- Get Started
- Write Code
Posted by Tim Martin
Posted 20 August 2015
On August 13th, 2015, we launched a heavily revised version of tincanapi.com. Andrew Downes has been working away, as he does, creating new content. Rather than direct it all at the blog, though, he’s been rethinking and restructuring the core site and sharing his insights for first-timers, learning designers, learning product vendors, and organizations. There are countless other updates laid out below. Please spend some time with them.
Many readers of the site, though, will likely notice a significant change to our handling of the name… tincanapi.com. Years ago, Mike shared our perspective on the name, that we were going to call it Tin Can API. For some, this has been a contentious issue. With the new site, we’ve made the site behave as we have been personally for a long time. We call it whatever you call it.
On the site, you’ll notice a toggle in the upper left. If you prefer to call it Tin Can, do so. If you prefer xAPI, that’s great too. Whether you visit tincanapi.com or experienceapi.com, the site will present everything to you using your prefered name.
It comes down to this: arguing about an API’s name simply isn’t productive. We have far more important things to accomplish together.
So please, enjoy the new content. Go build a brilliant activity provider. Make some statements. Or ask us for help if you need it.
Here are the new sections of the site:
The existing Tin Can Explained page gives a really helpful introduction to Tin Can if you’ve never heard of it. We’ve brought this section up to date a little and added some pages around the different components of the new enterprise learning ecosystem that Tin Can enables. We’ve also added pages targeted specifically at organizations, learning product vendors and vendors of products outside L&D.
By now, if you haven’t heard of Tin Can and got a basic understanding, you’ve probably been living on mars. These days, the question we get asked most isn’t “what’s Tin Can?” but “how do I get started?” If that’s your question, then good news – we’ve created a new section just for you!
The get started section includes pages targeted at product vendors, content authors and organizations. It includes guides to help you see Tin Can in action, get a Learning Record Store (LRS) and run a pilot project in your organization. There’s a collection of pages to help you think about moving on from SCORM, too.
We already had a bunch of resources for developers, but not much really aimed at learning designers. We’ve added a page outlining the impact of Tin Can on learning design, including reflections on a handful of learning models and theories in the light of Tin Can. If you’re thinking more at the strategy level, we’ve got a page on incorporating Tin Can into your learning strategy, too.
The developers section was already crammed full of resources. We’ve tidied these up to make them easier to find and created an interactive statement explorer page to help you understand the structure of the statement.
The statement generator we created a few years ago was due for an update and ADL recently published a new more comprehensive statement generator. We don’t believe in reinventing the wheel, so we’ve taken the ADL tool, made it orange and included it on the site.
To help you put all these resources into practice, we’ve created a series of challenges for developers to try out writing code for Tin Can.
The previous webinar list contained embedded YouTube videos for all our webinars. We’ve got so many webinar recordings now that it was getting hard to find webinars on specific topics so we’ve created a new categorized webinar list. Each of the webinars is now on its own page, making it easier to share the recording with other people.
Posted by Jeffrey Horne
Posted 11 June 2015
On June 2nd, 2015, we were part of a joint webinar presented by Bersin and CUES. As usual, the attendees had more questions than we could answer during the live webinar, so we’ve posted the questions and Andrew Downes’ answers here.
Name of Answerer: Andrew Downes
Answer: Tin Can allows for learners to be identified by email address, Open ID or an account on some system, such as an LMS. For privacy reasons, a hashed version of the email address can also be used. In practice, most implementations either use email or an LMS account id. Activity Providers always need to know who a learner is in order to send the LRS data about that learner, which can either be done by having the learner log into the activity provider, or some kind of launch/single-sign-on process.
It’s possible that different Activity Providers might use different identifiers for the same person, for example accounts on different systems or different email addresses. In this case it’s important for the LRS to have a record of all the identifiers that relate to a single person. Activity Providers can request this information from the LRS if they need it (and if the LRS gives them permission).
Posted by Jeffrey Horne
Posted 7 April 2015
On Tuesday, March 31st, 2015, we hosted a webinar about nine practical use cases of the Tin Can API (xAPI). As usual, the attendees had more questions than we could answer during the live webinar, so we’ve posted the questions and Andrew Downes’ answers here.
Q: LRS is learning XXX system? quick definition please
Q: what does LRS stand for?
Q: how does an LRS differ from an LMS?
A: Learning Record Store. There’s a great explanation of what an LRS is and how it differs from an LMS here: ../learning-record-store
Q: I’m in the US…and I’m not familiar with the way Andrew is using “bespoke”.
Q: What does “bespoke API” mean?
A: From the Wikipedia definition of bespoke: “altered or tailored to the customs, tastes or usage of an individual”. Many products and systems have an API that’s specific to that individual system. If you want to integrate with that system, you need to tailor-make an integration with that system and you won’t be able to re-use that work with another system. The point of Tin Can is that you can do the integration work once and it will work with any Tin Can conformant system. MORE…
Posted by Megan Bowe
Posted 1 July 2013
We get this question a lot.
To do Tin Can properly, you need an LRS to send your statements to. Statements are generally the focal point of Tin Can, but LRSs play a vital role in creating rich collections of data and making the data interoperable.
To answer the question, we built this page explaining what goes into an LRS.
It’s a complicated undertaking to build an LRS, whether it’s an installed or a hosted-standalone-enterprise system, or a component of some other system like an LMS.
Posted by Megan Bowe
Posted 26 April 2013
Yes, the 1.0 specification release is today. And yes, all of our tools support it right now. We’ve spent a long time building towards this so that you did not have to wait a single moment for your gratification.
Need an LRS? SCORM Cloud is ready.
Would you rather use the statement generator? Go right ahead!
Want to play with prototypes? Tetris, golf, and the museum tour are ready. So is the public sandbox.