6 Replies Latest reply on Dec 29, 2007 5:20 AM by Captiv8r

    Captivate...or Camtasia?

    ploughman1 Level 1
      This week, we are finally making a decision on which of these packages to go for, and wonder if any of you people had suggestions/info?
      After an (extremely brief) look at both packages I think we will go for Captivate for it's extensibility, support for visual impairment etc. However, there are three features in Camtasia that really appeal and, as far as I can see are not possible in Captivate (or maybe, you'll prove me wrong!)

      When first starting a recording, it seems it's an either/or in Captivate - we need our screen movies to be 800 x 600 but this creates bad horizontal scroll bars whereas Camtasia allows a post-recording re-size.

      SmartFocus in Camtasia is cool - anything similar in Captivate? And finally,

      Is it me, but the option to include PowerPoint-like 'text' slides for intro, credits etc. doesn't seem to exist in Captivate.

      Many thanks for you help.

      The S
        • 1. Re: Captivate...or Camtasia?
          Captiv8r Adobe Community Professional & MVP
          Hi The S

          Captivate allows resizing after the fact. If you look at the Project menu, you will find Resize Project. This will scale the project down. Additionally, although it certainly isn't recommended, you may link directly to the .SWF output file of Captivate and allow it to scale to whatever the browser size is. But the quality will suffer as a result. There's always a trade off, eh?

          As I understand it, SmartFocus is new to Camtasia 5. And nope, I'm sorry, but nothing similar exists in Captivate. At least not yet.

          Absolutely you may include PowerPoint like text slides. In Captivate, you click Insert > Blank Slide. Then insert a Text Caption or other desired objects on the slide.

          Sincerely... Rick
          • 2. Re: Captivate...or Camtasia?
            ploughman1 Level 1
            Cheers for that, Captiv8r.

            All my questions answered (for now!) and we're ordering today!
            Just a point, why are there so few books, resources etc. out there for Captivate 3? Also, the CS collections do not include the program. Is it a bit of a 'bolt-on' as in the same way access was in MS Office?
            • 3. Re: Captivate...or Camtasia?
              Captiv8r Adobe Community Professional & MVP
              Hello again The S

              Captivate falls into one of those specialized areas. Actually, it *IS* part of a suite that is aimed at the Technical Authoring community. The suite is called the "Technical Communication Suite" or "TCS". It includes four applications.

              * Framemaker 8
              * RoboHelp 7
              * Captivate 3
              * Acrobat Pro with a 3D capability

              There are a few books out for Captivate generically. But nothing for the TCS yet. The only books I'm aware of for Captivate that go into real detail are for version 1. I'm unsure if anyone is in the process of writing one. I've heard that writing a book for a software application such as Captivate is a daunting task, because by the time something has been written, WHAP! A new version exists and you are off to the races again.

              I'm confident that something will turn up fairly quickly in this regard.

              Cheers... Rick
              • 4. Re: Captivate...or Camtasia?
                mtb Level 1
                Hey Rick,
                What are your thoughts on Framemaker and RoboHelp? I have a lot of adobe programs but hadn't even heard of these!

                Google-ing I go . . .
                • 5. Re: Captivate...or Camtasia?
                  mtb Level 1
                  Hey Rick,
                  What are your thoughts on Framemaker and RoboHelp? I have a lot of adobe programs but hadn't even heard of these!

                  Google-ing I go . . .
                  • 6. Re: Captivate...or Camtasia?
                    Captiv8r Adobe Community Professional & MVP
                    Hi Matt

                    FrameMaker is a tool used to manage and handle long documents. Anything from 100 to thousands of pages. It shines where Word normally fails. One could write a book using FrameMaker (And many have). Often, it is used for technical documentation. It also supports a new standard that is more of a buzzword at the moment than it is something that many are clamoring for. The standard is called "Dita". I think it means "Darwinian Information Typing Architecture". Essentially it is a way to force structure into technical documents.

                    RoboHelp is an application known as a "HAT". (Help Authoring Tool) RoboHelp is used to create help systems that might be used in conjunction with an application. You are probably using a browser or E-Mail client to read this text. I'm guessing that whatever you are using has a Help menu. Click that and open the help system. RoboHelp is often used to create these beasties. I run a web site using the domain name of RoboWizard.com. I use RoboHelp to manage that site. So it can also be used in other capacities. I've developed some RoboHelp projects for a web hosting service that uses them to manage hundreds of RoboDemo (Captivate's predecessor) projects. So Captivate dovetails nicely with these products.

                    I derive my living by teaching others how to use Captivate and RoboHelp. But I'd be hard pressed to tell you more than what I have regarding FrameMaker. I've never had a need to learn it. That is, until this TCS came along.

                    Hopefully this answers what you were looking for! Rick