14 Replies Latest reply on Nov 1, 2006 1:29 AM by macrofireball

    Losing Flash External Dynamic Text in Captivate

    dfreem5
      I am new to Captivate, so bear with me.
      I have created a Flash file that calls externally text to be loaded into a scrolling text field. This works fine as a standalone swf. When I import into Captivate, I can see the dynamic text appear in the small preview pane of the import window, but when I publish the Captivate movie. I have made sure to include the external txt files in the same directory.

      Any ideas on what I could be doing wrong?
      TIA,
      Deb
        • 1. Re: Losing Flash External Dynamic Text in Captivate
          Captiv8r Adobe Community Professional & MVP
          Hi Deb

          This falls into that "odd" or "grey area" category and is likely the reason you haven't seen anyone reply. I say "odd" or "grey area", because you are now beyond the realm of pure Captivate behavior and have entered the realm of where you are now blending Captivate with other Flash output in an effort to try and achieve something unique. And there is absolutely nothing wrong with this. Personally, I would encourage it, as you never know what you will discover to create a neat effect.

          However, having said that, you are now dabbling in something that perhaps nobody else has yet tried. I'm no Flash expert just yet, but I'm beginning to work on those skills. From what I DO understand about blending Captivate with Flash, I believe Captivate only likes and easily works with Flash 6 output and Actionscript 1. Anything newer and it likely won't work. I'm unsure if Flash 6 output is even possible to create, where you can call an external text file. For all I know at this stage, it could be a Flash 7 or Flash 8 only feature.

          Assuming this was something that was part of the feature set for Flash 6, if you are using Flash 7 or 8 to create the Flash file, perhaps try publishing in the earlier format?

          Hopefully this helps... Rick
          • 2. Re: Losing Flash External Dynamic Text in Captivate
            archq
            Deb,

            Hi. Just to clarify, cause I think there's some wording missing from your question... when you publish your Captivate movie, what AREN'T you seeing? The text field or the text itself? My considered opinion is that nothing using a loadvars or loadmovie method would be problematic for a captivate movie but I'm guessing you've used t his technique before or you wouldn't be trying it here.
            • 3. Re: Losing Flash External Dynamic Text in Captivate
              dfreem5 Level 1
              Thanks for the replies. No successful progress on my end yet., but any other suggestions welcome.
              To clarify and to answer both your questions: I am authoring in Flash MX (v7), but am publishing to Flash 6 , using Actionscript 1. When brought into Captivate, the fields show, but not the text. I am using the loadvars Actionscript below to call the external .txt file.

              //create new instance of LoadVars object
              myData = new LoadVars();

              //define what to do with content once it has loaded
              myData.onLoad = function() {
              //the value of the "content" property is assigned to the text field
              myHeadline_txt.htmlText = this.headline;
              myText_txt.htmlText = this.content;
              };

              //now load the external file into the myData object
              myData.load("slide5.txt");
              • 4. Re: Losing Flash External Dynamic Text in Captivate
                Captiv8r Adobe Community Professional & MVP
                Hi again Deb

                I'm not even remotely suggesting that I'd have a clue as to how to solve this issue, but is it possible that you might post these files somewhere as a .ZIP so we could experiment to see if we see the same results as you or to see if one of us can make it work on our end? If so, we could then post back to say whether it worked or it failed.

                Just a thought... Rick
                • 5. Re: Losing Flash External Dynamic Text in Captivate
                  dfreem5 Level 1
                  Thanks Captiv8r for your continued interest & support =)
                  I have zipped up the files for you to dissect. Interestingly, I found that on initial import of swf (with LoadVars code), the text appears in preview pane of Captivate. Click OK, then re-open the animation window, and all ani shows EXCEPT text.
                  WIERD.
                  Sort of a workaround, but not really: Bring entire CP file into Flash, publish in Flash, sure, the text shows. But for my purposes (will need scoring to LMS, which only works in Captivate (correct?) I think I need this to work in Captivate, w/o having to export, then re-import... Did I lose you? Let me know if you questions..

                  As you seem to be the Captivate GURU in these parts, I will pick your brain a buit more... Need to know if Flash and Captivate will be the proper tools to achieve the results I need for a large scale e-learning projet. It will take some explaining, so I might save for another thread. Let me know when your ready to chew your ear off. ;-)


                  Link to download zip folder - files to show example of Captivate not displaying dynamic text from embedded Flash swf
                  • 6. Re: Losing Flash External Dynamic Text in Captivate
                    dfreem5 Level 1
                    Rick,
                    Just wondering if you had a chance to review the files mentioned above?
                    • 7. Re: Losing Flash External Dynamic Text in Captivate
                      archq Level 1
                      Deb... a little more clarification, if I may....

                      - To what object are you attaching this actionscript? Is my data the scrollfield instance?
                      - And what flash objects have .content and .headline properties?

                      Reason for my inquiry is that I don't believe there IS an .onload method for the LoadVars object. This may explain why you're not consistently seeing anything.

                      -Marty

                      • 8. Re: Losing Flash External Dynamic Text in Captivate
                        Captiv8r Adobe Community Professional & MVP
                        Hi Deb

                        Indeed I did grab the file and give it a try. Unfortunately, I saw the same results you did. No text.

                        Hopefully others will have better luck or find a workaround. If I knew enough about Flash, I'd try some different things. But I'm not quite to that level with my Flash skills yet. However, I am working on them!

                        Cheers... Rick
                        • 9. Re: Losing Flash External Dynamic Text in Captivate
                          dfreem5 Level 1
                          quote:

                          Originally posted by: archq
                          Deb... a little more clarification, if I may....

                          - To what object are you attaching this actionscript? Is my data the scrollfield instance?
                          - And what flash objects have .content and .headline properties?

                          Reason for my inquiry is that I don't believe there IS an .onload method for the LoadVars object. This may explain why you're not consistently seeing anything.

                          -Marty




                          Marty,
                          I used this tutorial to help with the Loadvars AS: http://www.oman3d.com/tutorials/flash/loadvars_bc/
                          Acording to the tuorial: "LoadVars is an ActionScript class that is required to be instantiated into an object that we can refer to and control, myData is the name we have chosen for our instance of the LoadVars class."

                          -The scrollbar's Instance name is: myText_txt
                          -"content" is the identifier for the variable, the .txt file contains the variable "content=blah blah blah"
                          I'm actually not using the "headline" variable, but irrelavent to the problem, I think.

                          Not an AS Expert, but I do see the correct results in Flash consistently, just not when the swf is brought into Captivate and published.
                          Any ideas ???
                          • 10. Re: Losing Flash External Dynamic Text in Captivate
                            archq Level 1
                            Deb,

                            I"m not clear on why he's suggesting such elaborate code (constructor for the class, multiple assignments, etc...) to do what you're suggesting, but if it works in Flash, I suppose that's all that counts. Generally, you should just be able to do the following:

                            - Create your text box, and give it an instance name
                            - Create your text file with the variable in it.
                            - Use either loadVariables or LoadVariablesNum (depending on whether you wish to load into a movie level or to a target)

                            That SHOULD be all you need. LoadVars is already an object from Flash's Global classes, so I'm not sure it buys you anything to create a new object.

                            loadVariables("slide5", "_root.myText_txt"); (depending on which timeline contained the text box)

                            A couple of other things to check:

                            - Dynamic text isn't embedded with your flash movies unless you specity 'embed characters', so if you're using a font other than Arial or Times New Roman, this may explain why you're not seeing anything. Flash would substitute or use the fonts on your own machine, but I don't believe Captivate would.

                            - Doublecheck your instance names and your action script

                            -Marty
                            • 11. Re: Losing Flash External Dynamic Text in Captivate
                              dfreem5 Level 1
                              Thanks Marty for the 2 suggestions. Unfortunately, neither made a difference. I embedded the fonts and checked my verbiage in the code. Like you said, if it works inthe published swf, it probably should work in Captivate.

                              At this point, I will have probably have to sacrifice the flexibitlty and ease of maintenence that would have been gained form using the dynamically loaded external text, and just embed the text into Captivate manually. It will stink when I am forced to edit and republish over and over again.

                              Lesson learned: Captivate and Flash are not "quite there yet". Macromedia still has work to do in regards to the compatibity/ ease of integration between the two apps.
                              • 12. Re: Losing Flash External Dynamic Text in Captivate
                                sirrahe
                                Another thing to consider is at what layer "z-layer" you import your text. In Flash you can specify the "z" level where the text will appear. Suggest specifying the next higher level in your action script.
                                • 13. Re: Losing Flash External Dynamic Text in Captivate
                                  DilbertG Adobe Employee
                                  dfreem5, what is the version of your SWF file? Is it Flash version 7 or Flash version 8? If it is not 8, can you try creating your SWF with Flash8, and then try in Captivate?

                                  thanks
                                  • 14. Re: Losing Flash External Dynamic Text in Captivate
                                    macrofireball Level 3
                                    Hello dfreem5,

                                    quote:

                                    Originally posted by: dfreem5
                                    Lesson learned: Captivate and Flash are not "quite there yet". Macromedia still has work to do in regards to the compatibity/ ease of integration between the two apps.


                                    This might not make any difference but are you sure that the SWF file that has the dynamic loading text is in the same folder as the published Captivate file. The only reason I ask is because in a project I worked on recently I used a Text Area component created in Flash 8. When I published and sent my files to a colleague they couldn't see the Text Area, once I sent them this and they added it to the published SWF folder it worked. It would seem that for these types of animations Captivate creates a link to them rather than embedding them into your published file. Captivate also does this with Flash Video files primarily to keep your file size down. This would also explain why when you publish the project as a Standalone exe the text field is visible.

                                    Lastly, as DilbertG recommended please make sure you publish the project as a Flash 8 file.

                                    Regards,
                                    Mark

                                    Just a thought.

                                    Regards,
                                    Mark