Simplifying the Road to Insight
June 4, 2019
Our latest update brought a range of exciting new features to Learning Locker, and for some of them, it is just the start of a much bigger plan.
I’m going to walk you through a few of the key elements for three of the new features that have the biggest scope for changing how you will interact with Learning Locker now, and how you might interact with the platform in the future.
These three things are:
- ‘Templates’ for querying data
- ‘Deletion API’ to tidy up the data in your LRS
- ‘App Pages’ to easily view all the xAPI-enabled apps
So let’s break them down…
One of the biggest goals for the Learning Locker team this year is to simplify how users receive useful insights from their xAPI data. We often find ourselves in a situation where a customer has multiple connected stores, with many data sources, full of rich xAPI, but need a lot of hand-holding through the initial stages of data analysis.
This isn’t a problem unique to Learning Locker, I might add. This is a problem that stems when you ask people who aren’t data analysts – who have never considered being heavily involved in data – to now suddenly insight information from thousands, if not millions, of records.
With this, we introduce templates! This is the start of a series of updates that will significantly reduce the complexity around your xAPI data. The initial set of templates are a one-click solution, designed around questions that you might ask your data when you first get started in the Learning Locker UK – as you will see below:
Over the coming months, you will see a lot more of these appear, some with a simple one click and others with a very minor configuration, like a course drop down, for example.
In most cases, we need an answer quickly, and this isn’t conjunctive with investing unnecessary time building out queries for simple solutions. So, our aim is to remove the stress of this for all users, even the more technically minded.
As data becomes more important in understanding learner activity and the wider picture of business performance, it is not uncommon to see customers integrate multiple different sources of data; some with built-in xAPI and others more custom.
Whilst testing these integrations, there is some fine tuning of the xAPI recipe that requires a clean out of old data. Perhaps there are some statements that have been sent in error, or maybe it’s that you just don’t need to store all of the information that gets sent from the xAPI conformant platform and you want to reduce the amount of storage you’re using.
All of this is possible with the new Deletion API. Single and batch deletions can be done, giving you complete control over your data like never before! Of course, we are always here to help if you need us, but you won’t need to rely on us for that element of your workflow anymore.
If you’re interested in finding out more about this feature, head over to our docs page.
Some of you will already be aware, but for those who aren’t, we’ve tried really hard to avoid building an overly bloated piece of software that is overrun with tabs, menus and features.
Instead, we decided to go with a more app-based approach to some of the more unique cases that we’ve seen creeping up in the industry. With our API-driven platform, it’s been really simple to build custom applications and integrations that sit alongside Learning Locker, without disrupting the cadence of releases in the core platform.
So, what’s going on with the pages?
Well, right now these are a set of instructions on how to connect particular integrations, and for the most part, that’s what they’ll continue to be. But we won’t just be advertising our own apps, this will be an opportunity to shout about the rest of the xAPI community.
So, if you’re reading this and work for a company who builds software that is xAPI compliant, then we’d love to hear from you!
Here is a selection of the current apps listed on the page.
For some apps, like Sparks (as seen above), we plan to have a tighter integration that will let you spin up an account from within the platform. We hope this will go a long way in making it much more straightforward to create a highly functional, data-driven learning ecosystem.
Watch this space!
Why Have We Added These Features?
It’s pretty simple really… We want to simplify, streamline and automate your road to gaining insight from your learning platforms. We want you to have full control and ownership of your data without compromising service, and we want to take the stress away from making positive changes within your organization when it comes to creating a data-driven ecosystem.
As always, I love hearing from fans of Learning Pool Learning Record Store and xAPI heads across the globe. Feel free to get in touch and please keep pushing the boundaries of this exciting marketplace we work in.
If you’d like to learn more about using your organizations learning data to inform future decisions about course design in order to create meaningful learning experiences, sign-up to our ‘Data, Nudges & Learning’ 3-part Open Learning Experience.
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