Forum LAMS for Tech-Heads - General Forum: Using videos

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1: Using videos
09/12/12 11:13 AM
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We found it quite difficult to use videos with LAMS through the fck editor.

* flv files may or may not display. Autoplay=off doesn't work. Both is VERY frustrating for my only serious non-student user.

* Since videos are handled by jboss (jboss-5.1/server/default/deploy/lams.ear/lams-www.war/secure/....) and not LAMS, there are migration problems (they get lost when moving a LAMS DB and repository to a new server) and they are can't be shared.

So I got three questions:

1) Any tips about using videos (using you tube is not an option), but transcoding could be. Btw. I also tried an flv video on the translation server called "video test" and it will not show.

2) Is there a better player and how can it be installed ? (I am aware that there are some forum posts and wiki pages, but all these do look very out-dated)

3) Wouldn't it make more sense to deposit fck editor assets in the LAMS repository as opposed to the obscure JBOSS one ? Of course, this would require some programming and a tool for managing these assets.

- cheers ! Daniel

Posted by Daniel Schneider

2: Re: Using videos
In response to 1 09/27/12 02:22 PM
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Please anyone can help.

My only LAMS teacher is really getting angry...

This whole video player is absolute total disaster. I managed to get at least something going by uploading the swf and then killing about 2/3 of the code (including the one that loads the player). However, then there is other fallout like controls not always showing etc.

Does any of you use videos ? If so, how do you manage ?

thanx :)

Posted by Daniel Schneider

3: Re: Re: Using videos
In response to 2 09/30/12 01:43 PM
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Hi Daniel,

My apologies for the long delay on replying in this thread.

LessonLAMS and house moving has taken their tol in my life these days :-)

Anyway, as for video, I will highly recommend to completely switch to the Kaltura Online Editor plugin.

If you are using 2.3.5, see the Online Editor Kaltura plugin. If you already have 2.4, then that comes integrated already in LAMS and no need to add the plugin manually.

As you might know, Kaltura is an online video service very much like YouTube, but private. The big advantage of this integration is that you can upload your videos into Kaltura via LAMS and then they will get coded to the most popular video formats. So these videos can be rendered to mobiles, desktops or any other device. All the encoding, streaming and player selection is all done by Kaltura. So this simplifies video usage a *lot*.

It also allows you to upload videos or use your webcam directly.

You can sign up for a free account with them and get 10GB of bandwidth to use with LAMS.

Here's a little video on how to configure and use this integration:

Thanks and once again, sorry for the delay.


Posted by Ernie Ghiglione

4: Re: Re: Re: Using videos
In response to 3 09/30/12 02:15 PM
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Just to add to this... in the near future we will have a Video Recording tool that uses Kaltura exclusively.

So that way, you won't need to have a video streaming server like you currently do with the current Video Recording tool.



Posted by Ernie Ghiglione

5: Re: Re: Re: Re: Using videos
In response to 4 09/30/12 03:48 PM
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Thanx :)

I'll give that a try. The teacher will use her lesson on Monday and she wanted to finalize last week. Editing the HTML did help getting a somewhat ok result.

Posted by Daniel Schneider

6: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Using videos
In response to 5 09/30/12 03:52 PM
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HI Daniel,

Thanks for your patience on this once again and I hope the teacher is not too mad about this :-)

I think Kaltura is the way to go in the future as it uses a robust, solid and efficient way to share, stream and access videos from a large variety of platforms.

If you need any help, let me know. I'll be more responsive now when I finish my move (hopefully by Monday night!)



Posted by Ernie Ghiglione

7: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Using videos
In response to 6 09/30/12 04:15 PM
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The teacher actually is quite mad. Not just because of the video but because of the sum of difficulties she had (she was the one who struggled with the bugs in the assessment module discovered last year). She also found the usability of the now working module quite strange. I had to tell her to tick all checkboxes in order to provide feedback to students which is a bit strange (sorry I am busy too and can't test all possibile combinations in order to provide a more serious feeback).

I do think that the technical user community (you other guys in this forum) should be a bit more expressive about bugs if they encounter them and not adopt the usual "muddling around" strategy that is common to the Microsoft/Apple universe. While people happily accept the fact the even Word 2010 just doesn't work properly, teachers and learners do less accept similar problems when it comes to edutech and we have to be careful about this. Since Ernie and the LAMS are very responsive, it's a crime to remain passive is something doesn't work properly.

But maybe nobody ever did use this video feature ;)

- Daniel

Posted by Daniel Schneider

8: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Using videos
In response to 7 11/06/12 05:23 AM
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Hi Daniel,

This week I've been doing some testing with video uploading in LAMS.

The requirements are quite intense:

* Teachers should be able to upload any type of video files (.flv, .wmv, .avi, .mov, .mp4, etc)
* The video files have to be played in learner according to the software/OS the students has.
* Videos have to be played in mobile devices (whenever possible).
* If LAMS server is on a private network (no internet access), then videos should be played/streamed from the LAMS server.

I was planning to have one and only one video service in LAMS, but with these requirements, it doesn't seem that really can do this.

Therefore my current thinking at the moment is that we will need two different "tools" to handle this and you would use one or the other according to your requirements.

For instance, the Kaltura Widget has its clear advantages: pretty much takes *any* video file you can think of, does codec conversion and provides a fantastic content delivery network for faster video streaming. It also can provide different players according to your browser and/or mobile device. However, as this is an online service, if you are on an intranet (as some schools are), then this simply does not work for you.

The movieplayer plugin we use (the one your teacher was struggling with) has disadvantages. The main one is that if the user does not have the appropriate video plugin installed in his/her computer, then this won't work. Unfortunately, in many cases to install these video plugins you need to have administrator rights and most computer labs at universities/schools won't allow the students to install any of that. But, the movieplayer can play files directly from the LAMS server. And if you are in a private intranet with no internet access, then this would work for you.

So I think we need to have some instructions on these pages that will help the teacher make the right decision about the player/video streaming engine they want to use. I'm pretty certain that some simple text on each of this plugins explaining the pros and cons of each will save a lot of time and frustration.

Let me know your comments (if any).



Posted by Ernie Ghiglione

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