I’ve just uploaded an updated OppiaMobile preview video, showing some of the changes we’ve made over the last couple of months, especially with the updated interface design and with our platform name. I’ve also launched the OppiaMobile website, so has some extra information pages especially for course authors and for developers.
For those interested, I used an Android screen recording app to create the video – was easy to use and could record my voice at the same time (though it requires a rooted phone to work). With the previous demo videos I’ve made of apps running the mobile, it’s always been tricky to get my digital camera to focus on the screen properly and also so there aren’t reflections from the mobile screen. Although I think it looks good, I think I still prefer videos where you can see the whole phone and it being manipulated. One issue I found was that when I was demonstrating the videos running, they automatically play in landscape mode, but the rest of the video is in portrait, so I needed to cut and rotate this part of the demo. I’d be interested to hear if you think a video of the full phone (and my hands) or a screencast recording is preferable as a demo of the app.
Since we’ve been working on our mobile learning app, we’ve not really had a good name for it, and have just been referring to it as ‘our mobile learning app’, and we really wanted to come up with a nice name for the platform. Selecting and finding a good name is pretty tough, especially a short one that isn’t some convoluted acronym. We also didn’t want the name to be specific to a particular field (such as health), as although most of our current content is health related, we can also use the platform for other subject areas (such as the Open Education MOOC).
So… the name we have settled on is “Oppia Mobile”, for info ‘oppia’ means ‘to learn’ in Finnish, and as far as we can tell it doesn’t mean anything strange or bad in any other language – but please let us know if it does.
We’ve registered the domain http://oppia-mobile.org, but currently this just redirects to the app download page in Google Play. I’ll get a proper site set up in the coming weeks. It feels good that we now have a name we can use to refer to the platform.
I’ve just begun to add some gamification into mQuiz and our mobile learning application. We’ve been thinking quite a lot about badging for the mobile learning modules and perhaps how we could apply this to quizzes too. However, for me, awarding badges for just completing a single quiz, seems to cheapen somehow the value of the badges. So I’ve decided to try out a dual approach of points and badges and see how that works. You gain points for creating/taking quizzes and for completing activities in the mobile learning app, but you only gain a badge for completing all the activities in a given module (or perhaps creating a certain number of quizzes).
So far I’ve only implemented the basic points scoring system (I’ve retrospectively added points to those who have previously been using mQuiz), and the scores only appear on the leaderboard on the homepage, but shouldn’t be too much work to get this more integrated (for example showing your score in the mobile app etc).
For those interested, the scoring currently works like this:
100 – creating an account
200 – creating a quiz
20 – first time you attempt (someone else’s) quiz
? – percentage score you got for a quiz on your first attempt. E.g. if you score 75% on your first attempt you get 75 points
50 – bonus if you get 100% on your first attempt at a quiz
10 – each subsequent attempt at a quiz (max. once per day per quiz)
5 – someone attempting a quiz you created (max. once per day per quiz per user)
10 – completing an activity in the mobile learning app (max. once per day per activity)
I’ve tried to encourage people to try and get as high a score as possible on their first attempt, although you are rewarded for trying the quiz repeatedly (on different days), and I also wanted to encourage people to create popular quizzes – hence the points when someone attempts a quiz you created.
I’m not sure I’ve got all the points quite right yet, so will see how this works and I may make some adjustments over time. I’m sure there are a few ways to cheat this (I’ve thought of a few already), especially with the API to create quizzes.
Next steps are to get the points, leaderboards etc displaying in the mobile app…
I’ve just released the new version of mQuiz. For those of you who have previously signed up to mQuiz and/or the mobile learning app, the key change is that you will need to reset your password (the new version of mQuiz uses a more secure way of storing passwords) and upgrade the mobile learning app on your Android phone.
To reset your password, go to: http://mquiz.org/profile/reset/, enter your email/username and a new password will be emailed to you. Once you log in, you can reset your password to something more memorable. If you are using the mobile learning app, after you upgrade the app, you will need to log in using your updated password.
The key changes to mQuiz are:
Quiz creation/editing. You can now add different question types (not only multiple choice) and add feedback to give to the user.
Rewritten in Django application framework. This should make the app faster, more robust/stable and easier to add new features.
Finally, I should add that this is all still a work in progress, there are many, many more features and improvements I’m looking to make. If you find anything isn’t working as expected, or if you have any comments/suggestions then please either post a comment below or email me.
As before, when you first start the app you’ll be asked to login or register and then you can install some of the modules to test out (once logged in you’ll see the link to ‘install modules’). For initially logging in and installing the modules, you’ll need a data/wifi connection, but after this the app will work fully offline.
Also (and as before), the video content is not included in the module packages (mainly to keep the download size down). For trying out the videos, you can download them from here (all the .m4v files): http://alexlittle.net/blog/downloads/heat/ – just copy these files directly into the /digitalcampus/media/ directory on your phone SD card.
If you have any problems/comments etc then please leave a message below.
With the HEAT Mobile content I’ve been looking at ways in which we can allow users to switch between different translations of the content. By enabling the Moodle Multi-language content filter, I can add alternative translations for the same content page. I found this method a little fiddly, and in switching between the HTML code view and the HTML editor view, sometimes the language span tags get removed. For example, if I enter:
the HTML editor strips out the span tags completely. But with a bit of playing around I got it all working.
I then updated my export code (which generates the files to drop into the Android app) to check for the languages available on each page and to create an option for the user to switch to whichever languages are available for that page. Here’s an example of switching between English and Swahili on one of the PNC module pages:
The next step is to be able to switch the whole interface over to alternative languages (not just the content) and also being able to provide the quizzes in multiple languages. Though now I already have this working with the main content, it shouldn’t be too hard to extend this.