July 8, 2018
Force Clicking Hotspots: Comparison 2 Workflows
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July 8, 2018
Force Clicking Hotspots: Comparison 2 Workflows
Lieve is a civil engineer (ir) and a professional musician. After years of teaching and research (project management/eLearning/instability) she is now a freelancer specializing in advanced Adobe Captivate as trainer and consultant. Her blog is popular with Captivate users worldwide. As an Adobe Community Professional and Adobe Education Leader, she has presented both online and offline. Since 2015 she is moderator on the Adobe forums and was named as Forum Legend (special category) in the Wall of Fame. In 2017 Adobe Captivate users voted for Lieve as a Top Content Experience Strategist.
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Intro

 This post is created in CP2017  but most can be done in CP9 as well.
A learner has to click several hotspots. Those hotspots reveal extra information such as explanation, images, video…. Moreover the clicks on the hotspots are tracked, because something has to happen when all of them have been clicked at least once. The clicking is not in a forced sequence. That ‘something’ could be the appearance of a Next button, a congratulation message etc… I have answered with a solution to such a situation multiple times. Although I have such use cases on my personal blog, thought it was time to summarize how this can be done in the present version.
There is third workflow, using Drag&Drop, not included in this post.
Focus will be on non-responsive projects. Both workflows can be transferred to a responsive project developed with Breakpoint views. Situation is different for Fluid Boxes workflow, will be explained in a future article.

Example movie

Watch this short (rescalable) interactive movie. In between the Title and End slides, you’ll have two slides that look identical, but the first was developed using the (older) workflow Show/Hide, while the second uses a Multistate Object.

Play

Common preparation

Sequence to click the hotspots is not imposed. For that reason tracking the clicks cannot be done using a counter variable.  I created one user variable (Boolean type) for each of the hotspots. A Boolean variable is a variable that has only two possible values: True/False, Yes/No or…. what I mostly use 0/1. The user variables have a default value of 0. Once a hotspot is clicked the value will be changed to 1. In the above example  3 variables were needed:  v_Flash, v_Theme, v_Action. I will reuse them for both slides, the one with the Show/Hide workflow and the one with the Multistate object.  You’ll see how this can be done by a Reset action On Enter for the slides, also useful if you want to give the opportunity to revisit the slide.
The hotspots are shape buttons (arrows). I didn’t use the old Show/Hide workflow to indicate that a shape button has been clicked, but used the Visited State, InBuilt state which can be created for all buttons, including Shape buttons. Here is a screenshot of the Object states for the first hotspot SB_Flash:
Object states Hotspot

Show/Hide Workflow

Timeline of this slide is visible in this screenshot, watch the grouping of the (3) Text shapes:

The action triggered when clicking a hotspot (in this case FlashAct for the shape button SB_Flash) has two decisions. Watch the Preview:

The first decision (standard) hides the group with the text shapes, shows the text shape needed for this hotspot (here SS_Flash) and toggles the value of the associated tracking variable (v_Flash). When duplicating the action (see Advanced Actions Outfit) only the Shape text and the Variable have to be changed for the other hotspots.

The second decision (conditional) checks the value of all tracking variables, and if all hotspots are clicked shows the Next button. This decision is the same for all hotspots.

To allow multiple visits to the slide, you need to create an On Enter action that will restore the original situation. That action (standard) is easy to understand:

Multistate object workflow

The timeline of this slide has less lines:

All texts are now in a state of the multistate object SS_Multi. The Normal state of that shape has no fill (Alpha=0) and no stroke. It looks invisible to the learner.
The action triggered by the hotspot (ThemeActBis) looks very similar to the one in the first workflow:
In the duplicate actions, only the state and the tracking variable have to be edited.
On this slide another On Enter action is needed to reset the slide. Because the Normal state is automatically reset when revisiting the slide (Retain state remained unchecked), no need to reset the Multistate object. The action is shown in this screenshot:

Comparing?

Show/Hide workflow

The text containers can have hyperlinks, which is not possible in states of a multistate object. When grouping the texts, even for more than 3 hotspots, the advanced actions are not that complicated.

However, as shown in the last slide of the example movie, the situation become much more complicated when you want to show more than just text, when you want to show multiple itemsi The grouping will then have to be done for each hotspot.  This will complicate both actions. I’ll show the example of 5 hotspots, each having to show a group of items:

  1. Action to be triggered by a hotspot : instead of having two commands ‘Hide Gr_Text’ and ‘Show TextX’ you’ll need 6 commands:
    Hide Gr_2
    Hide Gr_3
    Hide Gr_4
    Hide Gr_5
    Show Gr_1
  2. For the action resetting the situation the ‘Hide Gr_Text’ will have to be replaced by 5 Hide commands.

Multistate Object workflow

Disadvantage is that you cannot have a hyperlink (nor an inserted variable) in a state.

As for the actions to be used both for Hotspot trigger and for resetting the slide On Enter: the present actions can be used, you only have to add the multiple items to the proper state.

9 Comments
2018-07-10 08:44:17
2018-07-10 08:44:17

OMG – I havent start playing with fluid boxes yet- will be my next challenge.

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rois ardila jr5664888
's comment
2018-07-10 09:07:55
2018-07-10 09:07:55
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rois ardila jr5664888
's comment

Very wise decision! Too many starters jump right away in a Fluid Boxes project, while they don’t even know the bare basics of Captivate, thus cumulating so many stumbling blocks that they risk to drown. If I coach a basic training, responsive projects will only be treated the last day of 4 days. If the training is shorter, I even skip that topic. It is too important to get acquainted first with Captivate.

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Lieve Weymeis
's comment
2018-07-11 04:30:20
2018-07-11 04:30:20
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Lieve Weymeis
's comment

Thanks Lieve for the advise, I in in the task to conquer advance actions and variables, will move to fluid boxes next-
I am trying to understand captivates variables also.
Do you think that it will be beneficial for me to use javascript- I learnt some basiscs sometime ago but never use it- seeing your blogs I see it can be use in captivate – the ideas that I have for my courses will involve (eventually) complex interactions- as they are advance medical training. The first modules that I create were very basic and then as the information increases, I am using the advance actions.
I was scared to use variables and conditions because I didnt know how many I can use in a module and if it makes the module bigger to download.
Your blog has been very helpful-

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rois ardila jr5664888
's comment
2018-07-11 12:25:59
2018-07-11 12:25:59
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rois ardila jr5664888
's comment

I decided to step away from answering…. for several reasons.

Another advice, to take or to leave. I rarely use JS myself, but I know advanced and shared actions really very well. My plan is to offer an advanced course, personalised or a canned training, where in-depth exploration of variables, advanced/shared actions and their links with learning interactions, quiz, D&D will be the main focus. Only a little bit JS. To my experience advanced/shared actions are a lot more powerful than most JS experts seem to think. I use them also in collaboration with CpExtra widget (InfoSemantics – Australia) which extends a lot of functionaliy without needing to program. Lot of ‘experts’ will disagree with my viewpoint, but I don’t care about that.

Farewell…

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Lieve Weymeis
's comment
2018-07-17 04:34:18
2018-07-17 04:34:18
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Lieve Weymeis
's comment

I would love to do one of your face to face courses. 😉 thanks for the tips. I got the ebook and the CpExtra widget

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rois ardila jr5664888
's comment
2018-07-17 07:27:24
2018-07-17 07:27:24
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rois ardila jr5664888
's comment

CpExtra is the most amazing widget I ever had. Especially with HTML output where almost no external widgets are available. It lets me realize a lot more before having to need JS.

Watch out for my website which will go live soon, will explain my view on training and how I create personalized training.

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2018-07-10 07:41:48
2018-07-10 07:41:48

You’re welcome. I have been writing out this so many times in answers, that I think it would spare me time just pointing to the blog. Hope you can use it. Will try to explain why using the Multistate object will be the only solution valid for use in Fluid Boxes.

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Lieve Weymeis
's comment
2018-07-10 14:25:08
2018-07-10 14:25:08
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Lieve Weymeis
's comment

You make me smile Lieve. Thank you for being a patient mentor.

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2018-07-10 04:17:27
2018-07-10 04:17:27

Lieve thank you very much, this is really good!’

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