Usually I will not talk about a new version immediately after its release. However I am very excited about this intermediate release which is much more than just a patch. ‘Voor elk wat wils‘ (interesting features for each developer whatever her/his level) is Flemish proverb fitting in this case. Do not expect a full review in this post, I will talk exclusively about some of my preferred features Of course they appeal to my level of expertise. My apologies if you don’t like that ‘egocentric’ approach. Be sure I will write more in the future, need some time to explore in-depth., I may overlook some little gems which I couldn’t dig out yet, but will continue the search. You’ll find already three of those small gems at the end of the post.
SVG as Button
It has been possible to fill a shape with an image since version 6. Converting the shape to a button was much easier to create nice buttons than the older workflow with Image button. For those image buttons you needed a graphics application and you couldn’t add a label. . Shape buttons also can have custom states on top of the InBuilt states which they share with the old button types (Normal, Rollover, Down, Visited) . Personally never use the legacy button types anymore. One exception: embedded buttons on Quiz/Score slides cannot be shape buttons, so I use transparent buttons for those..
However, those shape buttons were limited in two ways:
- You can only fill with Bitmap images, the much sleeker vector images such as SVG cannot be used as Fill..
- The clickable area of the shape button is the bounding box, not the image itself.
In version 11.5 it is possible to use SVG’s directly as buttons, no need to fill a shape. And you can limit the clickable area to the image itself! This is a big step forward. File size of SVG’s tend to be smaller, compared with bitmap images, and moreover they are excellent for responsive project due to their vector nature. The SVG, activated as button, has all the features of shape buttons: can be used on master slides, can be timed for the rest of the project (not in Fluid Boxes), can be added to quiz and score slides as extra button. A setup with 3 buttons like in this screenshot was not possible in previous versions, because the bounding boxes are overlapping: The screenshot may look blurry (has been converted to bitmap here) but the original SVG’s in Captivate are really crisp. Size of the SVG: about 75Kb.
Bitmap images as Buttons
Similar to SVG’s, bitmap images can directly be used as button, no need to fill a shape. Same for the clickable area: can be limited to the image itself (provided you have an image with transparent pixels of course – no JPEG but GIF or PNG). Depending on the type of images this extends the functionality which I explained in the first point. I will show a use case of custom hotspot questions with partial scoring like described in this older post. Watch out for use cases in future blog posts. Not only are you now rid of the cumbersome workflow which I described here, Themes
Themes have now a dedicated Theme Properties panel. The only way to access this panel is from the dialog box under the big button Themes. You cannot open it with the Windows menu, nor from the Themes menu. That last menu still has to be used to save a customized theme. Here is a screenshot of that panel:
This was a new feature in the first release of CP2019 which I really like a lot. The patch doesn’t add a lot (was well designed from start). On demand from many developer, you now are not only limited to videos on your system or from YouTube, but Vimeo videos are possible as well..
Another improvement is the possibility to insert a sequence of overlay slides (content or KC slides) on a frame of the video.
VR project/360 slides
- To the actions which can be triggered by hotspots ‘Play Video’ is added.
- The hotspots became customisable, black and white (minstrels?) are over and out: use colors appropriate for the project design and video background.
Double click on the hotspot when inserted, select one of the paths and choose a color.
- If you trigger Text, you will like the new formatting possibilities. Just a pity that Typekit fonts cannot be used….
- No need to guess a duration for the popups anymore. Default setting is now a close button in the top right corner as you can see in the previous screenshot.
Theme colors: in the screenshot of the new Themes panel inserted earlier, you see that the main theme colors are now named ‘Color1…. Color10. This fits better the use of the colors, because in previous versions there was a Title color, which was not always used for titles, a Subtitle colors which was rarely used for subtitles etc…
Drag&Drop: when selecting Infinite attempts in the Actions tab, the ‘Failure action’ will disappear, very logical since it will never happen in that situation. Regret however that the wording ‘Failure’ is still not replace by ‘Last Attempt’. The action doesn’t occur On Failure, but only at the last attempt, same as for quiz slides.
Preview menu: for non-responsive projects, the option ‘Preview HTML5 in Browser (F11)’ is now the first option which is great! The death of Flash player for all browsers will soon be a fact, every developer has to switch to HTML5 output. The other Preview methods are all still based on a temporary SWF output (except Play Slide, which is NOT a preview method). To check the future output only the mentioned Preview HTML5 in Browser should be used.
…sure will find more of those.
This was not a complete overview at all. As I explained, need more time for features like the new Assets panel, use of Quick Start Projects, Branching setup, multiple themes, copy/paste appearance etc…