01 June, 2007

Using YouTube to Host Learning Objects

Some members of staff here have been talking about using video sharing sites like YouTube to host their videos, so I thought that I'd look into this a bit more so see what I could learn.

I've uploaded my 'Screencasting with Camtasia' screencasts to YouTube.

Screencasting Using Camtasia: 01 - Introduction
Screencasting Using Camtasia: 02 - Installing
Screencasting Using Camtasia: 03 - Microphones
Screencasting Using Camtasia: 04 - Starting a Recording
Screencasting Using Camtasia: 05 - After Recording
Screencasting Using Camtasia: 06 - Producing
Screencasting Using Camtasia: 07 - Tips
Screencasting Using Camtasia: 08 - Accessibilty

So, what are the benefits and drawbacks of releasing materials this way, over putting them on the streaming server?

-Should be no access problems because YouTube uses Flash video and almost everyone has the Flash plugin installed.
-Easy to embed the videos in your WebCT area.
-Doesn't use the limited space on the streaming server.

-Quality is almost always lower after it has been re-encoded during the upload to YouTube, although the 'What's the best format to upload for high quality?' page will give you advice on the formats to save your video in for the best results.
-YouTube seems to cut the end off my videos - you need to remember to leave a bit extra video at the end to compensate.
-Can't update videos on YouTube without uploading another version and changing the link. We can do that easily on the streaming server.

Anything else I've missed?

1 comment:

Mike Nolan said...

I agree that Flash encoded video is the future. I probably marginally prefer Google Video over YouTube for quality and length of video (which YouTube still limits, IIRC).

Couple of other issues:

* Reliance on third party service - while I doubt Google/YouTube are going anywhere, their services could go down or videos could be pulled without notice

* Watermark on YouTube - not present on Google Video

* Videos are very public - this is often desirable and a good publicity tool, but if you want it restricted it's hard to keep the URL secret

I've been doing some work on an online flash video conversion tool for the webteam so if there's interest I'll tidy it up and make it available for people who want to create flash videos.