LodeStar

LodeStar

free to download: http://lodestarlearning.com/downloads/lodeStar7.2/en/LodeStar-7.0.exe

From: Robert “Bob” Bilyk [mailto:Robert.Bilyk@LodeStarLearning.com]

I would choose LodeStar if I wanted to do decision-making scenarios or branched interactions that included visuals and, optionally, voice. I would choose LodeStar if I wanted to mash up html presentations with a dozen activity types and have it all come out in an html 5 compliant fashion.

Having written that, LodeStar was redesigned from the ground up on a framework that will allow more media control in the future. The next step for LodeStar 7 is to restore vector graphics editing and the opportunity to link graphics with interactive properties such as assembling machine parts or maps or a science experiment. LodeStar was redesigned on a platform that allows vector graphics to be first class citizens along with components. That work will take another six months. After that, I may revisit the synchronization of visuals with voice-over. We’ll see.

Incidentally, the recent move of LodeStar to a new look and feel has left vestiges of wonkiness with the dialog box fonts. I can see that in your screen capture. The purpose of the audio dialog is simple — but made unclear by the oversized fonts. Currently, you select an audio file to match the page. Currently, because of an IP issue that got resolved for the browser companies, you can select MP3 and it will run everywhere. The purpose of the .wav file was for a fall back. That is no longer necessary. IE, Firefox, Opera, Chrome, and Safari now natively support MP3. The instructor also has the choice of the audio running automatically or displaying a control that enables the student

to start and stop audio. One page, one audio file.   Instructors, especially language instructors, use this successfully.

Robert “Bob” Bilyk

LodeStar Learning Corporation

http://www.LodeStarLearning.com

Follow us on Facebook

https://www.facebook.com/LodeStarLearn

Related IMS blog entries:

http://blog.stcloudstate.edu/ims/2015/04/28/voice-over-presentation-solutions/

Voice over presentation: solutions

Voice over presentation

Faculty request to lay voice over a presentation with pictures. Solutions:

  • PowerPoint:

Windows / PC

ppt voice over

ppt voice over

Apple/Mac

voice over PPT on Apple

voice over PPT on Apple

advantages:

– unfortunately, faculty are way too familiar with PPT. Familiar to the point that they don’t want to try something better.
– FERPA complient

disadvantages:

– too old. PPT is pre-Internet. It does not matter how much Microsoft is trying to adapt it, the concept is old. There is a myriad of cloud-based solutions, which do better job: http://blog.stcloudstate.edu/ims/2013/09/30/the-5-best-free-slideshow-presentation-and-creation-tools-for-teachers/
– too many files, too many variations
– PPT posted in D2L displays in the D2L Viewer. The visuals are there, but the voice is not. In order to hear the voice, students must download the presentation. Faculty must reflect this in the syllabus.
– faculty need to know how to upload on their web space and figure out URL, if PPT is not place in LMS (D2L)- if faculty places PPT in LMS (D2L), then it is behind password; nearly impossible to share (can share only with SCSU and/or MnSCU members.
– faculty must remember to indicate in the syllabus and/or D2L / Content that “in order to hear the voice over, user must download presentation.”

  • SlideShare

slideshare

slideshare

advantages:

– it is a “social” app, like LinkedIn and Twitter. Tagged correctly, the presentation is a platform for “same-minded” people to discuss mutual interests.
– excellent for sharing: conferences, MOOCs etc.
– it has discussion group in LinkedIn.

disadvantages:

– voice over presentation: way to cumbersome compared to PPT. Watch their presentation
– by FERPA regulations, if the presentation contains personal data about students, it cannot be shared on SlideShare

mybrainshaark

mybrainshaark

advantages:

– it is a “social” app, like LinkedIn and Twitter. Tagged correctly, the presentation is a platform for “same-minded” people to discuss mutual interests.
– excellent for sharing: conferences, MOOCs etc.
– like PPT, very easy upload of pix and voice over. Better the PPT, since it is online and easy to distribute.
– easy to upload PPT and easy to voice over each slide

disadvantages:

– does not embed in D2L (it is D2L issue, not the app), but works perfectly as a link
– faculty must remember to indicate in the syllabus and/or D2L / Content that when clicking on the URL to the PPT, user must simultaneously press “Ctrl” key to open PPT in a separate browser window or tab
– by FERPA regulations, if the presentation contains personal data about students, it cannot be shared on SlideShare

voicethread

voicethread

advantages:

– consistently voted through last 5 years by K12 educators as great interactive tool.
– video, images, audio and text.
– “constructivist” premiss: teacher and students can exchange asynchronously ideas by using images, video, text and audio.

disadvantages:

– free option has limited features.
– by FERPA regulations, if the presentation contains personal data about students, it cannot be shared on on this site.

mediasite

mediasite


advantages
:

– crude screen capture: faculty can run the PPT manually and narrate over it.
– dirty but fast
– easily shared online (URL ready)
– FERPA compliant

disadvantages:

– students cannot comment (compared to VoiceThread)

  • LodeStar

lodestar
lodestar

advantages:

– free: http://lodestarlearning.com/downloads/lodeStar7.2/en/LodeStar-7.0.exe
– easy to use
– FERPA compliant; endorsed by MnSCU

disadvantages:

– voice over too complex (very much the same as with SlideShare)

  • SoftChalk

advantages:
– FERPA compliant; endorsed by MnSCU

disadvantages:

  • others

I have not included TechSmit’s Jing https://www.techsmith.com/jing.html, because their video output (Flash file) is obsolete and impossible to convert for free. While it still can be played, shall faculty want to upload the video file on Youtube or similar social media, it will be impossible.

———————————-

Related IMS blog entries:

http://blog.stcloudstate.edu/ims/2014/06/01/social-media-and-presentations-free-image-sources/

http://blog.stcloudstate.edu/ims/2013/09/30/the-5-best-free-slideshow-presentation-and-creation-tools-for-teachers/