September 1, 2018
Captivate 2019: The Tool of Choice
September 1, 2018
Captivate 2019: The Tool of Choice
I am currently a provider of technical training and support in the electronic manufacturing industry. My prior training and work experience as a teacher, network administrator, web design, and instructional design make me well prepared to design it, develop it, and deliver it. I am a father of five, a US Army veteran, and I enjoy playing the guitar as well as performing in local community theater. 
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There are several definitions for the word ‘tool’ but here are a couple that accurately reflect how I will define the word ‘tool’ in this post.

“something (such as an instrument or apparatus) used in performing an operation or necessary in the practice of a vocation or profession”

“something that helps to gain an end”


We all use them. Of course, we also either love them or hate them. Tools are used, and unfortunately, they are often misused. Some tools function well while others function poorly for the tasks which they were designed to perform. Tools can range from the very simple such as a hammer to the highly complex such as a CNC milling machine – each with a different level of training and practice required to become a proficient user of the tool. In the end, we all want the best tool for the job.

I once read a book called Emotional Design: Why We Love Or Hate Everyday Things by Donald Norman. I find that of the many books I have read over the years, this one comes up in conversation quite often.

The book details three aspects of a successful design: visceral, behavioral, and reflective. These aspects might be quickly summarized as follows:

This is the eye-catching, “WHOA!”, “I really want to have one of those!”, feeling. That gut reaction to fancy cars and candy bars. Packaging and imagery can be used to exploit those feelings and draw people in to the wonderful things the product can do for you.

This is the aspect that centers on the idea of whether the product was able to deliver on the promises it advertised. Have you ever eaten something and later made the statement that it did not taste as good as it looked? Does it work? Does it help accomplish that which was set out to be accomplished? Is the product intuitive or mysterious in terms of function?

This is the aspect that deals with emotion and feeling surrounding the product. When you share with your friends about the product, are the feelings positive or negative? How much enjoyment does engaging with the product bring to you?

Captivate 2019 scores a big win within each of these categories. Viscerally, even though I have been a long-time user of Captivate, I must admit that when I reviewed the new feature set of Captivate 2019, I was like, “WHOA!, I would really like to try that out!”. Behaviorally, after installing the new version, I experimented with some ideas using the new features and was pleased, having observed that the outcome was as expected without being difficult to figure out. Finally, in reflection, I was excited about sharing the information and possibilities with several of my colleagues and how we could leverage them in upcoming courses. I look forward to using the tool again.

If you are in a training related profession or perhaps another profession with some sort of training requirement, you might be reading this because you are looking for a tool to help you accomplish your goals. Without doubt, Captivate 2019 is a tool that offers a wealth of options and flexibility regardless of your current skill level. At some point, you’ll have to make that decision and pick a tool to help you do your job. Captivate 2019 is my tool of choice for crafting interactive learning experiences that help to increase retention – maybe it is time to make it yours as well.


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