14 Replies Latest reply on Jan 5, 2007 1:24 PM by KCWebPlaza

    Missing the Action

    video22
      Hi all,

      I am new to Captivate. I have a client that loved a short demo i did for them on their employee website. It was about 5 minutes and it was flawless. Now, when i had the vice-pres of Human Resources do the full presentation, Captivate missed an enormous amount of activity on the screen. He was not blazing around, just mousing and clicking, and entering text in a normal fashion. Entire chuncks, i.e. logging in, were missing. I went with "custom size" recording, sized IE to their web pages and enabled "auto" recording, etc. etc. Am i missing something here? I cannot ask my client to sit down and do it again hoping that after the hour it's there!

      TIA,

      -peter
        • 1. Re: Missing the Action
          Hal_2001
          "... after the hour?" Are you saying that the time required for recording was 60 minutes? If so, try to put together what you know:

          A 5 minute movie was flawless.
          A 60 minute movie is full of holes.

          -peter, those numbers are saying something to me. Is it just me?

          In any case, try again, this time using the method the pros use ... 1) manually recording (move mouse, then press PrtScr to capture ... press PrtScr to capture change in background, then move mouse, then press PrtScr to capture again - and so on) or 2) auto-recording supplemented by manual capture. That should help some ... let us know.

          • 2. Re: Missing the Action
            video22 Level 1
            Hal,

            I'm a bit confused, just exactly what are those numbers saying to you? Should the first five minutes of a sixty-minute program be fine, (which it wasn't, Captivate dropped the ball early on) then go funky because of the size of the file? How did Captivate know that i was going on for an hour? If it didn't capture the first five minutes as far as updated screen shots, would it have failed the test if i went to six minutes?

            With all due respect, I will try the "print screen" method which to me is a workaround and not necessarily a "pro" methodology. I am capturing narration so fumbling around on the keyboard will require editing. Isn't it a bit cumbersom having two people operate the keyboard at once?

            Paying $600 for a program that needs "workarounds" seems to me the development team for Captivate needs to "fix" this so it acts the way it is advertised.
            -peter
            • 3. Re: Missing the Action
              Captiv8r Adobe Community Professional & MVP
              Hi Peter

              Hopefully Hal won't mind my offering up some clarification. From what I'm seeing, it would appear that you have a fundamental misunderstanding of the manner in which Captivate works. It's also possible that you have tried Captivate's loose competitor, Camtasia Studio. If so, you may believe Captivate works in a similar fashion.

              Captivate does not capture in full motion mode. From what I've seen of your descriptions, it seems to me that this is how you are expecting it to behave. Just turn it on, let it record the action, then turn it off. This is exactly how Camtasia works. But Captivate is a bit different. What it does is to grab a screen capture when it senses a mouse click or other action that triggers it. This is why Hal suggested supplementing the capture process with manually added print screen actions.

              Captivate does "do" full-motion capture, but by and large it is intended for small things such as dragging a window from one place to another or dragging the thumb of a scroll bar or even dragging across a line of text to select it. But it was never intended to just turn it on and record something in full motion mode until you stop. You can certainly try forcing it that way. To do this, press the F9 key to begin and F10 when you are finished. (Unless, of course, you have deviated from the defaults) Oddly enough, I believe the same keystrokes are used in Camtasia to begin and end recording. I do understand version 2 does a much better job of handling full motion video, but I'd be surprised to hear it worked fine to record an hour's worth.

              Cheers all... Rick
              • 4. Re: Missing the Action
                video22 Level 1
                Hi Rick,

                I guess i do have a misunderstanding of Captivate. When I did a 5 minute demo of a employee/management website which consisted of logging in to the website, entering passwords, creating goals, self-evaluations, etc. Captivate did in fact capture all the action on the screen. However, when i tried to do the entire demo which was just short of an hour, it failed to capture the same screens it captured during the five-minute version. My question is, why did it fail to repeat the first five minutes when doing the hour version?

                And yes, i have purchased camtasia, but it seems the files are much larger, and the predictive arrows and boxes around the "going to" link are not there.

                I probably should have researched this more fully before commiting to a real project, but there you go.

                Thanks for any help - peter
                • 5. Re: Missing the Action
                  Captiv8r Adobe Community Professional & MVP
                  Hi Peter

                  Just from the outside looking in, here's my take on it. You said "when you did a 5 minute demo of logging into a site..." that Captivate recorded everything. But in your initial post, you said something about having the vice-pres do the full presentation. When I see this, I interpret that you performed a few steps that Captivate recorded. But you later tried recording something you were simply watching the vice-pres do. And therein lies a world of difference.

                  If you are performing the steps, Captivate is sensing when you click the mouse, where you move it and things like that. But if you just use it to watch someone else perform the steps (I'm assuming that it's perhaps via some remote desktop or desktop sharing software) there is nothing happening on your PC to trigger the same captures.

                  Just from a personal standpoint, I find both Captivate AND Camtasia have places in my toolbox. As much as I love Captivate, if I'm correct in what I've interpreted you are doing, it would sound to me that Camtasia is the better tool for recording the process you are trying to record. For the simple reason of the manner in which it records.

                  Sincerely... Rick
                  • 6. Re: Missing the Action
                    video22 Level 1
                    Hey Rick,

                    Yes, what i did was to download the demo of Captivate. I got a guest logon to their employee website. I tried it for about 5 minutes, clicking around and filling in boxes. For five minutes it worked perfectly. I bought the program and took it to the clients site, installed it on their computer and there is where i learned about the uphill battle i had on my hands. Right now, i am trying to recreate his movements around the website, using his narration as a guide. I just don't understand why it worked for me using the demo and then the first slide recorded when the money was on the line was recorded at 51 seconds instead of the 3 seconds that was set in the preferences???

                    I do have Camtasia and if i have to will redo this thing again. But my very unanswered question is why did it work for me ( i was quite vigorous moving around the screen) and not the next time we did almost the same thing except for the length? If the prefs are set for 3 seconds per slide, and it does not do that, isn't that a bug?

                    Frustrated - Peter
                    • 7. Re: Missing the Action
                      Captiv8r Adobe Community Professional & MVP
                      Hi again Peter

                      I can imagine the frustration. I think once you fully understand and come to terms with Captivate and its recording ways, it will hopefully make more sense to you.

                      You said:
                      Yes, what i did was to download the demo of Captivate. I got a guest logon to their employee website. I tried it for about 5 minutes, clicking around and filling in boxes. For five minutes it worked perfectly.

                      By "worked perfectly", are you saying it seemed to be recording? Or are you instead saying you recorded five minutes worth of action, played it back and it seemed to do fine? Assuming it's the latter, I'm simply guessing here that what you watched in playback mode seemed acceptable and you had no actual understanding of the source at that point? What I mean by that is that you hadn't quite grasped the whole individual screen shot thing and what you observed led you to conclude it was all full motion.

                      You then said:
                      I bought the program and took it to the clients site, installed it on their computer and there is where i learned about the uphill battle i had on my hands. Right now, i am trying to recreate his movements around the website, using his narration as a guide. I just don't understand why it worked for me using the demo and then the first slide recorded when the money was on the line was recorded at 51 seconds instead of the 3 seconds that was set in the preferences???

                      Unfortunately, without actually seeing what you were doing it is rather difficult to ascertain what may be happening. I suppose it's entirely possible that you managed to start recording in Full Motion mode with Captivate. Hmmm, as you say you have Camtasia, this actually makes some sense. When you began recording, did you press F9? And F10 to stop? If so, those are typically the keystrokes that force Captivate to begin recording full motion clips.

                      When you click Options > Recording Options... what do you see at the bottom of the Recording Options tab? Is there a check mark inside the check box labeled: Record actions in real time? If so, this might explain why a single slide might be timed substantially longer than others. And as for that "default' slide time, I believe that only applies to slides you manually create. For example, by clicking Insert > Blank slide...

                      Sorry. Sometimes it seems I end up causing more questions to be raised than actually answering the questions that were posed. But with a little patience and perseverance, I think we'll get through it.

                      Cheers... Rick
                      • 8. Re: Missing the Action
                        video22 Level 1
                        Rick, Thanks much for the prompt reply. Let me preface this with saying that i am primarily a video guy and maybe i have stuck my neck out too far in this world, becuase it doesn't seem to make too much sense to me...
                        --

                        Rick:
                        Assuming it's the latter, I'm simply guessing here that what you watched in playback mode seemed acceptable and you had no actual understanding of the source at that point? What I mean by that is that you hadn't quite grasped the whole individual screen shot thing and what you observed led you to conclude it was all full motion.

                        Peter:
                        That's correct. I logged on to the site, moused around, filled in text boxes and when i published it, viola`, everything i had done on the website was being played back to me as a swf file. I did understand that Captivate was using some sort of predictive action when it was compiling so it could put the arrows and the highlighted text around where i was headed to with my mouse.


                        Rick:
                        When you began recording, did you press F9? And F10 to stop? If so, those are typically the keystrokes that force Captivate to begin recording full motion clips.
                        (continued)
                        When you click Options > Recording Options... what do you see at the bottom of the Recording Options tab? Is there a check mark inside the check box labeled: Record actions in real time? If so, this might explain why a single slide might be timed substantially longer than others. And as for that "default' slide time, I believe that only applies to slides you manually create. For example, by clicking Insert > Blank slide...

                        Peter
                        I got into the real-time mode by clicking on the "options" tab in the record window. First it asked me to check the audio levels on the mic, then i clicked on options, and a tab for "full motion recording" was the middle one. Everything was checked but "disable hardware accel." I assumed that got me in full motion recording autimatically. Guess i was wrong. I thought i had duplicated my setup from my short demo, but i guess not. Perhaps, i just got real "lucky?" with my initial setup?

                        How about this, do you think i am spitting in the wind with Captivate by trying to recreate slides and insert them in the correct spots using the narration, or should i scrap this and either start with Captivate again, or try Camtasia? I know it's a non-objective question, but i would appreciate your take on my delima.

                        Thanks - Peter
                        • 9. Re: Missing the Action
                          video22 Level 1
                          Hey Rick,

                          I was able to recreate the action i needed. How do i get the narration from the previous slide(s) under the new slide(s) i have created?

                          Thanks - Peter
                          • 10. Re: Missing the Action
                            Captiv8r Adobe Community Professional & MVP
                            Hi Peter

                            Try this:

                            First, you need to determine the audio used for the narration. So click the slide containing the existing audio and examine the Slide Properties. After you do that, click the Audio tab. Note the name used. Dismiss the properties.

                            Now click the slide where you want to actually use the audio. Examine the properties for that slide. Then click the Audio tab and click the "Select audio from library" button. After that, choose the file you noted earlier.

                            Cheers... Rick
                            • 11. Re: Missing the Action
                              video22 Level 1
                              Hi Rick,

                              Thank you for your patience with my newbie questions, and impetiousness. I do have a much better handle on how Captivate "thinks" thanks to you. What i see as the main difference, for me, between Captivate and Camtasia is I don't get the fancy, predictive "now click on XYZ link" stuff with Camtasia and I do with Captivate. From a video editor's POV, Camtasia operates more in the way i think. That said, I have chosen to redo the project in Captivate, if, i can have control over the computer that the director is doing the presentation, so i can update the screen captures when needed. We tried this once and when multi/user control was enabled over their network, the mose pointer began to flicker and it was a nusance. One more question if you have it in you, "when i import an audio file and say "spread it over several slides," it seems i have to get it right the first time. I have not found a way to get back into that "edit" mode where "start the next slide" is a choice. Any thoughts?

                              Thanks again, peter
                              • 12. Re: Missing the Action
                                Captiv8r Adobe Community Professional & MVP
                                Hi again Peter

                                From what you are describing, you simply need to adjust audio timing. Assuming I'm correctly understanding you, try clicking Audio > Edit Timing... and see if that doesn't display the dialog you are looking for.

                                Cheers... Rick
                                • 13. Re: Missing the Action
                                  video22 Level 1
                                  Rick, thank you so much for all your help! A couple of things from the video editing world that might help here: Being able to see the slides while the "edit audio timing" box is open. An overall view of where the "start next slide" markers are in the audio timeline. Pherhaps there is another way of keeping an eye on the overall picture i'm just not aware of right now. All-in-all, i think Captivate is a good solution for training types of applications.

                                  Have a great day - peter
                                  • 14. Re: Missing the Action
                                    KCWebPlaza Level 1
                                    My habits from the RoboDemo days... I record all of my Captivate movies using only the manual recording method (pressing a hotkey after every screen action I perform). It really doesn't slow me down as I record, and I'm guaranteed that everything will be recorded. In addition, the cursor movements, screen capture, and interactions for each action are all on ONE slide. Doing automatic captures gets things out of synch across several slides, making edits very difficult.