I always hated screen casts. I prefer creating a Word or PDF document with annotated screenshots which user can go through at their own pace. One of the idea in my idea list was to make it easy to take screenshots and annotate them and create a polished PDF.
But what you have created is even better. It is highly interactive and user can follow the steps as they work on the actual application. Extremely well done. I think you should market the hell out of this. I think there are lot of buyers out there for this kind of software.
What kind of pricing are we looking at?
P.S.: Always great to see a team of Indians creating a software product, I wish you all the best. I hope you also become as successful as Visual Website Optimizer guys.
I think it will be a PERFECT SEM strategy.
Also, while clicking around your site I got quite a few ColdFusion errors with the full debug output. At the very least I'd set restrict debug output to your local IP's within ColdFusion Administrator.
PS: this is Paras from Visual Website Optimizer.
I think that by eschewing video and audio entirely, you're missing out. As apple has demonstrated, animations and transitions are important to the user experience and user understanding. I would definitely allow screenboard creators to import or upload video and audio clips. Perhaps this could be a feature for advanced/paying users.
Audio is pretty important too. Sometimes, explaining things via voice or with sounds are more efficient than writing. You can convey emotion and emphasis through voice that don't come through via a limited text palette. The web audio api part of HTML5 is getting better and I would investigate using this. Again, for advanced/paying users.
But seriously, thanks for building this. I've wanted something like this for a long time.
There's absolutely nothing wrong with liking screencasts. But if you want a screencast - a thing with video and audio clips that conveys information through voice - you want a different product, right? There are existing products that help you make screencasts.
The problem with bolting screencasting features onto this product is that it muddies the message ("we need an alternative to screencasting, one that also does screencasting!") and really threatens to overcomplicate the software, both the UX and the back-end.
Maybe I'm just asking for a youtube-boxed sized version of hypercard. :D
Given that premise, audio and video would completely defeat the point.
You should research for a different way to direct users there, the outline should be optional. Maybe an arrow or other type of animation.
Other than that, it looks great and I can't wait to see it mature. I'd love to use it!
I too dislike screencasts. This is a great concept. Good luck.
Keep up the good work guys!
Also looking for premium PPT and PDF export options. Going to play with this more to see how easily my project teams can pick this up.
The editing workflow is a bit clunky, but given it's a first launch it's definitely workable. Small nitpick: wish that triple-click selects the entire caption in editing mode.
A lot of the examples at the bottom seem to either be blank or break your webserver seeing a lot of
Error Occurred While Processing Request
Element XMLATTRIBUTES.IMAGEID is undefined in a Java object of type class coldfusion.xml.XmlNodeMap referenced as ''
The error occurred in C:\inetpub\wwwroot\iorad\app\dspHTMLPlayer.cfm: line 777
Here's a few usability items I uncovered while playing around with it...
- Support undo. I accidentally deleted a slide, but it was gone forever :)
- Same with on-slide elements...
- I used it to create a tutorial on modifying PDF document properties in Acrobat, but the dialog box was cutoff top and bottom and I was unable to scroll to close the dialog.
- The above issue resulted in me creating 42 slides instead of 12, because I kept clicking and scrolling to try to get to the 'OK' button on the dialog. The tutorial would have been usable, but there is no way to easily delete 30 slides at once, and clicking 'delete... confirm delete' on 30 slides is tedious.
Overall, very nice work, and best of luck!
I understand that's not financially favorable to you as a free service, but will it be part of the paid service?
I'm not sure if you can control it's position, but that is probably the only thing you'd need to solve any problems (though I strongly disagree this is more difficult for users than a traditional screencast)
If this dialogue was placed in a fixed position (say in a black bar across the bottom) it would add a consistent location to refer to the content. Instead of watching the black box jump around, you could watch the content change and push at your own pace.
Great idea that could be a game changer with a better UI!
My hunch is no animation is better, but since I haven’t actually seen that I don’t know if some animation is necessary to provide a cue for where the next step is.
And please, fix the SQL injection you may have and the debug mode too! Try searching for something like: " (a double-quote only)
SQL SELECT * FROM module WHERE name like "%"%" AND is_deleted <> 1 ORDER BY name
I read somewhere just go with the tech you're most comfortable with - would it be wrong to assume the same here?
(Probably this should be directed to Binamra. And awesome frontend by Susrut and Amar!)
Congrats to you and the entire team!
Pretty much exactly what I was thinking. I even wireframed the same interaction. Frustrated but happy. At least someone did it.
How long did it take you guys to put this together? It's quite slick. I hadn't though of using a java applet to record stuff. That locks in the IP and helps with some things, but I was imagining more of a browser extension approach.
feedback: Have a native English speaker (english major, english professors, someone that likes to debate the finer points of our pitiful English language) read through all text facing the user. I have found several type-o's that are distracting and take away from the quality of product.
an example: "the caption text will be _empt_ and you will" should be _empty_ .
It's just one of these names that doesn't stick (if not prominent enough) and can't be derivated of its purpose.
EDIT: I didn't catch that you could actually execute the actions laid out to move forward. This wasn't clear, but makes sense now that I've seen it.
Example buyout -> shutdown: http://philbradley.typepad.com/i_want_to/2010/06/screentoast...
Overall, I love the idea. Potentially solved an issue I didn't know I had.
Overall though very optimistic this could replace Adobe Captivate and some use of Camtasia for me. Please add support to generate a simple list of actions (including or based on edited captions). I'm dying for something that will let me produce:
1. Demo script
All in one run.
Design details make this work or not work - put some effort into figuring out how to guide the user's eye to keep their attention where it needs to be.
Otherwise - excellent. You have a customer :)
This looks like a great alternative! Thanks :)
Record a screencast even if you have an accent. Silent screencasts with just clicking (or even worse - music) seem pointless.
I have some issues with the usability of the presentations, specifically around the prominence of the next action. The green highlighting isn't visible enough, and the annotations look like buttons themselves.
Is there a email I can reach you at? Alternatively, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Would love to share some more ideas.
Although language and UI elements could use some polishing.
Is this really the work of a single individual? How long did it take you? It looks like something a team built.
It was a team. I would have upvoted this in heartbeat if hadn't been for the misleading title.