Topic: A lot better than tutorials... captivates! (Page 1 of 1) Pages that link to <a href="http://ozoneasylum.com/backlink?for=27948" title="Pages that link to Topic: A lot better than tutorials... captivates! (Page 1 of 1)" rel="nofollow" >Topic: A lot better than tutorials... captivates! <span class="small">(Page 1 of 1)</span>\

 
_Mauro
Maniac (V) Inmate

From:
Insane since: Jul 2005

IP logged posted posted 05-17-2006 21:46 Edit Quote

Macromedia captivate rocks, plain and simple.
I mean, can you imagine recording your user interactions as swf movies, in a couple of clicks? It's small, it's on the www, it's fluid...
Can spread it easilly and anybody can understand it - with theyre own eyes and point of view.

Anyway,
whacked this together for a classmate using captivate: http://www.beyondwonderland.com/data/videos/visual_editor.htm

It shows how to create a simple Java visual class.
I was considering using this to make java handson Flash movies.

What do you think?

poi
Paranoid (IV) Inmate

From: Norway
Insane since: Jun 2002

IP logged posted posted 05-17-2006 21:59 Edit Quote

Neat. Would be even cooler with some voice. It'd feel more personnal and entertaining than those click sounds.

_Mauro
Maniac (V) Inmate

From:
Insane since: Jul 2005

IP logged posted posted 05-17-2006 22:09 Edit Quote

Sure, but I don't have *that* much time on my hands. Plus you wouldn't want to hear me sing (kimson, comments on that just mean *total war* between us ).
But if you feel like recording fancy "beeps", "pouets" and the likes, help yourself.

poi
Paranoid (IV) Inmate

From: Norway
Insane since: Jun 2002

IP logged posted posted 05-17-2006 22:30 Edit Quote

No need to sing.
I wish I had a half decent microphone. I needed some sounds recently and had to fallback to a few sounds from %windir%\medias\

kimson
Paranoid (IV) Inmate

From: Royal Horsing Ground
Insane since: Jan 2005

IP logged posted posted 05-18-2006 12:40 Edit Quote

Just to add my 2p: I had to get the company I work to pay for one of these screen recording programmes. I have quite a lot to say about them, but I didn't go for Macromedia Captivates for a few reasons:

1. It's Macromedia (Adobe's or Macrobe's or Adomedia's )'s expensive stuff
2. There are a lot of similar tools on the market which all have their strengths/weaknesses, but if you actually get the one with the features you need, why pay an extra EUR 300?
3. It is the slowest to deal with files, apparently.

Anyway, there is a great review here, it is worth reading: DonationCoder

I almost tried all of them (and many more), and finally went for BB Flashback, as it seemed to have the features I required for a very good price. And the file size it produces is very good.

Other than that, Camtasia was great, you can edit your movie in a similar way than with Adobe Premiere or FinalCut (as opposite to BB Flashback where you deal with frames), but that is only a matter of taste. The only trouble with it was that I was unable to figure out why my movies were jerky. I contacted the support team, they came back to me with things I already knew, so I didn't get that one. I know, tough.

There are some other features to be aware of when choosing a screen recorder:

EDITING THE MOVIE
1. If you don't want to have to import it into Flash (or SWiSH, as I do) and add text bubbles or other animations, make sure you have the possibility to add them within the application
2. Some of them allow you to modify the mouse path, which is very handy if you tend to be a bit spamsic (BB Flashback allows you to re-record it, rather than modify the mouse keyframes)

WORK INTERFACE
Some of them work with slides (eg TurboDemo, I think), similar to PowerPoint, or as mentioned above, with frames or with a real time-line (like FinalCut)

SOUND
Some of them do not record sounds
some of them do not synchronise well or allow you to modify anything in the sound

Appart from that, Captivates seems to stand out in many ways, but I am not sure how they justify their price.

******************************
Mauro do not, please do not start !

(Edited by kimson on 05-18-2006 12:41)

_Mauro
Maniac (V) Inmate

From:
Insane since: Jul 2005

IP logged posted posted 05-18-2006 13:14 Edit Quote

Good points overall and thank you for sharing. I'll disagree on one thing:

quote:

but if you actually get the one with the features you need, why pay an extra EUR 300?



Well, if you really get it, fine.
But what about the long term and evolutions of the product? Macrobedia will be there in a few years.
What about quality support? Huge companies allow customers to get immediate feedback to bug reports for instance.
What about the learning/teaching costs? Captivate uses common GUI concepts that are familiar to Flash users.
And finally, reliability.

Third parties do not have the source code: they can reverse engineer at best, but while this process works, sometimes,
it fails at spotting small/discreet flaws, which will impact your work when you're less expecting it.

I guess your advice applies depending on the company size.

Here in PMI, for instance, another factor which matters - a lot - is integration in the network.

We don't want software to be spread if they are likely to cause bugs later on.


Some softs stupidly remove too much info when uninstalled, or add useless info when installed, or alter this or that setting
which will impact something else later on (example: when uninstalled, some softs remove many entries from the "PATH" environment variable,
and can cause many administration scripts to lose track of the Windows folder location, making them crash).

Here, where 42000 users worldwide share a given software pool, we just can't afford doubt:
any soft is thoroughly tested inside the production environment before being approved, and each single license is controlled.

Of course, my employer doesn't mind the price at all which also completely changes the selection.

Xel
Bipolar (III) Inmate

From: NY, USA
Insane since: Nov 2002

IP logged posted posted 05-19-2006 09:14 Edit Quote

Doing tutes over the net with captured footage is nothing new... I've been training with them for about two years by now.. The only advantage I see with this particular way is that Flash has 99% browser integration, .. And a little interesting interactivity with the text that comes up.

But I would much rather capture in any other kind of format that is easily convertible to another..

For this, tools such as Snapz, Camtasia, Fraps, and some other newer/smaller ones on the scene are just as good. I'd rather have quicktime with h.264 any day.

Also not sure what you mean by "Macromedia will be there in a few years", .. Pretty sure they got bought by Adobe recently, so things are in their court..

Also, in my experience, it's the smaller companies that have better support... I've always gotten the best support from shareware companies.. Half the time I can get email responses in a few hours from nice shareware makers, and you can bet they'll be getting my business.. Bigger companies like Adobe, Apple, .. I've always had to work my way through bad phone hotlines and $99 for a fix.. Which would basically amount to "wait for the next version.." Heh.

But in the end, whatever works. Flash isn't a bad way to go, they just aren't there yet on the codecs.

_Mauro
Maniac (V) Inmate

From:
Insane since: Jul 2005

IP logged posted posted 05-19-2006 17:38 Edit Quote

On the codecs? And you're talking about file size? Man, I am not talking about video capture here.

quote:

"Macromedia will be there in a few years", .. Pretty sure they got bought by Adobe recently, so things are in their court..


Re-read my post. Noticed the pun about MacroBedia? What I mean is it's a huge company with huge investors which will stay.
As for support, MS patches typically are based on request by companies like my employer.

I guess support has two speeds then, from your accounts, but hey, for a company, what matters is not private support.

The only thing I totally agree with is "whatever works". But I'd avoid cheap if I had to make the choice for my company.

Then again, the price of Adobe... err... Macrobedia software is a pain, granted.

Xel
Bipolar (III) Inmate

From: NY, USA
Insane since: Nov 2002

IP logged posted posted 05-19-2006 19:16 Edit Quote

On codecs I'm talking overall quality vs size.... Quality of both Spatial and Temporal compression.. Be it video capture or not.. Things like your captivate example there would compress incredibly well, because the vast majority of the frame is staying the same through the entire movie.. Not a lot of big changes frame to frame..

And "ah", I didn't notice the pun, thought it was a typo.

But I will always invest my money in those companies that look good and give me good support.. If you look at ambrosia (Makers of Snapz, one of the cheaper solutions) they have a lot of support and fanservice on their forums, and they have been that way for a long time.. Good products, good support, .. But I'm not here to advertise for them, just saying that a companies quality of support has nothing to do with their size.. Big companies can be good and bad, small ones can be good and bad.. I don't think there is a correlation anyone can draw accurately.

But regardless, a lot of apps have already been tested against time and they are good, so that you don't have to fear making the cheaper choice. Just do your homework, and you can make smarter decisions, whether that's the more or less expensive.



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