Making of an Award-winning Location-aware App!
Last month, during the Learning Solutions 2015 conference, I showcased a location-aware course for Downtown Disney at the LS DemoFest show. With this just-in-time and just-in-place learning app, anyone who visits Downtown Disney can learn and benefit from it. The conference attendees loved this app and voted it as the best mobile solution app! 🙂
Inquisitive to know more about this app? Let me answer some of the questions you might be thinking of.
Why did you build this app?
There’s magic all around Orlando, and it’s easy to miss some amazing things you can do to shop, dine, and play there. This GPS-enabled app, available for Android and iOS devices, guides you through the streets of Downtown Disney. As soon as you reach near a prominent spot, you get information related to the restaurant, shop, or play area.
How did you build this app?
- Design for tablets and mobile devices: This is a truly responsive mobile app created using Adobe Captivate 8 and the breakpoints are set for tablet-horizontal, mobile-horizontal and mobile-vertical views. These breakpoints are for typical tablet and mobile viewport sizes. I ditched the laptop here, as I didn’t expect people to carry their laptops around the marketplace to learn more about it. Lol 😉
- GIF Animations: There are tons of GIF animations in the app to give it an interesting look and feel. For the intro animation as well, I converted an MP4 video to a GIF animation to reduce the file size and play the video in loop. And for the information slide, I created animations with pictures related to the place to give it a slideshow kind of a feel. These GIF animations were created using Adobe Photoshop and embedded in Adobe Captivate project.
- Location-aware: To make the course location-aware, I enabled GeoLocation tracking for the course and created variables for each of the prominent locations in Downtown Disney. Then I wrote a conditional action to check the person’s current location and display content based on where they are in the marketplace.
- App creation: Once the project was ready, I published it as an app from Captivate, with the help of integrated PhoneGap technology.
Interested in taking a look at the step-by-step procedure to create this app? Register for this free online webinar on Just-in-place learning for a Mobile Workforce scheduled on 28th April 2015.
How long did it take you to build this app?
It took me about 4-5 days to build this app. This includes designing the interface, storyboarding, taking pictures, creating animations, writing advanced actions for Location detection, putting it all together in Captivate, and publishing it as an app.
- Scan this QR code to download and install the app on your iOS or Android device.
- Launch the app.
- Click the Enter button and walk around in the Downtown Disney marketplace with the app active. As soon as you are close to a prominent location, information related to the location will pop-up.
What problems or challenges did you face?
The problems that I faced while creating this course were solely because I was away from the location when I started working on this app. I needed the actual pictures and videos of the prominent spots in Downtown Disney. Also, there was no way I could test this app without being physically present at that location. To overcome this problem, I created the course with placeholders for images and animations and wrote the actions for each location, and parked adding the final images and testing the app for the day I reached Orlando to attend the conference. I also did a dummy test by adding location details related to a park in my area to test if things were working fine.
What were your lessons learned while working on this app?
There can be nothing more effective than just-in-time and just-in-place learning. Though you’ll face some challenges in using the newer technologies and getting used to them, you should make the most of them for designing your learning content. This will allow you to make the most of the native capabilities of the devices and make learning effective and fun!
Have more questions? Leave a comment here or join me on 28th April for a free webinar on Just-in-place learning for a Mobile Workforce and get all your questions answered!