Evaluation: MediaMAX™ Software for Creating Laservideodisc Lessons
Source: Videodiscovery, 1700 Westlake Ave.N., Suite 600, Seattle, WA 98109-3012
The MediaMAX program works with either IBM or Macintosh computers to easily create interactive, multimedia lessons. It is designed to be simple enough to be used by teachers and students, with very little formal instruction. The icons(pictures that act as control buttons) used are recognizable representations of what the buttons do. For example, by clicking on the remote control icon, a Remote Control screen appears to allow you to control the videodisc player from the computer. Header bars appear at the top of the screen to direct you to what options are available while working with a particular portion of the program. There is also a HELP menu that can be used to clarify and explain any steps that seem confusing. The following descriptions of the program options are only meant to give you an overview of its potential applications. Detailed operating instructions are provided in the MediaMAX manual to handle most of the questions you may have. Videodiscovery also provides technical support, Monday through Friday, 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. PST, at the phone number 1-800-548-3472 or by using America Online. Just type in the keyword ³Videodiscovery² to access members of their staff, share MediaMAX™ slideshows and lessons with other teachers or join their national multimedia discussion board.
Descriptions of the Options Available in the MediaMAX Slideshow Program:
Identifier: The Identifier provides information about the frame or movie that is currently displayed by the player. If the videodisc has database files about the images on the disc, then lessons can be prepared by searching the database and including the descriptions in slideshow notes.
Remote Control: This feature allows the computer to act as a remote control in selecting and playing video clips. Any selected clip can be added to the clipboard for putting together a slideshow. An interesting feature of the remote control is the Quick Quiz Machine(or Slot Machine). This will randomly choose and display frames from within a defined range, set by the ³start movie² and ³end movie² fields. Students can quiz themselves by trying to identify an image, and then clicking the Identifier button in the header bar to see if they were correct.
Button Maker: A variety of different types of buttons can be created on a Hypercard stack in order to make interactive lessons. Text and graphic features allow you to create concept maps, flow charts, and outlines that access specific frames and video clips from the disc. This option can be used to create a lesson from scratch or to enhance a preexisting slideshow list.
Slideshow: The Slideshow program is where you can arrange custom lists of still frames, movies, graphics, sounds and text for presentation. By editing a slide, you can add overlay text or vary the speed at which it is played. The list of slides can be run at preset durations or be manually controlled. Descriptive notes can also be added for each slide to create worksheets or lectures notes that will activate the slides by using ³hotlinks². This portion of MediaMAX allows you the greatest flexibility in creating lessons.
Notes & Barcodes: A Slideshow list can be printed out using barcodes to access the video frames, in place of the hotlinks. This option can also be directly opened from the Main Menu, to allow students to write reports to be presented to class. The barcodes can be saved to the Scrapbook file of the Macintosh for later use in a word processing file. Only videodisc slides can be used to make barcodes. To play a movie, you can make a barcode for the first frame of the clip, then play the movie once it has been activated.
Lessons: This option is used to access pre-made, interactive tutorials or presentations. These Hypercard lessons can be commercially prepared or homemade. The advantage of making your own lessons is that you can customize them to meet your particular needs.