AG08 Day 2

I’m a little more rested today, and only slightly lagging from the time zone shift.

I started off again with a Breakfast Byte, this time on Decision Support strategies present by Janet Emery. Wow, that was the right way to start my day. Janet is absolutely brilliant (she’s won multiple awards from ASTD and ISPI) and I’m surprised I haven’t heard of her before. She has a ton of experience working with call centers and improving performance of agents. What I learned from her is that we should provide support tools first and think about formal training second. In other words, use basic Human Performance Technology strategies to get people to perform. Those strategies may not include training. Early in my career I was fully indoctrinated into HPT. Janet reminded me of what should be my primary objective – find the best solution to improve performance. Train less, support more. I could do a lengthy blog post on just this session. It was so good I went to round table discussion she did later in the day just to hear it again.

After that was the keynote by John Patrick. Like yesterday, Clark Quinn provides a great summary. I do want to highlight one thing John said – America’s large telephone companies are the biggest threat to the Internet. They avoid competition and have an army of lobbyist making sure congress keeps it that way. Think about it. What has your ISP done for you? If network connectivity doesn’t get better and come up to the level in other countries (Europe, Japan, Korea for example) how will that impact your eLearning?

Next I attended a session on the future of SCORM. First of all, hats off to Rovy Brannon for being brave enough to come talk about SCORM. Many people have a love/hate relationship with SCORM and a few vented frustrations which Rovy handled graciously. Bottom line, SCORM is moving from an ADL standard to an IEEE standard, which should help improve the standard and make updates faster and more reliable. The new organization taking it on is LETSI. And the cross-domain scripting issue is not being fixed in SCORM 2004 4th Edition (due sometime in the not too distant future.)

After lunch I went to “I’m Busy Enough…What Do I Need a Second Life For?” mostly because Angela White (who I met at the conference) was so enthusiastic about Second Life. I went in as a skeptic and left intrigued. It does have applications in the learning space, but probably not in my organization. Alan Levine from NMC presented the session and “demystified” Second Life for me. I’ve heard of it, but never tried it. I have enough ways to kill time as it is, but I will be trying it out soon. I think it has a lot of potential.

The last session I attended was “The Great ILS Challenge”. (ILS = Immersive Learning Simulation = Serious Game) The three panelist (Alan Levine, Jan Cannon-Bowers, and Kevin Corti) were presented a scenario and had to give a short presentation on their solution. Each had a completely different solution to the same problem, but all used games or virtual worlds as the main delivery tool. What struck me was not the technology or platform each came up with, but that they all had such different ideas. My take away was that every learning problem has multiple solutions, each of which may work as well as the others. We just have to think creatively to come up with them.

Like yesterday I ended the day with a group dinner, this time with a different group that included Brent Schlenker from the eLearning Guild. Again, this was probably the high point of the day – just talking casually about learning and technology and social networking and whatever. The online contacts I’ve made blogging have turned into real world contacts and greatly enhanced my experience at this conference.

One Response to AG08 Day 2

  1. It was great chatting with you in our dinner group. You’ve reflected wonderfully on the conference. This is a great post.
    Many thanks!

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