MaUSECat Screen Shots
click images to enlarge
Here is the main screen for MaUSECat, which uses the "Organizer" component of the program Adobe Photoshop Elements 6 or 7. Filling most of the screen are thumbnails for photos and videos in the catalog. On the right is the Task Pane, which has buttons for selecting groups of media that are categorized (tagged) together or that belong to the same album. At the top is the thumbnail slider, which is used to change the size of images on the screen.
Each photo and video in the catalog is tagged for its phonological, grammatical, semantic, and familiarity characteristics. When you click on one or more of these tag categories, the corresponding photos and videos are displayed. The tags are organized in a hierarchy so that it is possible to view media belonging to very general (e.g., Fricatives) or very specific (final /theta/) groups.
Albums are collections of photos that we have put together to serve particular clinical purposes. The albums for phonological processes can be used for assessment, as they present multiple opportunities for a given process to occur. The minimal pair albums can also be used for assessing whether certain phonemic contrasts are present or for treatment when it has been determined that a particular contrast is absent. The collocation albums have groups of words that are semantically or pragmatically related. Among other uses, they might be used to stimulate conversation, to assess retrieval of related lexical items, or to teach new vocabulary.
Full Screen Display
In addition to displaying photos and videos on the main screen, you can show them in a full screen mode and navigate through them manually or via a slideshow. On the right hand side is a filmstrip of thumbnails. When you click on a thumbnail, that photo is displayed full screen. There is an option to have background music playing during a slideshow or to have each word pronounced aloud as it is presented in either slideshow or manual mode. You can choose from among three different speaker voices (English only).
Side by Side Display
Another display option is to show photos in a side by side (or top and bottom) mode. This is useful when you want to directly compare features of the two words, e.g., in a minimal pair approach to phonological treatment. Each word can be pronounced aloud as you click on it. Using the filmstrip on the right hand side you can hold one photo constant and rotate through the other photos.
Creating a Video or PDF File
The "Create" option of Adobe Photoshop Elements 6 or 7 lets you construct slideshows composed of photos and videos that you select. The slideshows can be customized in dozens of ways. You can add text, narration, clip art, music, special visual effects, etc. The final product can be output as either a video (.wmv file format) or PDF file. This file, with its sound and visual images, is then independent of both MaUSECat and Adobe Photoshop Elements 6 or 7. It can be copied and played on any computer, allowing you to share it with colleagues, use it in different locations, send it home with the client for extra-therapy practice, and so on.
Creating a Webpage
A further "Create" option is to build several different types of web pages, many of which contain interactive or animated features. These web pages provide yet another way of displaying your selected photos creatively to a client. Like the video and PDF files, the web pages are saved in a file folder, which can be copied and played on any computer, without the need for MaUSECat or Adobe Photoshop Elements 6 or 7. Note that these web pages are not located on the Internet. They are local files that play through your browser program.