Forum .LRN Q&A: Course Editor in Action (a sneak preview)

Hi all,

thanks to Macromedia Captivate I was able to record a first presentation on the Course Editor I've been developing for the last one year. Hopefully it will be available by the end of this summer.

The presentation shows how to
- Install the Editor
- Installing the Course Editor
- Creating a new Course Project
- Adding Chapters and Pages
- Adding Resources
- Exporting to HTML
- Creating a Navigation for DVD,Apache...
- Exporting to SCORM 1.2
- Uploading the SCORM course to dotLRN
- Viewing the uploaded course in dotLRN

The Course Editor will have support for

- Model-based development of courses
- WYSIWYG-Editing capabilities
- Support to reference arbitrary resources (DOC, PDF...)
- Support to integrate Audio, Video, Flash, Applets, Images
- Import from HTML and DOC. OpenOffice is planned
- Export to Single HTML, Chunked HTML, SCORM 1.2, SCORM 2004, IMS QTI, IMS LD, Dublin Core
- Some goodies like S5 Presentations
- Export to Docbook
- PDF/PS Export (if I get it work again :)
- Include of Latex math formula

The Course Editor is intended as an extensible toolkit. You can find a sample course already created with the Editor here:
Course: Computer Networks 2005 -

Here is the presentation:

Posted by sergio cubero on

This software, Where I can download a demo?


Posted by Nima Mazloumi on
<h3>Platform-independant Interface to Manage Legacy IMS/SCORM Content in an LMCS</h3>

While the IEEE LOM, IMS LOM and ADLNet SCORM Standards have increased the development
of platform independant course material the standards are only applicable when you have
a final draft of a course that simply needs to get shared.

Some LMCS provide editing facilities right on the platform to create course
material successively. This functionality is nice but limits the author to a given platform
editing environment. The initial goal of platform indepence should also apply to authors
and not only to content.


The goal is to design a standard webbased interface to manage existing ims/scorm content
in a platform. This interface should be used by authoring systems to control the structure
of courses in a platform.

The following use cases exist

  • Authentication
    • Connecting to the LMCS
    • Authenticating author via username and password
  • Course Synchronization
    • Searching the course catalog for existing courses
    • Mapping remote and local courses via unique Id
    • Automatically finding differences between local and remote course
      • Differences in course structure, like
        • Missing items
        • Changed item position
        • Changed item title
      • Differences between resources basically by comparing a hash value
    • Suggesting synchronization for each item and resource
  • Item management
    • Does an item with a given Id exist?
    • Add a new item to a course organisation
    • Remove an existing item
    • Move an existing item
    • Edit an existing item's title
    • Delete an item and associated resources
  • Resource management
    • Does a resource with a given Id exist?
    • Add a new resource
    • Add a new resource version
    • Remove an existing resource
    • Move an existing resource

<h2>Implementation options</h2>

The preferred way to carry out to implement these use cases on the server side is using HTTP and any
technology on the authoring system side to extend it's functionality.

Unclear is which technology should be used to manage the above described use cases:

  • WebDAV for file resource management?
  • XML/RPC or Web Services for item management and authentication?

Posted by Nima Mazloumi on
Sergio: The Editor is still under heavy development and testing. The official release will be announced.
Posted by Dave Bauer on

I think an interesting option is to pass around the IMS xml fragments that are relevant to the changes you want to make to the server. I am not sure if the XML would include everything you need, but starting there, and extending it might be a good option.

I think the best idea is to start as simply as possibly and just HTTP POST the information to a URL that is predefined to handle the operation. I guess you'd have to also setup this URL on the client editor application so it knows where to go.

Posted by Dave Bauer on
Also, if you need to send files along with the XML information, maybe just uploading a ZIP file would work, the same way an entire IMS course is uploaded. It could just contain the files that are different.
Posted by Alfred Essa on
Nima, This is excellent. Will course editor use Eclipse? If so, can you describe your choice? Thanks.
Posted by Nima Mazloumi on
The authoring tool can store:
- username
- password
- URL of the LMCS-Interface

The idea of using IMS XML fragments is nice. We would need to extend the syntax to support:

- Delete Actions
- Change Actions
- Rename item
- Move/Resource item
- New Actions
- New Item
- New Resource or new version

Posted by Nima Mazloumi on
Yes. The course editor is based on Eclipse. I don't understand your question but if your question is why I decided for Eclipse the reason was primarily that I needed a toolkit that was platform independant and that would provide technologies needed like:
- WebDAV for synchronizing with dotLRN
- CVS for concurrent course authoring
- Integration of external tools
- Model driven Codegeneration
- Model driven Graphical Editors
Posted by Nima Mazloumi on
Just added the S5 export and a University of Mannheim theme.

You need to have Java, Real and Flash plugin installed for a full featured presentation. Also Javascript must be enable.

I tested it on IE and all gecko based browsers (Firefox, K-Meleon...).

Posted by Caroline Meeks on
When I try to view the course:

I get the audio but not the video.

Windows Media Player Error Message Help

You've encountered error message C00D10D1 while using Windows Media Player. The following information might help you troubleshoot the issue.
Codec is missing
Windows Media Player cannot play the file (or cannot play either the audio or video portion of the file) because a required codec is not installed on your computer.

Nima, is the course editor an open source stand alone client ap? Does it run on both Mac and PC? What is it written in.

What are other open source alternatives for course creation?