Simplify Tool request - Add Blur and change Fill %

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I had hoped to use the Simplify Tool to obscure text in areas of a screenshot but still give the end user an idea of what type of controls are there. This would allow me to retain a screenshot even if the developers change the text.

As a test, I included a simplified screenshot in a review document to gauge the reaction of the reviewers. They all thought the screenshot was a placeholder graphic or a corrupted graphic. When I told them my goal, the majority of them told me that the text should be blurred out rather than blocked out.

It would be great if after using Auto Simplify to have an option that blurs the area under the block objects and another option to change the percentage of fill for the objects. (I saw another conversation where the Mac version lets you see through the block objects so that option seems possible.) It would be helpful if those properties can be saved as a preset.    
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ktorima

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Posted 3 months ago

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Kelly Mullins, TechSmith Employee & Helper

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Hi there,
This is an interesting way to present a UI mock-up to your users.  And, I believe Snagit can do what you would like. You might have to experiment a bit to get the exact look you need, but I have taken a stab at it.

First, I created a blur block of the lowest intensity and moved it aside.
Then, I added the Auto Simplify option and chose the gray color. I clicked the SHOW ORIGINAL option and adjusted the opacity for the blocks of color so you could see through them.

Then, I selected my block of blur and moved it on top of that. What you see in the red box is where the blur was added.

And, you can see how adjusting the opacity on the Simplify blocks that you can see through them.

Do you think you could combine these options to get what you need?
Try and click the image to see a larger version.

kelly


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ktorima

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Are you on a Mac? I have the Windows version 2019.1.0 (64-bit) (Build 2653) installed and don't see SHOW ORIGINAL as a setting. I saw a comment in another conversation that the Mac version has more functionality than Windows.

Also, the reason I requested adding Blur as an option to Simplify is that would make it a two-step process: Auto Simplify and then Blur. What you suggest would mean placing a blur block over each control, not to mention creating separate blur blocks if the control types are dramatically different in size. That wouldn't be a practical process for lots of screenshots containing lots of controls.
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Kelly Mullins, TechSmith Employee & Helper

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HiI am on Windows.
So, this was just a two step process.
You can make a blur that goes across the whole section. So, all the blur within that red box is just one large blur. So, that is step 1.
Then, if you look where I have highlighted the option in yellow, you will see if you turn that option on, then the opacity setting is available. That is step 2.

Kelly
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ktorima

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Thanks, Kelly. Do you have any idea why I don't see the same settings for Simplify? Are we using different versions?
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Joe Morgan

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If you don't have Auto Simplify activated.


The other controls won't be available.



Could that be the problem your experiencing?

Regards,Joe
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ktorima

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That last bit was user error on my part. My company blocks screencast.com so I had to guess at what Kelly had posted. After I turned back on Auto Simplify I could see the controls.

That said, the suggested approach doesn't work for me. The blur covers the controls (buttons, group box, list box, etc.) as well as the text used to label them. What I want is to see clearly are all of the controls and blur only the text. Additionally, the areas to blur are not uniform rectangles so they would require creating multiple blur objects.

The reason behind my request for using Auto Simplify to define the blur objects is that it is faster to delete the auto-generated objects that I don't want compared to creating blur objects for all the areas I want to cover. I hope that clarifies my request.
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Joe Morgan

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Yeah, I understood your request. I voted for it too.

I like the idea, the objects they use that cover everything up kind of look like blobs. And I don't much care for them. I use the simplify feature a couple of times when it first came out. An abandoned the practice because I just didn't like it.

Regards, Joe