Captivate Getting Started: Create awesome demo videos in a Flash!

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.

Task Basic Intermediate Advanced

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

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.

Create Learn how to record your actions in an application or a screen area.

Learn how to create different types of projects.

Create projects by leveraging the existing content, such as MS PPTs or images, or by creating new content and recording your demonstrations.

Edit and Enhance Learn how to add text captions and adjust the timing of these text captions. 

Learn how to choose the preferences for your projects. Also, how to add more slides and objects, and edit them in your project.

Engage your users with interactive objects and widgets, videos, and narration.

Enrich Learn how to make the objects and slides interesting by adding effects and transitions to them.  Make your projects interesting and engaging by adding effects to objects and slides. 
Aggregate Integrate multiple courses into a single course using Aggregator. 
Preview Learn how to preview your project before publishing it.  Learn how to preview a project or only the required slides during content development.  Know how your project looks when it is played to your users. Preview specific slides to refine and tweak interactivity and branching of slides. 
Share Colloborate with your co-workers and reviewers by sharing your projects.  Share your projects with other co-workers and reviewers. 
Publish Learn how to publish your project as a SWF file.  Learn how to publish your projects in different formats such as SWF, EXE, APP, and F4V. Also, learn how to host your projects on Adobe Connect Pro or an FTP server.  Publish your projects in different formats, such as SWF, EXE, APP, and F4V. Learn how to host your projects on an LMS, Adobe Connect Pro, or FTP servers. 

So, get started right away!

If you know other resources that will help, add the links as comments below.

Technical Communication Suite 3 is here!

Technical Communication Suite 3 has now gone live!

Some of the new features include:

  • Robust single sourcing and publishing to multiple devices including ePub from both FrameMaker and RoboHelp environments (TCS special versions).
  • Seamless review and collaboration.
  • Improved cross-product integration.
  • Complete suite supports scripting, thus strengthening automation workflows.
  • Improved search capability in the outputs.
  • Ability to directly link DITA files.
  • Rich multi-media support
  • And More…

For updates and helpful information, stay tuned to this blog! Visit the product page here on

RoboHelp 9 and RoboHelp Server 9 are now out!

RoboHelp 9 and RoboHelp Server 9 are now out! Excerpt from the introductory blog post by Ankur Jain, Product Manager – RoboHelp:

With version 9, we are taking RoboHelp and RoboHelp Server to the next level by helping our customers incorporate important industry trends taking place today into their TechComm workflows. Trends such as user-generated content, community-based user assistance, Rich Internet Applications, content personalization, single-sourcing, multidevice publishing, rich media, the Cloud and many others.

Read the complete blog post here.

And yes, if you aren’t already aware, Technical Communication Suite 3, comprising five of Adobe’s industry-leading technical communication products, is now available as well.

Stay tuned for more updates!

Sneak peeks: FrameMaker 10 and RoboHelp 9

Sneak peeks into Adobe FrameMaker 10 and Adobe RoboHelp 9 are now out, courtesy RJ Jacquez, Adobe’s senior product evangelist.

  • First Adobe RoboHelp 9 Sneak Peek: SharePoint & Cloud-based Reviews – visit this URL
  • First Adobe FrameMaker 10 Sneak Peek: Rich Media – visit this URL
  • [Edit: December 2, 2010] Second Adobe RoboHelp 9 Sneak Peek: How RoboHelp lets you publish directly to a Microsoft SharePoint workspace – visit this URL and scroll to the bottom (same URL as the first RoboHelp 9 sneak peek)

Hope you enjoy watching these videos. I’ll share more information about these exciting releases in the weeks to come. Stay tuned!

Quick Tweets, Big Prizes!

An opportunity for you to win the full license copy of Adobe Technical Communication Suite 2.5!

Here’s how:

  1. Log on to your Twitter account (if you don’t have one, create one in a jiffy, and it’s free).
  2. Send prize-worthy tweets with hashtags #tcscontest #stcindia:
  • Best practices for FrameMaker 9, RoboHelp 8, and TCS 2.x
  • Top reasons to buy or upgrade to FrameMaker 9, RoboHelp 8, and TCS 2.x

The contest closes at 4 PM on November 12, 2010. Keep tweeting till then!

What/who is prize-worthy?

  • The best tweet – Decided by judges at Adobe
  • Most popular tweet – The most retweeted best practice or buy/upgrade reason
  • Most prolific tweeter – The person with the maximum number of valid tweets

The results will be announced at the STC India Conference in New Delhi on 13 November, 2010, and the prizes will be awarded to the winner(s) by Naresh Gupta, MD, Adobe India.

Questions? Tweet them to me at @samarthav.

Tutorial article on designing interactive PDF forms

In 2010, I contributed a tutorial article on designing interactive PDF forms using Adobe Acrobat/LiveCycle Designer to the IEEE Professional Communication Society Newsletter. Later, STC’s Intercom published a version of this article revised for Acrobat X.

Read the Intercom version of the article at this link.

As always, your feedback is welcome.

RoboHelp tips article in Indus

RH-icon.jpgNandini Gupta and I recently contributed an article on our favorite RoboHelp tips to Indus, the newsletter of the India chapter of STC. Check out the article here!

The May issue of Indus carried an article on my favorite FrameMaker tips. Check that one out here!

FrameMaker, CMS, XML, and DITA eSeminars

Exciting news! Adobe is teaming up with partners to organize eSeminars on FrameMaker, CMS, XML, and DITA.

There are two eSeminars coming up in June:
  • Integrating Adobe FrameMaker 9 with Documentum to maximize content reuse with Linked2 on June 22
  • Sense out of Confusion: Streamline your Authoring by transitioning from unstructured to DITA XML on June 24
Stay tuned with RJ Jacquez’s blog for information about the contents of the eSeminars and to register.

Updated RoboSource Control documentation is now live!

Over the past few months, we have been in active touch with the community and power-users to understand the areas of improvement in the RoboSource Control documentation and address them.

The updated Help is now live at this URL. Please feel free to spread the word!

Here are a few major changes in this update that you will find useful:

  • Additions to the introductory topics in the Help to make it easier for new users to adopt RoboSource Control as their source control system
  • New topics on setting up a database for use with RoboSource Control. This was the number one area of improvement that the community and users suggested.
  • Pointers to resources that will help you add your RoboHelp HTML projects to RoboSource Control and get started with using the version control features in RoboHelp
Do take a look at the updated Help. As always, your feedback is more than welcome!