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Gordon R. Meyer
Easier screenshots on Mac OS X
Capturing screenshots of applications is second only to drinking coffee on a technical writer's list of daily tasks. On Mac OS X, it's already a simple process thanks to the built-in tools that capture any screen or window to a high-quality PDF file. However, if you're shooting full-screen images, you do run the risk of exposing your cluttered desktop, not to mention your salacious desktop picture (that's wallpaper to you Windows users), to the outside world. While it might be fun to purposefully taunt your reviewers and peers with a "my sh*t list" document not-so-subtly left visible in the background of a screenshot, the truth is that cleaning up your desktop just to take a clean screenshot is a tedious task.
Well grouse no more. John Haney Software's freeware Backdrop is a simple and effective tool for putting a temporary curtain between the screen you're capturing and your desktop and other applications. You can use either a solid color--set to the exacting specifications of your style guide--or an image file that completely simulates a clean fresh-from-Apple desktop. And best yet, just quit the app and you're back to your own messy environs. So simple, but oh such a welcome tool.