Ah - now what happens if you set your monitor to a big-boy resolution above 1280x1024? In (amost) 15 years of Authorware development I have never developed an AW app that is the same size as my development monitor resolution.
Well, I can't go above 1280x1024 on my current computer, if I decide to
upgrade my computer (which I may for this upcoming project, I may need a
big-boy resolution!) I won't have to worry about it. I do need this new
course to be full screen, I don't want any desktop or browser windows to be
visible. When the course is started, we just want the lesson to take up ALL
the real estate on the monitor. So, looks like I can make this happen how I
want with AW.
Can't say thanks enough, I'm sure I'll be back here soon...Terry
Back again! So I'm hoping to get your opinion again on LMS software that
works well with AW. I have been poking around, and most popular LMS programs
do a lot more than I need. I have full control over a independent,
stand-alone classroom, so I do not need a courseware deployment system or
need to use the internet. I just need a basic student record system, I
really just need to keep track of some personal info (name, last 4, etc),
lesson progress, lesson completion, and quiz/test scores.
I know I could capture and export this data to a Microsoft Access file, but
that isn't really considered and LMS system, is it? I would like to go down
the road to AICC-compliance/certification for this. Would Access be enough?
So if you know of any simple LMS programs that work well for basic
recordkeeping, I would appreciate your opinion. Thanks!
As you say - if your data needs are so limited, an Access database will do just fine.
I've always been cynical of LMSs for most of us. The typical usage is tracking who accessed what and when, and if the completed lessons and assessments. If you are a large corporation tracking compliance etc than maybe an LMS makes sense, but from your description, I'd say go ahead and use an Access database.
If you really really want to use an LMS, I reiterate Moodle. But beware that it will require some configuration and effort that you may prefer to devote to other tasks.
Yes, I believe Access will do the trick. I've done a little research, since
its been awhile, but I believe using Access for student tracking is totally
fine as far as AICC/SCORM compliance goes. Thanks again for your timely
input! Have a great weekend...
I think for true SCORM or AICC compliance you must use a SCORM or AICC compliant LMS too.
If you simply want to track data as has been discussed, using ACCESS, that would not really be SCORM compliant.
Yes, I agree, if I really need to be 100% compliant I would need an LMS.
Also, there is the difference between "compliant" and "certified". And the
fact that technically I am not developing e-learning for the web, or
web-based distribution, but stand-alone instruction. According to SCORM and
AICC websites it does make a difference in requirements.
To change the subject, is there a website or resource that still has 3rd
party Xtras/Sprite add-ons available? I know there is a lot of added, bonus
functionality that doesn't come with AW. Not really finding much out there.
I saw on the Adobe website a mention of something called QuickDraw 3d Xtra,
but the link was bad. Anyway, if you know of a decent Xtra source I can
browse out of curiousity, let me know.
That's it for now- as always, thanks for your time!
Yes and no... meaning none of them are up to date. Do a search simply for "Authorware Xtras" and you can get some results, but you may find little help or support on anything you find.
QD3D Xtra was old and relatively useless in 2000, so I wouldn't hold your breath for it now ... But I think it should be on your Authorware CD.
Good morning Steve- time for another question of the day!!
So I may be tasked with developing a course in AW, and then have it
translated into several different foreign languages. Could be simple, could
be complicated. If I have English text in my AW course, and replace all the
text with, say, a Korean or Russian font, would I need to install the
foreign font on the target computer? Will the foreign text display in a
packaged AW file? I guess the question may be as simple as how do I include
an unusual font in an AW packaged file. Have you ever heard of or dealt with
foreign languages and AW?
There's multiple ways to solve that. None of them are quick and easy. All require extensive knowledge of Authorware. If you dig around the Aware List archives you should be able to find some excellent history.
First, you could build one version of the course, then make a copy, and switch out the text in the second version.
Sounds easy, but this quickly becomes a maintenance nightmare - any time you have to maintain multiple files, you create extra headaches for yourself.
Second, there are multiple ways to build something more dynamic - something that uses external text perhaps in rich text or XML format. Here, you would build your course with some logic to read the external content at runtime, and populate your text objects with the appropriate language. There is no quick and easy way to tell you how to do this. You will need to understand external files, XML, the use of custom code, variables etc in Authorware.
There is a third possible approach, where you have all your text content in libraries, and create a library for each language. At runtime, you can control which library Authorware loads by allowing the user to select a language, then use JumpFile to select your course and language library.
I am sure you will find many other solutions discussed in the Aware archives.
Thanks so much for the detailed answers, I can't tell you enough how big a
help you have been. So yes, it looks like dealing with foreign languages
will be painful. I am still in the planning phase for this project, so a lot
of requirements are still up in the air, so I am trying to anticipate as
many hurdles as I can. I believe I will definitely have a need for some
translation, but I do not know how many or which languages I would be
dealing with yet. But you have given me a great start for thought on this!
I'm sure I will have more crazy questions soon...
A few years ago, I spent a few hours trying to convert an application to Chinese. I didn't have any luck. Installed the Chinese font and followed whatever posts I could find on it, and just couldn't get the characters to appear on-screen.
Latin languages, like French and Spanish, are FAR less complex. I just keep my text in external .ini files (yes, I know, way old-school these days ;-) and reference those files/values based on the language the user selects at the beginning of the program.
The biggest issue I've found with this approach is layout - if the text area for English is tight, you can almost be assured that text in French or Spanish is going to overflow that space in many cases....so you have to leave some padding/margins and maybe workout some dynamic display icon placement.
Thanks so much for your input, I really appreciate it. I can see dealing
with foreign languages won't be easy! I don't have to decide or determine
exactly how I need to proceed, as I am still in the dark as to which
languages and to what extent I may need to translate. But I am sure I will
be posting again soon, it seems a new question comes up every day. Thanks
again for your time, it means a lot!
There's an additional thing to remember in dealing with languages. Some of them require a 'double-byte' OS. I'm thinking way back five years or more so I'm not sure how it's been affected by newer OS versions. IIRC there were specific OS versions that were requred to support some languages. If you need to use one of those then I think your only option will be to obtain a machine and OS capable of supporting that font and obtain a copy of Authorware that supports that OS to do the development for that langauge on that machine. This could be why Erik's attempt at Chinese didn't go well.
I've never tried using Authorware's RTF objects with different languages. I'm not sure if it's capable. Here's a link to something I found in the AWARE archives... http://www.jsconsulting.ca/products
Good point about double-byte fonts windows vista and windows 7 have expanded language support that removes the need for language specific versions of the os.
You can display external rtf objects with code and/or by variable expression. Dazzletech did this for at least one project I saw.
Thank you so much for your time, I really appreciate it! As I go through
this planning phase for this project, more details on the extent of the
foreign language requirements will come to light, and I'll have to look
close at the AWARE archives for help. Thanks for the reference, its a big
So, no matter what method is used, and no matter whether its an a7p, a7r,
exe, or published for the web, doesn't the unique foreign font have to be
installed in the target machine's c:\windows\fonts folder? If this is the
case, is there a work-around of some sort, some way to include a unique font
in the packaging/publishing of an AW course, so its not an issue? I'm full
of questions, I know...
And this kind of throws a wrench in the use of some system variables, does
it not? I used to display map icon names for page titles, you know,
displaying variable text on screen with IconTitle or page numbers with
PageNum, I believe it was. Just rambling now. But as always, thanks again,
and I'm sure I'll be back soon...
You're right that the font needs to be installed for it to work. There is a KO for installing and removing fonts during the execution of your program. Test early, test often. We really have no idea if these will work with current OS's. Since Authorware's EOD at Adobe there isn't a full time QA staff testing out all these things. It's up to us.
Oh yeah - Authorware does not support double-byte fonts natively. There used to be a third-party u32 that did. It was like RTFObjects.u32 only better. Can’t remember the name offhand ... Can't remember if rtfObjects.u32 supports double-byte fonts or not - gonna guess not.
By the way, one workaround for font support is to use images instead of text. Not ideal, especially if your course is large, but it can be an option.