At the moment, the Efofex team is in a not so sunny Vancouver as we prepare to attend the British Columbia Association of Mathematics Teachers’ annual conference on Friday. We will be there, in our Efofex jackets, so if you are attending the conference please come and say hello.
We also planned to attend the biannual NZAMT conference in Christchurch. We booked flights and accommodation and proposed two sessions to the conference organisers. We have attended many times in the past and didn’t anticipate any issues. Alas, it was not to be.
Even though our main session was going to be (as always) “How to get the most out of FX Draw”, our sessions were deemed to be commercial and were not permitted unless we were “Gold Sponsors”. Efofex will never be big enough to be a gold sponsor so we have been effectively prevented from offering New Zealand customers support.
We have certainly been to conferences in the past where a major sponsor has been subjected to “ambush marketing” by a competitor who doesn’t pay any money but offers lots of sessions. We understand why a company like Casio would insist on this condition when sponsoring a conference. Having said that, we feel like we are collateral damage in a fight between multi-national companies and, in the end, it is teachers who miss out. We hope that our New Zealand customers quietly suggest to their association that this particular rule be implemented with a little more nuance!
Our products are basic tools for a mathematics teacher’s job and we believe that schools should be purchasing site licenses so that all of their teachers can use them. We have always tried to encourage this by making our Full Site licenses very reasonably priced and a quite low multiple of the Personal Use licenses. We want schools to be spending their money, not relying on yours.
We have decided to promote this idea even further by offering you a full rebate of your personal use license fee if you convince your school to purchase a full site or distribution license during your subscription period.
That’s right, all of your money back!
Obviously there are a few terms and conditions, but they are not onerous. We wantto give you back your money! All you really have to do is ask (we have included the Terms & Conditions below for your reference.)
You can visit the rebate page to claim a rebate.
Terms & Conditions
- Only one personal use license fee can be claimed back per school license purchase.
- Maximum rebate is one year’s personal use license fee.
- Rebate must be claimed while your subscription period is current.
- Rebate does not include any third party fees charged to you during the purchase.
- Rebate will only apply if the school did not hold a current Efofex subscription when you purchased your Personal Use subscription.
- Rebate will be paid when the school’s invoice is fully paid.
- Offer only available directly from Efofex and participating distributors.
We have recently begun work on modernising the user interface of FX Draw. Don’t worry! We will definitely NOT be making wholesale changes that require you to learn something new. We are just trying to make things more useful on more devices.
The first change is the addition of on-screen buttons that allow you to delete selections and edit the properties of figures. If you draw a figure and select it, you will see these new buttons.
- Button 1 will only appear if you have selected a single figure. It allows you to edit the properties of the figure. It is equivalent to right-clicking on the figure (or Command + Click on the Mac).
- Button 2 is the rotate button re-imaged. The rotate button’s behaviour has not changed but the button now gives you more information about what it does. Remember that not all figures are rotatable so this button will not always appear.
- Button 3 allows you to delete the current selection. It is equivalent to pressing Del.
Why the New Buttons?
The need to right-click to edit properties and press Del to delete figures makes FX Draw a little harder to use than it needs to be on Mac computers and tablet computers. It also makes it harder to move FX Draw onto new platforms (like the iPad). Adding these buttons makes the interface more accessible to everybody without removing ANY of the functionality you are used to.
Keep an eye on our products over the next few months. There a lot of little enhancements like this one coming soon.
This is one for the more technical of you. It will not affect most people, but those it does will find their lives are much easier.
Our products now support authenticated proxy servers. This will affect you if you have found that our products cannot connect and your school makes you type in credentials whenever a program wants to access the internet.
Previous versions of our products supported proxy servers but failed when authentication was required. This new feature should remove the last impediments to schools using the new cloud versions.
If you use our products as inserted objects in Word (the “old” way), the products are started and stopped every time you create a graphic. This means that credentials need to be supplied every time the program starts. Because of this, our products cache your credentials for 24 hours after you enter them. This will allow you use the products as interactively whilst still allowing for your school’s security settings.
If you have experienced connection issues in the past, our new versions will almost certainly correct them. They are certainly worth a download.
We have uploaded FX Draw 7.001.16 for both Windows and Mac. This version includes two neat new features that will allow you to modify the font of multiple objects in one command.
1. Change The Font Of All Selected Objects
This command allows you to change the font (and optionally, the font size) of every selected object. This allows you to change every font in one operation.
Many FX Draw objects have text and their own font settings. If you want to change the font of a few objects at once, this can become tedious.
The new alternative is to select all objects and choose Change Fonts For Selected Objects from the Edit menu.
You can change the font and, optionally, the font size. Note that setting the font size is not always appropriate as would affect things like the titles of graphs.
2. Change All Default Fonts
This is a very similar command (available in the Tools menu) which changes the default font for all objects. This will only affect objects created after the change but allows you to standardise on one particular font in all contexts.
We have just uploaded new versions of all Efofex products. There have been a number of small improvements and bug fixes, particularly for FX Draw and FX Stat, but the main feature that has been added to all products is option syncing.
If you regularly use more than one computer to create your work, option syncing will make your life much easier. If you change the default text size for marked points (for example), that new option is automatically saved to the cloud and will be loaded into your other computer the next time you start FX Draw. Option syncing means that you can work across a consistent environment on all devices.
Syncing works between the Windows and Mac versions of the products (for those of you forced into using a platform you do not prefer at school) but differences between installed fonts can cause some issues. If, for example, you set a default font of Helvetica on your Mac, but your Windows machine does not have that font installed, Windows will replace the font with something as close as possible.
Other than that, it should work seamlessly!
If you have ever found yourself reaching for a calculator as you type up equations, the FX Equation calculator tool is for you. It allows you to create worked solutions quickly and easily.
If you are using FX Equation to show how to use the quadratic function (for example) you might already have typed in something like this…
which FX Equation will turn into a fully formatted equation for you. If you actually want to evaluate this, you would probably reach for a scientific calculator and retype everything – which is both boring and slow.
In FX Equation, you can just select this string and push the calculator button. FX Equation will automatically evaluate your selection and you can paste the result directly into your next line.
We have uploaded a video of the process. You can find the video here.