Way back in the day, back when the internet was an academic buzzword, when email was business only, and Google and Facebook were ideas not yet born, there were two basic graphic file formats on the interwebs.
JPEGs for photos. GIFs for images. JPEGs still rule, but GIFs have largely been replaced by PNG files. GIFs had one element that has been in rebirth recently. Animation. Or, put another way, movie clips. Why? I don’t have a clue and it makes no sense but here we are.
GIF 89a, Cica 1989
While JPEG images remain dominant for photos on websites, not much has happened to the GIF image file format since 1989, and with good reason. 256 colors. Or less. That’s it. Today’s PCs, Macs, iPhones, iPads, and Android devices often come with Retina displays that feature many millions of pixels and colors to match.
GIF animation files made up the first truly obnoxious website advertising element, only to die a slow death thanks to Flash videos. In fact, videos of nearly any format are superior to GIF animations.
Enter Gifox, a GIF video recorder for your Mac’s screen. Why? More on that in a moment. Gifox resides in the Mac’s Menubar. Click to start recording your Mac’s screen.
Gifox can grab the Mac’s screen as a video recording– an animated GIF. Why? More on that in a moment. Gifox has few Preferences to worry about. Adjust the Record and Playback frames per second with a slider bar (more frames per second means larger files; much larger files). And select a folder to store the recorded animations.
Gifox can record sections of the Mac’s screen, too, and true to the GIF 89a standard– last updated in 1989– you can loop the animations over and over.
What good is such screen recording?
Gifox captures the Mac’s screen– whole or in part– and the resulting animation (I hate to call it a movie or video clip, though both function about the same way; a stream of static images) can be used for micro-screencasts, product demonstration animations, instruction videos and anything else that requires a video of what you do on your Mac’s screen.
There are not yet any sharing options built-in to GIifox so it’s mostly a bare bones app with a price tag to match.
But why the ancient GIF animation standard and not a more recent high quality video file format? Honestly, I don’t know. Gifox is simple to setup and use, works well, and the resulting GIF animations (again, I balk at using the term video) are decent if not rather large, but even that is controllable somewhat by the FPS slider bars.
Gifox can share files on Dropbox and Google Drive (and, ostensibly, iCloud Drive). Gifox is Mac App Store only, but the price tag is more throwaway money than expected, and more feature laden Mac apps that capture a screen as a video are more expensive.