New User Manual published for ExplorOz Traveller

We've put a lot of work into this revision/update and have literally JUST published this as a pdf into the ExplorOz Traveller page (as a linked Blog), so it also appears in the Blogs.

You can view it here ExplorOz Traveller User Manual PDF

The in-app Help/Instructions hasn't yet been updated. Formerly the info was identical but as of today they are different with the new version only available in the online pdf so we are yet to push the update to the app. Would you like us to change the format so its a pdf format in the app? Or keep the current format you see for Help in the app? Either way, its offline so its from a usability/readability perspective that we ask this question.
Michelle Martin
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Reply By: Frank P (NSW) - Monday, Dec 16, 2019 at 22:02

Monday, Dec 16, 2019 at 22:02
Hi Michelle,

The new pdf is excellent. I much prefer it to the look and feel of the hèlp file currently in the app.

Just to confirm - you do plan to make it a component of the app, available off line.

Can you make it searchable and keep it within the app, useable and searchable off-line?

Cheers Frank
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Reply By: ExplorOz Team - Michelle - Tuesday, Dec 17, 2019 at 01:34

Tuesday, Dec 17, 2019 at 01:34
Yes, offline in the app. Searchable? Not sure. Isnt the table of contents good enough? Does the pdf browser give search tools already?
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Follow Up By: Frank P (NSW) - Tuesday, Dec 17, 2019 at 10:42

Tuesday, Dec 17, 2019 at 10:42
The table of contents is excellent!

As for searchability, when I wrote my reply I wasn't at all sure about searchability in the various pdf reader options on mobile devices as I don't use them that often other than to have a quick read of a received file.

I have since checked and most of the logical "open with" options for pdf files are searchable, particularly the mainstream apps, so question answered, I guess.

cheers
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Follow Up By: ExplorOz Team - Michelle - Tuesday, Dec 17, 2019 at 13:26

Tuesday, Dec 17, 2019 at 13:26
Thanks Frank,
Just a question, did you realise that in the app that there is a ? symbol in the top right corner of most parts of the app that provides Help specific to that section? The current onboard offline help manual offers that feature so if we move away from this system that feature would also need to be removed. How useful is that to you/other users?

David has yet to do a lot more testing of delivering the pdf in app as currently there appears to be no way to install a default pdf browser into the app that is compatible across all platforms (Apple, Android, Windows). It's not quite a easy as first thought.

We might need to put a bit more testing/thought into how to deal with the onboard in-app Help system as the current ? is unique. We need to figure out if that is worth keeping as well as a pdf manual. And how to deliver the manual - ie. in-app OR as just as a downloadable file via the Data Manager than installs the document on the device but not within the app which can then be used in the device's own inbuilt/default pdf reader and if the owner of the device doesn't have a pdf reader installed what do they do then? Is it our requirement to include a pdf reader in the file download? All these options need thought as they also contribute to file size download etc and the file needs to be easily updatable/downloadable each time we do a new version release that affects instructions (or I find a typo etc).

So for now, download the file we've linked and print it off. But I did just find a few minor typos and I will probably update these over the course of the next few days/weeks - pending time due to Christmas interruptions etc.

Thanks for your positive feedback about the content of the manual though - its been "all consuming". ;)
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Follow Up By: Frank P (NSW) - Tuesday, Dec 17, 2019 at 20:48

Tuesday, Dec 17, 2019 at 20:48
Hah, Michelle! You're a victim of your own success. I have found the app so intuitive that I've never had to look at instructions to find out how to work it, so the ? mark on some pages never really registered on me.

Besides, I am of the male variety and you must know that the last resource we of that kind resort to is the manual :-)

More seriously, I can see from your email the issues you face.

I'm no expert in these things, but could you do the instructions in HTML and keep them within the app? That way graphics would be retained,and they would be readable in any device as AFAIK all devices have a browser of some sort. I have some Windows desktop apps/programs that have off-line or self-contained searchable help files - old ones from the days when fast internet was not ubiquitous. The technique might be useful here. I seem to recall a .chm filetype. Is this technique Windows-specific or is it transportable somehow?

If it is transportable you could perhaps retain the ? mark, context sensitive interface where appropriate.

If you cannot do the above I find it hard to chose between keeping the current built-in help and the richer, outside-the-app .pdf help file.

If you have to go for a .pdf help file outside the app, I don't think that would be unreasonable. PDF files are ubiquitous these days and consequently I don't think it's unreasonable to expect users to have a PDF reader of some kind installed, and if they haven't, to get it. There are plenty and they are free.

But then you would lose the context-sensitive ? mark facility.

Would it be unreasonable to have a text-only help file within the app as you do now (with the context-sensitive ? mark facility) and an optional external .pdf file with bells and whistles for those that want it - both with the same text but the internal one without the graphics, etc?

Cheers
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Follow Up By: ExplorOz Team - Michelle - Tuesday, Dec 17, 2019 at 21:00

Tuesday, Dec 17, 2019 at 21:00
Thanks for thinking this through Frank and for your input, however David has spent all day on it and we've come up with something for now... he had to release a new version of the app (3.9.11) to the stores today with some news features and we wanted to at least find a way to get the new User Manual into it. What we've done is add a button inside the top of the current Help/Instructions screen that links to the new PDF version (this launches the pdf browser on the device). So far works nicest on Apple we think as they use a built in reader. There is a short bit of a text to explain the other in-app help options (but they remain unchanged so far). Not much is wrong with them, but a few updates are required so for now this is deemed suitable to get through to the next update and we will improve from there.
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Follow Up By: Frank P (NSW) - Tuesday, Dec 17, 2019 at 21:23

Tuesday, Dec 17, 2019 at 21:23
It works perfectly on my now old Galaxy Tab S2 9.7 android 7.0 and my Galaxy S7 Edge phone, also old by today's standards, android 8.0.0.

Maybe that's all you need.

Cheers
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Reply By: Member - cruza25 - Tuesday, Dec 17, 2019 at 15:48

Tuesday, Dec 17, 2019 at 15:48
Michelle

The link in the Facebook Page doesn’t work.

Thanks
Mike
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Reply By: 116hynes - Sunday, Dec 22, 2019 at 08:31

Sunday, Dec 22, 2019 at 08:31
Do you have any plans to make it compatible with ? CarPlay?

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Follow Up By: ExplorOz Team - Michelle - Monday, Dec 23, 2019 at 20:45

Monday, Dec 23, 2019 at 20:45
No sorry. Neither Apple or Google want other navigation apps in their hands-free app system as they want to keep customers using the Apple/Google maps so even if we did, they wouldn't allow us to submit. Furthermore, to make our app compliant with their requirements would mean rewriting the whole app and removing all the features of the app that make it unique, so it wouldn't really achieve anything to use our app in CarPlay. If its just hands free operation you want, did you know our app has voice guidance?
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Reply By: Triton man - Monday, Dec 23, 2019 at 14:27

Monday, Dec 23, 2019 at 14:27
Spellcheck in Manual, not a big deal but on page 17, first line under Navigation, the correct spelling is “stationary” as in “car” , the other version is “stationery” with an ‘e’ as in pen. This is the only way I can remember it from school some 60 years ago. Funny how little things stick. ??
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