New Features in Timeline 3D (v3)
This is a list of the new features and interface changes compared to the Timeline 3D v2 releases.
Publish to Web
Publish an Interactive Timeline
You can now publish an interactive timeline chart to the web. Interactive timelines are optimized for a wide range of browsers including mobile devices such as the iPad and iPhone.
Choose a Web Look
When you publish to the web you will have multiple Web Looks to choose from, so you can select the Look which best suits the content of your timeline.
Manage Published Timelines
When you select Manage Published Timelines from the Share menu you will see a list of all of the timelines you have published to the web. You can view your timelines both in the viewer or by launching your browser. You can also check the status of timelines that are processing, change the Web Look, or delete existing timelines.
Embed Timelines in Websites
You can now embed an interactive timeline chart in your web or blog article. If you are posting an article or story that has chronological events, an embedded timeline chart can help viewers to understand the larger story.
Event Movies and Audio
In addition to images, you can now drag movie or audio files onto events. You can use any multimedia file type that the Apple's QuickTime Player can play. When you mouse over the event, the play button for the audio or movie file will appear. You can click on it to play the movie or listen to the audio.
Drag an audio file onto the background of your chart to set a timeline soundtrack. The music will be used for movie exports and will automatically be mixed with the audio that is associated with events.
Automatic Event Narration
The auto-narration feature allows you to have the events in your timeline chart narrated by your computer in the exported movie. This option is off by default but can be turned on using the advanced settings during a movie export.
Movie exports can include a short BEEDOCS logo at the end of the movie. This option is on by default but can be turned off using the advanced settings during a movie export.
A new controller makes it easy to discover the navigation options in a 3D presentation. Use the arrows to switch events. Press the 3D button to rotate your timeline. The media button lights up when there is event movies or audio attached to an event. The web link button lights up when there is an event link that you can open.
The bee-line is visible in 3D mode to help you keep track of where you are in your timeline chart and quickly skip to events in your timeline. You can hover your mouse over the tick marks to scan through your events, or click to skip directly to an event.
When you are in presentation mode, you can open the web link by clicking the link on the 3D controller or using the keyboard shortcut "L". This will launch your browser. To return to presentation mode, click on your Timeline 3D application icon. You will return to your 3D presentation.
Event Movies and Audio
Multimedia content that you have added to events can be played during a 3D presentation, either use the new 3D controller or the keyboard short "M" to play media for the current event.
Ease of Use Improvements
New Timeline Types
You can now choose from three different types of timeline charts, each with different date formats. Below is a brief overview:
Dates & Times: Create timelines using specific dates and times. An example is: August 23, 2011.
Geologic Time Scale: Create timelines for events that occurred more than 2 million years ago. An example is: 3,211.2 Billion AD
Quantities: Create a timeline chart based on quantities instead of exact dates. An example is: Chapter 1
Improved Date Formatting
Timeline 3D will automatically adjust the Event Date Format settings based on the date you enter. Dates ranges will be displayed in a way that takes up less space and is easier to understand. For detailed explanations of the improved date formatting, please see this blog post.
Share using iTunes
The functionality that was previously in Devices toolbar button has been reorganized and is now in the iTunes toolbar button. This feature allows more control over the size of your exports. You have the option to optimize your timeline move for an iPhone and iPod, Apple TV, or computer.
Save As PDF
To automatically save your timeline as a PDF document, in the main menu choose File > Save As PDF. This is a more simple alternative to using File > Export Chart with the format set to PDF.
Tags are a series of short or one word phrases separated by commas that will allow you to categorize your events so that you can search through your timeline chart. Tags will be included when you publish a timeline to the web where they can be used for filtering events. One potential use of the tagging feature is to export movies that only pause on a single category of events. Simply search for an event tag (which will automatically select those events) and then share your timeline as a movie.
Save a Custom Look
If you create a visual design combination that you like (Font, Background Color, Image Fill, etc) you can save the design as a Look which you can re-use for future timeline charts. Go to Format > Save Look to save that visual design combination. Your custom look will show up in the intro sheet whenever you open create a new Timeline 3D document.
Hiding Event Information
You can hide Event Images, Notes, Range Bars, or Titles in order to make your timeline chart more compact for printing purposes, or to customize the view for the presentation experience using options in the View menu. The information remains editable in the event edit panel and your timeline chart will remain fully searchable, even if certain event information is hidden.
Document Specific 3D Settings
Settings used to export timelines as movies and control the 3D transition speeds used to be set using Timeline 3D Preferences. Now these settings are accessible through advanced settings during a movie export and are saved in association with the specific timeline your are working with.
Smaller File Sizes with QuickTime Export
For HD movie exports, Quicktime export will create much smaller file sizes than in the previous version of Timeline 3D. Exporting your movie will take less time and take up less space on your computer.
Faster Saving for Timeline Documents
The Timeline 3D document format has been updated which results in faster saving times and better compatibility with Apple's Time Machine backups. The new format also supports storage of event movies, audio, and timeline soundtracks.
Faster Movie Exports
Movie exports take better advantage of multi-core processors on modern computers to render and compress movies faster.
User Interface Fits Better on Small Screens
The user interface has been adjusted to fit better on small size screens such as those on the MacBook Air.
Pause on Selected Event is Implied
When movies are exported, the presentation pauses on every event if no events are selected, one event is selected, or all the events are selected. If some other combination of events is selected, the movie will only pause on those events.