New eLearningChef Logo

eChef-Logo_src2What do you think of our new logo?

I really liked the lighthouse, an ‘enhanced’ picture we took of the local , historic Thomas Point lighthouse…but it didn’t have much to do with eLearning…
(plus the lighthouse theme is one better suited for our CapeMedia website)

eChef-Logo_photo
So we whipped the new logo together last Sunday – took a pot, put in some related books I’ve had on the bookshelf for a few years, added a small tablet and a whisk (can you see them?)…then brought into Photoshop and cropped and cleaned a little, added a handle, overlaid a word-cloud, then some ‘simmering’ effects…

Does it work? I think it works well. And, hey, I’m an overall chef, not a sous-chef. If I wanted a professional logo, I’d have hired a professional graphic artist :)

Interactive Video in Adobe Captivate 8

We’ve talked about this a bit on our Recipes page, but eLearning Brothers asked for a more detailed contribution, so here it is:

Helpful Tip: Interactive Video in Adobe Captivate 8

In brief, Captivate allows you “to place a video on the actual Captivate timeline as ‘synchronized’ video. With the video playback extended along the timeline itself, you can match other Captivate components with that playback….So not only can you time captions and callouts with the video, you can also overlay click boxes.”

Need to step someone through the any particular process? Film the process, integrate the video into a Captivate project, then overlay click boxes to stop the video and ask the learner to ‘click the next step’ – maybe it’s a button to press, or select the correct piece of equipment, or identify a safety hazard…

Provide feedback on the learner’s click and continue the video playback, showing the correct ‘next step’ in the process.

Video is a great way to demonstrate any given procedure…and you can enhance actual *learning* by asking the user to actually interact with the video (albeit to a limited degree).

Visit the eLearning Brothers site to learn more and for links to a sample published project and the source file (Captivate 8). The sample project uses two videos from the eLearning Brothers rather deep ‘Stock Assets’ portfolio.

Any other tips or suggestions regarding video and Captivate 8? Share those thoughts here in our Comments, or head on over to the ‘eLB’ site and share there!

Camtasia Studio 8.4.4 Update & Tutorials

Techsmith released their Camtasia Studio 8.4.4 update in November (!); guess it had been a while since I loaded their software. I was notified when Camtasia asked if it should check for updates. If that doesn’t happen, you can click Help > Check for updates.

So just a quick post in case anyone else out there was in a similar position and hadn’t checked in a while, whether not having occasion to load Camtasia or dismissing the ‘should I check’ dialog in their eagerness to develop…

Fair warning, it’s a large download at 247.23 mb!

Per the Version History page… Continue reading Camtasia Studio 8.4.4 Update & Tutorials

Lectora 12.0.2 update…

Lectora has another service pack release…so quickly after their 12.0.1 release in January!

On one hand, now that’s responsive! On the other, maybe they should have QA’d the 12.0.1 release a bit more closely :)

Patch for Inspire

Patch for Publisher

Only a few updates in this release…

  • Using the “Go To Web Address” action to open a PDF document in Run Mode no longer crashes Lectora.
  • Issues that prevented button actions and effects from rendering properly in Internet Explorer have been resolved. Tags have been added to all published pages to prompt IE to run in compatibility mode in order to ensure the most modern browser experience.
  • Users can now use the Enter key to select a button in published content when JAWS is running and the Web Accessibility Settings option has been set.
  • Issues have been resolved that required users to select the “OK” button twice in a pop-up message when working with published content from titles using Web Accessibility Settings.

“As with all Lectora updates, users will receive the service pack through the auto-update inside the product, or they can download the service pack update program on our website: http://lectora.com/service-pack-downloads/. You can navigate to this page by selecting Support > Downloads & Release Notes from the main menu.”

See our previous post on the initial Lectora 12.0.1 patch release for a bit more detail and insights on Lectora…

TED Blog: video editing tips

Very informative article on the TED Blog covering 10 tips for video editing. I’m surprised I’ve not come across this before, the post is almost a year old! While these are focused on edits of live sessions (i.e. TED), they’re timeless and certainly can apply to a variety of settings.

http://blog.ted.com/2014/05/12/10-tips-for-editing-video/

Cutting angles on movement and words is a long-standing principle, as is editing out mistakes. In this article, I specially like the interview example with Bill Gates.

Great suggestions overall by the author, Kari Mulholland, and an excellent use of good/bad examples throughout.

ADL eLearning, SCORM, and xAPI Survey

The ADL Initiative has launched a new effort to create a SCORM profile of the Experience API (xAPI). ADL wants your input to help inform our direction for this effort, and to gauge your current usage of distributed learning products, services, SCORM and xAPI. The target audience for this survey is anyone in the education and training community familiar with distributed learning. The survey should take no longer than fifteen minutes to complete.
To participate in the survey, click the link below and begin! The survey will be open until February 27, 2015. Results will be shared with all respondents.

http://www.adlnet.gov/adl-community-survey/

“The survey should take no longer than fifteen minutes to complete. Questions with red asterisks must be answered.”

(repost from LinkedIn)

2015 Top Ten eLearning Stats and Trends

I’m wary of infographics – a lot seem to be needless representations of info that could just as easily, and perhaps more clearly, be presented as good old text…

But this is pretty cool.

2015 - top 10 elearning stats

(repost from eLearning Industry’s “Top eLearning Statistics and Facts for 2015“)

Additionally, Adobe released their ‘2015 Trends Report‘. It does require a form submission (name, email, etc)…but if you already work with Adobe products, they probably have all that information anyway :)
But do note the ‘Notice’ at the bottom of the page…

Lectora 12 update

Lectora 12 was released in December, 2014…and in a reflection of their commitment to the product, Trivantis has quickly released a patch to address some issues found with that most recent version (which ties nicely to one of our 2015 predictions that Trivantis will re-assert their product. I’m not sure I’ve ever seen Adobe respond that quickly…)

See the release notes here for the Lectora 12.0.1 patch. If you are a current Lectora 12 user, you may have noticed the patch availability through the auto-update feature within the product. If not,  you can download the patch directly.

If you’re fairly new to Lectora, or want to get a general insight to the capabilities, visit their demo page for variety of ‘How-To’ and other sample courses.

Lectora is an often-underrated product with a strong history. Lectora 12 seems to have two primary goals: Continue reading Lectora 12 update

eLearning Tech and Trends for 2015

There are a few articles out there each year predicting what the hot topics will be (for a variety of things) in the New Year…so we’ll jump on that bandwagon.

SCORM, xAPI, LTI, CMI-5

SCORM will continue to be popular, it’s still far too entrenched. xAPI (TinCan) will grow as more vendors integrate the technology into their products and the general understanding grows. LTI *should* continue to grow, especially since academics tend to move slowly, but I’m not sure how much momentum it has. CMI-5 will be an interesting to watch with the move to ADL. I don’t see that moving forward much in the next year (but I’ve not explored their roadmap). One potential issue I’m surprised not to see more concern about is privacy in relation to xAPI. Anything can be tracked? Anytime? Do the users KNOW that? Remember the furor over cookies, which are not even centralized…

Authoring

Captivate and Storyline will continue to dominate. Watch for Lectora to push harder to re-assert their product. Lesser-known tools like iSpring, Brainshark, Claro, SmartBuilder, and even ZebraZapps will grow as more folks look for tools to enable self-production.  With Microsoft Mix, PowerPoint may enjoy even more growth as an eLearning dev tool. Camtasia should retain a solid position as well. Those tools that can really improve upon Responsive Design delivery and significant cross-platform compatibility will have a strong advantage.
Reference sites like eLearning Brothers and online tools like PowToon will also grow and see more demand. Continue reading eLearning Tech and Trends for 2015

AICC hangers it up!

The AICC group, arguably the grandfather of SCORM and xAPI, has accepted that the AICC spec is well out-dated and, due to ‘declining membership’, officially dissolved.

From their site,

Our journey is at an end.
Due to declining membership, the AICC membership has decided to dissolve the AICC.
We are very proud of the AICC’s pioneering work in learning technology interoperability specifications.
It is quite a legacy that is still strongly influencing how most of us learn online today

AICC was staying relevant with their work on CMI-5. Based on this ADL Post, they were working with the ADL and the current xAPI efforts to define the ‘next generation of SCORM’. That project has been moved to the ADL and will hopefully continue to see advancement (as I’m not sold, by far, that xAPI [TinCan] is a total solution…but there have been some pretty cool advancements!).

On that note, our previous post, “AICC, SCORM , xAPI, CC/LTI, CMI-5…What Does It All Mean?” now has some dead links. The “collaborators”, “CMI-5 specification”, and “AICC’s CMI-5 Wiki” links are all dead. Current new URL:

CMI-5 specification: https://github.com/AICC/CMI-5_Spec_Current/wiki

Otherwise watch ADL’s site for any news on their hosting and leadership of old AICC spec archives and CMI-5 progress… There are no news updates on their site about AICC or CMI-5 as of this post.

For whatever it’s worth, I appreciate the effort the AICC Executive Committee initiated and maintained over the years. The airline industry may not always be seen as inventive but their move to standardize training communication and record stores was a critical first move to the specifications we work with today.
Cheers to the AICC organization and thanks for the guidance and contributions they’ve made to the eLearning community over these many years!