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28 - Special Report From Singapore - Organizing TechLearn Asia

1. Warning Signs From Singapore - A recent study on information addiction pointed towards a growing problem that some aggressive users of technology are facing. With information everywhere, how does one set limits. Dr. Mark Griffiths from Nottingham Trent University in England suggests several warning signs that high volume computer users can be on the alert for:
* You realize that you have spent several hours looking for a piece of information when you only intended to spend a few minutes.
* You lie to your colleagues (or spouse) about the total amount of time that you are spending on a PC at work and/or home.
* You are constantly anticipating your next on-line session or access to your email.
* You find it easier to talk to someone by email than in person or by phone.
* You skip meals in order to continue working on your PC.

As someone who often worries about this syndrome hitting home, I'd add to this list three warning signs:

* Turning on your machine before getting your coat off in the morning.
* Telling your spouse that you will only be another 5 minutes and spending 2 more hours online.
* Trying to do at least 3 on-line tasks at once.

2. Confusing On-Line Publishing with On-Line Learning - We have had a number of calls lately from managers who are troubled by the lack of clarity about the distinction between on-line publishing and on-line training and learning. One senior manager called and ranted on for 30 minutes about this issue. They had been quite excited to adopt an on-line learning program for their IT department. When this manager actually took the first class, she was deeply disappointed. "It was just a bunch of text, formatted in HTML, and delivered over the web. There was no interactivity or collaboration. Why would I want to spend all this money to just put in on the screen. If text alone worked, we would have just sent people books, rather than spend millions on classes."

She has a great point! There has been a rush to define on-line learning as an easy thing to do, with simple processes to "convert courses to internet format". But, if we are only converting the lectures, we don't have a very robust learning model. In the next several months the on-line industry will be challenged to model a wide range of added-value learning activities, beyond the publishing of information. This manager has put a hold on her department's adoption of on-line learning UNTIL she sees interaction, remediation, collaboration, and high levels of learner engagement built into the programs being offered.

3. Asia Looks at Technology & Learning - We are now in Singapore, on our 3 week tour of international sites adopting technology and learning models. Asia is very interested in on-line learning. There is great interest throughout this region in finding ways of extending the reach of education and instruction to the entire population. The strong ethic of learning is motivating a number of government and corporate groups, as well as higher education institutions, to start experimenting with on-line learning. Singapore, even in the current Asian financial crunch, is deeply committed to leveraging technology for the development of the economy, and that includes learning. We have met with colleagues from high technology companies as well as training organizations and there is a strong sense of support for the exploration of on-line learning.

The next challenge is to integrate this into the culture of each nation. Merely exporting distance learning programs from UK or US colleges will not work. Each area must create its own models for how learning, facilitated by technology, will succeed. (We are planning a TechLearn Asia event and invite our colleagues in this region to participate in the planning. Send an email to

4. Productivity Point Forms Relationship with Vanstar and GE Capital - Productivity Point, a major player in the IT Training arena announced a strategic relationship with Vanstar, a major distributor and integrator of IT Technology and GE Capital for the delivery of training in Canada. For information:

27 - Special Report From Melbourne, Australia - AITD Conference

1. A Great Digital Camera for Trainers. Most folks have waited to buy a digital camera until they got better, cheaper and more functional. Your wait may be over. We have been testing the new SONY Digital Mavica Camera on our international tour this month. It is an awesome piece of equipment that could be used quite nicely by training departments. It has several features that we found to be a big plus. Zoom: It includes a zoom lens that will go up to 10x magnification. Pictures on a Disk: The camera uses a standard 3 1/2 diskette to store pictures in the popular JPEG format. You can take the disk out of the camera, pop it into a desktop or laptop and transfer the photos with a simple click. Long Life Battery: We got more than 200 photo's on a single charge the battery, and it recharges quickly. Macro: It has a macro feature that lets you get very upclose to take a picture. Cost: Street cost is under $675.

Training Departments can use a camera like this to take lots and lots of pictures in the workplace that can be easily integrated into presentations, learning materials and brochures. It has been wonderful to use the camera on this trip and send back photos for our staff, colleagues and families to view over the web. It could be used in a safety class by having learners work in teams and take 10 pictures of at risk sites on a factory floor. Then, bring the disks back, project them on the screen and chat about real time safety procedures. This is a super camera and great bargain. Check out their web site at:

2. Barrons Focuses on Training Marketplace. Barrons, the financial magazine published by Dow Jones, featured a cover story on the Learning Marketplace. The copyrighted story, written by Eric Savitz, is the most comprehensive coverage to date of the training marketplace by a mass media publication. The story focused on the economics of both classroom and on-line learning. It paid close attention to how stocks in the learning sector have fared on Wall Street, including CBT Systems and Learning Tree. The writer also delved into the interests of high profile investors like Michael Milken, Larry Ellison and Paul Allen in the training marketplace. It was the presence of these high profile investors as a vote of confidence in the power of the learning industry in the years to come. I was interviewed for this article and a similar one about to run in the Daily News, and had a
sense of the journalists' intrigue with the world of learning from a financial perspective. Check out a copy at your library or at the paid subscription site of the Wall Street Journal. (Note: Our Business of On-Line Learning Conference will be held in Seattle on March 30 and 31st:

3. TechLearn Trends Goes LIVE on April 1st @ 1,500 Sites. On April 1st, TechLearn LIVE! will be broadcast via satellite, video-conference and Real Video to over 1,500 sites. The free three hour show will be hosted by The MASIE Center and will contain content from a wide range of organizations and leaders in the training, learning and technology industry. Guests will be interviewed by myself and respond to questions from the audience and viewers around the world. Topics to include: Learning in the Digital Age, The Skills Gap, Roles of Instructional Design, Learning and Technology, The President's Focus on Training via Technology and the Pentagon's ADL Efforts. The satellite broadcast can be received via KU Band, C Band, Armed Forces Satellite Networks and the TEN Network. Videoconference equipped sites can receive a bridged feed. Any individual with an internet connection can also hook up via a live feed by Real Video. A good number of these sites are opening their doors to colleagues in their communities for this free broadcast. Complete information is available at our web site:

Report from Australia's AITD Conference: There were 250 training professionals from across this continent at the recent training and development conference. I was joined by keynoters Curtis Plott via ASTD, John Prokop from Lotus and colleagues from the Philippines and other countries. It is clear that the training profession in this country is focusing deeply on the appropriate use of technology. Some of the most provocative conversations were about how to use technology without losing the personal interactions and relationships that are so highly valued by trainers. There were also heated conversations about the need to create localization and regionalization of training materials to avoid focusing learners on the spelling of color as colour. The organizers of this event did a great job in bringing a global perspective to the field of training and also threw a wonderful event and party. If you ever are headed over here, send me an email and I will hook you up to some wonderful colleagues in this part of the world.

42 - Special Report from Training Director's Forum, Florida

1. Lotus Moves to Sametime Collaboration with Acquisitions. Lotus dramatically increased its presence in the real-time collaboration marketplace with the announcement of their Sametime services and the purchase of two distance learning and collaboration technology companies.

As we have been predicting in TechLearn Trends, the real-time collaboration capability of learning via technology will become a vital and critical component of corporate training models. Lotus has purchased DataBeam and Ubique. They will add these capabilities to their Learning Space product line. In addition, Lotus inked a deal with AOL to embed these capabilities into that network. Here are the details from the Lotus announcement:

"DataBeam has led a number of key international standards initiatives to ensure that real-time technology can be applied widely and interoperably across the Internet. Today, DataBeam is the leading provider of conferencing technology based on the International Telecommunications Union's T.120 and H.323 standards and the developer of the award-winning neT.120 Conference Server software product. The neT.120 conference server allows users of standard Web browsers and T.120 clients such as Microsoft's NetMeeting and DataBeam's own FarSite client to share documents in real-time, brainstorm ideas, and deliver presentations and product demonstrations to people in remote locations."

"Ubique, headquartered in Rehovot, Israel, developed patented technology in the area of document-based awareness, which allows users to be aware of which other users in an online environment are working in the same "virtual place" (e.g., same Web page). Ubique's current "Virtual Places" server provides an infrastructure for developing and deploying real-time collaboration applications. Ubique used this server capability to develop its own chat, buddy and instant messaging products. Ubique has been actively involved in the IETF standards setting process for real-time applications. "

2. A Driving Experience with Performance Support. For the past five days there has been an extra passenger in our Hertz Rental Car. Actually, more like a co-driver. We have been conducting an experiment with the new location system, Never-Lost. This is a small screen, to the right of the driver wheel, with a voice that we have named "Joe", which has been guiding us around Florida. At the start of each drive I punch in the name of a hotel, a street address or an intersection of two roads. In a few seconds, the on-board computer and GPS system calculates the best or fastest route and begins to provide visual and voice prompts every step of the way. Here are a few of our early learning's about the human/machine relationship:

* Trust was the first issue. Did we trust "Joe" to get us to our destination. We did a lot of face validity testing, by looking at printed maps to see if Joe was as smart as Hertz claimed. As the validity proved basically true, the trust factor went up.
* Voice was important. We can turn the voice on and off. I tried both modes. With the voice on, "Joe" provided warnings about 1/2 mile before a turn, prompts when I went astray from his directions and a nice beep to thank me for following a direction. The performance support element was significantly important in his silence when we didn't need him and presence for coaching and even some praise.
* Personification helped. My mom, 88 year old Dorothy, was in the back seat for much of the journey and gave the Hertz system the name "Joe". It was a great trick to help us all accept this interruptions and to have a sense of humor about his weakness. When we couldn't find a remote address, Dorothy said it was OK, Joe never visited this out of the way location.
* Driving in a strange place changed! It really did reduce the LEARNING aspect of directions. Rather than go through a long pre-driving learning event, with immediate memory loss, the system provided just in time support and focused on performance rather than training. It worked and we only got lost once in 5 days. Pretty cool.
* Risk taking went up. We got pretty adventurous with Joe as time went on. We would scan for a location and try a new restaurant location or tourist site that was in Joe's memory bank. With Joe at our side we were ready to tackle a new and unknown turf.
* Joe would eventually get a lot smarter. We started a collection in the car to send Joe to college. Mom wants to have Joe hooked up to a review database on restaurants, include a listing of where the nearest public toilet is and have a link to the traffic control system to route around traffic jams. All on the drawing board already according to Joe's parents at Rockwell.

Try one of these systems the next time to rent a Hertz car. Send an email to with your experience.

3. Manager Concerns About Technology and Learning. Over 300 training directors and managers gathered at Lakewood's annual event for training supervisors in Florida. After presenting one of the keynote speeches, I was part of a data collection process about the top questions on the radar screens of these managers. Here were some of the top concerns:

* Deciding IF and WHEN to use technology for learning.
* Creating rapid content for training
* Increasing the speed of delivery and scaling up for large scale training efforts
* The role of outsourcing in training efforts
* Moving towards performance consulting while continuing to deliver large quantities of training
* Building an ROI model for learning
* Adding business skills to the training staff
* Evaluating vendor claims and promises
* Integrating technology and classroom training

4. On-Line Learning LAB Scheduled for July in Saratoga. The MASIE Center is proud to announce the next session of our popular event: The Road to On-Line Learning LAB and Seminar. This 2 day, hands-on briefing for training managers and senior trainers will be held in Saratoga Springs in July. We will take people through the steps needed to plan and implement effective and appropriate on-line learning and technology oriented training programs. This is a vendor-neutral event, with frank discussions of product and service alternatives. Go to for details.

26 - Special Report From Abu Dhabi - United Arab Emirates States, Middle East

1. Continuous Collaboration Technologies. Imagine your desktop configured or continuous collaboration. A small box in the corner of the screen lists the names of key colleagues throughout the world. When any of these people are on-line, their name indicates their presence and you can immediately enter a chat, text or voice based, or send an immediate mail message. A number of technologies in this new category of Continuous Collaboration are hitting the internet. We've started to use a popular one, ICQ, to keep us connected with our office and colleagues as we are travelling in the Middle East. It creates a sense of connection that is unprecedented and far more real-time than email. Download a demo copy of this technology from

Training? Imagine using this technology to link the instructor to learners after a class (live or on-line). Imagine using this technology to create a virtual community of colleagues who are available throughout the day for short, chunks of advice or support. For example, starting in April, I will be on a continuous ICQ connection to the members of the TechLearn Collaborative (see story #4 below). It is a new model of consulting, to be available continuously. We imagine that this connection will allow organizations to share a much higher level of best practices and perspectives .

2. IP Based Telephone - Training & Connections. IP (or internet) Based Telephone usage will be a very hot and high impact vehicle in the near future. We are field testing one while on our trip. Using a technology called Net2Phone, we are making extremely low cost (15 cents per minute) calls from the Middle East to regular telephones at our office and family homes. The quality has been awesome. Using the microphone and speaker on my laptop, dialed into an ISP in Abu Dhabi at 28.8 kps, we type in a 800 number at our office or family and the phone rings in the US in about 10 seconds. We do need to press the mouse button to speak, but we have been using this technology for on-going office support and updates to the family on our travels.

Training? Once again, imagine using this technology, leveraging the existing network, for on-going collaboration without regard to the long-distance charges. We see this as a capacity that will also be built into future on-line learning technology to link learners, subject matter experts and facilitators. Download a copy from and search for Net2Phone. Watch for enormous investments and developments in IP based Telephone Technologies.

3. Salary Survey Response Enormous...A Couple More Please! We have had more than a thousand responses to the most recent TechLearn Salary Survey. Please add your input by going to We will be publishing the results next week. Thanks!

4. Wal-Mart, Ernst & Young, Chase Manhattan Join Collaborative. We are pleased to announce that Wal-Mart, Ernst & Young, Hewlett Packer and Chase Manhattan are amongst the charter members of the TechLearn Collaborative that is beginning on March 26th. These groups are working together to explore the implementation of technology and learning on a continuous basis for the next year. There are only 6 spaces left in the Collaborative, which costs $5,000 per charter organization. Check it out at

Abu Dhabi Impressions: The Middle East Human Resource Development Conference begins on Saturday morning, opened by the Shiek Sultan Bin Khalifa Al Nahyan. Over 200 HR and Training managers from across the Middle East are gathering to look at the issues of national and regional productivity of the workforce. Technology is a key topic at the conference and I am going to be presenting a speech on Working and Learning in the Digital Age. The Skills Gap is core to their progress, as they attempt to leverage technology as a tool for economic development and knowledge expansion. The decision makers in national enterprises are very supportive of leveraging technology foe learning. We'll post some pictures and findings from the Conference later next week.

25 - Collaboration Marketplace to Reach $14 Billion by 2001; Train the Trainer Self Study Kit Launched by Friesen Kaye

1. Collaboration Marketplace to Reach $14 Billion by 2001. A recent study predicts steep growth in the collaboration marketplace, including groupware, internet meeting tools, audioconferencing and videoconferencing. The figure used is $15.7 billion in 2001, according to the study conducted for the Telecommunications Industry Association (TIA) and the MultiMedia Telecommunications Association (MMTA). The MASIE Center believes that the Collaboration Marketplace, which will either include or parallel the on-line learning marketplace, is an wider view of the role of technology in organizational learning and knowledge management. To obtain more information about the study, go to

The larger role of collaboration, linking of associates, clients and customers for transactions, work process and learning is a logical destination of computing. Most people don't compute with their desktop and laptop machines, they communicate and collaborate. We will need to build the skills of on-line collaboration, rather than just drop ship the technology into an organization and assume that individuals will change their work processes. It will take considerable training and coaching to make the leap to new models of on-line collaboration. We would suggest that the training and learning leaders in each organization grab the Collaboration label for their use and influence within the enterprise.

2. Train the Trainer Self Study Kit Launched by Friesen Kaye. We recently field tested a new self-study product for trainers entitled "Trainer Certification Coach" from Friesen, Kaye and Associates. It is a very comprehensive and detailed train the trainer or refresh the trainer program. It provides video demonstration of key skills and techniques required for instructional excellence. A self-assessment guide included with the tool, gives you the opportunity to compare your instructional skills with the expert's example and to evaluate it against the certification standards required by The Certified Professional Development Trainer and The Certified Technical Trainer Programs. I was impressed with the depth and range of feedback and coaching that this program provides. The cost is $299 and details are available at their web site

3. The Stolen Laptop Saga Continues: Well, my stolen laptop was not found, but we have received over 100 messages of condolences from TechLearn Trends readers (even a set of condolence flowers from some colleagues at Microsoft.) My mailbox is loaded with tips and war stories for laptop users.

- There are several automatic, on-line backup services for laptop.
- Build a complete password protection of the entire unit at the systems level.
- Handcuff the laptop to your body (a bit extreme but I can understand the intent.)
- Watch laptops very carefully when going through airport security, at telephones and on planes.
- Don't leave key valuables in rental car trunks.
- Check out "sniffer" programs that dial back home when modems are used without passwords.
- Change from logo oriented laptop bags that announce your investment.

Thanks for your concern and tips.

4. MASIE Center Meetings in Middle East, Asia and Africa: The next several TechLearn Trends will come from Abu Dhabi (United Arab Emirates), Singapore, Melbourne and Hong Kong We are working in these areas with HR, Training and Technology groups to focus on the next stages of on-line learning, collaboration and technology in the workplace. We'll send along interviews and clips from these conferences and global leaders. If you are located in these areas and would like to meet up for a cup of coffee and chat, please send an email to Watch for TechLearn events and conferences in these countries in the near future.

24 - Laptop Theft and Lessons; Coopers & Lybrand Report on Skills Gap

1. Laptop Theft and Lessons: I had a traumatic experience this week. While visiting my mother in Miami, Florida, my rental car was robbed and all of my luggage, including my Micron Laptop was stolen. I live my by laptop. It had all of my key information, personal diary, email addresses and even photos of my family. While some of this is backed up, a good amount is not. Lesson One: tell your colleagues to back up laptops on a regular basis. Lesson Two: the loss really hurt on a personal level. In a digital age, a laptop can be repository of a great deal of personal history and information. The folks in Miami were pretty blase about the everyday nature of thefts, and even referred us to a Dial-A-Robbery Report. I was devastated and shaken for the next 24 hours. My mom told me that it was similar to the way in which people felt who lost a box with old photographs. Maybe it will turn up. If anyone offers you a black Micron laptop for cheap dollars, give me a call. And, remember, back up that data!

2. Skills for On-Line Trainers Seminars Announced: The MASIE Center is pleased to announce 4 sessions of our new seminar: Skills for On-Line Trainers. These will be taught in Spring 1998 in Atlanta, New Orleans, San Francisco and Chicago. I will be leading this 2 day in person and 10 hours on-line, intensive learning event. We will explore and practice new skills for facilitating learning over networks. Remember, learning is not about which tool to choose or porting information to HTML. It is all about engaging learners! For information about these courses (with seats limited in each class) go to or call 800-98-MASIE.

3. Coopers & Lybrand Report on Skills Gap: Coopers & Lybrand's "Trendsetter Barometer" interviewed CEOs of 441 product and service companies identified in the media as the fastest growing U.S. businesses over the last five years. The surveyed companies range in size from approximately $1 million to $50 million in revenue/sales. Half of these CEOs say their companies are recognized as high tech firms.

America's fastest-growing companies have made education their business. Spurred by the worker shortage and IT upgrades, more than half have adopted new programs for retraining or redeploying current employees. These firms are also demanding solid educational credentials from new entry-level hires, including advanced skills in technology, mathematics and problem-solving, according to Coopers & Lybrand's latest "Trendsetter Barometer" survey.

"CEOs from 70 percent of 'Trendsetter' firms tell us they face serious problems finding skilled, experienced workers," says James Lafond, mid-atlantic cluster managing partner, Coopers & Lybrand L.L.P. "This is caused by their ambitious hiring plans, as CEOs strive to increase their collective workforce by 22.4 percent over the next 12 months. With qualified workers in short supply, more than half -- 52 percent -- of 'Trendsetter' CEOs have been upgrading and retraining their existing workforce in efforts to retain existing employees and increase productivity. "

The Complete report is available at:

23 - Skills for On-Line Trainers: Expanding the View; Learning Update from The White House and Pentagon

1. Skills for On-Line Trainers: Expanding the View ---- Training people in a classroom and training them on-line are two similar, yet distinctly different skill sets. Over the past eight months, The MASIE Center has been developing an analysis of the evolving roles of On-Line Trainers. Here is an executive summary of the skills:

a) Engagement Strategies - engaging the learner in the content and process of the on-line class.
b) Content Delivery - skills for preparing and delivering learning content to the class, focusing on questions of When? What? What Style? How Much? and How?
c) Remediation Skills - when they are confused, how does the training know and respond.
d) Collaboration Strategies - building collaborative relationships amongst the learners and facilitators, including the difference between mediated and unmediated collaboration.
e) Linking - expanding the learning content collection through linkage to private and public collections of additional material.
f) Facilitation - "facil" means easy.. how to make the learning process easier or smoother for the learner. Strategies for intervention
g) Reflection - how to get the learner to internalize and "work" the content as part of their reflection process.
h) Accountability - strategies for providing accountability for the learner for workplace learning via on-line methods.
g) Assessment - building assessment processes into learning without demotivating the learner.
i) Contracting for Learning - articulating the roles and expectations of the on-line learning process.
j) Virtualization Decisions - what aspects of physical classrooms can and cannot be virtualized: doughnuts? supportive conversations? sidebar consulting?
k) Live vs. On-Demand - when should on-line learning be conducted in a live (synchronous) vs. on-demand (asynchronous) fashion.
l) High End vs. Fast Food Training - using ranges of content, from fully authored simulations to just-in-time content.
m) Appropriate and Inappropriate Content for On-Line: which topics are ideal and which topics are totally inappropriate for on-line delivery.
n) Typing vs. Talking - the differences of typing and talking, implications for "cognitive rehearsal" in each style.
o) Personality Issues - dealing with assumed roles and on-line "acting out"
p) Technical Support - strategies for low-overhead technical support, to avoid turning on-line trainers into technical help desks!
q) Trainer Development - processes to build and expand on-line trainer skills, including strategies for using non-classroom trainers in on-line teaching roles. Plus, staying current in a rapidly changing time.
r) Scalability - how large and how far reaching can on-line classes be, without sacrificing quality or overwhelming "digital" trainers.

In the next 2 weeks, The MASIE Center will announce a new 2 day course that I will be teaching entitled: Skills for On-Line Trainers. Sessions will be offered in cities across the United States and overseas, as well as offered on an in-house or licensed basis. If you would like an early announcement of this, please send a note to

2. Learning Update from The White House and Pentagon: Last week, we met with technology and learning leaders at both The White House and Pentagon. The President's memo on Technology & Learning has created great support within both Federal Agencies and Corporate Training Departments. The Pentagon's ADL efforts are most impressive and wide reaching. Check out their web site at: Their commitment to build collaborative efforts for the learning and technology fields will push our field forward in the months ahead. More to follow!

3. Coming Up! TechLearn Trends is going to provide Corporate Tours for its readers. We'll do a behind-the-scenes look at the training and learning operations of major organizations. The first one will be coming in our next edition, a look at IBM's Education & Training operation.

Correction: We made a mistake in our Early Glance! of DataBeam's new product in a recent TechLearn Trends report. It is called EventTools and can be found at

Tip: Readers can go directly to our Learning in the Digital Age video on-line by going to the Eloquent Page: Check out the Gallery for the 36 minute segment.

22 - Develop Once - Use Many: Approach and Request

(Dear Readers: We are packing up to head for a stop in Washington, IBM in Atlanta and then the Training '98 Conference. If you are in Atlanta at that show, please stop by our booth after my keynote on Sunday Night. Watch for several major announcements during the week of new products and services. We will summarize them in a TechLearn Trends. Warm regards, Elliott Masie)

1. Learning in the Digital Age: We decided to "walk-the-talk" and provide an on-line video presentation of "Learning in the Digital Age", our new book to be published this fall by Jossey Bass. Watch a unique presentation model, using the Eloquent technology, of the video, rolling transcript and slides from this speech. Just go to to see the presentation. This is a 36 minute, text searchable audio-video presentation.

2. Early Glance: Meeting Tools from a Service Provider: We take a look at DataBeam's new Meeting Tools products. These allow you to host an on-line event (from a class to a meeting) using a service provider, without making a large technology investment. Go to for screen shots and details.

3. Develop Once - Use Many: Approach and Request: One of the major trends that is underway is a movement towards joint and rapid development of learning material that can be deployed in both a classroom and technology delivered format. We are advocating a Develop Once and Use Many Model. This means that the Instructional Design process proceeds without reference to the delivery system. Then, the content is "coded" or "authored" in a fashion that can be used and deployed easily for both classroom, intranet and CD ROM content. We are looking for a few places that are currently using such a program as an example site for one of our readers. If you are doing this process of development, would you please send me an email at

4. People on the Move! John Farrell, General Manager of IBM Education and Training has announced the appointment of Tom Ruttkamp to Chief Executive Officer of Catapult, Inc., a wholly-owned subsidiary of IBM Corporation. Ruttkamp will also have global responsibility for the end-user training segment. Tom is one of the most experienced folks in the IT Training field and brings a strong IBM perspective to his new role at Catapult.

Carolyn Rose, has been appointed CEO of a new training and certification venture, USWeb Learning. Carolyn was the leader of Novell Education and a pioneer in the areas of training and certification. USWeb Learning will emphasize a vendor-neutral curriculum that focuses on professional Internet skills and knowledge

5. Wall Street Focuses on On-Line Learning! We are getting about 2 calls a day from Wall Street companies and publications focusing on the Learning Marketplace as a hot area for investment and expansion. The public success of several IPO's in this area (CBT Systems and Learning Tree) as well as the investments by Knowledge Universe in PPI have put the spotlight on the training marketplace, with special emphasis on the On-Line Learning segment. We will have the Wall Street perspective included in our upcoming Busine$$ of On-Line Learning Conference to be held in Seattle on March 30 and 31st. (See for details.)

6. The Softer Side of IT Training: My current column in Computer Reseller News points towards the opportunity to blend Business, "Softer" and IT Skills. Locate it on the CRN Site:

21 - Books on Tape Growing Rapidly as Learning Tool; Coping with No-Shows in Training Events

1. Books on Tape Growing Rapidly as Learning Tool: ABC News has reported a 20% growth in the books on tape marketplace. Commuters, travelers and others are gobbling up taped editions of books in all categories, from fiction to business topics. Tom Clancy has even written a new book that will ONLY be released on tape. Training departments should take note! This should be added to your menu of delivery systems. Off the shelf training topics as well as easy to produce in-house training tapes can be made available to your workforce. Consider sending a "pre-work on tape" to attendees of upcoming learning events. We have used this model for our conferences with great success. Also, keep an eye on the internet delivery option for books on tape. ( is a venture into this area.

2. Research on Training Trends From Hill Associates: Thanks for TechLearn Trends Reader Rob Lauer, for pointing us to a recent in-depth survey on training demand and delivery approaches. This study was conducted by Hill Associates and was conducted by telephone in late 1997. Hill Associates published the bulk of this study at

3. Coping with No-Shows in Training Events: This is a growing problem, even in times where the demand for training is rising. Organizations report no-show rates from 5% to 20%. In some organizations they have taken to over-booking to compensate for no-shows. Keep in mind that most no-shows are NOT the fault of the LEARNER. We have found that the bulk of no-shows are triggered by managers and supervisors, making a last minute decision that the cost of absence from the office is too great. Focus your no-show prevention efforts on the managers.

Some tactics that seem to work include: greater amounts of contact with managers prior to the course, focusing on learning objectives and benefits to the organizational; telephone confirmations to managers 2 weeks out, which can be combined with needs assessment; greater levels of tuition for repeat no-show departments; a one to one conversation raising the trends of no-shows issues. We have found that many managers are not aware of the true cost of no-shows. We would be interested in hearing readers's comments on no-shows.

4. 320 Attend TechLearn Announcement - Wednesday Session Still Open: We had an overwhelming turnout to our telephone conference announcement last week. The 25 minute telephone conference included a listener survey on change rates and a quick overview of the TechLearn program and process. If you missed this or would like to join us for the next call, it is scheduled for Wednesday, Feb. 11th at 2:04 PM (Eastern Time). Just go to and reserve a space on the call - instantly receive the dial-in instructions.

5. MASIE Center Trip to Middle East, Asia & Australia Planned: I am honored to be presenting keynote speeches at several international training, learning, technology and HR conferences in the month of March. We are interested in meeting up with TechLearn Readers as Cathy and I travel to United Arab Emirates, Australia, Singapore, Hong Kong and China. If you are in these regions and would like to get together for a chat about learning and technology send an email to The 2 conferences include: Abu Dhabi: and Australia AITD Conference (send email to for contacts)

20 - Microsoft Releases Seminar Online; Training Demand Survey - Preliminary Results; Business Marketplace of Learning Expanding Rapidly!

Dear Readers: This issue contains the results of our most recent 3 Minute Survey. We want to turn these around rapidly, so today you'll get the first level analysis...more to follow next week. Next week we'll be meeting with the learning leaders at the White House, Pentagon and CIA. I'll write a perspective on the D.C. technology learning push in the near future.
Yours in learning, Elliott

1. Microsoft Releases Seminar Online...New On-Line Learning Program. Microsoft has a new and exciting FREE set of on-line learning seminars, that are now in public beta. We interviewed Brad Brunell, Group Manager for Seminar Online and Distance Learning. This is a powerful use of the internet to deliver rapid and multi-media learning. Check out our Early Glance at

2. Training Demand Survey - Preliminary Results! Over 700 organizations world-wide have responded to our recent 3 Minute Survey on Demand for Training and Learning. Notice that the largest increase in demand is for
On-Line Learning and CBT...while at the same time demand for Classroom Training is also on the rise. Here is the first set of data:

Based on 700+ Responses from Organizations

In 1998 what are the changes (if any) in demand for these types of learning activities in your organization:

Demand for On-Line Learning Programs (delivered via intranet or internet through browsers):
INCREASE: Large (30%); Moderate (27%); Small (23%)
DECREASE: Large (0%); Moderate (0%); Small (1%)

Demand for CBT (Disk or CD ROM Based)
INCREASE: Large (21%); Moderate (33%); Small (21%)
DECREASE: Large (1%); Moderate (1%); Small (1%)

Demand for Classroom Training:
INCREASE: Large (18%); Moderate (27%); Small (16%)
DECREASE: Large (2%); Moderate (9%); Small (9%)

INCREASE: Large (8%); Moderate (23%); Small (24%)
DECREASE: Large (1%); Moderate (2%); Small (4%)

INCREASE: Large (3%); Moderate (18%); Small (19%)
DECREASE: Large (2%); Moderate (5%); Small (4%)

INCREASE: Large (18%); Moderate (26%); Small (22%)
DECREASE: Large (0%); Moderate (1%); Small (1%)

(We will issue further analysis, broken down by country and size of organization in the near future. You can still add your company's data by going to )

3. Business Marketplace of Learning Expanding Rapidly! The learning marketplace and the business of on-line learning is expanding rapidly. As the above survey indicates there is great demand and enormous confusion in the marketplace as a flurry of new opportunities and services are launched. We will be addressing these issues at The Busine$$ of On-Line Learning: The 3rd Annual On-Line Learning Conference to be held in Seattle, Washington on March 30 and 31st. There are only 103 spaces left for this event. Check it out at

Reminder: If you would like to participate in Friday or next Wednesday's free telephone call about TechLearn '98 just go to to reserve a line.

18 - White House Announcement about the Federal Government's Approach to Technology & Learning

Dear TechLearn Trend Readers:

The following annoucement was released this morning by the White House. It relates to the Federal Government's approach to Technology & Learning. I have been in dialogue with a number of the advisors at the White House on this effort and will send a full report to TechLearn Trend readers in a few days.

Yours in learning,
Elliott Masie


Enhancing Learning and Education Through Technology The Federal Government continually invests in training its employees. Federal agencies have an obligation to provide the best training for their employees at the lowest possible cost. Federal agency training programs should be model users of new technologies to enhance learning. Many agencies are already improving training by using new technology effectively, but more can be done. New instructional technologies can also make education, at work and at home, easier and more convenient for all American workers. Federal programs that provide financial support for lifelong learning should adapt to the new oppor-tunities technology provides.

A Federal Government-wide effort is needed to explore how Federal programs and initiatives can better support the use of technologies for lifelong learning.

Therefore, I hereby direct as follows: 1. The National Economic Council (NEC), in consultation with the Chief Information Officers Council (CIOC) as established by Executive Order 13011 of July 16, 1996, the Office of Personnel Management (OPM), and the Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP), shall investigate how to make full use of emerging technologies to improve the cost-effectiveness and the quality of Federal training programs. Specifically, I direct that within 6 months from the date of this memorandum the NEC, in consultation with CIOC, OPM, and OSTP, provide me a plan identifying areas in which technology-enhanced training and learning may complement conventional Federal training and learning.

The plan should describe how the agencies, when feasible and appropriate, will: (a) make full use of best commercial practices when purchasing instructional software; (b) work with businesses, universities, and other appropriate entities to foster a competitive market for electronic instruction; (c) develop a model technical approach to facilitate electronic instruction building on existing agency efforts, such as the Advanced Distributed Learning Initiative Partnership; and (d) develop and support a program of research that will accelerate the development and adoption of new instructional technologies. 2. The Secretary of Education and the Secretary of Labor shall work together to promote adoption of the best new ways of using technology to enhance training and education in programs that provide Federal support for education and training. 3. The NEC, in coordination with the Office of Management and Budget, the OSTP, and other appropriate Federal Government entities, shall develop a national strategy to promote high-quality education and training opportunities that can be offered in a manner that is efficient, affordable, and convenient.

Industry, universities, labor unions, and other stakeholders should be consulted in the development of the strategy. The strategy shall be completed within 6 months of the date of this memorandum.


19 - Updates on Learning, Business & Technology

TO: Training & Technology Colleagues
FROM: Elliott Masie
RE: Invitation: TechLearn '98 Program Announcement Conference Call
February 6th or February 11th @ 2:04 PM Eastern Time

Dear Colleagues,

Join me in a 25 minute live telephone press conference to hear the details of TechLearn '98 (November 15 to 18, 1998 in Orlando, Florida). We will announce:

TechLearn '98 Program Focus: (Facing The Skills Gap, Learning in the Digital Age, Next Wave of On-Line Learning and A Fresh Look at Technology Training)
Keynote Speakers: (including General Colin Powell,USA (Retired). Secretary of Labor Robert Reich, PBS Star of Stress: Loretta LaRoche, Don Tapscott, Elliott Masie and many more)
TechLearn Task Forces: (Knowledge Management, On-Line Learning, A Fresh Look at IT Training, Developing Organizational Skills, Balance! for Training Professionals)
The Year Round TechLearn On-Line Courses for Attendees!
Special Disney Activities at TechLearn '98
Co-Hosted Conferences in 1998: CEdMA and ISA
Early Reservation Reward: 25 TechLearn Dollars (for books, tapes and party refreshments)
Update on TechLearn LIVE! Broadcast on April 1st.
You will be able to ask questions during the briefing and join in an instant Benchmark Survey using the touchpad keys on your telephone.

There are 2 times for this teleconference: Friday, February 6, 1998 or Wednesday, February 11, 1998. You will need to make a telephone call to our conference line in Virginia in the United States. Just go to

to get details and reserve a place on the call. This page will give you the telephone number and password. See you on the call!

17 - The Price of Training is Changing!

Dear Readers: This is the week of visits to The MASIE Center. We're hosting folks from Allen Communication (Designer's Edge), Audible and Eloquent. This gives us a chance to see new and emerging products before
and as they hit the marketplace. We will provide screen shots, perspectives and previews of these products in our new Early Glance! feature. Regards, Elliott Masie

1. A TechLearn Early Glance!: New Quick HTML On-Line Learning Authoring Tool. Allen Communications showed us their new Net Synergy tool for the easy creation of HTML, browser based learning content. It is an add on to their Designer's Edge pre-authoring tool. We have a write up and look at screen shots at our Early Glance site:

2. Flash! Compaq Buys Digital. If you don't get a chance to look at breaking news during the day, check out the hot off the press release about the merger of Compaq and Digital. .

3. TechLearn '98 Task Forces Forming: We are building a series of 20 task forces to work on critical issues at TechLearn '98 (Orlando, Florida - November 15 to 18). These task forces will include: Skills Gap!, New Roles of Trainers, Creating Organizational Learning, Management Issues, Beyond Computer Training, Knowledge Management - What Does It Mean?, Training Burn-Out, Learning on the Road and a host of other topics. If you would like to propose a topic or volunteer to lead one of these task forces, please send an email to As always, TechLearn will be designed from the ground up to map to the interests of the learning, training and technology attendees.

4. The Price of Training is Changing! We've noticed the price of training (both products and services) in great flux in the past six months. There are areas where the demand is driving per day costs much higher. On the other hand, on-line learning content is struggling to maintain price points, as the value points of web delivered content are falling. What do you think? Go to our on-line chat room at and join the conversation. This topic will be a major focus of our Business of On-Line Learning Conference to be held in Seattle on March 30 and 31st. Details at

Registrations are now open for the next Road to On-Line Learning LAB & Seminar to be held in Saratoga Springs, New York on April 14 and 15th. This is an intensive, 14 hour lab and seminar that has been attended by over 1,200 technology and learning professionals. It is a VENDOR-NEUTRAL event. For registration information:

16 - Get Ready for MetaTags; Tips for Balance! Staying Fresh as a Trainer

To TechLearn Trends Readers: I've been travelling a lot these first weeks of 1998. Keynotes at IBM and Oracle Education Meetings and future of learning sessions at a number of Fortune 500 Companies. Learning and technology will be hot topics in 1998, the skills gap is growing and the pressure to align business issues and training is increasing. We'll cover a few major companies' efforts to re-design learning in future issues of TechLearn Trends... Regards, Elliott Masie

1. Get Ready for MetaTags...The Scanning Codes for Learning. By the end of 1998 there will industry agreement on a metatagging standard. There are a number of standards groups that are now working on the development of a simple way of placing a tag on each element in a learning plan, for ease of storage, use, reuse and even sale. Think of it as a sort of scanning barcode. These standards would allow you to 'tag' each module, content piece, picture and question. The tag would contain information about the type of element, context of use, copyright ownership and even expiration date. Corporate specific elements could be added as well.

These tags would be placed using a wide range of tools from Authoring Systems, to HTML editors and even word processors. It would then be very easy to reassemble content, as objectives changed, mix content from various sources and even track usage on a very module level. There are still a number of organizational and ownership issues to be worked on with tagging. But, it is coming and will be on the radar screen of training organizations by the end of 1998. (Note: Standards and Tagging will be discussed at our upcoming Business of On-Line Learning Conference in Seattle on March 30th and 31st and on the TechLearn LIVE! broadcast on April 1st. for details.)

2. KnowledgeSoft Acquires Acquires Kobixx Systems. KnowledgeSoft, one of the major players in the learning management systems field has acquired Kobixx Systems to broaden it's internet delivery capabilities. See their
site for information:

3. A Teacher's View of Teaching On-Line: Check out a teacher's interesting perspective on their experience of teaching an on-line learning class. at

4. Regional TechLearn Network Meetings to Be Held! A large number of TechLearn Trends readers have asked about organizing regular local meetings of folks interested in training and learning. Many of the host sites for the TechLearn LIVE! free satellite broadcast will be serving as hubs for regional TechLearn Network meetings. If you would like to be a host site go to: We anticipate several thousands attendees are regional meetings throughout North America and overseas. Later in February we will post a listing of all local sites if you would like to attend.

5. Tips for Balance! Staying Fresh as a Trainer: Whenever I have to teach a course that I have taught a zillion times before, I do these prep activities to stay fresh and prevent burnout: a) I change the sequence slightly. b) I add a new activity, even if the course was great the time before. c) I update my content with an additional resource, handout or web page link. d) I change my location in the room...moving my teaching position to a new default position. e) I take an instructional risk. When we feel like the class is getting to be old or boring, our learners have felt that for some time already.

6. Registrations are now open for the next Road to On-Line Learning LAB & Seminar to be held in Saratoga Springs, New York on April 14 and 15th. This is an intensive, 14 hour lab and seminar that has been attended by over 1,200 technology and learning professionals. It is a VENDOR-NEUTRAL event. For registration information:

15 - ASTD Survey Highlights Training Patterns By Sector

1. We rarely endorse a piece of software. But, I found one that has changed my approach to writing, design and planning. MindMan is an inexpensive (under $100) application that embodies the "mind-mapping" approach to laying out information. You can use it to take notes in a non-linear fashion, to build a course outline in a non-sequential order and to look at the whole picture of a concept or project.

The best example that I can give is our actual use of this software. Take a look at our TechLearn '98 Planning Guide in this format: This version lives on our intranet and has internal drill down for text and links. This grid has allowed the key planners to build our curriculum in a non-linear, deeply visual fashion. I am also using it for course planning and meeting note taking. The software can be downloaded from the developers and tested. Their site is

2. ASTD Survey Highlights Training Patterns By Sector: In The 1998 ASTD State of the Industry Report, ASTD reports what recent research reveals about companies' investment in workplace learning and the effect that has on performance. The data are from ASTD's Human Performance Practices Survey, conducted recently in partnership with the Times Mirror Training Group, Development Dimensions International, the Forum Corporation, and the U.S. Department of Labor. Data was collected from 540 randomly selected firms with 50 or more employees. Industry-by-industry highlights from the survey include:

Extraction and construction -- These are the mining, oil exploration and extraction companies; refineries; chemical plants; construction companies; contractors; and stone producers. These companies have few internal trainers and use a lot of apprenticeships and union-delivered training. They experienced notably improved performance in 1995 and 1996.

High technology -- These are pharmaceuticals; computer and communications manufacturers; biological and physical researchers; and software designers. These companies represent the leading edge in training, compensation, and quality practices. They have large internal training staffs and spend the most money per employee of any industry group. They also use learning technologies to deliver training more than other companies in other industry groups.

Finance, insurance and real estate -- These include banks and other credit institutions; insurance companies; securities brokers; and real estate companies. They spend a lot of money on training and have a lot of in-house trainers. They do a lot of computer, sales and product training and are heavy users of computer based training. Business services -- This is a diverse industry group made up of business- to-business and professional service companies. Possibly due to their diversity, they don't have consistent or exceptional practices, except for a larger-than-average use of computer based training and computer training.

Heavy manufacturing -- This industry group is comprised of metal fabricators; mills; foundries; and manufacturers of machines, including turbines, industrial equipment, motor vehicles and aircraft. They are complex workplaces with heavy use of high performance work practices, quality initiatives, and apprenticeships. A large portion of total training expenditure goes to external providers, including educational institutions. Heavy users of computer based training, these companies predict the largest increase in total and outside training expenditures.

Light manufacturing -- These are manufacturers of food and beverages; textiles; furniture; fabricated wood; plastics and medical instruments; and paper and pulp mills. These companies are most dependent on outsourcing, with the largest percentage of total training expenditure going outside and the second largest percentage of outside dollars per employee. Their use of delivery technologies isn't heavy, though they predict more use of computer based training and intranets in the future.

Transportation, communications and public utilities -- These are the power, water and gas utilities; trucking and warehousing companies; and telephone companies. With a lot of safety, technical, and customer service training, these companies have higher-than-average expenditures. They're characterized by leading-edge training practices and a high use of computer based training and other technologies.

Health care -- This industry is made up of hospitals; clinics; doctors' offices; and home care companies. They train a large number of employees in advanced work practices and safety and quality training. However, expenditures for training, and outside training in particular, are low. They seldom use delivery technologies for training, using instead non-training employees and product suppliers. As a whole, they have experienced performance problems and a recent decline in training expenditures.

Customer service -- These are the retail stores; restaurants; hotels; and other nonprofessional consumer services. These companies have a large percentage of part-time employees and low average salaries. They teach primarily customer service and orientation training. They have the lowest training expenditures of any group and are light consumers of outside
training services and training technologies.

SOURCE American Society for Training and Development

3. Registrations are now open for the 1998 On-Line Learning Conference, focused on the Business of On-Line Learning. If you are a developer or vendor of on-line learning training and learning materials this is an executive, interactive briefing and industry gathering. To be held in Seattle, Washington on March 30 and 31. Details are now on-line at

4. Correction: The correct URL for CBT Systems is