Adobe just released the newest version of its popular eLearning authoring tool, Captivate. The new release contains several enhancements and additions that have really enhanced your ability to create high-quality eLearning in a short amount of time. For the purposes of this blog, I’m just going to give a high-level overview of these new additions. There will be webinars, videos, and blog posts coming in the near future with more detailed information on each of these.
First of all, there are a couple of major enhancements that will aid in the creation of Responsive (aka. Mobile) eLearning:
- Integration of Typekit fonts
- Fluid Boxes
- Conversion from non-responsive to responsive
Let’s look at each of these in turn:
If you have a Creative Cloud account, you can access Adobe’s Typekit font library and use the fonts in your eLearning projects. Typekit is a cloud-based repository of fonts that are web safe, thus ensuring that the fonts you choose will look the same across all devices and platforms, even if the font isn’t installed on that device.
This is especially important with the prevalence of HTML5 where text is actually text instead of a graphical element as it is in Flash. To access the Typekit web page from within Captivate you just click on the icon in the Character properties panel.
The most significant change from Captivate 9 to Captivate 2017 comes in the way that responsive design is handled. Using a tool called Fluid Boxes, developers can divide up the slides into containers that hold the objects, text, and graphics. As the workspace is resized for various display sizes, those containers intelligently resize or rearrange the objects without the developer needing to go into a myriad of breakpoints and manually adjust things.
Fluid boxes can be laid out horizontally or vertically and have a number of properties that can be adjusted to give the desired outcome to the responsive project.
Another major enhancement in this version is the ability to take a project that was previously created as a desktop-only (non-responsive) course and convert it to a responsive course with just a few simple steps. This means that training departments don’t have to scrap or redo those old desktop courses as they move to a more mobile workforce. Instead, they can just convert them to a Captivate 2017 responsive course and push it out to mobile device users.
Some of the other enhancements are:
- Enhancements to Multi-State Buttons
- Closed Captioning Formatting
- Advanced Actions Update
Let’s briefly look at those as well.
In previous versions of Captivate, the ability to have objects with multiple states was a big deal. However, on Master Slides and Quiz slides, the buttons were unable to have different states. Captivate 2017 changes that. You can now insert a Smart Shape as a button with multiple states (Normal, Hover, Down) on Master Slides, Quiz Slides, Quiz Results slides and Drag and Drop interaction slides.
Previously, you could insert closed captions into your eLearning project, but you were very limited in how much formatting and configuration you could apply. With Captivate 2017, you can move the CC window anywhere on the stage and resize it however you like. You can also apply font formatting to any part or all of the text in the CC window. This means that you can now make your CC formatting match your project formatting and even adjust the size and position of the window based on the available space on your stage.
Prior to this version, developers usually just made all Advanced Actions conditional since it was just easier than trying to deal with the issues of changing from a Standard Action to a conditional one. With the new version of Captivate, conditional actions and Advanced Actions are one and the same. Just a small check box to switch between the two.
In summary, there are a number of great enhancements to Captivate 2017 that can aid in your eLearning development. As mentioned earlier, we’ll dig into each of these more in depth in subsequent blogs and webinars so look for those.
And of course, don’t forget about the 75,000+ free eLearning assets from eLearning Brothers that are available to you within Captivate. This includes templates, interactions, games and cutout people in a plethora of poses and positions.
So go grab the new Captivate 2017 today and start checking out these new enhancements. I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised at how easy they are to use and integrate into your eLearning development.