It has already been a week since DevLearn 2019 and I am still processing through all the information, new vendors and ideas I want to pursue. Here are my top 5 things I learned at DevLearn 2019 last week:

1. Augmented & Virtual Reality – Cool emerging tech when used for the right thing!

To be honest, I went in with a bit of a bias on AR & VR. It is all the buzz right now and certainly is worth the excitement but I stand by my belief that it is still emerging and developing (probably in its adolescence) and is really great for certain things. I see phenomenal uses for AR & VR in forestry, manufacturing, construction, and hazardous/safety areas. Mapping forest reclamation projects, overlaying construction projects on a building site, teaching electrical workers to resolve hazardous issues without having to recreate those situations. The potential is endless. But please, do not ask me to build communications skills in a Virtual Reality game.

2. LXP, LMS and LRS – Learning platforms have come a long way

I spent a ton of time in sessions about platforms, LXP, LRS, LMS, LCMS… I also spent a significant amount of time talking to vendors who provide these platforms. Biggest take-away: the platform is really just the jumping off point. An LXP provides the framework and foundation but you still need to design good training and bring it all together in a format that conveys the right information at the right time and in a way that your audience can consume it. I am over-simplifying a bit but as I learn more about the evolution of learning platforms, I look forward to learning more about which platform works best and whether we can finally do away with the traditional LMS systems.

3. xAPI – only as good as what you put into it

I learn more about xAPI every year and we have even started an xAPI pilot program in house to test out the limits of SCORM and AICC data and its ability to be read by xAPI. Biggest take-away, SCORM and AICC are very limited in what data they can pass and without an LRS you can’t really interpret it. I am learning still and am still a bit confused about not only how it all works but what we can actually get from this new type of data. It is one thing to gather data, it is another thing to interpret and act on that data.

4. Speaking of Data – Because everyone else was talking about it

There were tons of sessions talking about xAPI, Data, analytics, dashboarding, how to get data and what to do with it. The key take-away for me and what I personally continue to struggle with on this topic:
– What should we be measuring?
– Is what matters actually measurable?
– What metrics matter? To the designer? To business leaders? To outcomes?
– Why can’t we get better data?
Lots of still unanswered questions but I feel like we are all still looking for these answers.

5. Simplicity is key
Each year, I attend at least 1-2 sessions on color, design trends, color, imagery, etc. And every year I see the same thing, simplicity is key, color preferences are going to change, and whether it is content, color, graphics, imagery, keep it simple and make sure you have some white space.