New Virtual Classroom Version - Performance Build (01/01/2019)

We've rolled our a new virtual classroom build across all global locations. This 'performance build' was created to fix the issues affecting our users and improve overall class delivery experience with our new backend updates and improvements.

Bug Fixes & Improvements:

  • [NEW] Show logo in video recordings
  • [FIX] Fix Chrome browser's "audioplay" policy issue which was corrupting the audio stream resulting in no video recordings
  • [FIX] Recording is not produced when browser tab is closed in the middle of a recording session by the instructor
  • [NEW] Avail BrainCert's new dynamic SFU/MCU engine (codename 'Fast Tiger') that is highly tuned to provide an immersive audio and video experience. All 15 of our global locations is now powered by this new technology.
  • [IMPROVEMENT] Default video tool window size should fit the video without any dark areas on the left and right side of the recorded videos output file
  • [IMPROVEMENT] "Enhanced video recorder" feature that automatically recovers corrupted or partially recorded videos by checking the file integrity and compare the data points from the session and produce a video recording file
  • [FIX] Attendees were able to control video player even when when allow control toggle is turned off by the instructor
  • [FIX] Whiteboard toolbar is not shifted to the right side when using RTL interface language such as Arabic and Hebrew.
  • [FIX] Pencil Tool is changed on Select tool when document is uploaded
  • [FIX] WolframAlpha was not producing output on the whiteboard
  • [FIX] Settings windows are partly displayed out of the screen on Android devices
  • [IMPROVEMENT] Rework Net Speed Check
  • [IMPROVEMENT] New feature to resize media player window by dragging the right bottom of the window and resize it. This is useful when you want to have a bigger window to watch streaming videos using media player
  • [IMPROVEMENT] Increase the window size of the media player popup
  • [IMPROVEMENT] Improve 'capacity planner' tool that comes into play when you schedule a live session. This tool helps to create a 'blueprint' for the session by analyzing various metrics such as compute resources available in a global datacenter, optimal network path required to achieve very low-latency, switch to dynamic SFU or MCU configuration (core technology), low bandwidth optimizations and congestion control.

Planned Accomplishment in next version (2-3 weeks from now)

  • Add expand button for media player pop-up to enlarge it in whiteboard area (similar to code editor)
  • Add ability for presenter to hide Whiteboard tabs from students by locking and unlocking specific boards
  • Improve document display for screens with high DPI so all uploaded documents look better on mobile devices

New test delivery features - Even distribution based on objectives and difficulty level

Great News! We've introduced two new options to manage your test delivery.

In 'Questions' page, click on "Test Delivery Settings".

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You'll now see the new features that is designed to pull questions evenly from all objectives and/or based on questions difficulty level.

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Randomize questions order during test → The question order will also be randomized ensuring that two students won't be shown the exact same questions.

Randomize answer choices during test → This feature ensures the answer choice order will be randomized ensuring that two students answering a particular question will see the answer selections in a different order.

Even distribution of questions from each objective → This feature pulls the questions evenly from all the test objectives ensuring that all objectives are given same priority.

Even distribution of questions based on difficulty level → This feature pulls the questions evenly based on the difficult level percentage configured. Make sure the the total percentage distribution equals to 100%.

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New Media Player - Playback Rate Controls, and Casting

We've released a new media player with ability to manage playback rate controls and casting feature.

Playing, Fast and Slow

This feature was designed for learners who might want to speed up a lecture using our pre-set rates (which are 0.5x, 1x, 1.25x, 1.5x, and 2x) or savor a great moment by slowing a video down.

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Casting and Airplay

Casting enables a viewer to use Google Cast or Apple AirPlay technologies to stream video and audio content to a compatible TV or sound system. With this casting feature, a student can tap an icon in the control bar to stream a lecture content on a cast-compatible device. If no compatible device is detected by the player, no cast icon appears.

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Virtual Classroom - Minor Patch (11/30/2018)

A minor patch for virtual classroom has been updated to fix the following issues and improve overall performance:

  • Fix insert image issue with Firefox browser
  • Chat message window shifting upwards bug with Firefox browser
  • Low volume output in a live virtual classroom session
  • Improve the adaptive bitrate algorithm to deliver the best possible audio & video performance in low bandwidth situations
  • Improve network congestion control feature to improve overall transmission performance and stability
  • Some of the old recurring classes were using old cached DNS hostnames of the VC server clusters in multiple locations. Recent updates has forced everyone to use new backend servers automatically which is transparent to end users. However, few users running very old recurring schedule were affected and this issue has been resolved by pointing to new DNS entries without any further changes
  • Improve recording bandwidth consumption and produce complete recorded video in low bandwidth situations

Managing multiple notifications sent out for open-ended questions such as 'essay questions' in testing platform

There was an issue reported by one of our esteemed customer that when the test instructor had setup test notification to inform students when their test is graded, it sends out an email to the student. The problem with this approach leads to students receiving multiple notifications for each question manually graded by the instructor.

To overcome this issue, we've rolled out a patch that sends our only one notification email once all the open-ended questions are graded. If the notification template is not turned on, it will show a warning popup when the final open-ended question is graded.

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Student notification email template below:

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There is also a new option called "Notify Student" in grading page to trigger the above notification template manually by the instructor.

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New Virtual Classroom Major Version (11/03/2018)

All the good things comes to an end...and be replaced with something way better!

We've launched our much-anticipated all-new virtual classroom major update across all 15 global locations worldwide. The new virtual classroom boasts a modern and responsive design along with new features such as code editor.

Here is a sneak preview of what to expect in this new version: https://braincert.wistia.com/medias/nvlhp5kr91

New Features

  • Completely Revamped Design: We have been hard at work with a significant update to our entire UI and UX. Everything has been completely redesigned from the ground up with a collapsable right and left panels.
  • Collaborative Code Editor: We have integrated an amazing built-in code editor to teach any kind of code in a virtual classroom session. Lock or unlock code editor to teach coding one-to-many or code online collaboratively.
  • "Onedrive For Business" Integration: With this premium 'onedrive for business' integration, you can choose the Office 365 tenant and share files from OneDrive folders on the whiteboard. You can leverage this feature from Cloud Uploader using document tool.
  • Collapsible Navigation: The all-new collapsible navigation blocks makes it possible to close or open whiteboard tools on the left and video/attendee list/chat menus on the right making more room for the whiteboard viewing area.
  • Chat Timestamp: This new feature shows the localized timestamp of the messages arrived in the global chat area.
  • New Whiteboard Paper Tool: We've removed the old 'grid' tool and added new lined, grid and millimeter paper background tools.
  • Take photo from student's webcam: This is a useful feature created specifically for younger students in mind. Instructor can now take a photo from student's webcam and show it on the whiteboard or save locally.

Bug Fixes & Improvements:

  • [NEW] Add whiteboard Background tool
  • [NEW] Redesign the speaker output drop-down menu width in Video settings
  • [IMPROVEMENT] Show audio\video permissions pop-ups above all other windows
  • [FIX] Filtering PDF library content by date does not work
  • [IMPROVEMENT] Add ability to move Video Settings window
  • [IMPROVEMENT] Add mention someone pop-up button to the chat
  • [IMPROVEMENT] Improve naming format in attendee list
  • [IMPROVEMENT] Show name abbreviation in chat
  • [IMPROVEMENT] Remove the grid tool that is inside line tools
  • [IMPROVEMENT] Improve UX and fix UI issues in the text chat
  • [NEW] Add ability to pass presenter role to a student in Break Room
  • [IMPROVEMENT] Keep showing video/audio in video settings without disappearing it for a second when recording button is pressed
  • [IMPROVEMENT] Improve Screen Share tool
  • [NEW] To add "Export as PDF", and "Export as an image" features when right-clicking on the whiteboard
  • [FIX] Fix isVideo=1 (single recorded video file) option which was not producing final recorded file.
  • [New] To create Photo feature for Presenter which is used to take photo from student's webcam output.
  • [FIX] Speed check tool is taking too much time to product results
  • [IMPROVEMENT] Add ChromeOS detection in "info box" popup in attendee list.
  • [IMPROVEMENT] Show number of attendees in a break room
  • [New] Add ability to pass presenter role to a student in BreakRoom
  • [IMPROVEMENT] Improve whiteboard drawing smoothness and teacher tools performance
  • [NEW] Add pagination for document and media library to allow faster loading of larger content library.
  • [IMPROVEMENT] Minor UI improves
  • [IMPROVEMENT] Using eraser tool on the border of highlighted area make this area turn into square
  • [IMPROVEMENT] Cube, cylinder and cone one tool lines are disappearing when user redact them
  • [IMPROVEMENT] Acute angles disappear on erase
  • [IMPROVEMENT] Change save icon design in popups
  • [IMPROVEMENT] Add borderlines for overall whiteboard navigation panes
  • [IMPROVEMENT] change default interface font to make it more modern
  • [IMPROVEMENT] Improve design for right click menu
  • [IMPROVEMENT] Add keyboard shortcuts for whiteboard objects
  • [IMPROVEMENT] Improve right bar design
  • [IMPROVEMENT] Redesign navigation and menus in mobile version
  • [IMPROVEMENT] Change active speaker animation
  • [IMPROVEMENT] Make all VC button's pictures in vector format
  • [IMPROVEMENT] Move Net Speed check functionality into Video settings sub tab
  • [IMPROVEMENT] Draw tools instruments pop up doesn't appear right under the tool
  • [IMPROVEMENT] Add cam\mic turn on\off buttons on the top bar on the right
  • [IMPROVEMENT] Add logout button on the top bar on the right
  • [IMPROVEMENT] Increase default width of media player pop-up
  • [NEW] Add collaborative code editor
  • [NEW] Presenter should be able to allow/block code editor tabs to all students
  • [NEW] Sort code editor drop down menus by alphabetical order
  • [NEW] Improve help page popup for code editor
  • [NEW] Make codeEditor independent for each BreakRoom
  • [FIX] iOS devices receive sound stream only when they switch on their own mic
  • [FIX] Fix lagging Eraser tool
  • [IMPROVEMENT] Move recording timer to the left side of recording stop button
  • [NEW] Add ability to upload document from Onedrive for business using Document tool
  • [FIX] When there are more than 2 elements drawn on each other eraser tool is working by layers
  • [NEW] Play a sound for receiver when first message in private chat is received
  • [IMPROVEMENT] Users should be able to turn on more than one screen share and switch between tabs while screen share is active
  • [FIX] Draw tools don't reappear when enlarged code editor is closed
  • [FIX] Chat messages can move all the layout up in Firefox browser making it unusable

Bulk import test questions from a CSV file

Instead of adding test question manually, you can choose to directly import question banks from CSV files with just a click of a button. Creating CSV format files and importing questions from them is useful if you have to add large number of questions in your tests.

Read more at https://www.braincert.com/braincert-support/kb/article/bulk-import-test-questions-from-a-csv-file-20181011163837

Prevent copying of uploaded contents

When you upload documents such as PPT, PDF, DOC and other supported file formats, it gets converted into an online courseware format on the fly. Students were able to select text from the document viewer and able to copy the contents.

Now, we have implemented a security feature by modifying the document's security settings using "Disable text copy" option. This step can protect the document's contents and manage the distribution and use of sensitive information. When uploading new files, you will be prompted to select this option to enforce document security.

Rename existing contents to check this option.

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'Auto select nearest datacenter region' fix and the new 'Capacity' feature in virtual classroom

The previously reported issue of all the traffic going to Dallas, TX location when using 'auto select nearest location' feature is now fixed. When you schedule a live class and leave the default option, it will now assign class to the nearest datacenter location and/or takes the least congestion free network path in to consideration.

Furthermore, we've improved this feature to include 'capacity' in to consideration. When you schedule a class with high number of attendees, the built-in 'capacity' tool will find the best performing servers from our cluster pool and reserve it for the class to offer the best possible performance.

Introducing Amsterdam Data Center

We're excited to announce the launch our new virtual classroom region: Amsterdam, Netherlands! This brings our datacenter coverage to 15 global locations worldwide making BrainCert the largest virtual classroom provider!

As always, we bring the same high-performance and reliable technology stack that we have developed over the years and that is in use in all our previous data centers. Our latest Amsterdam datacenter offers high performance and low latency performance to the rest of the world and provides fault tolerance to other European locations that BrainCert offers - Frankfurt, London, Milan and Paris.

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