XML loadin' widget, w/plastic lake.
As you can see in the two previous entries, my latest experiment is a success.
The purpose is to allow someone to host their audio and text on a blog, images on Flickr, and have the Flash movie controlled by the rss.
I want to see if I can import the most recent mp3 to Flash by parsing the RSS from my blog.
Wish me luck.
I've been asked to research some possible hook-ups using Presenter and WebCt. I always tell people that with Flash, Everything is Possible. Now think of WebCt and Powerpoint as the evil step sisters telling your instructional design to stay in the potato cellar. Here are some things you can and can't do with Presenter in WebCt.
Embed a Flash interaction in a Breeze Presentation: Yes, but no import at runtime. This means all content must be added to the Flash movie when it is being authored. For example the Language Flashcards load dozens of words and sound files at runtime.
Flash interaction in Breeze Presentation report to gradebook: No. I have not found a way to import a SCORM module into Breeze Presenter.
Breeze Quizzes in a Breeze Presentation report to WebCt gradebook: Yes, but as has always been the case , the grade cannot be released to the student nor can the SCORM grade be used in a calculated column. You get what you pay for. Wait, no we didnt!
Link to a WebCt discussion topic from a SCORM module or Content File: No. The discussion tool is not at a URL so it cannot be linked to. Confound and drat this Oracle LMS!
SCORM grading with import at runtime. Yes, but not from within a Breeze Presentation.
Nand won the eLearning category in Adobe's syncSWF contest 2006. You can find it at the exchange. Yes there is a prize, but the coolest thing is that you can search for Schubring on the Adobe site and get two results. I'm famous amoung the ten people in the world working on synchronous rich media.
I would also like to take a moment to celebrate my first official long-term gap in blog postings.
Every five years or so I take up Java again. In this case, I'm making a Java physics simulation that will run on the Unity server. The clients will be Flash. It's a cool rig because nobody has to work about having the right JRE but me. Everybody has Flash. Unity is cheap as free. I'm psyched about the next year's worth of development.
Java has a steep bump at the beginning of the learning curve. You've got to get your path together, find the libraries then figure out the javac and jar command line interfaces. Then you have the little matter of learning to code Java. The SDK has gotten better and Derek from moock.org is super helpful.
I've gotten over the hump. I have a custom room running on Unity and have established communication with the clients. Now I'm deciding what type of simulation I want to use for the demo app. I have a few things I want to demonstrate:
Synchronous multi-user interaction
Persistent, real-time environment
SCORM gradable results
I'll think of something.
This week I've done my initial proof of concept prototypes. I have a SCORM module that does a synchronous multi-user interaction and reports to the Moodle grade book. I tried modifying one of the Unity example rooms to do a physics model on the server, but I can't compile without the additional source code that comes with the licensed version. The purchase order is in.
As a workaround I made a Flash movie to run on the server and coded a bouncing ball in actionScript. It's working ok, but the clients are showing some jittery motion, likely caused by the server side movie being almost in sync with the clients. I'm sure the server side Java will run much smoother.
It's been years since I played with Java. The stupid thing about command line interface is that 'Documents and Settings' likes to be called DOCUME~1. Even stupider is that dots in folder names won't resolve - Try CD j2sdk1~1. You can't get there from here. You have to rename the folder. Microsoft can't figure out how to fix their command line parser after all these years. Does annoying Java users help save the world somehow?
The uniMoodle URL is active. Unity is serving sockets like a sommelier. A synchronous application is running in the sidebar of my course. It works and I'm pleased as cheese.
One issue I had to clear up was detecting this._url and punching up the path of the xml config file. Same thing as in Vista, but easier because on Moodle files actually exist at a URL rather than in the RelativeResourcesManager (A.K.A. the Interzone).
My next step is to do a SCORM hookup for graded, group interactions. I'll also need to get the licensed uClient Core so the apps won't time out.
I'll pass on the highlights of the first two days.
At the Adobe Keynote it was demonstrated that AS3 can run 10x faster than AS2 in player 9. I talked to one of the Adobe guys and there is no 3d hardware support in the works for Flash. Bummer.
Fuel Industries showed off some TV branding games.
The guys from Athletics were hilarious and talked about dealing with quick and dirty assets. See http://www.gamekillers.com/
Jeremy Thorp showed some cool graphic/audio applications for Darwinian evolution.
After lunch on the second day, I caught the first AS3 design patterns presentation and was nodding off every 10 seconds. Code in the morning please.
Finally, Burlesque showed how in the design world, busy is the new clean.