DOAP Project Details
ATOM Project Activity
Project Details:

Synote Mobile

Synote Mobile will meet the important user need to make web-based OER recordings easier to access, search, manage, and exploit for learners, teachers and others. All Synote recordings are available as OER and Synote is Open Source and freely available and facilitates the repurposing of anyone’s OER recordings. Virtually all UK students now carry mobile devices capable of replaying video and want to use them for learning. However the majority of these devices cannot replay Synote’s accessible, searchable, annotated recordings. This project will create a new mobile HTML5 version of Synote able to replay Synote recordings on any student’s mobile device capable of connecting to the Internet. Synote Mobile will enable all students to work together on their coursework, projects and revision in more modern flexible environments than desktop computer rooms not designed for collaborative working.
100% complete
Project Completed
Funding period:April 2012 to September 2012
Link Organisations:
University of Southampton
Tag Tags:

Standards less

Standard Comments
video player plays many formats
some investigation. use on web page

Technologies less

was tested but not used
Flash video as fall-back if HTML 5 video formats don't work
Media Elements
Videos stored on YouTube. Sends suitable format for device.
Twitter Bootstrap
Used for responsive web template


Posted by philb at 2012-08-20 11:32:44
Original synote was funded in 2008/9 for teaching and learning in lectures. Expanded to annotate research recordings in 2011 (Jisc funded Aluiar).
Posted by philb at 2012-08-20 11:26:36
Issue: what criteria for calling something a mobile device? Screen size? OS? Pixel resolution? Small tablet cf. large phone. Large tablet cf. small laptop.
Posted by philb at 2012-08-20 11:21:54
can track usage of annotations through use of server
Posted by philb at 2012-08-20 11:18:32
Looking at discoverability via Google. Allow Google to find parts of video / media fragment via search of annotation/captions.
Posted by philb at 2012-08-20 11:14:44
tested on four browsers x numerous mobile devices. Very time consuming and unpredictable.
Posted by philb at 2012-08-20 11:12:44
Accessibility: synote has background in accessibility, not focus for this project since is too short.
Posted by philb at 2012-08-20 11:11:13
Aside: looking at linking synote (not-just-mobile) to matterhorn open source lecture capture.
Posted by philb at 2012-08-20 11:01:08
Some metadata held of annotations, e.g. tagging.
Posted by philb at 2012-08-20 10:52:57
Issue: multiple people adding annotations may not all agree on access permission or licensing for group annotations. Open is default, but can make private copies.
Posted by philb at 2012-08-20 10:47:56
Don't currently use any licensing info that comes with video.
Posted by philb at 2012-08-20 10:45:53
original synote not concerned with hosting video: focus was on annotation of videos held anywhere. However mobile devices require more thought about suitable stream format and ability to stream just required segment not download entire file: YouTube does this well, so focus on getting synote mobile working for YouTube. Players cope well with YouTube, can just send ref. to landing page URL and player finds suitable video stream.
Posted by philb at 2012-08-20 10:40:45
Both notes and captions are stored in native format and can be exported in WebVTT or WebSRT (or other) depending on what is supported by player.
Posted by philb at 2012-08-20 10:38:52
Student notes are just recorded in database.
Posted by philb at 2012-08-20 10:33:02
Standards exist for sub title text, but not for user annotation synchronised with recordings. Synote was one of first to implement this
Posted by philb at 2012-08-20 10:25:27
Adding additional code to existing Synote code based, all HTML5, so mobile versions are added as new features

Links, feeds, etc

homepage Project Homepage
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jisc-page Jisc-Page
download-page Download-Page


Person Programme-Manager: Amber Thomas
Person Maintainer: Mike Wald