In its 17th year, the Learning Technologies conference and exhibition continues to grow and dazzle. The event earlier in February 2016 had more exhibitors, more attendees, and most importantly more technology on display. And for the team at kPoint, Learning Technologies 2016 was a reinforcement of our belief in video being the lead technology driver in the evolution of learning in the workplace.
Here are some of my observations and takeouts from attending LT2016 as an exhibitor and delegate.
The learning industry is flourishing
Things got really busy at Learning Technologies this year, not only in terms of visitors, but exhibitors as well. With more than 7,500 visitors and 250 exhibitors, and exhibition halls packed with the latest in learning innovation and practise, LT2016 provided buzzing atmosphere for the learning community. It was interesting to see how technologies, regardless of sector, have become integrally intertwined with learning. Learning Management Systems is a mature category. No wonder that new and seasoned businesses are jostling with each other for attention. Looks like the need to manage learning is only growing day by day.
Virtual Reality is exciting and visible on the horizon
The primary purpose of disruptive technology is to break status quo. In the last couple of decades, the ubiquity of computers and mobile phones brought us e-learning and m-learning. I believe that the next big wave of technological advance that will disrupt the learning industry is wearable technology. One of the forms through which wearable technology is delivering immersive learning is virtual reality. Virtual reality creates a parallel “reality” through a completely simulated world.
For me, the highlight of LT2016 was the way The Economist used virtual reality to reconstruct the historical sites and artefacts from Iraq’s Mosul Museum, which was destroyed during the current strife in Iraq. It was amazing to see how they have used crowd-sourced imagery to digitally reconstruct the heritage structure. Truly a great example of technology driving innovative storytelling. I am sure that with the right learning outcomes, this technology will be available at more affordable costs, making it a powerful tool for delivering learning.
Video is now mainstream
The explosion of smart mobile device ownership has resulted in massive growth in time spent consuming videos. With more than one billion active users, and close to 400 hours of video content being uploaded every minute, YouTube has become a prime example of the effectiveness of video for learning. The learning industry has already started adapting to this shift in the medium of content delivery by learners.
I was elated to see more than five organizations working with video participating at the event. There were video content production companies, and video technology companies. Apart from kPoint, the two other video technology companies were Ubicast and Refract. They discussed how they are creating their own processes to deliver video content with new levels of flexibility and application. It was good to see the exciting work they are doing in the video learning space.
It was most encouraging to see learning enthusiasts vouching for video as one of the prominent trends in learning. I thoroughly enjoyed the conversations, the technology showcase and the insights from Learning Technologies. The big takeaway for me was that video dominates the intersection of technology and learning content and kPoint is right up there with the biggest and best in videofying learning in the enterprise.
Co-Founder and MD, kPoint Technologies, consumed by a passion to create breakthrough products. Formerly COO at Persistent Systems. PhD, North Carolina State.