eXe Open Source Authoring Tool
You are probably aware of Moodle, the open source Learning Management System (and if not, read our free Moodle Overview). But you may be less aware of eXe, the open source e-learning authoring tool.
We have not been overly impressed with previous free authoring tools but we took eXe for a test run and began to see the potential. The future looks bright. At this rate, is anything not going to be open source by next Christmas?
The first thing you notice about eXe is that it doesn't feel like a commercial authoring tool. The very fact you need a Firefox browser to use eXe tells you a lot about the tool.
Once you get used to the simple site approach where you build sections, topics and pages it is very easy to add pages and content.
In essence each page is blank screen and you choose the interaction you want for that page --such as a flash animation, text and graphic, audio file, and so on. You can also combine multiple items on a page.
The tool then generates html pages with an integrated menu on the left. You can also export scorm packages to track in an LMS.
Overall the tool worked really well, fast and easy to generate content. What it lacks however, is a set of decent templates to improve the look and feel of the e-learning. The current set is very limited and not great. It would be nice to have a set of easily configurable templates that you could use which would improve the tool markedly in our view.
You can see the short demo we produced with eXe in a very quick go in this eXe rapid e-learning demo.
The Rapid E-learning Scorecard:
In summary, we rated eXe as follows
OVERALL SCORE: 26
Despite the overall score being the lowest of the tools we have reviewed it is one of our favourites. Primarily because it is open source and clearly has potential. If we get time over the next few months we might look at creating a few templates and seeing what we can do with it.
Agree or disagree with this review? Let us know at email@example.com.
Got an authoring tool, and need get some help in making the most of it? Kineo’s Rapid E-learning Design Team can help. Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.