Re-Usable Learning Object Extractor

Multimedia Design Corporation Announces Breakthrough Product that Releases “Stranded” Content from PowerPoint® Presentations

Re-Usable Learning Object Extractor “Unlocks” PowerPoint

Charlotte, NC – January 6, 2003 – Multimedia Design Corporation, a developer of award winning multimedia technologies, announces the immediate availability of its Re-Usable Learning Object Extractor (RLO-Xractor) for PowerPoint. MDC’s innovative solution enables PowerPoint content to be easily converted to XML for more flexible utilization of the media resources used in the presentations. PowerPoint can then be used as an “authoring” front end of a dynamic, data-driven learning communications system.

The vast majority of instructional and learning content prepared for presentation to is currently created and maintained within Microsoft PowerPoint. As the undisputed market leader of presentation software for business and academic communications, PowerPoint represents a tremendous content foundation upon which users will transition to new eLearning systems. Getting access to and repurposing this content, however, is problematic. Users must either work within the application, or developers can create access to the underlying content through APIs. Each of these approaches imposes difficulties and limitations.

“It costs as much as $7 per slide to get PowerPoint content into a Content Management System,” says Brian Snediker, MDC’s President. “We have the key to efficiently and inexpensively access the vault of PowerPoint assets and repurpose them for use in eLearning systems.

”MDC has developed a powerful solution for extracting the underlying content assets from PowerPoint presentations and making them accessible via a flexible XML schema. Each element (text box, graphic, video clip, etc.) becomes an abstracted object that is referenced by XML, resulting in truly Re-usable Learning Objects (RLOs) that can be used independently in presentations and sales materials or loaded into Content Management Systems.

The RLO-Xtractor operates on MDC’s powerful digital media communications platform, MOCHa. MOCHa (for Multimedia Object Communication and Handling) is a platform for creating powerful, flexible multimedia applications that can be controlled and extended by XML. Because MOCHa translates PowerPoint objects into its own native format using a presentation metaphor, the RLO-Xtractor represents a unique approach to the translation of PowerPoint content to well-formed XML. MOCHa insures that each imported object is abstracted and tagged to reflect its position and context within a presentation. Add to this process the additional step of translating these objects to XML, and MOCHa provides the RLO-Xtractor with a uniquely powerful combination of features:

Single-step translation of PowerPoint presentations into XML-tagged objects and filesOpen XML specification for flexible import controls
Low-level granularity for detailed object references (each bullet, graphic, title, etc., is treated as an object)
Each object includes animation or transition settings
High performance – translate hundreds of slides in just minutes
MOCHa’s XML DTD allows for quick translation of content references for use by SCORM and AICC compliant courseware

RLO-Xtractor is targeted to academic institutions and Fortune 1000 businesses that need to extract content currently “stranded” in PowerPoint presentations for reuse and indexing purposes. Key applications include:

Extracting PowerPoint slide objects for use in Learning Content Management Systems (LCMS) 
Integrating PowerPoint content with other applications
Gaining access to text and graphical elements of PowerPoint presentations without having to launch PowerPoint (or require users to abandon their favorite authoring environment)