An Interview with Audrey Dalton from CodeBaby Part 2

Part 2 of Interview with Audrey Dalton

BSF: Can you share some examples for us as to how eLearning Designers are taking advantage of CodeBaby for their services or products?


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Lots of designers take advantage of custom services through clothing changes, character changes, and even completely new characters. We have clients that ask for doctors, nurses, specific uniforms, hats, etc.

Additionally, in the very near future, we're gearing up to provide a more extensive lineup of training services, from self-service tutorials to webinars to onsite training. We currently provide this training, but we're looking forward to extending the offerings.

And at this point, since we're a very personalized organization that's still growing, we offer a very human connection when you're dealing with us. We provide unique solutions for each client.

Telstra, the largest internet provider, trains 40,000 employees on the best practices of social media engagement featuring character "Lily". They do this by integrating Lily into an interactive flash comic book.

The Medical School at McMaster University raised public awareness of asthma symptoms on behalf of the Asthma Society of Canada, in honor of World Asthma Day. They publicly launched the module “Taking Control of Your Asthma” on May 9, 2009.

ASTD Best Winner, global accounting firm, Grant Thornton, uses CodeBaby characters in multiple languages across the globe this is due to the language independent lip synching. Learners achieved an average of a 11% higher score than the national average for their most recent tax training.

The University of Illinois uses a specific mad scientist custom characters in its science eLearning modules.

I could go on, but the list is extensive.

BSF: What eLearning applications can you integrate CodeBaby into?

AD: Anything that accepts a swf, avi or flv file, for example Articulate, Captivate, PowerPoint, Lectora, Rapid Intake, and, etc. I'm not recommending specific tools, but the point is that this works with most everything. The only restriction we have is that you are using the CodeBaby characters for internal learning uses and you're not trying to sell eLearning that includes the CodeBaby character, unless you have a specific agreement with us.

BSF: What is the learning curve for integrating CodeBaby into your current projects?

AD: Extremely fast. If you're an eLearning developer, with one or two tutorials and perhaps a webinar, you'll be able to create a two character interaction almost immediately. I'm fairly tech savvy but nowhere near the skill level of some of our eLearning partners, and I can now create custom animated one character interaction, and I learned that in one day. We have one client, Wendy Phillips with Big Pond in Australia, that learned the program and developed an award-winning flash comic book eLearning program on employee orientation all in a matter of two weeks - from start to finish.

BSF: Could you walk us briefly through the steps to develop an eLearning solution using the CodeBay Production Studio?

AD: Yes, first things first. After you decide to use characters to simulate role plays or specific people, define that character's persona. Run a contest to name and describe your persona and get people familiar with your chosen character. Second, write dialogue script and scene instructions. How will the character walk in? What will they say? What's the location/background? You're creating a rich story before opening Studio. This way, you have outlined your props and backgrounds, character personalities and scene instructions.

Then for a very straightforward interaction, you drag and drop selected character. Drag and drop selected background (there's another step if you use your own or when exporting, it can be a transparent export which then will overlay any background in your learning output).
Import audio and allow the default for auto animation and lip syncing. Hit play and adjust gestures as necessary by dropping and dragging any number of the 400 animations. Export as flv or swf, and you're done with your first animation! As time goes on, you'll learn to use the camera changes, tweening and multiple scene and stage development.

BSF: What services does CodeBaby offer for those professionals who may be interestested in out sourcing the development?

AD: If the client provides the storyboard, we'll develop the animation. They provide their own audio or we'll source professional voice talent for them. We also create props, minor to major modifications such as glasses, aging, new clothes all the way to face wraps which means creating a character likeness of a real person, and we also develop new characters based on the client's developed persona.

BSF: What features are current users of CodeBay Production Studio asking for at this point in time?

These features will eventually be available in upcoming new versions. The most asked for new features are more character with different body sizes and additional gestures that allow for more character movement. I won't go into detail on these yet, but with our new releases, we will be satisfying these requests.

BSF: In closing- please summarize for us why eLearning Specialists should consider using CodeBaby for their projects?

AD: If you want to create amazing learning that truly helps learners retain information while enjoying the development process as you create engaging scenes and interactions, CodeBaby is the solution. Contact us for a trial to experience this for yourself!

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