I had a customer of my Interactive Label Widget ask me how he could prevent the widget from pausing the presentation. He wanted the interactivity but didn’t want the presentation to pause. I had to explain to him that, by nature, an interactive widget expects the user to interact with it so it pauses the presentation in order to wait for the user’s interaction. That’s all dandy in theory but in practice he had other needs. The answer to this dilemma is easy, I just need to create a Static version of the widget.
However, this made me think a little bit. Creating a static widget will solve the pause problem but will come at the cost of losing the capability of displaying the Hint, Success and Failure captions. What if someone wants that as well?
I believe that there are some improvements that could be done to the widget logic. First, that automatic pausing should be optional. The user should decide if he wants or not to pause the presentation when the widget is displayed. Captivate already allows this type of behavior for the “button” control. In the Timing section of the button, you can select if the presentation will be paused or not. It should be the same for a widget.
Talking about the pause functionality, It caused me some headaches too when coupled with advanced actions. If you want to put a few widgets together and tie their behavior via advanced scripting, you might be in for a nice ride! No matter what action you decide to run when the success criteria is met, the presentation will always resume. The only way for the presentation to stay paused, is by setting the action to “No Action”. This doesn’t make sense to me, in many cases I didn’t want the presentation to resume but I still wanted to run some action! I believe that running an action should not resume the presentation unless we want it to. So, the Action section should also offer an option to resume the presentation when an action is run.
So, if I resume, I would like Captivate to offer two new options: the first one is an optional pause and the other one is an optional resume. That would make interactive widgets a lot more powerful!
What’s your thought on this? Anyone else feels this way and thinks that it should make it’s way as a feature request?