Wednesday, May 25, 2011

HTML publishing

Does online learning content have to be created in HTML?

What are the advantages over other formats such as PDF? And do these advantages outweigh the benefits of being able to rapidly author in whatever software you like and convert to PDF?

Using a LCMS enables content packages with navigation
Hyperlinking can still be included to external sites
Formatting can be created in stylesheets, and are more accessible than CSS
File sizes are becoming negligible in a ubiquitous high bandwidth environment

Asking subject matter experts to invest in learning HTML is distracting them from focussing on their subject to creating content. Better for them to apply design on building the interaction with that content than on the creation of it.

The big downfall - accessibility
Can PDF be made accessible to W3C guidelines?

Friday, May 20, 2011

Alchemy or chemistry

Truth is not the domain of the expert (GFC anyone) but the constructed argument of a collective.

We are currently switching LMS from a proprietary product to an open-source one. Both systems can replicate features, it is the philosophy that is different.

Higher Education suffers from the proprietary mindset. Often accused of living in Ivory Towers it is time that we walked our talk, swap lectures for action-based learning, come down from the sage on the stage to be guides on the side. Be transparent, develop trust and drop authority. Favour discussion over debate, these are the ways to build the noosphere.

Here is a classic example of what happens when you blindly accept authority.