The Cp X-ray Widget is a debugging aid that enables you to explore the content of a Captivate presentation with the assistance of De MonsterDebugger.
How to use it
First, insert the Cp X-ray Widget into your presentation. You can insert it on any page that you want to monitor visually. A good tip is to put it on the master slide so you can see it on all the slides. The only option available in the widget properties dialog is to have the widget pause the presentation after a certain number of milliseconds. Beside this option, there’s also a link to download the De MonsterDebugger.
Start De MonsterDebugger and then preview your project. The widget runtime appearance is this:
The first thing to do is to select an object to inspect. The widget will propose you to inspect the main presentation or any of the slides present in the presentation. As soon as you select an object to inspect, two things will happen. The first one is that the second control of the widget will be enabled so you can now trace objects. We will get back to this a little bit later. The second thing that will happen is that De MonsterDebugger will show the display hierarchy of the object under inspection. The next picture shows De MonsterDebugger after we have selected a slide:
If you select an item in the DISPLAY TREE window, the objects and methods belonging to this item get also displayed in the INSPECTOR windows, just beside the DISPLAY TREE window. So, from that point on you are able to inspect any Captivate item, its display hierarchy and the objects that constitute it. But wait, there’s more: Every time you select an item in the DISPLAY TREE, DeMonsterDebugger will highlight it in Captivate. For example, in the following picture, we have selected a question slide containing a Likert style question. We have drilled down the display hierarchy until we found the _likertHeaderContainer movieclip. We selected it and De MonsterDebugger highlighted it for us inside Captivate. Neat isn’t it?
Now that we can see all the visual items in the presentation and have a summary of the object contained within it (INSPECTOR window), wouldn’t be nice if we could actually have more information? Well it turns out that you can too. In the next picture (click on it for a bigger view), we went back to the Cp X-ray Widget and are now inspecting the main presentation. We have also highlighted the top item (instance34) and are looking at the objects in the INSPECTOR window. Something attracts our attention. It seems that there is a variable called “movieXML”. Hummm that sounds interesting but there are not details for it. This is where the trace functionality comes handy. You just go back to the Cp X-ray Widget and type in the name of the variable to trace and hit the Go button. Note that it may takes a few seconds for the trace to appear in De MonsterDebugger.
Ok, I see that the TRACES window contains my trace but now what? Simple: double click on the line containing the trace statement. A new dialog opens and displays the object properties up to 4 levels down. Take a look at this picture.
You can trace any object that you see in the DISPLAY TREE and INSPECTOR windows. The catch is that you need to write the complete path to the object. For example, if you want to trace the _ItemXML object under _titleMC clips which is located in Slide1_mc, you would have to type: Slide1_mc._titleMC.m_ItemXML. Take note that the names are case sensitive so if you miss on letter, the trace will not work.
I think that De MonsterDebugger is a great tool but I had my fair share of problems and crashes with it. There are a few quirks that you will eventually get over with and you need to restart the application often because it stops responding. Maybe it’s my machine and I was running my memory to high.That, I don’t know. However, it’s still a great tool to use.
So, download the widget and have fun. Remember that this is version 1 and let me know if you find bugs in it.