If you haven’t already caught the wind, Adobe Captivate Getting Started is a multimedia series of articles, tutorials, and instructional videos that put you on the path to accelerated Cp learning. The series includes:
100 short articles/tutorials that would help you get started with Adobe Captivate features
30+ videos and demonstration that explain the procedures to perform the tasks
Yup, we didn’t mistype those numbers — 100 and 30!
The Getting Started series is workflow-based. You, the user, are guided step-by-step to create and publish projects using Cp. The workflows are categorized as Basic, Intermediate, and Advanced, keeping in mind users at different skill levels.
For example, a Basic user is presented with a simple workflow with four quick steps to create a sample demo. An Advanced user begins a notch higher — learning how to design and set-up a video-publication process, and then creating final, professional-quality video output.
Wondering where to begin? Use the table below to determine your existing expertise level and jump right in.
Create storyboards and standardize the look and feel for your projects using templates. Create standard styles for objects that you use in your projects.
Set up the content development environment by customizing the workspace. Specify the preferences for your projects, such as the publishing location, reporting options for quiz results, and default recording settings.
Marcel van Espen, over at the Dr Flex and Dr LiveCycle blog, explains how you can create a LiveCycle process to access custom Office properties. His blog post also includes a useful example.
“Within LiveCycle Workbench ES, one of the services in the common category that you can use is ‘Export XMP’. This service will extract all the available metadata from a PDF document. If you have converted a MS-Office document to a PDF document, you will be surprised what metadata is also converted. All these properties now become accessible.”
In a community blog post, Marcel van Espen from the Adobe presales team demonstrates how you can use LiveCycle and AIR to build a Twitter solution for your organization.
… you can use LiveCycle to build a process and an AIR application to publish tweets to a corporate Twitter account, where you have control on what’s published or not. Part 1 focuses on building the client with Flash Builder 4 with the LC Service Discovery plugin. In part 2 you will see how to archive all tweets in a PDF/A format within LiveCycle Content Services.
As technical communicators, one of our key responsibilities is to optimize the value of the user-assistance content that we deliver. What defines the value of content? I focus on the following key indicators:
The topics should be search-optimized and populated with the right keywords. Users should be able to reach the right topics when they search using the relevant keywords (if not close to relevant keywords!).
Once users reach a topic, they should be able to quickly find answers to the most pertinent questions that they have in that product area.
Based on the Web traffic details for a topic, key documentation areas must be identified and optimized.
For optimizing content in alignment with these indicators, we need specific information about our users’ content access patterns. This is where RoboHelp Server proves valuable as a powerful application for hosting, tracking, and managing RoboHelp output in multiple formats.
The many reports that RoboHelp Server provides help identify how users navigate user-assistance content and the product areas where this content needs to be strengthened:
Search Terms with No Results: Search terms that returned no results and the number of times users searched for them
Frequently Searched Terms: Frequently-searched keywords and how many times users searched for them
Frequently Accessed CSH: Frequently-accessed context-sensitive Help topics and how many times they are accessed. The report is arranged by the context IDs of the CSH topics.
Frequently Viewed Topics: Report on Topics that end users view most often
Usage Statistics: Chronological graphical report of the number of hits to the Help system as a whole. Pages searched for and not opened reflect in this list. The usage statistics report has three additional tabs:
Page Views: Number of pages viewed over a given window of time. The window of time is determined by the labels along the X axis.
Pages Per Visit: Number of pages viewed per visit. Every instance when a user opens the project is considered as a separate visit. Visits from different Web browsers are counted separately.
Browser: Comparative data about the Web browsers in which users viewed the Help content
OS: Comparative data about the operating systems on which users viewed the Help content
Search Trends: The percentage of search terms that returned no results. The detailed view of this report gives the total number of search terms and how many of them returned results/no results.
Help System Errors: Error messages encountered by the current logged-in user
Ankur Jain, Adobe’s product manager for RoboHelp, shares his perspective of the business relevance of these reports in an excellent blog post titled, Create What They Want to Read.
For the while, I’ll leave you with some other insightful community content for RoboHelp Server:
Tulika Goel from the RoboHelp team has posted a useful article on search enhancements in RoboHelp Server 9 at the Technical Communication blog.
Starting with RoboHelp Server 9, authors can continue to leverage strengths of Lucene Search Engine and also retain control over the search results. RoboHelp provides a number of constructs like Synonyms, Stop List and External Keyword Search; using which authors can controls search results for specific words.
Adobe Reader X features nifty integration with Acrobat.com that lets you quickly convert many types of files to PDF. At last count, many popular formats, including the following, are supported for conversion:
Adobe PostScript (PS) and Encapsulated PostScript (EPS)
Adobe Photoshop (PSD), Adobe Illustrator (AI), and Adobe InDesign (INDD)
Microsoft Excel (XLS, XLSX), Microsoft PowerPoint (PPT, PPTX), and Microsoft Excel (XLS, XLSX)
Text (TXT) and Rich Text Format (RTF)
Image files (bitmap, JPEG, GIF, TIFF, PNG)
Corel WordPerfect (WPD)
OpenOffice and StarOffice presentation, spreadsheet, graphic, and document files (ODT, ODP, ODS, ODG, ODF, SXW, SXI, SXC, SXD, STW)
To walk you through the process, let me convert a PowerPoint presentation to PDF. (Simply click any of the screenshots below to view them full-size.)
In Adobe Reader X, select File > CreatePDF Online.
In the Create PDF Files area in the right pane, click Add File and then select the file that you want to convert to PDF. I selected Sample_presentation.pdf.
Click Convert and, when prompted, sign in using your Adobe.com credentials (Adobe ID). Adobe Reader uploads the file to CreatePDF Online and then converts it to PDF. The converted file is saved online by default.
To save the converted file locally to your computer, click Retrieve PDF File. Adobe Reader displays the CreatePDF repository in a browser window, so that you can work with it.
Select the newly-created PDF file (in my case, Sample_presentation.pdf) and click Download. Save the file to a local directory.
Note that you can also use the online CreatePDF view to combine multiple PDF files. Now, isn’t that cool?
I’m sure you’ll love these new Adobe Reader features! For more information, refer to this Help article.
Jayan Kandathil has posted a really useful troubleshooting protocol for PDF Generator ES2 at the LiveCycle Product Blog. Here are the questions that Jayan suggests you consider while troubleshooting PDFG issues:
Is the operating system Windows?
Is the hardware sufficient?
Is the memory sufficient?
Is Microsoft Office installed (Windows only)?
Did you start Microsoft Office applications after the install and dismiss all dialogs?
Is Adobe Acrobat Professional 9 installed (Windows only)?
Is OpenOffice.org installed (Linux or Solaris only)?
Is the ‘Print Spooler’ service running?
Is the ‘Adobe PDF’ printer set as the default printer?
Did you start Acrobat Professional after the install and dismiss all dialogs?
Which Windows user’s credentials is PDF Generator running with?
Does the PDFGen.api file exist in the \Acrobat\plug_ins\ folder?