The SimsUshare system is a hybrid:
- Developers create simulations through a downloadable app on Windows, Mac, iOS, or Android. From this point, you can view simulations and upload/download sims to your own cloud account (SimCloud). You can also download the app simply for viewing sims without a connection to the Internet.
- Running exercises (both as an instructor and participant) is web-based, and can be used on all modern browsers except Internet Explorer. You do not need to install any software to run exercises or view simulations through a browser, though you must first upload your simulations from your development machines to your cloud account (SimCloud). Once your simulations are in the cloud, you can obtain a link that you can email to others for viewing, or you can post the simulation in a web page or Learning Management System for anyone to view.
- For organizations that would like to conduct exercises with multiple participants but do not want to rely on the Internet, we offer the SimsUshare On-Site server.
The app gives you the ability to introduce elements after a set period of time. Most plugins (effects) have a property called “Fade-In When” and “Fade-In Duration”. Fade-In When says when to start fading in the effect. Fade-In Duration says how many seconds to fade the effect in before it reaches its set opacity.
We set the maximum time settable with the slider to be 30 seconds. If you need a longer time, you can time the number of seconds in the box provided at the right end of the slider.
- Here is a video showing you how to use effect timing
- Here is a video showing you how to make your scenario evolve by keystroke/button click
Please remember that the time is relative to when you start the sim, not when the location (or effect) starts. Therefore, if you set a fade-in for an effect on Side C for 30 seconds, but you start on Side A first, the effect will come in 30 seconds after the sim starts, regardless of whether you are viewing Side C.
A subscription license can ‘float’ among devices running different platforms, so long as only one device has been activated at a time (per license).
For example, suppose you purchase SimsUshare for Android from Google Play. If you purchase a subscription license from us, you can apply that license (called an Enterprise license, on mobile) to your Android device to get enhanced features, or apply it to another computer or device (Windows, Mac, or iOS), so long as you logout/deactivate the license from the Android device.
A subscription license on Windows devices allows all users (even with separate logins) on the computer to create/edit.
If you selected auto-pay when you originally signed up for your subscription, you must call us at +1.215.627.8146 or email us at [email protected] to cancel your subscription.
SimsUshare on iOS & Android comes with the ability to create or edit up to 5 sims but play any number of sims. If you have made 5 already and want to create more, you will need to delete one or more of the first five.
To create/edit more than 5 simulations, you need to purchase a subscription. The subscription (Enterprise) license allows you to create or edit any number of simulations on your mobile device, as well as use that license on any other platform, so long as only one device is activated at a time. If you login/activate your license on SimsUshare Mobile, then create more sims, then logout/deactivate the license, SimsUshare keeps all the sims you have made so you can still play them–you may only edit the top five sims when the Enterprise license is not active on the device. The Enterprise license enables cloud storage not included in the mobile purchase.
SimsUshare v 2.8.6 and above for Windows and Mac now support wide-screen (16:9) format pictures without black borders showing on wide-screen monitors. If you want to ensure the best quality and resolution for your wide-screen sims, size your pictures to 1262×710 before importing them into SimsUshare (or really any width-to-height ratio of 1.777, or 16:9, with the width being approximately 1200+). Sizing the photos beforehand using programs like Photoshop ensure you get the best quality photos in your sims. If your photos are other sizes, SimsUshare will shrink or expand your photos to those dimensions, and sometimes the compression use will result in less crisp lines especially, for example, with pictures that have tight slates or other parallel lines in them.
We have noticed occasionally that when the app is updated, the permission to use the camera and photo gallery are shut off. Apple is supposed to ask your permission when the app starts, however, a few people have contacted us about this. Without the user giving these permissions, our app cannot take a photo or access the photo gallery.
To give permission, first close SimsUshare, then go to your Settings on your device and find the SimsUshare app. Click on the permissions, and set it to accept read/write for your camera and photo gallery. Restart SimsUshare and your camera access should be restored.
This happens if somehow SimsUshare is denied access to your Documents folder. This could be increasingly common because Apple is limiting what applications can see more and more.
To solve this, go to your Settings > Privacy > Files and Folders, then find SimsUshare and check the box for “Documents Folder”, as shown in this picture.
Apple decided to make the default picture format HEIF/HEIC for iOS 11 and above cameras that support it. This change is affecting other photo-sharing apps as well because only Apple is using this format so far. SimsUshare uses JPG and PNG pictures. Needless to say, this is frustrating for our customers and for us, as we search for a way to make SimsUshare compatible. Here are some options at this point:
- Use “Take New Photo” from inside SimsUshare – that should still work to take a JPG photo
- Change the Camera setting to store pictures as JPG – Settings > Camera > Formats > Most Compatible. http://osxdaily.com/2017/09/29/change-iphone-camera-default-image-format-jpeg-heif/
- Go to Settings → Camera → Formats and make your choice
- High Efficiency—Encode photos/videos you take using the efficient H.265 codec.
- Most Compatible—Always use JPG for images and H.264 for videos.
- Go to Settings → Camera → Formats and make your choice
- Converting HEIF to JPG using a computer
Simulations are stored within a special folder called SimsUShare in your Documents directory on your device or computer. Use any File Manager app to take a look there, after installing and running the app at least once). On all platforms, each sim you make is contained in a new folder within SimsUShare/sims, with an alphanumeric name automatically assigned based on the sim name you chose. For example, a sim you entitled “Ranch House 1″ will likely have the folder name RANCHHOUSE1, unless that was already in use at the time you made the simulation, then it will have a slightly different name. Needless to say, folder names have to be case-insensitively unique (i.e., no “Ranch1″ and “RANCH1″).
That sim folder (RANCHHOUSE1) completely contains the assets in your sim, so you simply copy the folder to/from your device and computer. Behind the scenes, when the app starts, it scans your sims folder to organize the sims it finds (you can also choose the menu item “Scan for New Sims”, from menu on the main screen). If it discovers a new sim, it will come up with a prompt asking you if you want to integrate the new sim(s) it found. You can choose to integrate them, or ignore them (it will keep asking you each time the app starts). If you have deleted a sim folder manually from your device or computer without telling SimsUShare Mobile, it will adjust its record of the sims.
Windows/Mac: Copying Individual Sims between Computers[Here is a video that walks through the process]
The simplest way to copy/transfer sims among different machines is to use the “Change Base Sim Folder” option off the menu on the main screen to point to a shared folder from which you can edit or play simulations. Other people or computers you use SimsUshare on can also point this location, and thereby you can share your sims. Caution: By default, anyone who points to a shared location can copy, modify, or even delete that sim, but you can setup your network permissions to let others only copy or play your sims. Typically, you will want to keep your own sims in a private folder and create additional folders in which you copy sims that you want to share.
If you simply want to copy sims among computers, you should open your Documents folder and navigate into the “SimsUShare” sub-folder, then go into the “sims” folder beneath that. You will see a set of folders within, one for each of your simulations. Copy the sims you want, and on your other computer, place them in the same place (Documents/SimsUShare/sims). Run SimsUshare on your other computer, and it will detect the new sims and ask you to confirm that you want to add them.
Only SimsUshare for iOS (iPhone/iPad) currently has a built-in video record feature. On iOS, you can also use the Reflector app to record your screen, as well as mirror the screen on a computer.
If you run the app on Windows or Mac, there are several tools you can use to record the screen during playback, and then you can make a video of your sims. For example, check out aTube Catcher, Snagit, and Camtasia Studio. On a Mac, you can use the built-in QuickTime screen recorder.
Another simple but effective way is to use your cell phone or other camera and simply record the screen.
The easiest way is to plug your phone into HDMI output and out to a projector. If your projector does not have an HDMI input, there are kits to convert HDMI to VGA. If you have no HDMI output on your phone or tablet you can use the Chromecast device to mirror your screen.
If you have an iPad 2 or higher, or iPhone 4S or higher, you can get a VGA adapter to connect your device to a projector. If you want to beam your screen to a PC or Mac wirelessly (and record the screen), and you have an iPad 2 or higher, or iPhone 4S or higher, you can get the Reflector app, which we highly recommend.
You do NOT need to purchase separate licenses between your own iPhone/iPad. Similarly, you do NOT need to purchase separate licenses between your Android devices registered on Google Play. This does not mean if you buy it for iOS, you get it for Android, too, rather, the license extends across all devices for that platform according to Apple’s and Google’s policies for your own personal devices.
However, if your department has purchased multiple mobile devices, according to Apple’s and Google’s policies, you need to acquire the app for each device, despite the fact your IT department may use the same Apple ID or Google ID for all devices.
We only offer SimsUshare for Windows or Macs, but we do have a customer who told us he was running it on an Intel-based (as opposed to ARM, which we don’t think is possible) Chromebook through Wine (https://www.winehq.org/). There is also a variant of Wine called Crossover (https://www.codeweavers.com/products/crossover-linux/).