Distributable Educational Material Markup LanguageTM


First Alpha version of schema published.

Though it is still rough and only covers the fundamental constituents of a DEMML™ topic, the DEMML_0.1 schema is available for viewing here.

Created DEMML™ blog site.

It took me a while to get around to creating a blog but it is finally up. (Updated July 8, 2009)
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Added new Features and Benefits page.

DEMML is truely unique but I seem to have a hard time getting people to see that. Hopefully this will help. (Updated Dec. 10, 2007)
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New Powerpoint about Communications Systems

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How DEMML™ was Invented

Necessity truly is the mother of invention.
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DEMCS™ Branches, Stems, & Leaves Metaphor

Standard Model

When discussing a file and folder structure or any hierarchical structure of data, the most common metaphor used is the basic branch and leaf metaphor. This is familiar to everyone and easy to understand.

Diagram of branches with leaves
Parallel diagram with sub folders

As expected, the branches represent folders and the leaves represent files in a computer file system.

When most people think about the branches and leaves metaphor they usually only imagine leaves on the ends of the branches. However, real folders can hold either files or other sub-folders so the diagrams should really look like this.

Folders with documents in the root folder
Branches with leaves at the joint

Conventional wisdom dictates that each branch represents a subject or child-subject and each leaf represents a document about that subject. When it comes to educational material, those documents are usually training modules or lessons. Unfortunately, in the standard model, it is hard to predict how many topics will be covered in a particular module or lesson. Each may cover many topics which span several subjects. This makes it difficult to accurately classify each document (module / lesson). Many also define their subject classifications based on whatever content they start with rather than all the subjects that may be covered in the future. After a while this ad-hoc system catches up with the organizers and they have to reorganize everything on a semi-regular basis. These are just some of the reasons why conventional computer based training systems usually only use very general subject divisions and often are forced to rely heavily on search engines to find content. These, naturally, generate many false hits and sometimes don't reveal what the student is really looking for.

Next: Why DEMCS™ uses a Different Model...

First Published: May 15, 2007 — Last Modified: May 15, 2007
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