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Tiny change, huge difference

Categories: SCORM Cloud
29 Oct 2010

We made a small change in our reporting tool in the past month. You might not have even noticed. But it’s probably the biggest, baddest, best change we could have made. Because it fixes the source of many questions and much confusion about the tool just by changing to real-time reporting.


We had originally meant for data in the reporting tool to update once a day. There’s this whole technical process where the form of the data has to convert from how it gets saved in the cloud and how it is reported in the tool. We really thought that once a day (and later, every 30 minutes) would be sufficient for admin types.

Only, it wasn’t. In part because admins weren’t the only ones needing to see pieces of the data and in part because we’ve just gotten used to a world of real-time data.

Our big concern – and the only reason we didn’t just jump on this one for a little while – was that the data transmogrification would throw a few kinks in the works and cause everything else to take longer. We dug a little deeper, spent a little time and realized this wasn’t going to be a problem. We’d hate to sacrifice performance in the process of adding a feature.


So, enter the world of real-time reporting! Where you will actually notice this is when a learner completes a course, they can be informed of their completion status immediately. In addition, you can go straight to a launch history report and see what just occurred in a course where there was a problem. It will all be there, ready and waiting in real time.

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Button10 - shortlistedWe wanted to create something new with SCORM Cloud. Something that could take advantage of the changes happening in learning online. Something that could change the way we think about tapping the internet. Something that anticipated the needs of educators and trainers.

And we think we did it. And we aren’t the only ones. In fact, SCORM Cloud was just short-listed for the e.learning age awards in the most innovative new product category. Sweet!

SCORM Cloud is just at the beginning of its impact. It’s already making life easier for people with big open-source LMSs, anyone needing to do SCORM testing and those offering training via WordPress. And we’re looking for new ways to stretch all the time.

Upcoming innovations? How about using it with Google Apps for domains? That one’s in the works to be available soon and could be a dream for small businesses. And we’re hoping to let you know soon about ways people outside of Rustici are building on top of SCORM Cloud.

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More than 10,000 plugins available for WordPress and we’re your first, best and only option for using SCORM. Which we should be. This is kind of our spot, after all.

All that to point out that SCORM Cloud is officially in the WordPress plugin directory, which makes it just that much easier to install and get going. Just search for SCORM and … well, it’s in a class by itself there. College class, instructional design portfolio, sales training – all easy to execute now.

We’ve heard from lots of you who are excited about using this plugin. But we want to hear more about how you’re using it and what other plugins make it more valuable. Do you tie it to BuddyPress? Have you figured out a clever connection to [some related posts]? Making money with a tie to Aweber?

I’m compiling a list to be part of our WordPress section to show off your sites and the smart ways you’re putting our plugin to use. If you’ve deployed the SCORM Cloud plugin, let me know and I’ll add you to the list.

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We write about working here more often than we ever post that we’re hiring. Small company, only so many slots to fill, yada, yada, yada. Seriously, when you have a great place to work, who wants to leave?

So now’s your chance. We’re hiring. Developer types. All sizes. Bonus points if you can beat Tim at ping pong.

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When we talk about SCORM Cloud, we usually talk about taking SCORM outside the LMS. Take learning anywhere online. Connect learners to learning.

Well, to date, we’ve still been connecting to LMSs with modules for open source learning management systems like Moodle and Sakai. But now we’ve taken that first step away from the LMS with a WordPress plug-in that allows you to offer a SCORM course right from a post or page or sidebar list.

We’re still testing it out, writing up instructions and so forth, but by next week (maybe sooner?), we fully expect to have all our ducklings in neat rows and ready to go for full release. To tide you over until then, here’s a look at how I used it on a test blog. Just by pushing a button and picking my course, I was able to add a course directly into a blog post and registered learners can click the button and launch the course right from the post.

Screen shot 2010-07-20 at 9.33.21 AM

Now, if you just can’t wait and want to try out the beta version, you can go ahead and download it to check it out. Screencasts to walk you through some of it are on the way available in our YouTube playlist. We’d love to hear what you think about the direction we’ve taken with this.

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