Upsies is something I wrote on a whim, just out of curiosity if it worked – using the MetalFX Spatial Upscaler to upscale photos and images. And lo and behold, it does work, and produces arguably nicer results than, say, resizing an image up with Preview.app.

It’s a freeware app, available for download on the Mac App Store (with optional tipping).
It requires macOS 14 Sonoma, and a MetalFX Spatial Upscaler-capable Mac.

Enjoy : )

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Today, January 24, 2024, marks the 40th anniversary of the Mac.
Here are a couple of random, personal memories because, well, why not?

1992(?) – Our first Mac – Macintosh Classic

I was around 6 or 7 when my dad brought home our first Mac – our first computer, for that matter: a glorious Macintosh Classic.

We mostly played games on it, and of course my dad, being a journalist, did his work on it, too.

1997 – An upgrade – the Performa 5320 CD

In 1997, we got quite an upgrade – the Performa 5320CD. Bigger, faster, and in color. This is where our gaming really took off. Tomb Raider II, Settlers II, Future Cop, Realmz, Reckless Drivin’, Myst, Imperialism… our first real foray into programming as well, with HyperCard. It was more my brother at this point, but I caught on soon enough.

It was also the high-time of Mac print magazines. All those demos and software trials. I remember thinking removing “Demo” or “Trial” from an application’s title would make it the full version. Oh, the naiveté.

My mom did a lot of work on that Mac, too, doing the layout for a local archaeological magazine in Quark XPress.

[Update] Some Saturdays, my dad would take me with him to the office, filled with Macs and the smell of newspaper and cigarettes (I can still smell that today in my mind). While he worked, I’d roam around, look at all the Macs they had (I remember towers, but no specific model), and he’d turn one of them on for me so I could get on the internet. I used to go into chat rooms and talk to complete strangers. It fascinated me.

I also distinctly remember using ResEdit to “localize” English software into German, going over all the menu items. Why? Beats homework… : P

At some point, we even upgraded its memory (to 40 MB, up from 8), and almost bricked the entire thing then and there. But it buffed out, luckily.
When my cousin and I tried to do that with a Macintosh LC (I believe… it was one of those flat ones), we totally bricked it. I’ll never forget the look on his face, and the sheer horror I felt.

[Update] Speaking of my cousin, there was this one New Year’s eve where he and I almost completely ignored the count-down to the new year because we were so caught up in Titanic: Adventure out of Time, trying to get the perfect ending.

[Update] My brother really got into Imperialism, which never interested me much at first (too much management, too little action, probably). But it grew on me. So much so that when we were about to leave for a winter vacation to go skiing, I really didn’t want to, because I wanted to play Imperialism some more. As a compromise, I took the guidebook with me and would imagine what I’d build and do once we came back home. Alas, once we did come back home, I had lost interest in the game. I guess I built it up in my mind so much that the actual game couldn’t live up to it anymore.

[Update] Riven is a very atmospheric game. You can really get lost in the fantasy of it all. My brother and I used to play it with the lights off in the evenings, which intensified the situation. The most shocking part for me was when it was all quiet, our parents asleep already, and we’d progress to a certain point in the game where a CD change was required, and out of the blue, the Performa’s CD tray would open up with a loud creek without so much as a little heads-up. That used to scare the crap out of me.

[Update 2] We had our grandparents over for Christmas – or was it a birthday? – and had just upgraded to Mac OS 8, where you could record your own alert sounds (instead of Sosumi, for example). Well, we had our grandma say “Blödsinn” (“Nonsense”) for a custom alert to demonstrate this with pride to everyone around. So we pressed record and signaled our grandma she could start talking, but it took her about 3 seconds to come up with something to say. Keep in mind, in those days, preemptive multitasking wasn’t really a thing. So every time the alert played, the Mac would “freeze” for 3 seconds, then we’d hear “Blödsinn”, and then the Mac would “unfreeze”. I don’t know why we didn’t re-record it right away; perhaps we didn’t think that far ahead. But we’d always have 4 seconds to contemplate what went wrong when the alert played.

[Update 3] Mac OS 9 came with Voice log-in. I can’t count (well, actually, I can’t remember) the number of times I re-recorded my voice for that in hopes to make it work, but it never would. I’d record it in the morning, it would kind of work during the day (I used to log out and back in to make sure it works, and I just loved to talk to the Mac), but come the next morning, it wouldn’t work anymore. It was Mac OS’ “Eat up Martha” phase, I guess.

2000 – iMac G3 (Slot Loading)

I really wanted an iMac. I had pictures of it pinned all over my bedroom and all over my bed. I let my parents know I wanted one, too. Every single day. And then, on Christmas in the year 2000, we got one, and it was the best thing ever.

We hooked it up to the internet, too, until my dad kind of lost it when he saw that first phone bill. Yikes.
I remember playing Caesar III on that Mac, and not wanting to go to relatives for the 26th of December because I just wanted to keep on playing.

I played Deus Ex at 5fps on this, too, and loved every frame I got.

This was the first Mac I bought memory for with my own money. My mom went with me to the Apple retailer (I was too scared to go alone) and didn’t quite know what more memory would accomplish. She knew, once we got it installed.

I got into REALbasic for a while and wanted to develop my own Football (soccer) manager game. The first thing I implemented was a cheat, so I could give myself a lot of money. I didn’t get far on that.

When Xcode came around, I pretty much switched to that and Objective-C right away. I got Aaron Hillegass’ book “Cocoa Programming for Mac OS X”. That was my bible for a year, going over all the tutorials and code and examples. This is where it all started.

I loved the hockey puck mouse, by the way (I know, unpopular opinion). I wish I still had it, but it broke at some point and stupid past me got rid of it.

[Update] Over most summers, we used to go to our house in Burgenland, where we “retired” the old Macs to (the Classic, the Performa, and at some point we also had a Macintosh Plus, but I can’t remember where we got that from. My brother would know). My cousins would join us in playing old classic games like Space Station Pheta, Stunt Copter, Super Maze Wars, and such. At some point, that wasn’t enough anymore, and we decided we’d bring our iMacs with us from Vienna. Things really kicked into gear then, and we never saw the outside of that house anymore. We played through Diablo 2 multiple times, grinding bosses, played Warcraft 3 all day and night, explored Tomb Raider II and III …

[Update] Like I said, we did get internet with the iMac. But it used to be sooooo slow, I used to keep downloads running over night so they’d be finished when I woke up. My dad, however, did not like the idea of having the computer running all night, so he’d often turn it off once I went to bed. Imagine my surprise when I had to restart the download again and wait for hours and hours for a game demo to finish downloading…

[Update 4] Oh, yeah, I just remembered Virtual PC. Riiight, ’cause that worked so well </scarcasm>… . So much time wasted trying to get FIFA running.

2005 – PowerMac G5

I remember my dad buying me this Mac for my birthday. We went to the retailer, and the sales person asked me “What makes you want this Mac?”. “The graphics power”, I said. “Oh, you’re doing 3D design?”, he asked with enthusiasm. “I play games”. He turned away at that point, with the slightest hint of disappointment and almost disgust in his eyes. But he made the sale. And I gamed my heart out (you can see World of Warcraft running in the photo above).

I wrote GimmeSomeTune on that PowerMac, and started to work on flickery, as well as some other minor apps.

[Update] I bought a graphics card upgrade for this PowerMac. The ATI X800XT. And I bought it twice off eBay. Because the first one wasn’t flashed for the Mac. Yay. Another moment where I thought I’d bricked an expensive Mac. I also expanded its storage with SATA HD drives.

2007 – My first portable Mac – MacBook Pro Mid/Late 2007

I had to make the switch to Intel at some point, and this was it. This was the first Mac I bought myself.

I do remember loving the keyboard. It was kind of… squishy.
See that IR sensor at the front for Front Row? I bought an Apple remote (IR) to use it with this Mac.

2009 – My next portable Mac – MacBook Pro Mid-2009

I discovered a local retailer that would give you money for your old Mac, and discount it off the new one. So pretty soon after that first Intel MacBook Pro, I got this 2009 model, with Mac OS X Leopard 10.5. You can tell, by the background image : D .
I upgraded its hard drive to an ADATA 256 GB SSD (they were still kind of new back then), and it just blew my mind.

Opening all apps in the Utilities folder on the newly installed ADATA 256GB SSD. Wow.

2012 – Retina Goodness – MacBook Pro 15″, Retina, Mid-2012

This one came with flash storage right away, so there was no need to upgrade.
I remember trading in my previous MacBook Pro (see above) to get a discount on this new one.
To this day, I use this one to debug stuff on older versions of macOS, and I even play games on it when I stream. Such a trusty Mac.

Many an app was written on this.

2017 – Back to the desktop Mac – iMac 27″

That 20″ Apple Cinema Display I’d been using with my 15″ MacBook Pro just didn’t cut it for me anymore, so in 2017, I bought the 27″ iMac, beefed-up to the brim. I did not regret it.

2018 – A mobile addition – MacBook Pro Touch Bar 2018

I was on the road a lot back then for client work, so I had to get a mobile Mac.

Another very good Mac. Although I kept doing most of my work on my iMac.

2021 – Apple silicon – MacBook Pro M1 Max

I sold both the iMac and the MacBook Pro 2018 and got myself a MacBook Pro M1 Max (again, beefed up).
It’s been my daily driver ever since and I couldn’t be happier with it.

I’ve always been a very happy Mac owner. So many great memories are tied to every one of these devices (except for that first Intel Mac, which, again, I totally forgot about owning).

When the M1 developer kit came out, it came with a little packet that said “The future of Mac is yours to write”. I think about that a lot.

Macs I wish I owned

I always adored the Macintosh Color Classic.

Image credit: Wikipedia

The iMac G4 was just an awesome machine and design, and my brother had one. I always envied him for it. He still plays games on it, too.

This design is due for a revival. Remember the commercials? I dream of them! (not really, but they were soooo good!)

[Update] Honorable mention: my girlfriend’s green iMac M3. It’s glorious. Having used Windows all her life, she’s still getting used to it, but she’s getting there.

Happy 40th, Mac. Way to go. And thank you for the good times.

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Let’s take a tour through ScreenFloat and see how it can power up your screenshots, too.

ScreenFloat powers up your screenshots by allowing you to take screenshots and recordings that float above everything else, keeping certain information always in sight. Its Shots Browser stores your shots and helps you organize, name, tag, rate, favorite and find them. Everything syncs across your Macs.
Extract, view and copy detected text, faces and barcodes. Edit, annotate, markup and redact your shots effortlessly and non-destructively. Pick colors any time. And more.

Posts in this Series

Part IHello ScreenFloat
Part IICapture – Take Screenshots and Record Your Screen
Part IIIFloat – Picture-in-Picture for your Screenshots and Recordings
Part IVEdit – OCR, Annotate, Crop, Fold, Resize, Rotate, Trim, Cut and Mute
Part VShare – Drag and Drop, Link Sharing, Export
Part VIStore – The Shots Browser, iCloud Sync, Tags Browser
Part VIIIntegrate – Widgets, Siri Shortcuts, AppleScript, Workflows, Spotlight

Part VII – Widgets, Siri Shortcuts, AppleScript, Workflows, Spotlight

ScreenFloat integrates perfectly with macOS, so you can easily and comfortably capture and access your shots any way you want to. Read on to learn how.

Table of Contents


Widgets

ScreenFloat offers you a number of widgets, ranging from quick access to capturing your screen and managing your floating shots, over quickly accessing your shots, to folders and picked colors.

Command and Control

These widgets allow you to control all aspects of ScreenFloat – capture new shots and recordings, manage your floating shots and open the Shots- and Tags Browser.
These might be especially useful placed on your Desktop, if you’re on macOS 14 Sonoma or newer.

Quick Access to Shots

With “Shot”-family of widgets, you get quick access to:

  • Favorite Shots
  • Recently Captured Shots
  • Shots in a specific folder
  • Recently closed floating shots
  • Shots tagged with a specific tag

Clicking a shot will reveal it in the Shots Browser.

Tags and Colors

And lastly, you can have quick access to your favorite tags, and recently picked colors.
Clicking a tag in the Favorite Tags widget will reveal it in the Tags Browser.
The color widget allows you to copy a color’s hex-, rgb-, float- or hsl values, or a sample color image.


Siri Shortcuts

To integrate capturing your screen into a Shortcut, ScreenFloat comes with a couple of useful Shortcuts to help you do that.

Here are ScreenFloat’s shortcuts available to you:

Capture Shot
Allows you to automate capturing a screenshot, timed screenshot, or screen recording.

Options include:

  • Float shot
    whether to float the new shot after capture or not
  • Title
  • Notes
  • Tags
  • Recapture previous area
    if, instead of starting a new capture, the last known screen area should be preselected for the capture
  • Add to Folder
    add the new shot to a folder
  • After Capture
    what should happen right after capture; for instance, open the crop UI, or annotate the shot right away

New Shot from Clipboard
Create a new shot from the contents of your clipboard: images, videos, and even text.

Import Files
Import specific image or video files into ScreenFloat, with the same options as Capture Shot.

Hide / Unhide Floating Shots, Close All Floating Shots
A way to manage your floating shots’ visibility.


URL Scheme

ScreenFloat’s URL scheme gives you access to all of ScreenFloat’s capturing functionality from the comfort of a URL, allowing you to automate captures in your own style.

For all the available options and instructions, please click here.


AppleScript

ScreenFloat allows you to run Application Scripts (AppleScripts that reside in a special folder on your Mac) as a double-click workflow, passing in a copy of the double-clicked shot, along with a couple of other parameters.
For all the details and instructions, click here.

This opens up a wide possibility of options to you, like creating your own Link Share service, uploading the shot to your server and copying a link to it to your clipboard.

You can also run Shortcuts with your shots as a double-click action. Read on for more information on both AppleScripts and Shortcuts as Double-Click actions.


Double-Click Workflows

From time to time, you’ll find yourself doing something over and over again, like resize an image before you send it in an email, or crop an image before you annotate it, or duplicate a screen recording before you remove its audio tracks.
ScreenFloat speeds that up by providing customizable double-click workflows for your floating shots.

Setting up Double-Click Workflows

Double-Click workflows are set up in ScreenFloat’s settings. You can reach them by clicking on ScreenFloat’s menu bar icon in the right portion of your menu bar; or by right-clicking any floating shot; or by pressing command (⌘) – , in the Shots Browser. Select Floating Shots, and you’ll be ready to get going:

You can set up double-click workflows for different mouse buttons, and different modifier keys on your keyboard (command (⌘), option (⌥), control (^), shift (⇧) and fn).
For instance, you can set up workflows for your left mouse button with no modifier keys pressed (a simple double-click onto the floating shot), or your middle mouse button with command (⌘) and shift (⇧) pressed.
This allows you to set up not just one, but multiple double-click workflows, tailored to different situations or requirements.

To add a double-click action to a workflow, hold down the modifier keys of your choice (or none) and press the mouse button area at the top of the list with the desired mouse button. Then press the + button at the bottom of the list to select actions you’d like to perform on the floating shot you double-click.

Switching through a couple of double-click actions for different mouse buttons and modifier keys.

The – button allows you to remove selected actions from the current workflow, remove all actions from the current workflow, or completely reset all your double-click workflows.

Available Actions

Actions in a workflow are performed in the order they appear in the list when you add them.
This order is more or less pre-defined and cannot be changed: for instance, the Duplicate Shot action is always added to the top of the list, and thus, performed first when the double-click workflow runs.
On the other hand, Copy as File is performed last, so you can have a double-click workflow where you crop, resize and annotate a shot, and after that, that newly edited shot is copied.

Let’s go over the list of available actions.

Some of these actions are only available when image shots are double-clicked:
– Reduce image resolution
– Annotate Shot
while others are only available for screen recordings:
– Copy Still Image from Video
– Trim Video
– Cut Video
– Remove Audio (All, System, Mic)

Let’s go over some that might need further explanation:

Copy Clicked Text (Additive)
When you double-click a text line in a shot with this active, that text line gets copied.
Double-click another in the same shot, and it gets added to the previous copy.

Copy Still Image from Video
Copies the currently displayed frame in a floating video shot.

Open Copy With
Allows you to specify two apps: one for image shots, and one for video shots.

Export to Folder
Lets you select a folder on your disk to save the double-clicked shot to in its native PNG format right away.

Run AppleScript
Run an AppleScript with a copy of the double-clicked shot. Read instructions here.

Run Shortcut
Run a Siri Shortcut with a copy of the double-clicked shot.

Resize Shot
Allows you to specify a percentage to resize to (25%, 50%, 75%, 125%, 150%, 175%, 200%), or to resize it manually.

Rotate
Rotate the shot clockwise, or counterclockwise.

Rate Shot
Specify a rating to give the shot when double-clicking it (from no rating to 1-5 stars).

Add to Folder
Specify a folder the shot should be added to, or let the double-click show the folders menu so you can select one on the fly.

Add Tag
Specify a tag to tag the double-clicked shot with, or show the Tags menu to select one on the fly.

Toggle Opacity Between 100% and
Select an opacity level all the way down to 40% to toggle between with a double-click.

Ignore Mouse Clicks
Makes the double-clicked shot ignore mouse clicks until reverted.

Toggle Visibility Between Everywhere and
Select “Current Space” or “Currently Active App” as an option. Double-click to set it to, say, Currently Active App, then double-click it again to toggle it back to Everywhere.

Resize Floating Shot Window
Allows you to resize the floating shot window down or up in increments, or reset it to 100%.


Some actions are mutually exclusive. For instance, you can’t have both Copy All Detected Text and Copy Clicked Text in one and the same action, because one would override the other, and only the last operation would “take”.


Running a double-click workflow on a floating image shot that automatically reduces the shot’s resolution to 72 dpi, then asks me to resize it, then to crop/fold it, and then shows the Share menu.

Spotlight

ScreenFloat optionally indexes your shots and their metadata with Spotlight, so you can find them system-wide.

The neat thing about this is that it not only allows you to search by shots’ metadata (title, notes, tags), but also their detected text/barcode content, as well as any text annotations you have made.

Selecting a search result reveals it in your Shots Browser, where a double-click onto it, or the enter/return key on your keyboard will float it right away if you like.


That’s a Wrap

Whew, what a journey. Congratulations, you now know everything there is to know about ScreenFloat – you can now get the most out of it, I’m sure!
Consider these posts living documents that I’ll keep up-to-date with the changes made to the app, so you’ll always know where to go if something’s unclear.
Speaking of unclear, if you have any feedback or questions, please do not hesitate to write me – I’d love to hear from you.

Links

ScreenFloat Website (+ free trial)
ScreenFloat on the Mac App Store (one-time purchase, free for existing customers)
ScreenFloat Usage Tips

Eternal Storms Software Productivity Apps Bundle (Yoink, ScreenFloat and Transloader at ~25% off)
Contact & Connect


Thank you for your time. I do hope you enjoy ScreenFloat!

Read more

Let’s take a tour through ScreenFloat and see how it can power up your screenshots, too.

ScreenFloat powers up your screenshots by allowing you to take screenshots and recordings that float above everything else, keeping certain information always in sight. Its Shots Browser stores your shots and helps you organize, name, tag, rate, favorite and find them. Everything syncs across your Macs.
Extract, view and copy detected text, faces and barcodes. Edit, annotate, markup and redact your shots effortlessly and non-destructively. Pick colors any time. And more.

Posts in this Series

Part IHello ScreenFloat
Part IICapture – Take Screenshots and Record Your Screen
Part IIIFloat – Picture-in-Picture for your Screenshots and Recordings
Part IVEdit – OCR, Annotate, Crop, Fold, Resize, Rotate, Trim, Cut and Mute
Part VShare – Drag and Drop, Link Sharing, Export
Part VIStore – The Shots Browser, iCloud Sync, Tags Browser
Part VIIIntegrate – Widgets, Siri Shortcuts, AppleScript, Workflows, Spotlight

Part IV: Edit – OCR, Annotate, Crop, Fold, Resize, Rotate, Trim, Cut and Mute

At some point, you will want to crop, resize, rotate or annotate your shots. Perhaps you might want to trim your videos, or remove individual audio tracks. Read on to learn how ScreenFloat makes this easy and pain-free for you.

Table of Contents


Edit – OCR, Annotate, Crop, Fold, Resize, Rotate, Trim, Cut and Mute

To edit a shot, right-click it (either in the Shots Browser, or a floating shot itself) and select the according option in the menu.

Convenience Feature: Whenever you feel like you might want to create a backup before making changes to a shot (like cutting or trimming a video, or removing its audio tracks), you can duplicate it beforehand. Right-click the shot, hold down the option (⌥) key and select Duplicate.


Crop

Cropping allows you to crop away unwanted edges of your screenshots or recordings.

  • At the top left, you’ll see the dimensions of your selection, and the current zoom level
  • Snap to edges can help you crop at just the right edge of a window, for example
    • Hold down the command (⌘) key to temporarily disable snapping while changing the selection rectangle
  • While changing the cropping rectangle, hold down the option (⌥) key to change its size around its center point
  • Click and drag the area of your selection rectangle to move it around

You can adjust the rectangle with your keyboard’s arrow keys, too:

  • Up, down, left, right moves the rectangle up, down, left, right by 1px. Hold down the shift (⇧) key to increase it to 5px.
  • Up, down, left, right while holding down the option key (⌥) increases or decreases the selection rectangles width or height by 1px. Hold down the shift (⇧) key to increase it to 5px.

Aspect Ratios
In case you require a specific aspect ratio, ScreenFloat has you covered for the most popular of them. Right-click the cropping area and select it.

Fold

“Folding” is a concept I came up with trying to remove unwanted parts from screenshots. You fold to remove a vertical or horizontal middle section of an image, and stitch the remaining two parts back together, as if nothing was ever in between.
Before I confuse you even more, here’s a video of it in action:

Note how, in the beginning, there is the “Ratings” bar, and the “Also Included In” bar below Yoink’s icon – both of which I don’t want in our screenshot.
So I Crop the shot and select Fold Vertically, which allows me to select a vertical portion of the screenshot I want to remove along the entire width of it. I click Fold, and those two bars that were there before are now gone, and the image is stitched back together.
I then go in a second time and Fold Horizontally, because the screenshot is unnecessarily wide. So I select a horizontal portion along the entire height of the screenshot and click Fold to remove that as well.
Voilá, my finished screenshot! And I didn’t have to manually fumble around to re-align things.

Folding is only available for image shots.


Resize

Resizing screenshots is one of the most common things to do, so it better be quick and easy.

Width and height are ratio locked when you resize a shot, which means that when you enter a new width, the new height will be auto-calculated for you, and vice-versa.
I’ve often been finding myself in Preview.app wanting to resize to exactly half, or a quarter of the current size. So in ScreenFloat, you can do that, without having to wreck your brain about what half of 180px is. Just select 50% from the menu and it’ll do the math for you.

If you’re scaling an image up, ScreenFloat has the option to make the image larger using the MetalFX Spatial Upscaler, which can yield a nicer result than without (although it does depend on the source material). Here’s an example of a screenshot of the word “macOS” having been upscaled without and with the MetalFX Spatial Upscaler:

De-Retinize

When you take a screenshot on a Mac’s retina display, its resolution is usually 144 dpi, resulting in a nice and clear screenshot.
In some situations, however, you don’t require that high a resolution. Select Reduce resolution, and the shot will be rendered down to 72 dpi, making the file size smaller, but also reducing the quality of the shot.
(De-retinize is only available for screenshots, not video recordings)


Rotate

There’s not much to say about this one – you can rotate your image- and video shots clockwise and counterclockwise. That’s it. That’s the feature.


Trim Video

Another one of those self-explanatory things: trim screen recordings’ beginnings and ends.


Cut Video

Cut out parts of a screen recording you don’t want: an entire section of video, maybe an unintended cough in the microphone audio track, or a notification sound in the system audio track, for example:

Removing an entire section of video, part of the microphone audio track, and part of the system audio track

Remove Audio

You can remove a recording’s audio tracks. It is handy when you’ve recorded your microphone along with your recording for internal purposes only, but want to send the video to someone else. Remove its audio tracks, and send it. And if you duplicate the shot first, you’ll still have the original screen recording with the audio track for later.
You can choose between removing all audio tracks, only the microphone track, or only the system audio track:


OCR, Annotations / Markup and Redactions

All redactions and annotations are entirely non-destructive. That means you can always go back in and make changes to your annotations, or remove them entirely and restore the original shot.

QuickSmart Redaction
Let’s begin with “QuickSmart” redaction. Right-click a text line, face or barcode and redact it without any further effort on your part.
I couldn’t decide between “quick” and “smart”, so I just used both. Usually, names are hard, but I got definitely lucky that time.

QuickSmart-redacting a line of text, a face, and viewing the contents of a QR code.

The type of redaction (blockout, pixellate, blur) used for QuickSmart-redaction is based on what you’ve set up the redaction tool to be when manually annotating. But we’ll get to that in a bit. **

Annotate, Markup, Redact
To begin, right-click a shot (floating, or in the Shots Browser) and select Annotate… .

At the top, you’ll find your tools. From left to right, they are:
– Select: Select, move and manipulate one or multiple annotations space bar on your keyboard
– Freedraw 1 on your keyboard
– Rectangle 2
– Oval 3
– Line 4
– Arrow 5
– Star 6
– Checkmark 7
– X-Mark 8
– Text
– Smart Numbered List
– Highlight 9 on your keyboard
– Redact 0

Double-click any of these tools (or press their number on the keyboard twice) to adjust their properties for future annotations. These are the tool’s defaults and used for every new annotation.
Use the Select tool and double-click an annotation (or multiple) to change their properties. This will only affect them, and not become your new defaults.

In the screenshot above, I double-clicked the Redact tool to be able to switch between the Redaction Styles blockout, pixellate, and blur.
If I choose Blockout, the Blockout Color will come into play, which will be used to completely block the part you overlay with this redaction.
** Like I said above, the Redaction Style you select here will be used for QuickSmart redaction.


The line-based tools (from freedraw to x-mark) all offer the following properties:

– Line Width: How thick a line to draw (1px, 3px, 6px, 9px, 12px)
– Line Style: Solid, dashed and dotted.
– Stroke Color: The color of the line you’re drawing, the rectangle’s bounds or circle’s outline.
– Background Color: A background for the entire annotation, based on its bounding box.
– Fill Color: Rectangles, Ovals, Arrows, Stars, Check- and X-Marks also offer a fill color.
– Rectangle Corners: For rectangles, you can choose between sharp and rounded corners.
– Arrow Style: For arrows, you can choose between “line arrow”, “shape arrow” and “back-and-forth” arrow
– Check- and X-Mark Corners: Choose between sharp, rounded rect, circle or none.

Using freedraw, rectangles, ovals, lines, arrows, stars, check- and x-marks.

Text Annotation
You can change the font, the size, and text- and background colors.

Adding a text annotation, adjusting its text- and background color.

Smart Numbered Lists
This allows you to add self-increasing numbers (or letters) to your image, for example, when writing a mail with instructions on how to perform an action on the computer, you could use this to add steps, like 1, 2, 3, and then reference them in the mail.

Using the smart numbered list tool to add “steps”. Removing one automatically updates the rest.

You can choose between numbers (1-x) or letters (A-Z, then A1, B1, … Z1, A2, B2, etc), and change their borders and colors.

Highlight
You draw a highlight around an object you’d like to draw attention to, by “tuning out” the rest of the image.

You can change the corners of the highlight (sharp, rounded or oval), and the dimming color (all alpha values supported).

Redact
Use the Redact tool to obscure something in a screenshot you don’t wish to share.

Using the Redact tool to blockout, pixellate and blur details in an image.

Please note that researchers have been able to reverse blur- and pixellate effects, so for sensitive information, please consider using blockout.

Select
Use the Select tool to select existing annotations and move them around, manipulate them, or edit their properties.

Editing an already annotated image and changing its redactions, drawing a freedraw line and changing its properties, too.

As you can see above, it’s easy to go back into an already annotated shot and change or remove its annotations, and edit those annotations’ properties with a simple double-click.


Tips
– Annotating supports undo and redo. Press command (⌘) – Z to undo, command (⌘) – shift (⇧) – Z to redo, or right-click to reveal the contextual menu and select it there
– With the Select tool, hold down the option (⌥) key on your keyboard and click-and-drag an annotation (or multiple) to duplicate it and its properties (alternatively, select them and press command (⌘) – D)
– Select all annotations easily by click-dragging with the Select tool onto the background, or by pressing command (⌘) – A on your keyboard
– Delete annotations by selecting them and pressing the backspace / delete key on your keyboard
– If you have an iPad and use Sidecar, you can use your Apple Pencil to make annotations, and you can switch between your current tool and the Select tool by double-tapping the Pencil. Hold down the command (⌘) key and double-tap to select the next tool, or hold down the option (⌥) key and double-tap to select the previous tool (from left to right)
– Move annotations around by click-and-dragging them, or with the arrow keys on your keyboard
– Remember that you can always export and drag shots to other apps with and without annotations
– Annotations/markup and redactions are non-destructive – you’ll always be able to restore the original image, or go in and make changes
– Change an arrow’s direction by holding down the option (⌥) key on your keyboard when you start to draw it (video – first we draw an arrow without the option key pressed, then with)

Up Next

The next part of this series – Part V: Share – Drag and Drop, Link Sharing, Export – takes a detailed look at everything you can do with a simple double-click onto a floating shot. Definitely take a look, there’s a lot of neat stuff there!

Links

ScreenFloat Website (+ free trial)
ScreenFloat on the Mac App Store (one-time purchase, free for existing customers)
ScreenFloat Usage Tips

Eternal Storms Software Productivity Apps Bundle (Yoink, ScreenFloat and Transloader at ~25% off)
Contact & Connect


Thank you for your time. I do hope you enjoy ScreenFloat!

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