When the news came down that Flash was retiring (and not being supported), I wasn’t expecting such a vocal response from my development team. “Good!” “Finally!” Well, you get the gist.
We’ve been at this since 2003, and when Adobe Flash player came out, it was a big deal. Suddenly, the internet became new and exciting, with new ways to build websites. Except there are some sites I will never forget, no matter how hard I try. Jurassic Park’s Ian Malcolm said it perfectly, “Your scientists were so preoccupied with whether they could, they didn’t stop to think if they should.” Let’s say; I’m very thankful for the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG).
Flash also took the online learning world by storm. We could increase the level of interaction and build nifty animations and engaging courses. And we did.
So why did our developers hate it so much? It was too slow, took up too much memory, and crashed desktops, not to mention security issues. And it became more and more difficult as more and more browsers decided not to support it. My team now creates multifaced learning experiences with HTML5 and use programs like Articulate-360 and Storyline and our favourite open-source, Adapt.
Over the years, we’ve taken Flash-based courses and turned them into HTML5 offerings. If you’re going to convert them, here are three pieces of advice.
Don’t just try to reproduce what you already have. Take a look at each course and ask whether you can make it even better. Today’s tools make that even simpler when used by the right people.
Don’t shirk on professional graphic design. You could have a course with a high level of interactivity, but if the graphics suck, the learner might think their experience sucks. Our graphic designer is one of our secret weapons. She turns lead into gold—every time.
Don’t start with just one. Bundle them. If you have a bunch of courses that need a facelift (even ones that are not Flash), group them together. You’ll find that economy of scale leads to better pricing. And you’ll get fresh courses faster.Thanks. Feel free to reach out if you have any questions. I’ll be contemplating what my next blog is going to be. Probably another countdown because they’re such fun.