How to create user-defined variables in Adobe Captivate

Like all programming languages, Captivate uses variables to temporarily store values, which can be used by other components of Captivate. In Captivate, there are two types of variables, system and user-defined.

System variable: System variables come pre-defined with your copy of Captivate. For example, cpCmndMute, which mutes the audio in a slide. For a list of all system variables, see Captivate variables list.

User-defined variable: These are variables that you can create and assign them to customized actions. The name you assign to a user variable must not conflict with Captivate’s internal functions, reserved keywords, exposed system variables, or other hidden variables.

There are some conventions while naming a variable. They are:

  • Do not begin the name with a blank or a numeric character.
  • Do not use any reserved keywords. The table below displays variable names that are reserved by ActionScript.
  • Use unique variable names.
  • Use intuitive names for a variable.
  • Always add descriptions to a variable.

Creating a user-defined variable

In this example, we will create a user-defined variable and associate the variable with a button. When you click the button, a name displays.

To create the variable:

  1. Click Project > Variables. The Variables dialog-box displays.

    box display
  2. To add a variable, click Add New, and enter the variable information in the Name, Value, and Description fields.

    • Name: Specify a unique name for the variable. Ensure that the name is intuitive enough to help users guess its content. For example, a variable storing the version number of a product would have the name ProductVersion or VersionNumber.
    • Value: Specify a value for the variable. The value that you specify occurs at all instances of occurrence of the variable in the document. You can also choose to set the value later by leaving this field blank. Variables with undefined values appear as blank spaces in the project.
    • Description: Optionally, add a description for the variable. For example, you could add a note for the authors instructing them about when to use the variable.
    description
  3. To save the changes, click Save.

  4. In the Captivate project, insert a button, a text entry box and a text caption, as shown below:

    text caption
  5. In the text entry box, you insert the variable you had created, as shown below:

    text entry box
  6. With the cursor after the “:”, click [X] in the Property Inspector, as shown below:

    cursor after

    Also, make the text caption hidden.

  7. After you click Insert Variable or [X], in the Insert Variable dialog, click the Variables drop-down list, and choose the variable you created.

    insert variable
  8. After you insert the variable, the variable name gets enclosed within $$...$$, as shown below:

    name gets

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    Some of the variable names are reserved by ActionScript. Do not use the following variable names when creating your variable:

    alpha

    currentframe

    droptarget

    focusrect

    ramesloaded

    height

    buttonMode

    byte

    cacheAsBitmap

    case

    cast

    catch

    filters

    final

    finally

    float

    focusEnabled

    focusRect

    mouseX

    mouseY

    name

    namespace

    native

    new

    switch

    synchronized

    tabChildren

    tabEnabled

    tabIndex

    textSnapshot

    highquality

    lockroot

    name

    parent

    quality

    rotation

    char

    class

    const

    constructor

    contextMenu

    continue

    for

    forceSmoothing

    framesLoaded

    function

    get

    goto

    null

    numChildren

    opaqueBackground

    override

    package

    parent

    this

    throw

    throws

    to

    totalFrames

    trackAsMenu

    soundbuftime

    target

    totalframes

    url

    visible

    width

    currentFrame

    currentLabel

    currentLabels

    currentScene

    debugger

    default

    graphics

    height

    hitArea

    if

    implements

    import

    private

    protected

    prototype

    public

    return

    root

    transform

    transient

    true

    try

    type

    typeof

    x

    xmouse

    xscale

    y

    ymouse

    yscale

    delete

    do

    double

    doubleClickEnabled

    dropTarget

    dynamic

    in

    include

    instanceof

    interface

    internal

    intrinsic

    rotation

    scale9Grid

    scaleX

    scaleY

    scenes

    scrollRect

    use

    useHandCursor

    var

    virtual

    visible

    void

    abstract

    accessibilityProperties

    as

    blendMode

    boolean

    break

    each

    else

    enabled

    enum

    export

    extends

    false

    is

    loaderInfo

    long

    mask

    menu

    mouseChildren

    mouseEnabled

    set

    short

    soundTransform

    stage

    static

    stop

    super

    volatile

    while

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