Dude walks out and talks

Does anyone know where you can something like this:

www.cellfood.com (The doctor walks out at bottom of screen and talks.)

I have a client that requested an estimate for something like this and I have no idea where to get it.


We have had over twenty enquiries in the last 24hrs (some generated by this thread) so like I said you are going to see a hell of a lot more of them.
Most of the usability issues are red herrings as is the notion that flash videos cannot be seo’d.

This is true only if the “dude” is actually going to walk over the main content of the page. This would be a bad idea. The method used by the cellfood site (posted by the OP) is good because the doctor walks onto an area of the layout that is just the background. In this case the main content box actually overlaps a transparent area of the Flash object, so that the little bottle at the bottom left is still clickable even when the doctor is doing his thing.

I also noticed that if you reisit the site, the doctor doesn’t talk to you again. Definitely a good idea that improves the usability of the site, as you don’t want the guy repeating the same stuff again, but the option is there. They set a “played” cookie to check this.

Fortunately not everyone agrees with your very subjective personal judgements on what constitutes good or bad Usability or what is annoying and what isn’t. These little movies work, that’s why they get used but you seem to think that everyone should have exactly the same tastes and sensibilities as yourself. They don’t, that’s life.

I also think that accusing someone of having ‘integrity issues’ simply because they use one of these movies is quite offensive and arrogant.

You have a list of the ‘last things you need’, so don’t go to to sites that use those things, no one’s forcing you to, but accept that they have their place, they work, some people like them and frankly they meet the definition of Usability quite well in many circumstances, just not for you.

JJMcClure, as much as I enjoy your Ad hominem comments, it’s worth pointing out that not only did I acknowledge in the comment before you replied that if controlled properly, they can limit the problems commonly associated with such features, but the comments I made on the original post were based on some research I undertook involving a cohort of elderly people to which it became perfectly apparent that under several situations, the usability and the accessibility of the website was drastically affected. In respects to what constitutes good usability, just because something “works” doesn’t mean that a subset of your audience won’t be affected. Those mechanisms may be great sales techniques and they may be useful to some people, but my concern is for the people (who I know exist) that will encounter one and find themselves having their experience diminished. The public determine what good accessibility / usability is, not you or I. And my views (on the usability / accessibility front) were based on research (not opinion). If you disagree with me, that’s fine, let’s drop the subject. :slight_smile:

What can I say Alex, you will persist in posting these rants based on your very subjective personal preferences and views when it comes to issues like these. How can I avoid referring to your attitude when it defines what you post?

But… I’m not belittling you or insulting you nor trying to undermine your message through personal attacks and frankly if that’s what you’re implying with your ‘Ad hominem’ comment then not only are you doing exactly what you’re accusing me of but you’re also crossing a line and making this personal. Time to take a step back pal.

Your very specific example of Usability problems with a group of ‘elderly people’ does not justify sweeping and offensive statements about the integrity of any web site owner who would use one of these movies nor does it mean that you’re right about any of the comments you’ve made that are listed below:

Sweeping, subjective, biased and unsupportable.

You don’t like sales pitches, doesn’t mean no one should ever use one.

Yes they are, no they’re not, depending on who you are and what you want.

Just plain offensive. Who do you think you are?

I don’t have a problem with them if they don’t obscure the information on-screen and they are ONLY activated when the user requests it. In those cases it can be considered a feature (possibly an annoying one, but one none-the-less). My worry (as always) is the accessibility of such features, not only do they demand flash (issues of compatibility and availability if it’s central to the experience) but they can be deemed (if not strictly controlled) accessibility violatory. :slight_smile:

We have been providing “virtual presenters” for some of our clients using real actors.
The amount of information you can get across in a short time is astounding.
The conversion rates are through the roof; you are going to see a hell of a lot more of them believe me.
It is not necessary for them to talk all the time; in fact that would drive repeat buyers away, but that is easily handled by simply letting the “VP” walk onto the screen and having a “play video” button appear which you click if you want to hear his pitch; otherwise they stay “stum” except for first time visitors.

Appears to be a flash movie.
You’d need to film a doctor on a green screen (used to be blue screen), convert the movie to FLV and embed in a flash.

Don’t let this fool you, it’s not as easy as it sounds :slight_smile:

There is a product (can’t remember which one) that will help you record it but it’s VERY expensive and to be honest… those videos are the pinnacle of BAD usability. When you visit a website do you really want some annoying little man appear and start waffling their sales pitch in your face? Do you really want someone talking to you when you’re trying to read the website while listening to music or a blind person trying to hear their screen reader over this idiot? Those mechanisms of people on the website are like Bonzi Buddy and Clippy the evil Microsoft paperclip. They are NOT helpful, they ARE annoying and they do nothing for your end users other than make them want to hit the back button. The real irony is that if you need a virtual person to convince people to buy from your site, your business has some integrity issues. This is the Internet, the last thing we need are people taking non-web sales pitch mediums and thinking it’ll help their brand. :slight_smile:

Needs to specifically be an on2 vp6 flv with an alpha channel. You can sometimes get away without a proper green screen as long as the background differs sufficiently from the actor in colour. You’re unlikely to be able to automate removal effectively unless you have a perfectly lit studio and green screen, normalyy you need to spend some time tweaking the removal process. You also need some javascript to remove the page element containing the swf once it has played, else it will continue to obscure the underlying html.

Hahahaha fair enough. I should forward this thread to my client. I agree 100%, the target market for this site is south korean kids and families so I wasn’t completely sure what works for them. Anyways, I’m gonna try to get my client off the idea.