These are our favourite software tools
Movavi Screen Capture Studio
Install Movavi Screen Capture Studio and create video how-tos, save video from your webcam, grab online streaming video, capture Skype calls and applications, take desktop snapshots and much more!Use the built-in video editor to polish your video with stylish filters, special effects and other useful video editing tools.
As always, our screen capture software is very simple to use. Making a professional-looking screencast with Movavi screen capturer takes four easy steps: set the capturing parameters, grab the screen video, edit it if necessary, and save the results in the appropriate format.
This is piece of software that allows you to capture screenshots from your pc that you can then use to send to others as an explanation of what you are seeing, e.g a software error or to use in a report, advert, website etc.
The software is set to either start with windows or ran when required, it can either sit as a drop down section at the top of your screen or a floating toolbar.
You just need to click the “take a screenshot” button and a large cross appears that you control with your mouse and then draw around the item you want to screenshot and it can then be edited and resized. You can also add callouts, lines, arrows, extra text and other features and using a simple menu system that is very simple to follow.
The software can only capture squares it would have been nice if it could draw around other shaped scenarios like a triangle or circle but is still very useful. The suite also consists of a screen recording feature this is a great tool for making training videos as you can record every mouse movement, page opening and closing, typing, photo editing and many more scenarios.
Included in the suite is a fully functional video editor with a good selection of demo material and special effects, the whole suite is very intuitive and all works on a simple drag and drop setup
You can save the video in many formats and quality settings and there are options for saving to android, Apple, TV, direct to youtube or just the audio file, this is very handy as you don’t need to convert the video again once saved if you need to view on an Iphone for example.
So far I have found this software very useful with only a few minor niggles from only been able to snapshot squares as I have been trying to edit some round pictures, this is a really good set of tools that once installed you will definitely wonder how you manged without them.
Ashampoo 3D CAD Architecture Review
Ashampoo 3D CAD Architecture 6 Architecture software for home users as well as professional designers, construction draftsmen and architects.
The first thing you will notice about the software is that the download is very large, roughly 1.6gb this amount of data usage makes you realise how much work has gone into the software to take up that amount of space.
Once installed the software opens to a start wizard, you can stop this from showing next time with a tick box, it has a fast spinning carousel of various house styles that you can click on, you have to hover your mouse over then move on and off each picture to get a slow scroll, or you can use the building wizard or view the training videos.
If you choose the building wizard it starts with a screen to enter all the project details then moves on to enter the construction units and type, then install the wall thickness and floor heights and various dimensions, then you can add floors and finally the type of roof and it will design you a 3d representation of the details you entered.
You can go back to these wizards anytime by clicking the “start selection button”
If you choose to look at one of the already designed projects it will open up with the 3d house design and also a 2D typical blueprint that you can edit, add to and remove or look at the 3d house that you can spin round along its axis or click on any of the objects to change anything, there is also a walkthrough option that allows you to wander around the property with the cursor keys and mouse or onscreen buttons from the pull up menu.
You can add various objects from the catalogue menu at the bottom right of the screen, there is a wide array of items from people, cars, interior and exterior, stop signs, plants conservatories etc this helps to make your building project more true to life especially when pitching the idea to someone else.
The program can export in various formats including Autodesk and lightwave and many more, the program has extra features that you would only expect to see in a very high end product so it is good that they are installed in this software, some of the extra features listed below.
• Access to multiple new objects through SketchUp and Collada model import although there are no instructions on how to do this which is a pity as the import button doesn’t list these programs
• Plan roof-mounted photovoltaic installations
• Innovative 3D raster elements for use with large areas
• Powerful area analysis for precise calculations and proposals
• Mirror objects and 3D symbols effortlessly
• Numerous under-the-hood improvements:
• Colour or fill 2D symbols
• Edit areas in 3D with surface planner
Ashampoo have made some extensions available for the catalogue for £9.99 current pricing these are a large range of office products and a wider range of kitchens.
The software is fairly easy to use with only a minor inclined learning curve, if you have used any other cad products before you will quickly feel at home.
For the current price of £59.99 (November 2016) it is a total bargain, if you are building a new home, planning to add an extension or even just want to learn how to use a CAD style software then it is well worth the small outlay