From the Influencers

Four Big Things Shaping Content Authoring Through 2020

April 15, 2016

It's not enough to just have great content any more; much like it was with data, great content needs to be used effectively to get the most out of it. Technavio recently examined the market for content authoring tools worldwide, and revealed four big points that were set to shape this market for the next several years, up into 2020. There were some big changes to come, and with these changes, opportunity.

The first change was the growth of e-learning. A market that's set to clear $126 billion in 2020, e-learning content can come from a lot of places, and schools and universities are actively looking for e-learning content in a bid to augment current offerings. E-learning covers a host of formats—from straight text to video to animation to even simulations—so there are many places to sink a pick here.

Augmented reality represented another big change. Being able to recognize an object and display information about that object has already seen a lot of action in the field—it may the primary use for Google Glass in the field today, or at least one use—and it's likely to grow in future days. Several new augmented reality operations are coming online today, like EON Reality.

Two new programming languages are taking prevalence in the field, so having a handle on said languages—Extensible Markup Language (XML) and Javascript Object Notation (JSON)—should prove well worth learning in the content authoring market.

Finally, analytics tools were to take a prominent new role when it came to creating content. Added to several new content authoring tools, analytics systems allow users to find out what's working and what isn't when it comes to e-learning content, and work accordingly. Tools like Adobe Captivate are even putting analytics to use to see how well learners are doing with the material.

That's a lot to take in, but several basic conclusions can be drawn. Some are very simple, like incorporating augmented reality and certain programming languages in the loadout to help make sure the content can have the best reach. Others are a bit more complex; while using analytics can provide some important insight, it's also important not to get too caught up in the results. Sometimes people need to learn things that aren't particularly interesting or easy to follow, and if all the e-learning content is geared toward being interesting and easy to master, the end result may leave large sections of the market completely out in the cold.

Still, knowing these things—and how far to go in using them—will help firms make a real impact when it comes to building the next generation of learning materials.

Edited by Stefania Viscusi

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