Tuesday, March 18, 2008

ZoomIt


ZoomIt is a free utility that is especially great for tech teachers, trainers or anyone who presents to others from a computer desktop. Microsoft makes this tool available from their Windows Sysinternals site. Sysinternals utilities help you manage, troubleshoot and diagnose your Windows systems and applications. ZoomIt was updated this month to version 1.8, and this update to the popular screen magnifier and annotation presentation tool adds support for undo while drawing, and it also allows for resizable text fonts. I don't know how I managed without ZoomIt. Here is a direct link to the ZoomIt site. Click on the thumbnail image at the left for a blow-up of the features and keyboard shortcuts that make them happen. What's nice about ZoomIt is that you don't really have to install it. Just download the Zip file once, then extract it to your desktop, thumb drive or network drive. When you want to present something to a group, just double-click on the folder and launch ZoomIt with another double-click. It runs from your system tray/notification area right next to the clock.

Use the keyboard shortcuts listed in the screenshot to really bring out the power available in this tiny but amazingly useful presentation tool. What does it let you do? How about zooming in on any text item or picture with one click. How about the ability to bring up a count-down timer any time you want (again, with just a keyboard shortcut). Would you like to draw on your computer screen with a pen or marker? Now you can. These are all presenation tools that presenters want and need, and now it's all available for free...in one place. And it now has the Microsoft stamp on it, since Microsoft now owns Sysinternals. Computer presenters, you will wonder what you ever did without it. Thanks to
Frank Miracola for passing on this free tool during his "Free Is Good" presentation at the MACUL conference this year in Grand Rapids.

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