HX MP4 output

HelpXplain is the exciting new animated infographics and screencast tool that integrates with Help+Manual.

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HX MP4 output

Unread postby Dan Rosen » Fri Jul 05, 2019 6:31 pm

Just purchased HX, couldn't pass up the new user/summer sale :)

Some comments / questions about output.

1. Any chance of adding MP4 output so that we can send the screen shots to user? Would also let us add an audio track.

2. Publishing to a file, such as abc.html, seems to create not only abc.html, but a folder named abc and a folder named js. This is not only confusing, but can trigger an error if there's already a folder named abc. Any chance that publishing can simply ask for it's own folder and place all the output within that either as file(s) or sub-folders?

3. Is there a way to put the HTML player control bar underneath the bottom of the slides instead of overlaying it? I know I can resize the slides, but if there are 20+ slides this needs to be done for each one.

Have a lot more experimentation to do, but I think this could be a great addition to H&M.

Thanks.
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Re: HX MP4 output

Unread postby Tim Green » Sat Jul 06, 2019 8:51 am

Hi Dan,

Dan Rosen wrote:1. Any chance of adding MP4 output so that we can send the screen shots to user? Would also let us add an audio track.

The whole point of HelpXplain is that it isn't video. If you need video you need something like Camtasia or Captivate, and to accept that working with it and editing it will take about ten times as long. 8) That being said, we may add video output in the future, but no promises at the moment. Audio is definitely going to be added, however,

2. Publishing to a file, such as abc.html, seems to create not only abc.html, but a folder named abc and a folder named js. This is not only confusing, but can trigger an error if there's already a folder named abc.

An Xplain isn't and can't be a single file. It's a folder containing all the files needed to display something like that in an HTML page. You have full control over the name of the folder created in the Publish page so name conflicts are only a problem if you choose a conflicting name.

3. Is there a way to put the HTML player control bar underneath the bottom of the slides instead of overlaying it? I know I can resize the slides, but if there are 20+ slides this needs to be done for each one.

That isn't currently an option but may be added in the future.
Regards,
Tim (EC Software Documentation & User Support)

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Re: HX MP4 output

Unread postby Alexander Halser » Sat Jul 06, 2019 2:36 pm

3. Is there a way to put the HTML player control bar underneath the bottom of the slides instead of overlaying it

In addition to Tim's answers: yes, it is possible to put the player controls underneath. This actually applies for the default player skin only. Open the Publish dialog and click "Customize" next to the player skin selection. In the dialog box, uncheck the option "PLAYER_CONTROLS_OVERLAY".

Untitled_Slide1.png
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Re: HX MP4 output

Unread postby Dan Rosen » Sat Jul 06, 2019 8:07 pm

Tim & Alexander, Thank you for the quick responses.

I still think there's a problem with #2,
2. Publishing to a file, such as abc.html, seems to create not only abc.html, but a folder named abc and a folder named js. This is not only confusing, but can trigger an error if there's already a folder named abc.


1. I have publish some HX content to "c:\temp\dan", c:\temp\dan.html, and c:\temp\dan.js.

2. Then later, I create a new project and try to publish it to c:\temp\dan.

HX throws an error "Could not save HTML file c:\temp\dan or one of it's complementary files.

OK, so then I save to c:\temp\dan.html and it works, BUT in the dan folder are all the leftover files from previous publishing attempts.

I'd like to suggest that instead of naming the output folder the same as the file name, that you name it something else such as "<output name>.baggage" or "<output name>.media" and clear it before saving?

Likewise, saving the javascript to the "js" folder is also problematic as it's not obvious that it needs to be copied as part of the output.

I we are looking at 2 use cases for HX. One is to integrate with our help files, in which case these output name/folder issues are not important. The 2nd is to provide one-off "how-tos" to users who ask how do I something. Outputting an MP4 video would be perfect but in the absence of that doing a quick publish to our site might be a good substitute and having a more consistent naming mechanism would help.

Thanks, Dan
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Re: HX MP4 output

Unread postby Martin Wynne » Sat Jul 06, 2019 8:46 pm

Dan Rosen wrote:The 2nd is to provide one-off "how-tos" to users who ask how do I something. Outputting an MP4 video would be perfect

Hi Dan,

My solution to that is to play the HX on my screen and record it to MP4 with a screen recorder. There is nothing to edit, so any screen recorder will do and it's quick. I use FlashBack Pro, but the Express version is 100% free, no nags, and you can record a commentary over it: https://www.flashbackrecorder.com/express/

If you use the Pro version they will host the MP4 for you (free), uploaded directly from the recorder (no FTP needed), and then all you need to do is give your user the URL -- no email attachment issues. An idea there for Alexander?

cheers,

Martin.
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Re: HX MP4 output

Unread postby Alexander Halser » Sun Jul 07, 2019 10:25 am

The distributable files are listed in the master page. We should perhaps make it more obvious, which files you need to deploy.

As for the structure, this is designed to have more than one Xplain in the same folder. Every Xplain has its own HTML page and a sub-folder that matches this name. The sub-folder is required to store images, we need to put them somewhere. The parallel \JS folder for the JavaScript files makes sense, because that script is re-used if there is more than one Xplain on your website (which we assume there is). So the scripts will be loaded just once.

To deploy one or more Xplains on your website, we suggest to put them all into a dedicated folder. HelpXplain names it "\xplain" by default. This structure is the most efficient one and should be easy to overlook.

files-to-distribute.png
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Re: HX MP4 output

Unread postby Dan Rosen » Mon Jul 08, 2019 2:24 pm

Martin Wynne wrote:
Dan Rosen wrote:The 2nd is to provide one-off "how-tos" to users who ask how do I something. Outputting an MP4 video would be perfect

Hi Dan,

My solution to that is to play the HX on my screen and record it to MP4 with a screen recorder. There is nothing to edit, so any screen recorder will do and it's quick. I use FlashBack Pro, but the Express version is 100% free, no nags, and you can record a commentary over it: https://www.flashbackrecorder.com/express/

If you use the Pro version they will host the MP4 for you (free), uploaded directly from the recorder (no FTP needed), and then all you need to do is give your user the URL -- no email attachment issues. An idea there for Alexander?

cheers,

Martin.


Thanks Martin, that's a great approach.
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Re: HX MP4 output

Unread postby Dan Rosen » Mon Jul 08, 2019 2:26 pm

Alexander Halser wrote:The distributable files are listed in the master page. We should perhaps make it more obvious, which files you need to deploy.

As for the structure, this is designed to have more than one Xplain in the same folder. Every Xplain has its own HTML page and a sub-folder that matches this name. The sub-folder is required to store images, we need to put them somewhere. The parallel \JS folder for the JavaScript files makes sense, because that script is re-used if there is more than one Xplain on your website (which we assume there is). So the scripts will be loaded just once.

To deploy one or more Xplains on your website, we suggest to put them all into a dedicated folder. HelpXplain names it "\xplain" by default. This structure is the most efficient one and should be easy to overlook.



I totally glossed over the the "How to deploy" fly-out. Now that I see it, it's obvious.
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