Instead of viewing the Authorware pieces interactively on line, you may also download them to your hard drive and play them offline directly from your own computer. The advantage of this method is that there will be no delays while the piece is playing (as, for example, when your browser stops to access the various sections of the piece as it plays online). The disadvantage of the offline method is that you must first download the entire executable file before you can play it and you must have room on your hard drive. Each file is typically on the order of 2 megabytes and downloading them could take ten minutes or more each if you have a slow modem or a slow connection to the Internet. On the other hand, once you've downloaded a file, you can play it over and over again without even having to log on to the Internet and it will play smoothly each time.
In order to view the pieces offline, you must also download eight small "xtras" files that are used to play the sound; display the bitmap, jpeg, gif, and Windows metafile images; and play the videos. However, you only need to download these files once.
If you would like to try downloading and playing the "Using Authorware" piece and/or some of the Authorware lessons instead of viewing them on line, follow these steps:
1. Make sure you know which version of Windows you are running, 3.1, 95, or 98. A downloadable version is not available for Macs. Sorry.
2. Decide where on your hard drive you want to store the Authorware file(s). Choose a name for a special folder, C:\CH105, for example, and create it there on your hard drive. Then create a second folder inside the one you just created and call it xtras. (Please note the odd spelling! You must spell the name of this folder exactly the same way.)
3. Click one of each pair of these links in turn to download the xtras files. Be sure you store them in the xtras folder.
4. Now click one of these links to download either the Windows 3.1 Version or the Windows 95/98 Version of the "Using Authorware" piece and, when the dialog box appears, type in or select the first folder you created in Step 2 (not the xtras folder), and click OK.
5. The download will take a while, so sit back and relax, go get a cup of tea or coffee, stretch your legs, take a nap, play with the cat or dog, visit with your kids or your parents, read the paper, or something while the download finishes. If you have a fast connection, you may have to wait only a few minutes. In some cases, you can do other things (not on the Internet) with your computer while the file downloads in the background.
6. Once the file is downloaded, you can download another if you like. There are between three and five separate pieces each in Lessons 1, 2, 6, 7, and 8. (If you decide to create different folders for the five lessons, each must have the xtras folder with the five files you downloaded in step 3, which you can just copy from the first xtras folder you created.)
7. Before you can run the downloaded file, you must change the file extension from .exd to .exe so your computer will know that the file is a program. You can do this using File Manager if you have Windows 3.1 or using Windows Explorer if you have Windows 95/98. Highlight the file name (or right click it in Windows Explorer), then choose "Rename" from the File menu (or the pop-up dialogue box) and change the filename from, say, 501e31.exd to 501e31.exe and press Enter.
8. Now, to view the Authorware piece, you can exit your browser if you haven't already - it isn't used to play a downloaded file - and click on Start, then Run, and then either enter or Browse to and double click the file you downloaded and renamed, then click OK. The Authorware piece will now play smoothly all the way through, including the sound.
9. Finally, a word about the file names. The first module of Lesson 1 is called either 501a31.exd or 501a95.exd (before you have rename it). The "5" designates Chemistry 105. The "01" means lesson 1. The "a" indicates that it is the first module - the second will have a "b," the third a "c," and so on. The "31" or "95" indicates whether it runs under Windows 3.1 or Windows 95/98 and, actually, Windows 95/98 can run the "31" pieces (though they're slower) but not vice versa. The .exe tells Windows that the file is a program, so you must rename the file before you can use it. You could, if you wanted, change the names of these files once they are on your hard drive (to longer, more descriptive names, for example) but don't change the .exe or the piece will not run.