Thursday, September 25, 2014

Webinar: eLearning Technology Platform Demystified

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When: 25th September 2014, 11.00 am Pacific/2.00 pm ET)

Host and Presenter: Pran Kurup (Founder & CEO, Vitalect, Inc.)
Who should attend?
  • Anyone looking for an affordable online platform with which you can train and certify your employees. 
  • Anyone with valuable online education material (recordings in various formats, YouTube videos etc.) that you want to publish to users. 
  • If you spend several manual hours for tracking your virtual sessions or in-person classroom data for accurate reporting and certification. 
  • If you are unhappy with the current system simply because it cannot handle all the various types of course materials/ offerings that you provide.
Duration: 35 minutes 
Description: If any or all of the above issues are of your concern then chances are that this half an hour session might minimize a lot of your worries."Seeing is believing": Create and deliver various types of courses in a matter of minutes.

In this webinar we try to address the major concerns when you are on the look out for a learning management system to manage your e-learning resources (virtual sessions or recordings or assessments).  We demonstrate how an e-learning technology platform could be a solution to all your e-learning needs. Within the short duration of this webinar you will see how to add various types of courses to the system and get a feel for the end-user experience of actually taking a course.

What can you expect from this webinar?

This is the 7th webinar in the "Vitalect's Seeing is Believing" series. You get to see real products in action that real customers are using and benefiting from - The ease of use and the speed of deployment of the system that you can call your own online university!

We look forward to your participation. Thank You! 

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Caught in the Eternal Browser Wars!

During the cold war days the British used to joke that should America and Russia go to war all the bombs will be thrown on Europe. If you are in the business of online web application development this is exactly how you would feel in the midst of the never ending browser wars.

Internet Explorer, Firefox, and Chrome are the three most commonly used browsers (apart from various mobile browsers, Opera etc.) eternally fighting for market share. Every few months a new version of a browser is released. Besides, every few weeks these browsers undergo some fix or the other. To complicate things the ubiquitous Flash plugin (which is on its way out as a  technology) gets frequent updates too. E-learning content often uses flash and invariably something breaks. That's when the story begins.

The poor end-user who often pays for online content sits staring at the monitor expecting something to play in his browser. All he gets is a blank screen. Frustration creeps in and out goes the support email: "Fix it or give me my money back". The client forwards the same to the vendor and it goes to the application developer who has to sort it out like a puzzle from another planet. What are his issues? Well here's a start:

Say, the course material has MP4 content in one page and an MOV or a WMV in another. Not all browsers handle these formats without the appropriate plugins. MP4 and MOV plays with Quicktime player (provided they are H.264 compatible), but  WMV requires the WMV player. So the problem at hand is that "Video is not playing in the system".

He begins his job. Tirelessly goes through the fixes and everything seems to go in the right direction and hello! Here comes another case: A Mac user with a WMV content is experiencing the same issue! (for those who are wondering what's wrong with that, WMV does not play on Mac without an external plugin). 

OK, so our tech-guy fixes up the whole thing in his own style (by using custom players within the system and the like) and transfers the whole thing to the testers (translates into: thank god, it's out of my way!). The tester who has become sort of a human octopus (with 8 different browsers all around him, 5 of them being multiple versions of IE; Yes, the great IE6 included.) goes through rigorous testing and give a thumbs up. The fix goes live. The boss is happy. The client is happy. The end user who... well, still gets a blank screen in his browser. 

The whole issue re-starts. It's back to square one. The only difference is that the overall frustration levels of all the parties involved has gone up a notch.