This is how I make screencasts on <http://colinta.com>.
- Total 386
- Win 180
- OS X 121
- Linux 85
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ApplicationCommand that can be used to direct a screencast. Allows for interactivity, too, so
you can automate some tasks, and manually do others. Mimics typing, and if you get nitty-gritty,
it can mimic all your ST2 commands.
- Using Package Control, install “ScreencastDirector”
Open the Sublime Text Packages folder
- OS X: ~/Library/Application Support/Sublime Text 3/Packages/
- Windows: %APPDATA%/Sublime Text 3/Packages/
- Linux: ~/.Sublime Text 3/Packages/ or ~/.config/sublime-text-3/Packages
clone this repo
Install keymaps for the commands (see Example.sublime-keymap for my preferred keys)
Sublime Text 2
- Open the Sublime Text 2 Packages folder
clone this repo, but use the
git clone -b st2 email@example.com:colinta/SublimeScreencastDirector
screencast_bind_source: Establishes the current window as the “director”
screencast_bind_target: Establishes the current window as the “screencast”
screencast_director_run: Run current command and move “command cursor” to the next command.
screencast_director_previous: Moves the “command cursor” backward.
screencast_director_next: Moves the “command cursor” forward.
Director Commands and Examples
write(*what_to_write): This will write some text with a slightly random
delay, to give the appearance of a human typing. Accepts multiple arguments,
and inserts a newline between each argument.
- write: ['line one', 'line two', 'line three']
delay: Pauses, default is .1 sec. Used in
write to simulate typing, but
also useful in director scripts.
- delay: 1500 # pause for 1.5 secs
write_inside: SublimeText prints matching quotes, and I wanted to simulate
that in my screencasts. This command makes it easy:
- write_inside: "'string in single quotes'" - write_inside: ["'", "again, using array", "'"] - write_inside: - \' - write: you can nest commands, too! - \'
go: Move the cursor forward or backward by
- go: -10 # go back ten - write: HI! - go: 10 # return to previous position
delete: removes selected text
set_mark: Sets a mark, so you can return somewhere after some crazy commands.
goto_mark: Returns cursor to previous saved position.
a “name” is optional, and defaults to
- set_mark # same as set_mark: __tmp__ - set_mark: my_mark_name - goto_mark # same as goto_mark: __tmp__ - goto_mark: my_mark_name
select_from_mark: Selects from the mark to the position of the cursor. Uses
the same names (default: tmp) as
- set_mark - write: "this will be deleted in one second" - delay: 1000 - select_from_mark - delete
run_command: Run any SublimeText command! You can do almost anything using
this one, so if you are tempted to create a new command, consider using this one
- write: "I will fix this mitsake." - delay: 500 - go: -5 - delay: 500 - run_command: [transpose_character]
Writing Director Commands
I am totally open to pull requests that add more director functions! They are just a teensy bit hard to understand at first if you're just looking at the source code. So here goes.
ScreencastDirector class is the class that contains all the commands that
can be used in your
director.yaml files. An instance of the
ScreencastDirector class is created when the plugin is loaded (
if you're following along in the source).
The entries in your YAML source file are “executed” when you run the
screencast_director_run command, which pretty much delegates the work to
ScreencastDirector._run. All the entries are “executed” immediately, which is
to say that the command queue is built up at this time.
Let me say this more clearly: ScreencastDirector methods add one or more functions to the command queue, based on the contents of an entry in your YAML file.
When you add a command to the queue, you can pass in the
delay parameter to
control timing. Here is the
delay command, which is the simplest of all:
def delay(self, delay=100): def _delay(cursor, e): pass self._append_command(_delay, delay)
We don't even need to “sleep” in the command - that's taken care of by passing
delay parameter to
_append_command. We did have to accept the
e arguments. If you make a change to the position of the cursor, you must
return that new location (or selection). The
e argument is a
object. Since most commands will need to make a change of some sort, it is
provided for convenience.
Let's look at a simplified version of
write. It “types” each letter of input,
with a random delay between each letter to imitate actual typing. We will need
target_view.replace to insert the text (if a previous command makes a
selection, this command will overwrite it), and then return our new cursor
def write(self, what_to_write): def _write_letter(letter): def _write(cursor, e): self.target_view.replace(e, cursor, letter) return cursor.a + len(letter) return _write for letter in what_to_write: delay = random.randrange(50, 200) self._append_command(_write_letter(letter), delay=delay)
The actual implementation does much more - it supports multiple arguments, and if the argument “looks like” a command, it will execute that entry (aka “add those commands to the queue” - remember, an entry adds commands to the queue).
For your commands, just remember:
- For every edit, create a new function and add it to the queue using
_append_command. It is common to accept a
delayargument from the YAML source.
- The actual command accepts two arguments:
sublime.Editobject). Other than that, you should use the arguments that were passed in from the source file.
If you're having trouble, create an issue and I'll take a look.
These are all silent films, which is just my preference. Any screen recording app can take audio, and you can actually sit back and read your script while ScreencastDirector does all the typing — typo free!
Even ScreencastDirector itself!
Unfortunately, I didn't save the transcripts for most of these… I usually just use a scratch document. I recommend that you do as I say and not as I do: save your transcripts! It is useful when you realize there was a mistake and need to rerecord the video. Here is the director.yaml file for ScreencastDirector: https://github.com/colinta/SublimeScreencastDirector/blob/master/director.yaml