A year ago Father’s day, Brooke and Silas got me a new toy: a Wacom pen tablet.

For a long while it stayed in its box. I just never got around to doing much with it until recently.

A couple weeks ago I hooked it up and started doing screencasts using the pen to write on the screen over the images Silas’s math homework worksheets. Here’s one of the resulting videos:

It’s what has inspired further screencasts with the Bowling Kata series I’ve been doing (though I have not yet used the pen tablet in those).

These first ventures into video have been an eye-opener. I haven’t even started with any post-production editing. Just getting them recorded is hard enough for me as I’m starting out.

Having to say things out loud instead of just thinking them is harder for me than I thought it would be. When I’m thinking of what to say next, it throws off what I’m saying at the moment. I play the video back and am aghast at how many “ummmm”s and “ahhh”s I’ve committed.

Adding the pen tablet to this makes the effort akin to juggling. Saying one thing, anticipating what’s next, and trying to write all at the same time. You’ve got to be kidding. I have much more admiration now for those who do this sort of thing all the time and make it look easy.

Tonya Mork at Know the Code and Zack Gordon at JavaScript for WordPress – my hat’s off to you and others like you.