Ver­sion: 1.3.1 Web:

Linux Format - - LXF HOTPICKS -

It wasn’t too long ago that we ad­mired the su­per-use­ful Ks­nip in LXF223 and men­tioned that it took the best fea­tures of Snip­ping Tools from Win­dows while adding ex­tra fea­tures on top of it. But in the end, it still wasn’t the per­fect so­lu­tion, and we con­tin­ued our search for a more fea­ture-packed screen­shot-tak­ing ap­pli­ca­tion.

If you work with im­age grabs that you need to an­no­tate, it’s hard to un­der­es­ti­mate the value of a good screen­shot tool. It should be ca­pa­ble of do­ing more than just cap­tur­ing win­dows or cus­tom ar­eas. For in­stance, up­load­ing im­ages to spe­cialised web ser­vices (for shar­ing desk­top eye-candy), draw­ing ar­rows and cir­cles, num­ber­ing ob­jects, high­light­ing screen el­e­ments, and oth­ers tasks.

Screen­cloud is a cross-plat­form client to the Screen­ web service. Al­though it looks like a com­mer­cial ven­ture, it def­i­nitely isn’t. The web­site, to­gether with the desk­top client, is a one-man ef­fort and an open source project.

The ap­pli­ca­tion en­ables you to cap­ture a full-screen im­age, a win­dow or a cus­tom area. But the main ben­e­fit of Screen­cloud is in its abil­ity to post­pro­cess cap­tures with the built-in edi­tor. The pro­gram makes it pos­si­ble to add smooth ar­rows, text labels, el­lip­ti­cal or rec­tan­gu­lar shapes and – what we liked most of all – au­to­mat­i­cally num­bered round labels.

There are only five draw­ing tools, but they’re very wel­come be­cause there are no other Qt5-based tool that can do a sim­i­lar job. Your ex­port op­tions are lim­ited, though. Screen­cloud can send an im­age to the of­fi­cial web stor­age, or copy it to the clip­board. Ad­di­tion­ally, the pro­gram can up­load to Drop­box, Imgur, cus­tom (S)FTP server or to the lo­cal file: you just need to press the More ser­vices but­ton in the ap­pli­ca­tion’s pref­er­ences win­dow and tick the de­sired boxes. Fur­ther­more, there are dozens of ex­tra plug-ins for Screen­cloud on the Github.

Screen­cloud has been cre­ated us­ing Python and Qt, but it turned out to be capri­cious to build and in­stall as long as it en­ables you to use Python 2 and 3 to­gether with Qt4 or 5 in any com­bi­na­tion. As al­ways, users of main­stream Linux dis­tros will be up and run­ning with the pro­gram in no time.

“What we liked most are au­to­mat­i­cally num­bered round labels.”

Em­pha­sise key el­e­ments on your im­ages us­ing a prom­i­nent open source tool.

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