Wednesday, June 27, 2012



1.something that one's efforts or actions are intended to attain or accomplish; purpose; goal; target: the objective of a military attack; the objective of a fund-raising drive.
2.Grammar .
   a.Also called objective case. (in English and some other languages) a case specialized for the use of a form as the object  of a transitive verb or of a preposition, as him  in The boy hit him,  or me  in He comes to me with his troubles.
   b.a word in that case.
3.Also called object glass, object lens, objective lens. Optics . (in a telescope, microscope, camera, or other optical system) the lens or combination of lenses that first receives the rays from the object and forms the image in the focal plane of the eyepiece, as in a microscope, or on a plate or screen, as in a camera.

4.being the object or goal of one's efforts or actions.
5.not influenced by personal feelings, interpretations, or prejudice; based on facts; unbiased: an objective opinion.
6.intent upon or dealing with things external to the mind rather than with thoughts or feelings, as a person or a book.
7.being the object of perception or thought; belonging to the object of thought rather than to the thinking subject ( opposed to subjective).
8.of or pertaining to something that can be known, or to something that is an object or a part of an object; existing independent of thought or an observer as part of reality.
9.Grammar .
   a.pertaining to the use of a form as the object  of a transitive verb or of a preposition.
   b.(in English and some other languages) noting the objective case.
   c.similar to such a case in meaning.
   d.(in case grammar) pertaining to the semantic role of a noun phrase that denotes something undergoing a change of state or bearing a neutral relation to the verb, as the rock  in The rock moved  or in The child threw the rock.
10.being part of or pertaining to an object to be drawn: an objective plane.
11.Medicine/Medical . (of a symptom) discernible to others as well as the patient.
- from 
Notice how the definition of the word "Objective" is all over the place.
How many of you struggle with getting real educational objectives out of  your clients? 
You know...the actionable ones.  Never mind the "At the end of this tutorial the student will understand..." ones.

I know I struggle with this.  Constantly.

Why?  Because I suspect that what the client says they want out of the training and what they REALLY want out of the training are two different things.

What the client SAYS they want:
- The audience to act like their topic is the most important thing they will encounter all year.

- Greater awareness of their services. 

- Behavior change to more closely map to their processes 

- Whatever else they want me, the money folks or their higher ups to hear.

What the client REALLY wants:
- To check the box that says "training" - either because that's what they've always done or because an outside group has insisted on "training" (usually money or threats of lawsuits is attached to this)

- To cover themselves if their process doesn't work - "They were 'trained' on the process, therefore the training must be faulty"

Notice that what the client REALLY wants has nothing to do with behavior change, education, business improvement or anything else remotely useful.

I've come to accept that "check the box" training is not going away.

I dare say that with the increasing ease of development tools and the constant connectedness of the workforce - the demand for "online training" where there wasn't any is going to continue to increase.
People seem to be less cognizant of an employee's time when they are building online training vs. classroom training.  They seem to think that employees can still "work" while training.  

And funny how most of the topics for "mandatory online training" are not for things that would help the business or the person - other than to prevent them from getting sued or fired. (I will step off the soapbox now before I start this particular rant).

On the bright side for us instructional design and developer folk - demand for our services is increasing.  But I find that cold-comfort when I am creating dreck to push out the door.

The only way I've figured to mitigate the damage (and make myself feel better) is to encourage the SMEs and clients to keep asking how to make this as painless as possible for the audience.  What are the minimums the audience needs to know?
Many of my clients are amenable to this.  They just want the reporting, proof to whoever that the audience took the training, and have it done yesterday.  They are honest with themselves about their real objectives for the training.

The more stubborn ones, I'm starting to pull out other weapons:
- Policy.  Our organization has to be careful about making employees train outside of business hours.
- Awareness of the OTHER mandatory trainings that need to be done by the audience.
- Research (works for the more analytical ones)
- The occasional higher-up who understands that he/she would rather have the employee working over them doing yet another mandatory training.  Piloting with a higher-up usually removes excess REALLY fast.

It's a victory for me that in almost 5 years in my current job the culture is shifting from knee-jerk classroom to an acceptance of online resources and other modes of training. 

Instructional design, measurable objectives, and actually getting something USEFUL out of these check-the-box trainings seems to be my next 5 year mission.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

#iel12 Innovations in eLearning Keynotes

The professional version of the Innovations in eLearning Keynotes have been posted!

They are also available on DAU's iTunes
Just go to the Defense Acquisition University page and see them in the IEL 2012 folder
Materials from earlier years, podcasts, etc. also available.

Sit back and enjoy!

Thursday, June 21, 2012

#mlearncon Final Day

Went for this "lighter" nilla wafer donut from Psycho Donuts this morning.
Thinking the cookies will dampen the diabetic hit.

Tried out the House of Siam (@aaronsilvers recommendation) - Beef and Sweet Basil was delicious.

Checking out Rovy Branon and Moses Wolfenstein's MASLO presentation to get a preview of the tool I hope to play with when I get home.  Probably not taking notes on this due to lack of electric and the knowledge that I have to race out of the session to catch a plane back to DC.

Overall - this was an amazingly productive conference for me.

- Starting to develop the shell of a facilitation strategy to get the Mobility Guru and the Mobility Architect talking.

- Have a plan to evaluate some new tools that may or may not be implemented.  I will share this process with you all.  Especially since there are some big doings in this space.

- Have a better understanding of Tin Can and where it is at in the technology development cycle.  I just got a response from my LMS vendor.  I think there will be further conversations here (promising).

Idle Tin Can thought - wonder who the first developer will be to try to attach this technology to Moodle?

Doesn't apply to my current environment - but it will be interesting to watch.

One great thing about going 0 - 160 back into the eLearning space.  Lots of blog post ideas and things to share.  I warned Brent yesterday that there is a good chance I may be out on the speaker circuit next year.  I have some projects that have completed a cycle that I would like to share with everyone.

Considering I haven't had much eLearning writing juju in almost 2 years - this can be nothing but a good thing.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

#mlearncon Security and Mobile

Because I know I'm gonna get asked when I get back into the office.....

Critical Issues: Balancing Security and Mobility for Learning
Presenter: Robert Gadd, OnPoint Digital

These are devices that are easily lost or stolen.

90% of IT mgrs set to implement mobile apps in 2012.
50% of those say that successfull mobile app management will be top priority

- 54% cost concerns
- 25% - lack of direct experience
- 75% security

But mobile can be MORE SECURE than eLearning
- easier to verify identity (will prove)

Everyone bought the devices NOT to do mobile learning
- Bought for communication (emails, calls, text)
- Layer of training on device
- early on - browser based
- Of course - "course on phone". 
- Starting to see requests for - access for info, social components, user-generated content,
- Now - gamification layer, this is big

Avg mobile person may have a different class of device.

Feature phones / Data enabled handset / web apps / native apps / PC-Laptop
- The Native Apps will be your secure one
  + This one ensures that you are looking at the right person at the right time

CellCast model - more server-side stuff.

Core - security and encryption on the device itself

BYOD can be very secure - if you know about the person and the device as long as it's approached directly.
- It's out there whether IT central likes it or not
- Employee feel more productive and happier with it.
- The device will be work and personal

Interestingly - BYOD is NOT cheaper for the organization
- but time and effort.  The staff time offsets the staff cost.
- Employee more happy - a good thing

People lose phones every day
And concerns about the information on those phone

Security methods - 4 approaches x 4 ways
- Text and voice
- Mobile Web - HTML
- Web Apps - HTML5
- Native Apps - C#, iOS, Java

Each deal with security differently
Each has different encription

Biggest challenge is that there is a broadening range of devices - more coming in than disappearing
- Range of capability
- (little to no standardization)
- Also think about the old phones that are out there too that we need to support.
- If you are going to "impose security" you have to figure out what you are delivering on

Tablets - also beginning to change all the time
- Apple and Samsung making money on it
- Kindle allows Amazon to sell stuff - loss leader

Key Considerations
- Device (Physical ) Security
  + Device-level encryption (also BES - all traffic through their gate / traffic hub)
  + Device-specific authentication parameters
  + Device passwords - do you use them?
  + Platform level security
  + There is info about the device burned into the Cell Phone.  UDID or burned in ROM, MTN.
     ++ Can expose the information about phone number and serial number to use as authentication

- Application
  + Account verification and pin code validation
  + Password policy management and admin
  + Private app stores
  + mobile app management capabilities
  + Security of Mobile Web and Mobile App

- Platform - only last couple of years
  + Secure Device-to-Cloud-to-server path
  + Single Sign-on authentication - way to make sure still in the club + define time period the person can remain logged on with the app. (most elegant solution for security, even offline)
  + Remote device management control - software from other folks, how IT locks down the phone
    ++ In BYOD - can allow you to go to company store and download app next to Angry Birds
    ++ Allow self vs. corporate
    ++ We can render the app useless or get rid of app or "brick" the device

- Other Environmentals
  + The "BYOD" Movement
    ++ Would like to see orgs "draw a line" in terms of what will support.
  + Multi-Server Environments
    ++ Content loaded to device - no real "test" server
    ++ Plus, how do you avoid blowing away content
    ++ Synchronize identity change - has to appear seamless to the user
  + Time-based restrictions for the app
    ++ mLearning = conflict with union-based training rules and payment (this is important for our environment)
    ++ Don't trust "mobile" to get the content over correctly.  How do reconcile the record differences?
         ++ The "SCORM" things helps.  Allows the synch.  Not reported very frequently in the field.
  + Two-Factor Authentication ("TFA") Options
    ++ The RSA Security ID dongle or biometrics etc
  + "FIPS" Compliance (no one really doing this yet - gov't requirement)

(I probably need to get the slides for this.  Very technical conversation and would probably be best to get the Mobility Guru in touch with this presenter.  Not sure what the Technical mobile guys are thinking)

Biggest security challenge - Sony just got hacked, PlayStation.  Right now overly paranoid.

Really a cornucopia of choice. Depending on what the IT folks have done - you may see a mix of these solutions.
  + Mobile device management

We are a year away from knowing whether Tin Can will blow up or fizz
- Tried something - put together in 40 hours = good.
- But he is working in a closed network
- Tin Can, by it's current nature, is public
- The vocabulary of what the verbs are needs to be synchronized. 
MobileIron most frequent security product for mobile.  Considered a good one.
(He talked about others- I didn't catch them.  Figure it is an issue for Mobility Guru.)

(Rest of the session was a demo - Onpoint Digital.)

#mlearncon More Tin Can Hooky

The tipping point for me when thinking about any technology is "Does this solve a problem I have now."

I'm not gonna go look for problems so I can use the technology.  I'm too lazy for that.  The bleeding edge technology evangelists are much better at that sort of thing.

My conversation with Andy Whittaker (Rustici Software) helped me identify the problem I am needing to solve:

How do I figure out what our staff is learning?

We have so many different databases / spreadsheets / learning management systems / ill-formatted web documents with this information lurking around our campus.  How do we easily gather this information and then process it so we can figure out what is going on?

Heck - I would love to see just one list of all of the training an employee did just within our organization.  Nevermind conferences, external training sessions, certification courses, etc.

I'm thinking the easier it is to get this information, the easier it will be for us to get what we need out.

So I did a little more meandering around the conference.

After talking briefly with Koreen (really excited to see her!) - I meandered back over to Articulate to see how they put together publication in Tin Can format.  Slick.

Gerry at Articulate then recommended I wander over to the Litmos booth and see what it looks like on the LMS end.

Again - the technology is in VERY early days (we are only talking 2.5 months old).  But it was really interesting to see how it outputs.  Simple English.  Like looking at someone's Twitter feed.  All I needed to do was glance and quickly see where someone has been and completion status.  No complicated translation or formatting really needed.

There's still a lot of work to be done and lots of experimentation needed by the vendors.  And, again, I'm a bit downstream.

Still - I see a problem this can solve and it's pretty exciting.

#mlearncon Tin Can Hooky

Skipped the morning keynote (sorry Clark) because I got tied into a conversation with the Tin Can API folks.  Representatives from Ruscici, Articulate, ADL, the Feds, Chad Udell from Float (the Tappestry folks), Reuben Tozeman from edCetra and a few other folks I didn't know.

So I am apparently a voice for the downstream end-user educator / not-very-technical developer.
I'm still not entirely certain I understand what is going on, but ok.  

In my environment - there is a lot of noise surrounding "Analytics".  Not that anyone actually knows what they want to measure or what they necessarily want to do with that information - but "Analytics" have become real important.

Tin Can provides a more easily understandable standard for capturing information.  Though it is coming out of the education space - I think it will be even MORE powerful if they can somehow get some buy-in from the enterprise space.

Fundamentally - people learn EVERYWHERE.
This is what Float Learning is trying to capture with Tappestry.

I suspect this information could also be captured invisibly on the back end like Google Analytics does with web pages (wow - if you all could get Google in on it, this could be powerful / deeply frightening).

From an organizational standpoint - the best thing that could happen is an ability to capture and report on this learning.
- What do people know?
- What skills are they picking up?
- How are they gaining these skills (locations, tools, etc)?

Then - be able to leverage this information for the powers of good (ideally)
- Personal growth for employees

- Career development - moving folks into areas where we can use their strengths rather than keep trying to get them to "fix" their weaknesses

- Better aligning sales with organizational skill-set (not something I worry about in my job, but I've worked too many places where the sales team sold services that no one in the org actually knew how to do)

- Make it easier for folks to get the training, education, performance support and information they need.

If nothing else - having one standard would make it much easier to see what is going on in an organization and be able to actually create reports.  You know - like level 4 reports showing that our training group actually has real, positive, hard number financial impact using actual data.

Shoot - I would be happy if our organization could run a report showing all of the training an employee took within an organization. Nevermind external conferences and training and the informal stuff.

Tin Can appears to have the potential to make that easier.

What would be REALLY awesome - the ability for schmucks like me to be able to run our OWN reports.
Right now - I have to first get a hook into our DataMart system and wait for a hook into our DataMart system from our squirrelly HRIS system.  Then I need to beg the DataMart guru to build a report with the specs that I give him based on partial information because our 3 enterprise systems use different terms for the same fields and house them in 4 different fields in the back-end Oracle database.

I kinda don't think that is sustainable for anyone (nevermind educators) much longer.
So during yesterday's keynote, they talked about simple steps.

Here was mine: email my LMS vendor and ask if they have heard about TinCan.

To SkillSoft's credit, they have realized that their bread-and-butter needs to be analytics.
They have a pretty good roadmap right now.
Maybe if I can get them at least thinking about Tin Can too, and start helping to build some level of critical mass in my own environment - my immediate analytics collection tasks might be a lot easier.

That's my thought anyway.....

#mlearncon Staring at Tools

I am in the process of re-thinking my eLearning strategy and, possibly, my tool set.

With the rapidly increasing demand for mobile and the fact that I am now training others to create eLearning (vs me doing it for them) - my requirements for a tool are changing.

So I'm starting to nose around to see what is out there.
Adobe Captivate 6
I am a Captivate shop.  I've been using Captivate since Captivate 2.

I've been making folks buy Captivate licenses if they want to plant their training into our LMS.  They do the builds and edits.  I get the thing in the LMS.

I do software simulation - so Captivate has been the perfect tool for me for a long time.
My audience.....not so much.  Most of them are converting PowerPoints (sigh), so Captivate is a bit of overkill for them. 

Something about the HTML5 "solution" in Captivate 5.5 set off some alarms - so I was pretty happy to see  what appears to be integrated HTML5 publication.

Unfortunately, some of the initial reports are a tad bit alarming.
- Seeing reports of crashing during demos in the Expo hall.
- RJ Jacquez's First Impressions post

Haven't seen many other reviews yet since it is such a new product.

I have to support this product right now- so I will be buying a license and putting Captivate through its paces no matter what.

When I took a look at Captivate 6 the Adobe booth, I didn't see crashes - or anything else that either excited me or worried me.  Again - I'll see once I put Captivate 6 into practice.

Watch this space.

Articulate Storyboard

As I may have mentioned in an earlier post - I have never seen so much excitement around a development tool.  When your customers randomly tell strangers how awesome you are - that's a sign you are headed in the right direction.

I had a chance to talk to Arlyn Asch as he gave me a quick demo of Storyboard.

I liked the PowerPoint-like interface - that "familiarity" will make my clients happy.
My clients will like the characters (Captivate 6 added them too as a response). 

Arlyn asked off-hand if I did software simulations.  That's my bread-and-butter.

His eyes lit up.  "OK - I HAVE to show you this other demo."
I've never seen someone so excited about their product.

The way Articulate does software simulation is by doing a full movie, then allowing you to cut at the frames.  Overlay objects are then put at the cut points.

This is a really different method vs. Captivate.  One that assures that you don't "miss screens" - a sadly common problem in Captivate.

I need to see how this works in practice - but after wrapping my head around it a bit, it looks promising.

More importantly - it looks like something that will be much easier for my clients to use.

Where the rubber will hit the road for me, though - publication to our LMS.  I know it does it. 
And they put together a Tin Can output (Articulate has apparently been actively involved in the development of that technology).

Between that and being a huge fan of Tom Kuhmann's work on his Rapid eLearning Blog - I've become progressively more impressed with Articulate as a company.


I talked a little bit about my conversation with Rovy Branon yesterday regarding MASLO
It's still in early stages.  Right now, they are in the process of getting the development and output right.  Next stage will be Tin Can reporting.

My thinking on this - possibly introducing this to our compliance / legal / risk management type groups.  If they are going to build text-heavy - they might as well make it mobile.  At least that way SOMETHING positive comes out of this.  They look cool.  Audience is happy (or at least as happy as they can be for taking compliance training).  I look forward-thinking.  Win.

I'm gonna put this through it's paces once I get back to the office.  Maybe let Sid - my soft-skills twin - in on it.  Once the reporting piece is in - and if my tests go well - may try to roll this out to the compliance folks.

Can't wait to put this thing through its paces too.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

#mlearncon Investigating MASLO

Judy Brown, in her presentation, mentioned it as an open-source mobile development tool that is potentially easy enough to use that we might be able to hand it over to our SMEs.

So I put it in my calendar as a "thing to investigate."  Because I am getting lots of demand for mobile and don't have a way to help my SMEs fulfill it.

I ran into Rovy Branon at one of the hallway sessions - since I heard he was involved in the development.

He's got a very informative post regarding what they were thinking and where development is at as of today.

What was more interesting to me - he and his colleagues at the Wisconsin Extension have plans to show faculty how to create mobile apps and plan to let MASLO loose with them.

They are still figuring out the training and instructional design.  But I may be harassing him to see how the faculty reacts, what issues he and the team run into, where the points of resistance are.  Because I am going to have to do the same thing.

Heck - I've even thought of some potential victims who the appropriate audience would be for this.

First - I will have to put MASLO through its paces and let Rovy and the rest of the development team mature the product and documentation.  I've already put the play-time on my calendar so I capture this while it is fresh.

#mlearncon Tin Can Follow-on Conversation

I am going to look into this more tomorrow. Right after the session, I talked to Andy from Rustici Software.
- 1st main idea - "Fundamentally, this is about getting systems to talk to one another".
Not just learning, but ALL enterprise systems.  Education, LMSs and Content Development is not nearly as tough a nut to crack as business enterprise where complexity and obfuscation are valued.  Get those industries to play and we may be looking at a serious game changer in the education (and maybe even business) analytics space.

- 2nd main idea - Use as a sort of electronic CV.  How that might necessarily work remains to be seen.

- 3rd main idea - Gather the information so that we can look for patterns.  I asked Andy about the ethical implications of this type of data collection, how organizations will use it and whether they've started those conversations.  Quick answer is yes.  Again - how that might work remains to be seen.
- My impression that we are in way early days was an accurate one.  Kinda like electricity around the invention of the battery.  Looks like I'm a bit too far downstream to really worry about it yet.  Good news for me since I was afraid I was missing something

- One use case that I saw - "SCORM option".  This seems to be one I understand.  Saw this with the demo of Articulate Storyline.  This is not seen as a SCORM replacement though.

- A model that came to mind for me - Google Analytics and how it serves as an almost invisible reporting shell that you can then use to access the information when you need it.  Andy's comment - "We're hoping someone comes out with something like that where you can more easily access the analytics.  Haven't seen it yet."

- They've been really surprised with the amount of adoption they've seen in only 2.5 months of release.  My thinking - their standard solves some problems with SCORM and AICC.  The fact that it is based around basic English language structure is mighty appealing.

Will gather more info tomorrow.  Right now, my main takeaway is "watch this space...."

Thanks Andy for your time.  I'll be talking to you and the rest of the gang more tomorrow....

#mlearncon Aaron Silver and Friends on Tin Can API

Designing learning experiences – over lots of digital modes

Going point a to b in cognition

Tin Can
-         New API – not necessarily a replacement for SCORM
-         Language / tech that allows you to track activities
-         Allows you to track structured data
-         Apply to learning / courseware / apps etc
-         Very generalized
-         Different than designing courseware

Experience design – multiple lenses into an experience
-         Empathy with the notion that we all have different lenses.
-         We are all part of shared experience of being there.  But the individual view is different

Tin Can provides common data format
-         No matter what doing with Twitter, Tappestry, Rapid Intake etc – your activity can be shared with everyone
-         Robust picture of what learning looks like in your org with any event

Tappestry (Chad Udell) – hasn’t been an app built ground up
-         Most learning technologies tied to LMS
-         Most LMSs tied to organization
-         How do you go cross-LMS.  Cross-org
-         Social network that is open, focused on learning, talks to other social networks
-         People use social networks to track mundane stuff (foursquares, fitness apps, etc) 
o       All going out to separate areas
o       No safe repository for life as a whole
-         Every day you learn things.  Constant stream of learning activities
-         Closest – Path. Share thoughts and actions.  Still not made for learning.
-         Want to be able to send activities within systems and between systems.
-         November – Using Location –based services to fill our brains.
-         Want folks to create own learning, tags etc
-         No more digital hoarders – we can use this activity to create our own personal learning system

How TinCan augment and change this?
-         Gave Tappestry a blueprint for the “plumbing”
-         (Intro video)
-         Single safe data store
-         Could use Amazon Cloud DB – but wouldn’t give compatability with other systems
-         Learning activities are YOURS – not your employers.
o       Right now – housed with employers
-         Make your learning part of your digital identity

Tin Can 2.5 months old

Robert Gadd – Onpoint Digital
-         Learning objects on mobile phone.
-         Requirement to connect mobile device to system of record (LMS)
-         Figured out how to do this in an app with no online connection (no API)
o       Store within the app then synch
o       The download course model
-         SCORM is a specification – not a standard
o       Simple statements
o       Point back to LMS
-         Had to marry Tin Can support with SCORM support
o       Balancing act between the two
-         Not as ambitious as what Reuben and Chad have done.
-         Changing the tires while the car is moving
-         Trying to trap stuff in the app itself. Extend the player
-         Mobile not just about taking a course
o       Not replicating the course
o       Social components / communication
-         How do you use the Actor / Verb / Action structure to report
o       Into various systems
o       May help connect to other things
-         May ultimately cut development time and integration time

Rustici software – the implementation
(I really need to talk to Aaron 1-on-1 tomorrow)

LRS – a learner record store
-         Can be bolted onto LMS.  Can also be stand-alone
-         A repository
-         Not once CENTRAL cloud. – want to be able to “roll your own”

Did not want to directly tie to learner management system
-         big complex beast

Tin Can for designing learning in real day job
-         Really didn’t change your job dramatically
-         May remove constraints
-         How can we get these enterprise systems to share with each other?
-         What are we doing and how does this get tied to performance?
-         Maybe more closely marry “learning” activity with business activity (will need to see how this implements)

(OK – still don’t get how this gets implemented.  I may not be technical enough)

Enabling “Big Data” (and this is where Reuben comes in)

Cory – Tin Can could be very disruptive and force us to look at our entire architecture
-         learning in micro-systems and feed all of that into a datamart

Learning Management vs Learning Record Store
-         Learning Management – different
-         Learning Record – how it moves around (maybe looking at it like the electronic medical record?)
-         You decide what matters for you.

This is not a REPLACEMENT for LMS. 
-         (This could be all of a piece…’s a spec.  So might be a tool to help gather info on separate activity)

Right now – Tin Can in beta.
-         Query language – still in process
-         Extending verbs – still in process

Vision: Learner owns own data
-         Learner has a “data locker” – web service / app/ something.
-         You ALLOW orgs access to that data
o       Not necessarily all of it
-         Not there yet – federated system

Reuben – if people using Tin Can properly, people are creating unique experiences within orgs.  May wind up being difficult to put it in a way that is meaningful.
-         Tim martin – records moved over are individual statements.

Designing with Tin Can – also have to design for how the data will be used.

(So maybe like the “standards” for health care systems?)

Tim Martin – how do you ID someone
-         Spec references “friend of a friend”
-         If I can figure out what this person does, over many contexts, over extended period of time – what does this mean?  What can we do?

Tin Can – one use is to look for patterns
-         Activities (where subscribing, what reading)
-         Context
-         Other……
-         (setting off paranoia alarms – so what are the ethical implications of this type of data collection?)
-         Instead of after- the-fact, can look at time.  Visible to rest of organization. 
-         Potentially easier to model?  Catching some of the less “visible” behaviors?

Not just about social.
It is plumbing about how to communicate that.

What types of reports can we run?
-         Tin Can doesn’t really deal with that
-         Would need to create response engine that looks for activity patterns that describe a certain type of experience.

(So this is essentially an attempt to gather “Big Data” and capture it for later mining)

Is there a roadmap about how Tin Can will be applied and use cases?
-         “Yes and…..”
-         Learning / Performance Management etc all part of the same ecosystem
-         They are starting with learning because this is what we know

(OK – at this point I am seeing a “Google Analytics” type of thing.  So I need to take a look at what Rustici built.  Plus Articulate – I saw a “Tin Can” reporting component. Sort of a back-end process……The trick will be – how does this get combined and reportable.  And how does this leverage enterprise system reporting ?)

Tin Can – communicating from one end to another. Tin Can and string.
-         Fundamentally – getting systems to talk to each other.

#mlearncon PowerPoint to mLearning

Attended this session specifically to help my end user population.

Trying to figure out how to have a greater Instructional Design conversation is a whole 'nother challenge that I will need to grapple with.  Still picking my battles.....

A lot of the issues we saw years ago is the same issues we have now.
- Still issues with bandwidth and screens

People are very comfortable with power point.

How do we move PowerPoint to become effective eLearning, then mLearning.

Top 5 changes
-         Chunk content into no more than 15 page long chapters, 5 chapters per course
o       If you give them huge training course – will do it “later”
o       BTW – not talking graphic heavy simulations
o       “Page a minute” rule
o       Mobile environment will always be stop and start thing.  On a computer – ok.  Mobile – not happening.
o       Distinct chapter.  Don’t give them continuous stream of data and force them to figure out the logical breaks.
-         Create course and chapter learning objectives
o       Just like in eLearning
o       If have bad eLearning – will be much worse in mLearning
o       Don’t make them figure out what they need to learn.
o       “What’s the motivation”
o       Course and chapter summaries
-         Change titles so they are short and communicate
o       Titles need to mean something.
o       Can use the pages to also remind them what it is they want to accomplish on each page
-         Keep similar ideas on the same page.  Don’t use continue.
o       Never mind the scrolling.
o       Don’t scroll more than 2 width on smartphone
o       (this emphasizes the need for minimums.  Really makes the cutting of content to the absolute essentials even MORE important.  This will equal some tough conversations)
-         Write in complete sentences

Most powerpoints are pretty nebulous.
-         Can’t get away with that in eLearning.

Don’t fear getting rid of the graphics and multimedia if they don’t move the learning objective.
-         With bandwidth – have to consider download time.

2 directions for mobile development
- Web
            - Works on all smart phones and tablets.  Build and maintain one course
            - Great for text, pictures and test
            - Not uniform delivery for audio and video

-         App
o       Custom develop for each platform – must build and maintain for each platform
o       Great for multimedia (audio, graphics, video)
o       Need custom development
o       Hard solution – but more control

(she is pushing web – also ReadyGo WCB)

Compares mobile space today to web space / computer space in the late 90s.

What type of work you are doing and what do you want to get out there?
-         (seems to be based on graphics and multimedia)

Plug-ins don’t work well in the mobile environment

“Mobile era is about low-power devices, touch interfaces and open web standards”

Other problem with multi-media – 1 hour long movie can easily eat up all of someone’s monthly data.  This could be really expensive – for either the company or the individual.
-         This might change a couple of years from now (but I wouldn’t hold my breath)

HTML5 – not a real standard yet.  Better, but still in development
-         Still need to assure that an HTML5 web page works in each of the SmartPhones.  May not be true
-         Does not assure that landscape and portrait, touch or tracking works
-         Will provide plug in features without the plug-in – native audio and video
o       May not be ready for prime-time
-         If trying to put together a “mobile-friendly” training – add extra time for testing.
o       Test to iOS, Android, other in your environment

Truth behind mobile
-         HTML5 – 20% of what’s needed to get content to work well on a mobile device
-         Most SmartPhone browsers are closer to version 2 (1996) than version 7 (current)
-         None support ALL of HTML5.  Some support pieces of HTML5

Graphics and multi-media for mLearning (remember lowest common denominator)
-         Save graphics so width is 200 pixels or less
-         Place graphics longer than 200 pixels below the text
o       If people see graphic, no text – won’t scroll
o       Test 1st – will scroll
o       Graphic first and see text – will scroll
-         No side to side graphics / text
-         Flash works on Droid, QuickTime works on Apple
o       If you include both, only the one that works shows up on the device
o       Put the video at the bottom with text above
-         MPG3 works for audio
-         Automatic audio does not work, users MUST click to play
o       On iPhone – will bring up another page
o       (remember – what are the minimums you can get away with)
o       If so married to audio – why aren’t you doing a podcast?

Tablets are just big smartphones, they are not little computers.

Keep the user experience in mind.

Just text-heavy PowerPoint – creates a pretty nice smartphone experience.
-         Relatively simple to create

Instructional Design for mLearning
-         What are you really trying to do? (this question is loaded)
o       Management: Employees are training
o       Training departments: Employees complete training
o       Learners: Get it done fast and painlessly.
o       (all about checking the box.  Sigh)
-         Active and passive are different for classroom training vs. online training
o       Classroom –
§         Teacher Talking (active) / Group Exercises / Tests / Reading (passive)
§         (Why is Group Exercise considered less active?  Is thinking not MORE active because they have to do something / process / engage in a way?)
o       Online – Tests(active) / Exercises / Reading / Video (Talking Heads) / Narration (passive)
§         Testing – people automatically do stuff PLUS more parts of the brain light up (no research)
·        People remember the questions they got wrong.
§         Want to avoid your learners multitasking.  (This scale is defined by the ability to multitask while doing the exercise)
§         Narration = multitasking (so true – guilty)
§         (I suddenly want to multitask…..shame I am having issues with the wireless)
o       If it is mediocre in eLearning – it’s TERRIBLE in mLearning
o       Hotspots – learners get frustrated because they aren’t certain they got all the material
§         Optional information works well
§         Necessary material – not so much

What works
-         What people THINK is interactivity (dear god I hope this isn’t really true)
o       Narration
o       Flying bullets
o       Moving images that are disconnected from the learning objectives
-         What IS interactive
o       Tests used for reinforcement
o       Exercises
o       Reading

Tests GREAT for reinforcing new materials – HARD test questions.
-         Pre-tests – need to talk about philosophy on pre-test.  Can you let them test out?
o       You have their attention if they don’t pass the pre-test.
o       (Failure can be motivating)
-         Chapter tests
o       Use tests so they force the learner to think
o       Create 360 tests – go back to the ones where they got the wrong answer and give feedback, the right answer etc.  (Failure helps reinforce learning)
-         End of course tests
-         Tests work great on smartphones and a tablet

Make sure when they get it wrong – give them the correct answer when they got it wrong.
-         Make them re-answer it.
-         People get more learning if they are forced to put in the right answer.

Writing content
-         Clear and easy to understand – easy to read, easy to understand
-         Break thoughts into bullet points instead of paragraphs
-         Repetition
o       Same information in multiple ways
o       Tell them what you are going to tell them, tell them, tell them what you told them
-         Use test questions to reinforce the most important concept you are presenting