Great little screencap application – PicPick

PicPick - screen Capture and more

PicPick – Screen Capture Utility and more.

So I was doing my last post and what I really wanted was a way to do a screencap without having to then open up Photoshop, new image, paste, edit save.  Number one, Photoshop is fat – real fat.  I use it every day without a doubt, but it doesn’t need to stay open continually and it’s just plain overkill to get a screencap for a blog posting.  Can I get a “h*ll yeah!” out there?

Figured that there HAD to be an app out there that might work for me.  I found PicPick. I have to agree with the review over at CNET – this thing is a virtual swiss army knife of utility for web designers/developers.  It has some nice customization features to tailor it a little more to your own needs.

Screen Cap to the Max!

It offers my favorite “active window” capture. It does pick up the native <ALT> <PRINTSCR> functionality and allow you to get the image and directly save it OR take it to the image editor function.  Will also allow you to just cap and save directly with no intervention.  Allows replaceable parameters for file name.  Will have to play with that – would be nice if you could pick up on the window name that you’re capturing. It also offers full desktop capture, region, fixed region, “freehand” area, and a ton of other things. You can send the output off to MS Office apps, Skype, Facebook, Twitter, and more.

The scrolling capture did NOT work as expected. It purported to capture a scrolling window, but in my Firefox, none of the windows were scrolled and it only capture what was originally showing in the window.  Tried it on UltraEdit as well. No luck.  Might be my computer though.  I’ll reboot and make sure that it is the app and not my computer!

Pixel Ruler

It has a screen cap as well as a nifty pixel ruler.  And THAT pixel ruler works like a champ.

Replace my OLD pixel ruler perhaps?

It might just be the pixel measurement/ruler replacement that I’ve been wanting for an apparently defunct application called appropriate enough, “Pixel Ruler” by Miosoft.  Tried to buy it as it is shareware only to discover that the software publisher account is closed and could not pay for it.  Been continuing to use it though.  The nice thing about it is that it can stay open all the time.  So when I’m zooming around a page (or screen) I can see the pixel sizes without a whole lot of hassle. Unfortunately, it had a couple annoying tendencies (or HAS a couple annoying tendencies).

  1. It often goes behind other windows.  I run 3 monitors and 6 virtual desktops with probably 2 dozen programs open at any given time.  It’s SOOOO easy to loose track of that thing.
  2. You close the app by right clicking on the ruler itself.  Doing a long mouse move or something… I way too often errantly hit that right mouse.  Go find the launch icon and start over 🙁

The NEW Pixel Ruler (PicPick)

Now with THIS program, the pixel ruler portion is nice – includes a magnify function which allows pixel precision placement – a must in some situations.  The magnifier is smart enough to change screens (remember I use 3) as the cursor moves and it’s also smart enough to stay out of the way as you move.  It stays on top of other windows without an issue.

The one thing that I would like to be able to do is to leave it open all the time.  If you leave it open, it precludes you from using the other PicPick functions.  I most frequently would be using it by itself – pixel measurement is something that comes up a couple dozen times per day usually. It would be nice if I could STILL use the screen cap function without having to close the ruler part down.  Will keep looking but did not see a setting for that.


PicPick has an interesting whiteboard feature allowing markup on the screen.  Might have to search into that a bit more.  Looks like it might have some useful features and capabilities.  Allows you to magnify it, draw arrows, scribble general lines and more.  I like this.

Crosshair measurement tool

Spiffy little measuring tool that allows you to create a (0,0) start point and then move your cursor elsewhere on the screen. It shows you the actual pixel difference between start and current positions.  Now THAT can make some web development stuff easier.

And other stuff

Magnifier, color picker, color palette, image editor.  Might be nice to be able to do some quick editing rather than opening up Adobe Photoshop just do do a quick crop. Love Photoshop, but it can be SO massive at times.  Would probably help if it didn’t have to load up 1000 fonts when it launched LOL.  I *do* have a font manager for it, but honestly, you don’t know they are there if you don’t have ’em all showing.

Overall, a very nice and handy little application. Until I learn more, I give it a 3.5 out of 5.  And that’s based on it not doing exactly what I want it to do with the pixel ruler as well as the issue with the non-scrolling scrolling capture.  If I didn’t need that function, or want that function, I’d give the app a 5 as far as usefulness and build quality.

Author: Eric Erickson

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