Thursday, September 6, 2012

Camtasia 8 Smart Player & Quizzing Improvement

Although I haven't even fully explored Camtasia 8, I have already determined that it is the best upgrade to a program I've used EVER*. One aspect I want to highlight today is the smart player which allows interactive functions such as quizzing and hotspots to be supported in mobile devices.

I am a big fan of quizzing in tutorials. It's an easy way to provide a quick review of the main concepts and get the viewer to do something with the content. In the past, quizzing in Camtasia was nice, but the problem was that it only worked in the Flash output, so it could not be streamed and it had to be uploaded directly to D2L. Now, it is possible to maintain the functionality when uploaded to screencast.com, TechSmith's video hosting solution (2GB free storage and monthly bandwidth). I made a basic video with a quiz, uploaded it to screencast.com, and emailed myself the link. I was able to view it and take the quiz on my iPad and my Motorola Droid X smartphone.

The interactive features still do not work on YouTube. I've generally recommended YouTube because it's so prevalent, but I have no problem recommending screencast.com. I used it myself quite a bit at my previous job.

A new improvement to quizzing is the ability to have the results of the quiz emailed to the creator of the video. Viewers are prompted to enter their name and email address if they choose. The results are emailed daily. I took it a bunch of times with different names and emails. At the end of the day, I received an email with a link to a file including the results of my quiz in a csv file. The email came right to my inbox (I was afraid it would go to Junk).

TechSmith creates great tutorials for their products. Here is a video showing how to make a quiz in Camtasia 8. Here is an example quiz - the reporting aspect (to allow the creator of it to get results) is not included in this quiz.

*I reserve the right to change my mind about this after additional exploration but I'm pretty confident! 

2 comments:

  1. Hi April! It seems that videos produced with Camtasia 8 are not keyboard accessible. There isn't a keyboard shortcut to start the video, so end users who are blind can't play the video. Do you know of any work around for this? I saw that you have experience in working with people with disabilities, so I thought that you might have some insight in this area.

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  2. I had no idea, Lisa. That's horrible. Have you contacted TechSmith about this? Their community forum is great; I've gotten replies about questions I've posted there. When I have a chance I'll look into it but I can't guarantee it will be soon. Let me know if you do learn more about this.

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