Lab 2 Notes

February 4, 2014

Create an animated project in Captivate



Mac OS X 10.8.5

Memory: 16 GB

Captivate 6 (6.0.1240)



Not having a good time with Captivate. Many many problems – especially with publishing.




1.     Created Captivate project and saved to lab2 folder.

2.     Added 6 slides.

3.     Added text and images.

4.     Some issues with effects on buttons:

a.     Added 4 buttons with the effect of "low bounce" on entrance.  The first button bounced correctly, but the animation stalled on second button.

b.     Added more time between animations. All buttons appeared, but did not bounce in.

c.      Not sure whether this is affecting anything, but I am using these "buttons" as graphics. I could have simply drawn a button, but I thought this would be faster.

d.     Removed all actions from buttons (assigned "no action") and that seemed to prevent stalling.

5.     Applied Typewriter animation on text caption. Expected it to "type" characters one at a time. Instead, it blinked all characters at once.

6.     In previews, animations do not follow previous automatically. Need to find setting to enable that.

7.     Motion tween:

a.     Need to figure out how to create a good motion path. Zig Zag is really cumbersome – especially if you want an arc.

b.     Wanted to make the fly move along a curving path and change rotation and size it moves. Added rotation, but it's difficult to control. And changing from 4 to 2 rotations didn't make much difference. Need more precise controls!

8.     Animation feels very very clumsy in Captivate. I want a way to really animate. Show a frog really hopping, and a fly really buzzing.  I want to use drawing and animation tools!

9.     Not crazy about the timeline – the scroll bar moves when you perform actions like deleting effects, and it's easy to lose your place.

10. Tested using alpha (0 – 100) instead of fading. I wonder whether this is more expensive computationally than fade in/out.

11. Fly-in defaults seem very slow. Need to mess with these some more.

12. Took some trial and error to figure out that the main timeline and the effects timeline. Use the main timeline for most precise timing. Don't bury timing in the effects timeline.

13. I'll be interested to find out whether having several actions scheduled to occur at the same time impacts performance.

14. Got stuck trying to publish to video:

a.     In Captivate, went to File > Publish and selected Media.

b.     Tried the defaults first (MP4 video).

c.      The file was created, but Captivate popped up several apparent error windows (see screenshot below). The only option is to click Ok in the blank popup window.

d.     Publish to YouTube gives the same error.

e.     An MP4 file is created, but it's 0 bytes, and none of the video programs on my Mac or Windows VM can open it.

f.      Checked the forums, but no luck so far.

g.     Downloaded several conversion programs (swf to mp4) but none of them have worked so far.