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Something You Won't See on The iPad

The devices shown have Adobe Flash, but the iPad does not. So much e-learning is made in Flash, or published as SWF files, and iPad users will not have access to it. What a shame.

Flash Tutorials on Screenr

As a Adobe Flash addict, I am always on the lookout for tutorials and new tips and tricks that can make Flash development easier. Every now and then I peruse for Flash tutorials. Because screencasts on Screenr have a five minute limit, they are usually very succinct, which is what I like. They are also easy to search if you do a site search (flash Below are a few I found. I threw in one of my own too.

FYI: If you are interested in creating screeencasts, Screenr is easy to use and free. Thank you Articulate for offering this free tool. Also, if you are looking for Articulate tuts, they have plenty of those too.
To see the remaining tutorials for the paddle game, visit @paulkeenan59’s Screenr page.
Had to throw the last one in with the release of the iPad looming (feh).

If you are creating Flash tutorials on Screenr, please feel free to add a link to it in the comments section. Thanks!

Preview a Tablet, but This One has Flash

As we all know, that tablet everyone has been talking about recently does not have Flash. Oh well, I am over it. However, Dell will be releasing a multi-touch tablet of their own, the Mini 5, and it WILL have Flash. Take a look of the preview below from Adobe TV.

Yes, I know what you are thinking. A 5 inch screen and they are calling it a tablet? It may be a stretch, but Dell is talking about scaling it up and offering larger versions. Beyond a 5 inch screen and I will let them slide on the semantics.

Development Tools – Should I Cut Out the Middle Guy?

Adobe Flash Logo

Back when I first started developing e-learning courses, I used Macromedia’s Authorware. For more interactive elements, I used Flash and imported the SWFs into Authorware. Over the years, I have used ToolBook, Trainersoft, and even Dreamweaver with Coursebuilder. Almost every course involved using Flash for interactive elements (animations, games, quizzes, simulations, video, etc.). It has gotten to a point where some of my courses are all developed in Flash and the e-learning authoring tools (DHTML) have been used more as a “shell” that decompiles it as a SCORM package. I really prefer the robust ability of creating courses in Flash and only use the DHTML e-learning authoring tools for their ability to make the course SCORM or AICC compliant.

So,  do I really need to continue using these authoring tools? No, I can skip the middle man and produce entire courses in Flash. These courses can be published as SCORM or AICC compliant courses. This includes the learning interactions that are easily added as components. The learning interactions can be used for multiple types of quiz questions that will be tracked by a learning management system (LMS).

Here is a tutorial on How to Add Basic SCORM code to a Flash Movie from Pipwerks.

And from Adobe, Creating e-Learning Content, which includes configuring learning interactions and tracking to a SCORM or AICC compliant LMS.

Granted, many authoring tools provide a great deal of  ease when adding content, navigation and quizzes, but the interactions they include within these tools are limited.  For me, if I am already developing so much of the course in Flash, I might as well use the Flash learning interactions for the quiz questions and publish the entire Flash file as a SCORM compliant course.  I will note that I will keep Captivate in my toolbox, as it is more effective for developing software/application simulations than building them from scratch in Flash. Of course any sims developed in Captivate (also SWF files) can easily be included, or launched from, a course developed with Flash.

History of Adobe Flash

I am a big user of Flash and find it to be one of the most effective tools in my e-learning toolbox. Earlier this week I was very disappointed to learn Flash will not be included in the Apple iPad. I was hoping the iPad would be a great new medium for m-learning delivery, but without Flash it will be very limited in its ability to deliver the level of interactivity mobile learning deserves.

Now that I got that out of my system, here are a few resources on the history of Flash.

Of course there is “The Rather Amazing and Slightly Distorted History of Flash” created by Nectarine.

Preview of Flash Player on the Google Nexus One

Each time Flash appears on another mobile phone I get ever more hopeful about Flash becoming THE delivery platform for m-learning.

So, will Flash be on the new Google phone that everyone is buzzing about? It is not currently, but Adobe will be making it available for download sometime in future and here is a preview.

We are moving a little closer to a world were Flash is on every smart phone… iPhone, where are you?

Flash Player 10 on Mobile Devices

Here is a video from Adobe Max 2009 with Adobe’s CTO demonstrating Flash Player 10 on numerous mobile devices including Nokia, Palm and Android. Plus, he runs Connect Pro on a mobile phone. I am happy to see more advances with Flash Players on mobile devices. After all, more Flash on mobile devices, more opportunities to use Flash in m-learning.

FYI: Flash Player 10.1 is available as a prerelease for PCs and netbooks at Adobe Labs.

TweetDeck and Adobe Air

Here is an interesting interview with Iain Dodsworth, TweetDeck founder, about his experience developing his now prolific Air application.

Want to create your own Air app? The video below will show you how to convert a Flash project into an Air app.

Hanukkah e-Learning Wish List

Hanukkah HarryMy kids are making their wish list for Hanukkah, which inspired me to make my own. I do not necessarily expect to receive any of these things, but if Hanukkah Harry reads this blog, which he may, their is a chance he will grant at least a few.

  1. Adobe CS4 eLearning Suite – I am still working with CS3.
  2. High end microphone – It will come in very handy for adding audio to courses, plus it will look great on my desk.
  3. OutStart Trainer – I am currently using another DHTML editor in which I am not enthralled at all.
  4. The not yet released, possibly mythological, Apple Tablet – It does not exist yet, but I am willing to take a rain check in case it ever does.
  5. m-Learning development tool that produces courses compatible with ALL mobile platforms.
  6. DevLearn 2010 conference –  It has been quite a while since any budget has allowed me to attend a conference.
  7. Supreme knowledge of ActionScript – To know it to a point that there is nothing I cannot do with Flash (that’s on me isn’t it?).
  8. Open access to all social media for the workers of the world – I am lucky to have access to such things as LinkedIn and Twitter, but not all do. Some organizations block social media sites from their staff. I wish this to end.

If you have your own wish list, please share it in the comments section or add a link if it is on your blog.  Of course it does not have to be a Hanukkah list, it can be for whatever holiday you celebrate.

Flash is Coming to Blackberry – Announced at Adobe Max

Adobe Flash Logo

Today Adobe announced they will be releasing Flash Player 10.1, which will extend the use of Flash on mobile devices. And RIM has added its Blackberry to the list of devices that will run this newest version of Flash Player. Read more about it. No exact date has been set for when it will appear on the Blackberry just yet.

And with Flash 10.1, we probably won’t need, or hear about, Flash Lite any longer.

As stated in earlier posts, I believe that Flash’s availability on Blackberries will be a boon to m-learning. Sad to say, Flash on the iPhone is still not on the horizon.