Streamline News

Integrating Repository Function with Work Practice

Podcasting work flow analysis

Posted by Janet Finlay on August 2, 2007

We have completed interviews and scenario writing exercises to capture information on user workflows from the early adopters in the podcasting user group. We are still analysing the raw data but a number of things are immediately clear:

  1. Our users on the whole do not want to do truly live podcasting. Even those who are are considering podcasting live events want to edit/review work before release. This is interesting as much of the percieved benefit of the automatic podcast production system was to avoid additional editing effort. It also has implications for production support and file conversion within the support tools that may be provided.
  2. Persistence is a key issue. Some resources are time limited and ephemeral – and it is important to users to distinguish these from resources that will be more generally shared. This needs to be captured in metadata and has implications for personal management of resources as well as wider community sharing.
  3. Metadata and the potential sharing of resources do not register on most users’ radars without prompting, even though reuse is one of the key benefits of repositories and learning object development. We need to consider how we make this an inherent part of processes which at present do not even consider these possibilities.
  4. Many video/multimedia resources have some existing accompanying text based resources (e.g. notes, scripts, etc) which could be used to feed automatic metadata generation. We need to explore more fully how much detail can be generated from these sources and how reliable this might be.
  5. Many of our proposed podcasts have multiple potential uses (e.g. marketing and information delivery) and/or several potential audiences. We need to ensure that management and search tools allow these to be exploited.

We are now examining the interviews and scenario information in more detail to produce formal workflow representations that we can use to inform further user consultation.


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