2010 Predictions

It’s again the new year and time to review some of the predictions I had made for 2008 and 2009.

From my 2008 predictions:

  • PLEs will be sharable – tools shall arrive on the web that shall allow entire learning experiences to be sliced and shared between users. This shall be followed by ratings on which PLE slices are great. Any learner wanting to learn about a topic will take a PLE slice of a person who the community says has mastered it and follow the learning path.

2009 was slightly better in this regard, although I still did not see many meaningful attempts at conceptualizing this kind of experience. We seem to be meandering more around technology than learning. Once that finishes, that is everyone figures out the base technology behind concepts such as informal learning, it will perhaps be time to think about PLEs and slices. Not much luck here in 2009.

  • Hybrid VLE + PLE systems – LMS/VLE enterprise systems shall incorporate many social constructivism inspired features and organizations will pick up this trend.

I predicted that this will pick up in 2009 and it did. And how. Almost every major LMS vendor has integrated social collaborative learning features.

  • The first classification systems to manage and search the huge amount of tagging will start to surface. Folksonomies will start getting structured in some way.

Difficult for me to find much about the progress so far in 2009. Would welcome links where I could get abreast. Space to watch. Don’t miss the bit about Powerset.

  • The shift to rich Internet applications in e-learning using Flex and Silverlight among other tools, shall become a reality thus providing a boost to gaming and simulations for learning.

Silverlight, now in version 4 Beta, seems to be making solid progress. RIAStats shows a 45% hit ratio over 17mn unique browsers across 84 sites in the past 80 days which is pretty good. I have seen more and more websites start using SL.

  • Learning process outsourcing will get established as a business model for small and medium companies.

Expertus seems to have made substantial progress despite the downturn. The top companies seem to be Raytheon Professional Services, Lionbridge, GeoLearning, ACS Learning Service, Adayana, RWD Technologies, General Physics, Intrepid, Expertus and Global Knowledge.

From my 2009 predictions:

  • Silverlight (more so) and Flex for learning development and tools will see a significant rise

Yes, really can see that happening. In fact, I have been involved in multiple projects where this has been a requirement.

  • LMS mindshare shall start being significantly impacted by Learning 2.0 solutions such as Mzinga and ELGG. As the adoption starts, enterprise measures/metrics will also start falling into place. Adoption of Learning 2.0 approaches will start in earnest in the second half of the year

Yes, sure enough there is now great momentum here. Metrics, I am not too sure about – I don’t think they have gone beyond capturing hits and comments yet.

  • LPO or Learning Process Outsourcing will gain momentum in 2009

As I said, the position is not very clear on this one, atleast from my limited research so far.

  • The use of the mobile as a learning platform shall see renewed interest – the start of ubiquitous learning being made possible by technological developments in the handset, services and network space

This one is more interesting. I know Nokia Life Tools initiative is making a strong concerted effort in making this happen. I have seen more impact coming in from companies like foursquare.

  • The use of virtual worlds for learning will acquire more importance – if things are right, it should mark the beginning of the end for traditional virtual classrooms.

I don’t think this made much headway in 2009 from what I can see.

  • Games and simulations will see an increased adoption

I certainly see some increased interest in using games and simulations. See for examples the winners in gaming and simulations for this year’s BrandonHall Awards.

For 2010, I think the following would happen:

  1. Silverlight will come into prominence and we will see it taking out some, not insignificant, marketshare from Adobe Flash as a learning technology creation platform
  2. LMS vendors will start differentiating themselves by adding on focus for new Learning 2.0 features, maybe advanced PLEs.
  3. I am pretty sure this year we shall see some significant mobility-related advancement in learning technologies. Gaming and simulations will keep on picking up momentum, especially as companies are recovering from the downturn.

Will continue to trace LPO and Virtual Worlds, but I think they will make good sustained progress in 2010. That’s it for now. It is the start of another exciting year soon!

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