Connect Pro 7 – Notes from a seminar

As I said previously, I attended a seminar in Dublin about (deep breath) Adobe Acrobat Connect Pro 7, and just in case anyone is interested in attending a seminar themselves, or even of using the app, I’ve published my notes from the event here.

Content Creation

  • Enhanced content creation features via Microsoft PowerPoint
  • Supports animations, transitions, better support for importing on-screen text from PPT notes (no longer requires text to be html formatted)
  • Import and edit video in any format and export as SWF
  • Enhanced A/V tools: Better audio recording and editing features (ported from Adobe Captivate) new video recording / editing / rendering functionality.
  • Enhanced question creation tools: adds drag-and-drop / “fill in the blanks” question types.
  • New WYSIWIG question editing / formatting UI (previously done via PowerPoint’s UI)

Question Development

  • Enables question pooling, answer shuffling (i.e. in multiple-choice questions, correct answer(s) will be shuffled randomly and re-assigned to a new position in the answer narrative so that a user can’t memorise if answer(s) = a], b], c], d] etc)
  • Better integration with other content authoring tools (i.e. Captivate, Articulate, Camtasia)
  • Publish content as a PDF file, preserving animations
  • Better conformance to SCORM and AICC e-learning specifications for learner tracking
  • Support for Question-Test Interaction (QTI) standard and enterprise Learning Management System (LMS) integration
  • Better survey- and poll-creation tools

Connect new features –

Training:

  • New, more intuitive UI for users
  • Reporting now exposed as a series of 6 APIs for easier customisation
  • Enhanced, more granular reporting features
  • Enhanced report filtering including custom fields
  • Better LDAP integration

Output Options

  • Publish to Server
  • Publish to CD / DVD
  • Publish to PDF
  • Publish to mobile device format

Enterprise-level integration

  • Adobe are explicitly targeting the Enterprise Unified Communications space
  • Integrates with MS Office Communication Server 2007 (and LCS), as well as a range of other enterprise solutions (Cisco, SAP etc)

LMS Integration:

  • Better (if not perfect) integration with a range of LMSs – more to come on this in v7.5 and v8
  • Individual learning paths (“Service Planning”) now supported

Meetings:

  • Support of breakout rooms under Meetings / Seminars
  • Meetings and seminars can now be tracked under Reporting
  • Ability to download and edit meetings for offline / asynchronous use

Acrobat 9

New features:

  • Enhanced Start Connect Meeting functionality direct from an Acrobat PDF document
  • Enables PDF document workflow & reviewing via Connect server document sharing functionality
  • Form creation via wizard
  • New Form tracker
  • Enables users to complete, save, and submit forms via Adobe Reader
  • File redaction (find / remove sensitive info from PDFs)

I still have to get my hands on an actual hosted implementation of Connect and I’m looking forward to seeing the enhancements “under the hood,” as well as the new APIs, and trying out the new features. Equally importantly, I’ll be looking at stress-testing the new server, just to see how it performs under actual production environment conditions in an organization.

Interesting…