Useful Links

Typeface Detectives Do It For You

I don’t have time to write yet another long post complaining about Captivate today, so I figured I would tell you about some useful font-matching tools that I’ve come across lately:


  • What The Font? (above) – upload a sample image containing the text that you wish to analyze, and then confirm the characters shown in the image when prompted.  A few seconds later, WTF spits out a list possible fonts.  It was successful in identifying the font used for its own logo, so it is at least functional, but more extensive testing is needed – still, it is a useful tool to keep in your bookmark file.


  • Identifont (above) – similar to What The Font, Identifont will ask you around 15 questions about a font you are looking at and then take a guess as to what it is.  Didn’t have much luck with this one (got confused with Times New Roman) but then again I was only using a few letters.  I also can’t rule out user error since some of the questions were worded in such a way that they confused me.  I guess that’s what I get for being an “ESL” kid…

Hopefully these tools will make font-matching a little bit easier next time you need to do something like that.  Enjoy!

Useful Links

Tiny USB Office Makes You a Word-Processing Ninja

As a technical documentation expert, I pride myself on being able to get the most out of the simple tools that usually sit unused in most people’s Start menus. Why go through the trouble of setting up SnagIt just to capture a simple screenshot, when Alt + Print Screen and MS Paint will accomplish the same job at no additional cost?

Captivate Useful Links

Common Captivate Bugs and How To Fix Them – Tips and Links!

eLearning Weekly has a love/hate relationship with Captivate. It’s fun to read about it, especially since they point out workarounds that might save me some time.

Mobilemind also has some tips on how to avoid breaking SCORM when using Captivate.


Ah… nothing is as beautiful as the majestic Captivate bug in its natural habitat!

Here’s a few other things I’ve learned about this wonderful tool (version 2 in particular):

  • Don’ t waste your time trying to double up elements (imate-text, image-image, or text-text) on the same area. It confuses Captivate and just doesn’t work.
  • Be careful (and do looots of testing) if you use lots of click boxes on the same slide… they tend to mess up when there are more than one or two.
  • If you need to import an animation, turn it into a .swf beforehand to avoid problems. In the past, I’ve tried to use animated .gifs with mixed results.
  • Run Captivate by itself – kill as many other applications and processes as you can to avoid crashes (iTunesHelper.exe is not an essential operating system process). Save your work often. Even though you should be doing both of these things already, it’s especially important when working with The Cap.

Stay tuned… I work with this beast on an almost daily basis so I’m sure there will be more tips coming!

[Picture of leaf-cutters by mariandy_gizfel.]

Useful Links

Quick Friday Link Roundup

It’s link round-up time once again! Here’s what I found on the Interweb this week:

  • Internet Resources for Writers – Fairly self-explanatory.  Can’t think of anything I’d add other than “Lorem Ipsum” text to quickly copy to create placeholders…
  • Fotoflexer (via LifeHacker) – If, like me, you are a technical writer who spends most of the day switching between several computer systems… well, that’s just it, you use several computer systems.  And sometimes its just not possible to have Photoshop installed on every single machine.  Fortunately, you can use Fotoflexer to edit pictures inside of a web browser.  Problem solved!
  •  15 iGoogle Widgets for Web Workers – Finally, if you EVER use Google for anything, chances are you’ve personalized your iGoogle page (or at least you’ve seen it before).  Here’s a list of 15 handy thingees that will make your life a bit easier.  I like the procrastinator’s clock (for I am a procrastinator) and the timesheet tool (because like most contractors, I write up and send out a timesheet every single day…)

That’s all for now.  TGIF!