I know this topic seems off for a programming and technology web site, but as I'm sure many of you are aware, I've been doing a lot of programming videos recently, and with that, comes a learning curve, not just with constructing the videos, but with using the various software and tools.

Not that long ago, my wife was having a girl's night out, so I was at home with the twins. After I got them into bed, I figured I had enough time to run through a few Visual Studio Code tutorials. I managed to record four, but instead of using my regular setup, I decided to record from my Surface Pro 3.

The problem I ran into (after recording all the videos) was that the aspect ratio for a full screen recording on the Surface Pro 3 isn't the same as my normal rig, and isn't the correct aspect ratio for a YouTube video. As a result, the videos that I created--when uploaded--had black bars on the left and right, giving it the type of look you'd have with a movie that wasn't shot in widescreen.

I wanted to make some adjustments to the video aspect ratio (within reason), but the Camtasia editing software I use, isn't so straightforward, and some of the documentation online isn't accurate due to different versions.

As it turns out, the fix is easier than you'd think.

After you've dragged the video onto the timeline so that it appears on the main canvas, simply hold the "Shift" key down, hover over the edge you want to adjust, and drag it in the direction you want to go. For example, you can stretch your video by holding down the shift key, dragging the left side of the video farther left, and dragging the right side of the video farther right. This allows you to adjust the shape of the video despite the aspect ratio.

Now that doesn't mean you should always do it. Doing this will stretch--and possibly distort--your videos. You will have to see how much of it you can adjust within reason to keep the video looking high quality.

(Photo by Glenn Batuyong)