Tags: elearning development

06/26/09

As I've spoken about in the past, almost all of my eLearning is programmed by hand using the Adobe suite of products and creating interfaces, buttons and eLearning elements from scratch.

As I get ready to roll out my new business venture (Catapult Training Group...YAY), I'm debating about whether I should advertise on the new web site and in my promotional materials that I use/have used/can use the off the shelf eLearning development tools like Unison, Lectora, Articulate and Captivate. As an eLearning developer, I've always prided myself on the fact that I write from the source and do not use these tools when developing. Several of my clients have asked me to use these tools and help them to learn these tools, however should I be advertising that these tools are within my capability?

Does it diminish my reputation as a developer to talk about my company using these tools? Even though most of these tools are great, they have serious limitations when it comes to high degrees of complex interactivity. I feel that I shouldn't want it featured that I sometimes use them on behalf of clients...am I right to feel that way?

On the other side of the coin, some of my current clients are using them and I've been able to offer my assistance to those folks and make a little money to boot. In fact, one of my clients ONLY uses these tools and has required me to design within the confines of these applications. Is that a value to other companies? Should I advertise it?

I'm seriously interested in knowing your opinion! Please comment or shoot me an email to let me know your opinion. Thank you in advance!

03/02/09

I was reading this article in Wired Magazine The Netbook Effect: How Cheap Little Laptops Hit the Big Time and started to think about all the traveling I am going to do over the summer. I'm not concerned about being able to work from a hotel room, as I've outfit my MacBook Pro with a fully licensed version of the Adobe CS4 suite. Yes, its expensive to have such a nice laptop AND such nice software just to work remotely, and the idea of a Netbook and that article got me thinking about the potential of taking my online learning development completely, well, online. Through a browser. With NO installed software. Could it be done?

And so begins my quest...over the next few days, I'm going to attempt to find online software solutions that do everything I need to build eLearning programs so I can buy a Netbook and just go. Here is the types of software I will need to find:

  • WYSIWYG HTML Editor: I use Dreamweaver in split view: code and design view. Is there browser based software that will allow me to create web pages?
  • Graphic Editor: I use Photoshop to create graphics. The article refers to FotoFlexer as a browser based Photoshop alternative. I'll try it out and let you know this week.
  • Animation Editor: As I've said in the past, Flash is my primary creator of content for my eLearning clients. Is there something out there that's browser based that will allow me to create Flash like interfaces, interactions and programs? I'm doubtful that any web based app will allow me to create like I do in Flash, but let's see what I can find!
  • Content: My clients and I use Pages, Keynote, PowerPoint and Word to create our static content. I lift the content out of these pages and paste into Dreamweaver or Flash. Google Docs is out there as a browser based alternative, but I haven't tried it...I will and tell you how it goes.

That's the major functionality I will be looking for in online applications. I want to get a Netbook purely because its new and cool (and I have a problem with wanted all the tech I can get my hands on), but if I can validate it by finding these online solutions, well, then its a purchase worth making! I know...who am I kidding...

I'll keep you posted all week with what I find.

Very few people are creating technology exclusively for the online learning developer, so this site attempts to fill that gap. Whether you want ideas on how to use web technologies in your eLearning, or have questions about the what's and how's, this site is for you.

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