Arten Science Releases macVCR Screen Recording Software



We've just released macVCR 1.0.0.

macVCR allows you to record what happens on your computer screen to a Quicktime movie which you can then replay later at your leisure. macVCR doesn't require any form of installation, just double click the Icon and the program will launch.

* Specify Recording Length or Operate Manually
* Adjustable Compression Quality
* Choice of Codecs
* Specify Frames Per Second
* Low Disk and CPU Usage
* Trial Version Available for Download





www.artenscience.co.uk
Honest Expert Independent Technology Advice for Business