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Open an embedded YouTube video resizeable in a standalone pop-up

Explorer ,
May 07, 2020 May 07, 2020

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While investigating how to embed videos in a completely GDPR-compliant way, I couldn't find a good way to set it up to open a resizeable window.


It should open in a new browser window or tab but without the whole UI shebang - that's not possible with just adding target="_blank" to the <a href="...">. And the pop-up feature in RoboHelp doesn't create a resizeable video either.


This is what we want to create:

  • Just a placeholder (a classic <a> link based on text or on a thumbnail image) in a topic (not the RoboHelp standard video embedding or a <video> tag); the link would contain the video ID on YouTube (youtube-nocookie.com).
  • From that link, the video player should pop up in a predefined size which must be easily resizeable. That's mandatory for our kind of videos:  users need to adapt the video's content to their needs depending on how large their display is and how small the details in the videos are (like text in a software screencast). Most of our videos are screencasts, demanding at minimum a 1280 x 720px player resolution. And because it's about following the steps side by side with the application, the video window/pop-up should be moveable to a second screen when programming along with the tutorial video. That's why it should be a link/thumbnail and pop-up: most users will move the video pop-up to a screen corner or another screen and won't need the whole frameless UI in that situation.


Right now, we found no sufficing way to accomplish that. Either the pop-up brings its the RoboHelp skin UI with it, with the video in it being not resizeable again, or the window resizes but the video doesn't. 


The only way having the video popping up and being perfectly resizable, is to link the .mp4 video file directly (which works quite good). In that case we need to host the video file (.mp4) in the project (in a separate "videos" folder in the assets folder). But that way it's not possible to add subtitles in different languages (just one burnt-in language). 


As an alternative way, we could do the video embedding with the <video> tag and attributes (such as additional subtitles). But the direct hosting has an awful downside: we can't gather new viewers on the YouTube platform and will miss all the view counts and comments. That's why we want to embed the videos that are already published on YouTube into our RoboHelp content: single source, best impact.


But there must be a way to generate a really responsive pop-up window containing the useful video player with all the features people know from YouTube.


Any suggestions?







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