Happy Friday! Ok, maybe it's Friday when you're reading this, maybe it isn't. However, if it's not a Friday, let's pretend that it is.
You'd like your Adobe Captivate eLearning module to greet the learners with “Hello! It’s a lovely Friday to learn a little something. Let’s get started!”
Are you wondering how to get Captivate to perform this little bit of magic? You could simply write the words “Hello! It’s a lovely Friday…” into a Text Caption or Smart Shape. However, the learner would only be greeted correctly once out of every seven days.
Instead of manually typing the day, let Captivate share the information with your learners. Believe it or not, Captivate already knows how to get the information: via a System Variable called cpInfoCurrentDay.
If you wanted to have the day show up in a text caption, all you’d need to do is type the following text and the name of the Variable.
I thought I had done pretty well... except this is what I ended up with:
What’s that “6” doing there? Captivate did exactly what was asked. I asked for current DAY, and the 6th day of the week appeared... Friday.
The reason for the confusion can be found in Captivate’s Variables dialog box (via the Project menu). The Description for cpInfoCurrentDay: “Day of the week as set on the user's computer. Values range from 1-7 starting with Sunday. Sunday=1, Monday=2, and so on.” And that explains why Friday displays as the number 6.
I’m going to show you how to create a quick Conditional Advanced Action that will ensure that 6 is displayed as Friday in my current project.
First, open the Variables dialog box and add a new User Variable called myDay.
Replace the cpInfoCurrentDay variable in your caption with your new myDay variable.
Next, open the Advanced Actions dialog and create an action that looks like this (I named mine determineDay):
Be sure to create and fill in the Decision Blocks, one for each day of the week. As you create the Decision Blocks, remember to set the value for each appropriately (Sunday is 1, Monday is 2, etc. as shown in the images above and below).
Execute the advanced action somewhere in your project. (I’d suggest via the On Enter drop-down menu on the slide where you’ll want to display the day of the week. In the image below, I'm executing my determineDay action.)
Assuming it's Friday, preview the slide and you'll see this in your text caption:
Like this little action? Want to learn how to create more actions like this, and more complex ones too? Join me for my Captivate Variable and Action Deep Dive series. The 101 class starts with the basics. As we move through 201, 301, and 401, we will continue to build your skills and practice with Captivate Variables and Advanced Actions. Next? We conquer the world!
Lori Smith, COTP, is IconLogic's lead programmer and Adobe Certified Expert (ACE) in Captivate. Lori has a Bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering from MIT as well as a Master’s in electrical engineering from George Mason University. She has been working in the field of software engineering for more than 20 years. During that time she worked as an embedded software engineer at Raytheon (E-Systems) and ARINC.