Friday, April 11, 2014

Running an Articulate Storyline module on a non-iOS mobile device

A lot of blood, sweat and swearing has gone into the back story behind today's post.
I am preparing to run a short internal workshop about the use of technology in learning. As part of that, I thought I might start with a brief, fun quiz, designed to demonstrate to my largely tech-shy colleagues that they are not as digitally illiterate as they think. Of course, it makes sense to deliver that quiz using technology in an intuitive enough form that it supports my message, right?
Devising the quiz
So I opted to use Articulate Storyline. I am fairly adept with Articulate Studio, having used it to build solutions for several of my clients when I had my own business, but I have only recently been coming to grips with Storyline. It's very handy for this sort of thing. So here we had learning experience 1. I made a few mistakes, and oversights, which revealed themselves in the test stages, but I managed to sort them out (I think).
The challenges
Creating the quiz proved to be the easy bit. The difficult bit comes when we start looking at the tech for the workshop. Here are the challenges I faced:
  • There isn't enough cabling in any of our meeting rooms for everyone to bring along their laptops and access the quiz on our shared drive.
  • There is only one, rather feeble, wifi network in our offices, which doesn't reach the meeting rooms.
  • We have no supported tablets in our offices. We do, however, have some unsupported ones. These are generic non-iOS devices.
  • The unsupported devices don't have access to our network drives.
  • I don't have a space suitable for hosting the quiz module in a workable format.
  • Normally speaking, in order to run an Articulate module on a tablet, you have to publish an html5 version and download the Articulate Mobile Player app from iTunes. That means it's only available to iOS devices.
With the help of my remarkably supportive husband for some bits, this is what I will be doing:

Creating a wifi hotspot
I will create a wifi hotspot in the meeting room by bridging the networks on my laptop as follows (I hope - this bit has yet to be tested!):

Hosting space
The tablets can then use that wifi to access the quiz. However, as I mentioned, there isn't a suitable space for me to host the quiz. So I'm hoping that I will be able to impose on the good graces of the people at Articulate to host the quiz on their tempshare space for the occasion. It is a little frustrating that I need to do this at all, but let's not go there for now.

Accessing the quiz
Of course, the resultant link from the tempshare space will be a long-ass string of letters and numbers and I don't have a way of storing that link on the tablets, so I will use Bitly to shorten it and then, rather clunkily, ask my attendees to enter it manually into the address bar of the browser.

This brings me to the matter of the browser. As I mentioned, these are non-iOS devices. In order to run an Articulate module on a mobile device, said device needs to have the appropriate app. This app is only available from iTunes, so applies only to iOS mobile devices. However, thanks to this post by Robert George on the Articulate forum, I discovered that the way forward on my cheap and cheerful tablets was a browser called Dolphin.

Having done that, I no longer needed the mobile player app. The tablet could run the quiz without it.

So, at about midnight last night, my husband and I high fived each other and dragged our exhausted butts to bed.

Now to see if I can replicate this in the office! It all hangs on that wifi connection!

Wish me luck.

No comments: