Jing helps in reference

I’ve been playing with Jing since if first came out several months ago. To say that it’s easy to use is overstating the fact: make a screencast video, narrate it (if you want), and have it saved/played on the web via a link that you send to whomever; the video/screenshot is hosted by Screencast.com. You can even save your screen shots to Flickr.

This nifty tool came in handy when I was answering one of our e-mail reference questions. A student wanted to know how to access our PsychINFO database. Rather than explaining in great detail how to go about it, I simply wrote down a few instructions (you know, just in case this student is not a visual learner), fired up Jing and quickly made a screencast of the process. After doing that (it took no more than a few minutes) I also sent the link to my narration & video showing the student how to go about doing the search.

Jing is from the folks at TechSmith, the same ones who make Camtasia. Jing requires Microsoft .NET framework 3.0 to work. Jing has few whistles, but for what it does, it does beautifully and simply. You can get tips & tricks and ongoing developments at the Jing Project blog. By all means, give Jing a try. It is indeed a neat idea.