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Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Finally, life is almost a Breeze!

I’ve been waiting for this day for so long, I can’t actually believe it has happened. Two years ago, Maggie and I attended a Macromedia publicity day in the Glasgow. Largely aimed at business, two members of Macromedia staff took us through the workings of two products – Breeze and Flex. If you don’t know about either, please follow the links. To say that day knocked our socks off put it mildly. I then made it my personal mission to make sure that my employer realised the enormous potential Breeze has for education. (One step at a time – Flex is fantastic, but we are nowhere near ready for that in Argyll!) After countless free trials and the enormous patience of the staff at Macromedia, we managed to convince the ‘powers that be’ in Argyll to part with the money to buy Breeze. 15 months later, we had the software installed and configured on one of our central servers. Pathetic, isn’t it? I appreciate there have been technical difficulties, but lets face it, the rest of the world has since moved on. There are many SCORM compliant LMS out there that give the tracking functionality (the important bit!) of Breeze. Very few others give the ease and compactness of Flash though.

11 teachers spent a day with me showing them how to turn their PowerPoint presentations into Breeze presentations and upload them to a server. At the end of the day, we had a look at assigning these presentations as a ‘course’ to a ‘learner’. All present realised what a difference this could make to their teaching, to their pupils learning, to the tracking and monitoring of their pupils achievements and last but not least, to their own marking workload as teachers.

Not without its problems though – accounts will need to be created for the students. Oh, and the small matter of the ‘Breeze Meeting’ not working on our network due to routers being set to automatically drop multicasting packets. It took 15 months to get Breeze up and running (as far as it is) – I’m not holding my breath for ‘Meeting’!

I hope the 11 folk on the course stick with it. They will have whatever support I can offer. Two years ago this was the future. I now can’t wait to see what happens.


Anonymous Michael Fitzpatrick said...

Good luck with your Breeze deployment! Sorry to hear about your network config issues, but if you continue to run into issues, please contact our technical support and they will be happy to help!

4:51 am  

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