Month: March 2008

Blackboard: Spoke too soon?

Alfred Essa posted this tidbit today: An Important Correction to the Blackboard Patent Story A number of us, including this blog, have gotten this story wrong. It’s time for a correction. The USPTO has NOT invalidated the Blackboard patent. Instead the USPTO is proposing to invalidate the patent and has issued some preliminary documents for review and comment. At the end of the day the USPTO still might uphold the patent as valid. Let’s hope this is just a matter of semantics, and that the USPTO will continue along their current path towards invalidating Blackboard’s patents. *fingers crossed*!

Lines in the sand

Being an idealist, I eagerly bought into what was being covered in grad school. I believed (and still do, to a point) that every project should follow ADDIE or a similar model. C’mon, it makes sense, doesn’t it? The line in the sand had been drawn: skip these principles at your own peril. Now that I’ve spent a few years working full-time as an instructional designer-slash-e-learning developer, I’ve learned first-hand that the instructional design ideals taught in grad school are quickly thrown out the window when you get a “real” job.

PTO sets Blackboard straight

All 44 of Blackboard’s patent claims have been thrown out by the US Patent & Trademark Office. It’s not 100% official (this is the first step in the process), but things are looking up… for everyone except Blackboard. I really think they shot themselves in the foot by trying to establish a monopoly via patents and lawsuits. The negative PR will haunt them for years.

Example files for SCORM AS3 class updated

A number of people emailed me reporting problems using the demonstration files for the ActionScript 3 SCORM class. Turns out the imsmanifest.xml file was causing the problems; apparently, one of the supporting XML files was corrupt. After creating a new imsmanifest.xml file and bringing in fresh copies of all the supporting XML files (the ADL/IMS stuff), the example launches as expected. The new demo files pass the ADL SCORM 2004 Test Suite (both the SCO RTE conformance test and the Manifest Utility Test). They also work fine in Moodle (v1.8), which seems to be the LMS of choice for most …

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