Tut - include images in your post and screen captures

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Tut - include images in your post and screen captures

Postby gpsmikey » Sun Feb 24, 2008 7:28 am

Including an image in your post and capturing screen images
23-Feb-08 M.Fields (with help from Mona)


I realize there is a lot of “information” here – not all applies to all situations – just use the portions that apply to what you are trying to do

There are 3 parts to including an "image" for others to see in your post since the forum does not provide storage for images.
The following steps need to be addressed:

1) Capture the image (if needed) from the screen etc.
2) Place the image in a publicly accessible location so it is accessible to a browser (IE etc).
3) Create a post with an image "in" it by including a link to the actual image in your post surrounded with the appropriate "image" tags.

More detail on the above steps follows:

1) Capture the Image:
If the image you want to include is a screen capture of something (showing people how to set something up etc) then you need to do a screen capture of the area you want to display. There are a number of free ways to capture a screen image - some are listed below. If the image you want to include is one you already have, use the editor of your choice to add comments, arrows or whatever you want. Resize the picture so that it is an appropriate size for including in a post - typically between 200 and 400 pixels wide works well.

My Favorite screen capture:
My favorite is with a very worthwhile utility called Snagit ( $39.95 direct from TechSmith http://www.techsmith.com/screen-capture.asp - 30 day free trial). Snagit is typically activated when you press "Print Screen" - it freezes the screen and allows you to select the area you want. It then pops up a simple editor where you can add arrows, circles, notes etc to the image then save it in any number of formats. Snagit has a whole collection of neat features including "call-outs", special arrows and circles, text overlays, etc that really give your capture that extra special look and it is simple to use.
There are a number of other screen capture utilities out there - some for free, however, I have not experimented with any of them -- Snagit does everything I want and gets lots of great comments from others that use it.

Alternate FREE screen capture:
To use the free feature in windows, you have two choices - "Print Screen" will capture the entire screen while ALT+"Print Screen" will capture the active window to the clipboard. You can then open Paint and use the "Paste" function to insert a copy of the image you just captured. Use "Save As" to save the image to a jpg file.
Here are some good links with info on the "Print Screen" function (some include info on Vista)
http://windows.about.com/od/keyboardsho ... n_shot.htm
http://support.microsoft.com/kb/301583 <-- handy list of keyboard shortcuts from Microsoft

Another screen capture utility [thanks Mona]:

Fastone Screen Capture by FastStone Soft (now shareware)
Website: http://www.faststone.org/

To get the last free version (ver. 5.3 of Feb 12, 2007)
Download from here: http://www.aplusfreeware.com/categories ... pture.html
License: Free for home users
Download file size: 1380KB


2) Make the image available to the web:

Security issue: It should be noted that by looking at the “properties” of a picture on a web page, it is usually easy to get to the root directory for that user on the server and often see all other pictures, web pages etc that are on the server. If this is a concern, then you should use a separate server just for pictures that you are going to make public.

Once you have an image of the appropriate size with whatever notations etc you want on it, you then need to place it on a publicly visible server so that you can include a link to it in your post. What I often do is just put it on one of my web pages then grab a link to it (more on that shortly) that I can include in my post. There are a number of sites out there that let you share photos etc and some searching with Google will help find them. Some are free while others require payment of some sort. The chief requirement for this use is that the images MUST have a "static" location. This means if I look at it today, it has to have the same "location" shown in the "properties" as it does next week (there are a
number of sites that I have seen that build a "dynamic" web page when you visit it - this makes it easy for you to arrange pictures etc on it and as you add stuff up on their site, it moves it around so it works. The down side of this is that the location of the image as seen in the "properties" changes each time you visit the web page - this makes it impossible to use a link to it for your post. The simplest way to check and make sure your image is publicly available (and this makes a handy way to keep pointers to these for later ... ) is to go to where the image is located on the server (usually a web page
of some sort). Right click the image and part way down the context menu, you will see "Add to Favorites". Add that to your "Favorites" (I have a folder called "Proshow Image Links" that I put them in - keep the address but change the name to something more meaningful like "My example of xyz"). Now, bring up a new IE window and try going to that link from the "Favorites" - it should load a page with just that image on it.

NOTE: You can get the address of any image on any web page the same way - RIGHT click and select "Properties" then copy the url of the image. One of the other options from the RIGHT click menu is "Save Image As" which lets you grab a copy of an image off of a web site (be careful to observe copyrights and other people's rights if you are grabbing something of their web site). This method works for Firefox and IE.

You now have the url of the image you want to "include" in your post (it doesn't really include the image, it just resolves and loads the url you provide in your post).

Public Servers for your images:

Two servers that I am familiar with are Photobucket ( http://www.photobucket.com ) and Flickr ( http://www.flickr.com ) – these are only 2 of many sites available including simply pointing at an image on your web site (but review the “security” comment above). Both sites have free accounts you can sign up for. To get the image address from photobucket, it is actually fairly slick – you simply click on the “IMG Code” button (see the following image) and it will copy the url of the image complete with the appropriate image tags to the clipboard which you can then paste into your post.

Image

If using flickr, you copy the url from the “properties” of the image, but then when you paste it into your post, be sure and remove anything following the .jpg/png on the end of the filename – you only want the portion starting with http and ending with jpg or png.

For other servers, you will need to experiment and see what works.



3) Create a post with an image "in" it:

One important thing to understand here is all you are doing in your post is providing a link to the actual image you want to display - the post itself does not include the image nor does the Enthusiasts group provide any storage for images.

Create your post - where you want your picture to be, paste in the url of the picture where ever you have it publicly available. Now highlight the url you just put in and click on the "IMG" button - this will put the img tags on both ends of the url you just provided (if you used Photobucket and clicked the “IMG Code” box, your url that you paste in already has the appropriate IMG tags – you can skip clicking the “IMG” button above your post. You can click the preview button to see if it loads correctly then click the "Submit" button.

NOTE: Since the image that is visible in a post is NOT actually stored as part of the post, recognize that if that image is moved by the owner to a different location (change folder, abandon web page, whatever) the image will no longer be visible in the post. This is a good reason to print out posts with images in them if you want to be able to refer back to them later.

mikey -- comments welcome (yes, I know it's wordy ! :D )
Last edited by gpsmikey on Tue Feb 26, 2008 7:29 am, edited 1 time in total.
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mikey (PSP6, Photoshop CS6, Vegas Pro 12, Acid 7, BluffTitler, Nikon D70s, D300s, D810)
Lots of PIC microprocessor stuff too !!

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Postby nannybear » Sun Feb 24, 2008 10:01 am

You are brilliant Mikey!! hugs Jan


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Re: Tut - include images in your post and screen captures

Postby iknowwhereitis123 » Wed May 21, 2008 11:43 am

Thanks Mikey! Lets see if this works.. 6th times a charm.. having resizing issues.


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Well, it cropped it but I'll get there...sooner or later.

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