Richard Naish from QiConcepts ( recently made me aware of – an online portal that seeks to connect course providers/authors with customers.

Coggno provides tools for eLearning course creation, an online market place and some social networking/community-building tools such as ‘how to’ guides, articles and, crucially, an end-user rating tool al la eBay and Amazon.

I remember the mid 1990s when a number of online course providers appeared from nowhere only to disappear just as quickly. They failed because they sought to be an online catalogue shop of courses at a time when eLearning was very new (so there were few customers and few courses available) and because they used a 20th century business model. What Coggno promises is a much more transparent and useful system where both authors and customers are made welcome and, crucially, given the tools they need to create, deploy, support and sell/buy learning content. That they only charge a 7% fee is also important – the old online ‘catalogue shops’ took a much larger share – is also a major difference from what came before.

I’ve yet to take a course (there seems to be about 500 already priced from FREE to “more than $250”) – and I fully expect that there will be a lot of less-then-wonderful offerings – but I am tempted to create a ‘Dummies Guide to Immersive Learning Simulations’ aimed at helping commissioning organisations to better get to grips with using serious games and immersive sims in their L&D repertoire.

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