The CBA Itembuilder is a standalone graphical editing software for creating rich, interactive hypertext stimuli. Its intuitive user interface and easy understandable editing concept enables the user to construct a whole website, without any knowledge about a description language like HTML. The result is a stimulus, simulating the common behaviour of a website known from the World Wide Web that can easily be used for technology-based assessment with TAO.
Starting a Project
A CBA Itembuilder project is made of one or more pages and may contain several additional resources (e. g. images). The order of the pages is not relevant, they are linked to each other via hyperlinks forming a non-linear hypertext. Every page may consist of multiple text objects, images, links and buttons and is integrated into a browser window that features custom browser controls and scroll bars.
Editing a hypertext page is very easy: First, you select the type of object you want to insert from the editing palette (e.g. a text object). Then, you draw an objectframe to specify the size and position of the object on the page. Afterwards, you may edit the object's content (e.g. via the text editor). Finished. You may move, resize or re-edit your object every time after that, as the editor is vector-based.
The CBA Itembuilder allows saving pages of a project as a template. It comes equipped with a bunch of pre-defined templates. You can use a template as a starting point to create a set of pages with a common design and layout. The template page can be re-used inside or outside its original project.
Building a Website
By using a (textembedded) link, multiple pages are connected to a hypertext. Linking pages together is very easy: Select a link, click 'link page' and choose a page out of the projectlist.
Exporting a Project
If the project is finished, it may be exported using the export function. It can be saved, emailed and re-imported in a CBA Itembuilder on another computer for collaborative work.
Integration into TAO
An exported CBA Itembuilder project can be imported into TAO and used as a stimulus for testing by the TAO Authoring Tool. It may easily be combined with other TAO features (e. g. audio playback). This close integration of the Hypertext-Builder in the architecture of the TAO system makes it an important enhancement of the TAO Platform.