FX Draw – New Pascal’s Triangle Tool

We have added a new Pascal’s Triangle tool to FX Draw. The new tool is available in the new 7.003.3 release which is online now. We have uploaded a short video about the tool to YouTube.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UYluNP001v8

You can access the tool from the FX Draw toolbar

Select the tool and sweep out a rectangle. Your Pascal’s triangle will appear. There are lots of available options. All of these graphics have come from the new tool.

This, like many other changes made to FX Draw, is the direct result of a suggestion from a user (thanks Jacci!) If you have an idea for a great new feature, tell us!

Video – Using the Pascal’s Triangle Tool

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Help System Changes – Better Help, Easier to Find

Today we released a new version of FX Draw which includes a new way of accessing Help – the “How Do I Create?” box.

If you have something that you want to create but do not know how to do it, type it in here. For example, you might type in “Network Diagrams”. When you press Enter, your browser will do a Google search on our Help documentation. The top result looks like this.

If you visit the page, you will see the other major change we have implemented, we have linked all of our training videos directly into our Help system.

If you click on the video you get training that is immediately useful to you.

The “How Do I Create?” box will appear on all of the products as we release new versions.

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IMPORTANT – New Versions Uploaded

We have just uploaded significant new versions of ALL of our products. The new versions implement a number of new general features, like the expanded notification system. More importantly, they collect a number of previously released, smaller updates into one file.

Many products have experienced a large number of smaller updates since their last big release. FX Draw, for example, has had twenty five small updates! Each one of these updates fix small issues or make small improvements but the net result is huge!

Now is the time for all subscribers to visit our downloads page (http://www.efofex.com/Downloads.php) and download fresh versions.

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FX Equation & FX Chem – VB Script Problems

A small number of schools disable the Windows Script Host service on their computers (as a security measure) and this impacts on users of FX Equation and FX Chem.

If you are impacted by this, you will see a number of messages informing you that Windows Script Host has been disabled every time you use FX Equation or FX Chem from inside Word. You will also find that your equations are not being lowered.

The BEST solution to this issue is to get school IT departments to turn the host back on, or at least exempt the Efofex files, but we fully appreciate that teachers usually do not win those arguments! As an alternative we have made two changes to suit the needs of the affected teachers.

  1.  FX Equation and FX Chem will now only inform you that Windows Script Host has been disabled ONCE, the first time it tries.
  2. We have re-implemented a manual lower button on the Word toolbar. This will allow you to manually lower each equation as you create or edit it.

This solution is not ideal but is a pragmatic response to the changes made by some schools.

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Expanded Notification System

We have upgraded the notification system we introduced a few months ago. It now includes notifications of new versions of the products. As part of this upgrade, we have removed our old update checker.

Over time, our update checker has been blocked by more and more school IT departments as it forced them to update old copies. While we understand that IT departments prefer to maintain a stable environment, this did mean that an increasing number of our users were not aware of new versions that provided significant new features or fixes for old problems. One reason why our update checker was blocked was because it was intrusive and popped a window up when it found a new version.

The new notification system will simply show you a small flag when it finds a new notification. You choose when to look at the messages. It is far less intrusive.

Update notifications provide you with a download link and a link to what’s new in the version. You can make an informed choice about whether to update.

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Our notification centre will quickly become the single, best source of information about what is happening to Efofex products.

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FX Draw – New On-Screen Keyboards for Touch Computers

A lot of our customers are beginning to use touch-enabled computers in their classroom. Computers like the Windows Surface can massively increase a teacher’s productivity and we are working to keep providing tools that are relevant to modern teachers.

FX Draw V7.003.1 introduces context-sensitive on-screen keyboards to support touch-enabled Windows computers.

You turn on touch keyboards with this new toolbar button.

When you try to type in any location that requires a keyboard an on-screen keyboard will pop up. In this example we are typing a measurement and get a specialised measurement keyboard.

The system includes a full, on-screen equation editor that includes a selection of keyboards that you can use.

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Touch keyboards will be added to the other products in the next few months.

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FX Sketch Beta Release

We are really excited to announce the beta release of FX Sketch, our new way of interacting with the FX Draw engine.

This video provides you with a quick overview of what is possible.

 

There is very little to learn about using FX Sketch, but we have added an FX Sketch quick reference guide to the Help menu.

FX Sketch is still in beta and we are always very interested in feedback on how it is doing!

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