Elluminate

Elluminate (http://www.elluminate.com/index.jsp) promotes itself as an elearning or web conferencing solution for real-time online learning. The company is headquartered both in Calgary and Fort Lauderdale. The website mentions that Elluminate is “the winner of several prestigious awards, the company is also one of Deloitte’s 50 Fastest Growing Technology Companies and is positioned in the Visionaries Quadrant of the Gartner Magic Quadrant for Web Conferencing, 2007.”

Through LearnNowBC (http://www.learnnowbc.ca/educators/OnlineToolsResources/), BC teachers have free access to Elluminate online meeting rooms and training. I have only had one brief training session, so I’m not really familiar with Elluminate, but here goes!

Face 1: Market Focus
According to its website, Elluminate seems to be targeting all three areas of the market: k-12, higher education, and training needs.

Face 2: Types of Offerings
Elluminate offers infrastructure in the form of a virtual classroom/meeting place. Elluminate Professional Services targets services: Elluminate training; custom implementation through content conversion, etc; integration support (integrating with learning management systems, for example); event hosting; technical support.

Face 3: Who is the Buyer?
The learning is bought for the learner, rather than the learner buying it for him/herself. In most cases, it seems that the learning is bought centrally (the corporation or, in BC’s case, the provincial authority). For BC teachers, training is available through Elluminate, but it is up to the local school to implement local changes in order to create an optimal learning experience for the students.

Face 4: Global Markets
The Elluminate website states that Elluminate is used in 185 different countries. It appears that Elluminate could be used with all of the markets except for “Other Regions with Restricted or Poor Quality Internet Service.” Although Elluminate claims to work with speeds as low as 28.8 kbps, it certainly won’t work if there is no connectivity. Markets with different languages could use the virtual meeting rooms. I am not sure about the ability of Elluminate to work with other alphabet sets (I can’t imagine that the text area would support this), but there would still be some value in the application sharing and the virtual meeting rooms.

Face 5: Development of the Market
Elluminate would work well on the right-hand side of this face – in markets that import or export of content and infrastructure. Elluminate might also work in a market that only supports custom work or indigenous suppliers. Because Elluminate can provide just the virtual meeting place, the content can be developed locally.

Face 6: Learning Technology Competing with Other Forms of Learning
This technology seems to fit best where there is already a well-developed learning system. It could also provide a substitute for other forms of learning by displacing face-to-face learning.

September 18, 2008   6 Comments

Tutor.com

I came across Tutor.com and it looks very useful and engaging for students.  It also has a simple platform that opens access to non-computer types.  The cost is lower than a f2f private tutor which breaks down the economic barriers to additional help that many students face.  I don’t know any students who have used this service yet, so don’t take my review as a pitch! 

 

Face 1 – Market Focus

Tutor.com is “homework help and online tutoring” for gr. 4 – 12 students that is available 24/7.

 

Face 2 – Types of Offerings

Tutor.com is both a content and infrastructure based e-business that assists students with homework, studying, and general concept questions.  Once learner/parents purchase minutes they have access to a real-time private tutor.  Instant messaging is used to communicate between student & tutor.  Both the tutor and student utilize a white board to hash out problems.

 

There are also a number of free articles for students/parents/educators/librarians to access.

 

Face 3 – The Buyer

The “learning is bought for the learner” here!  The website is marketed to both the parent and the learner.  The company markets to the parents by providing a solution to their child’s homework needs.  The company also elicits the learners “buy-in” by using appealing aesthetics and the word “you”.

 

Face 4 – Global Markets

Currently, the site has both Canadian and American tutors which limit the services to North America.  When a student logs on they are prompted to list the specific subject & grade they are looking for as to get the appropriate tutor.

 

Face 5 – Development of Market

The ‘market supports export oriented learning technologies and the substitution of imports’ for online tutoring.  This business can be exported to anywhere in Canada and the US (and if they can acquire tutors in other countries if they wish to expand).  There are also substitutions at a local level as learners can get tutoring f2f and not go online.

 

Face 6 – Competing with Other Forms of Learning

Tutor. Com falls into two categories here as it both supports traditional learning in the classroom and is a substitute for f2f tutoring.

 

 

 

September 18, 2008   6 Comments

Alan’s views on Recombo and Ingenia

Both presentations were convincing and easy to watch.  In Recombo the company has changed with the need/? and this is good.  I am a little uneasy about the  large turn around.  Was this always in the design, or just what exactly caused the large shift.  It is not clear in the presentation.  The first presentation was very “silicone valley” , relaxed, open shirt, whereas the second was more “business” with shirt and tie, etc.  This may be healthy growth, but is there a hint of non specific direction, or indecision?  All in all a  case to support this opportunity could be made, but another presentation could place this one out of contention.

Ingenia looks good on the outside, but I am hesitant about their expertise.  I would like to know more about the “guru” status of the presenter and why is it that with all the cultural concerns, are they working with Vietnam, without a solid base at home?  There may be very good reasons for all these concerns, but it is not clear in the prersentation.  Again I have some concerns and another project may be more rewarding.

September 18, 2008   1 Comment