Just-in-Time (JIT) learning is always a tall order to fill. As the technology industry moves towards a business model that demands smaller workforces utilizing broader, cross-disciplinary skill-sets, on-demand, technical training is becoming increasingly necessary to properly mobilize business. This is an industry-wide trend, but it is especially pronounced in the SQL Server arena. The observational data gathered by SQL Server Magazine editors reports that many DBAs and Network Administrators using SQL are new to the engine. Due to SQL's increasing back-end ubiquity, users with no previous version experience are suddenly staring at a SQL Server 2005 interface and being asked to make it work with anything from SharePoint technologies to Microsoft Office Access. <?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" />

Even when CFOs want to spend the money to train these users, options are limited. "In the tech training industry, your delivery options are usually either a 3-day seminar or a thin-content, e-learning solution," counsels AppDev (http://www.appdev.com ) President and CEO Craig Jensen. He says the problem with seminars is that they tend to be expensive, time-consuming, and the information is 'too much, too fast' to be retained. Alternately, the problem with most e-solutions is that they are low-bandwidth, don't cover information deeply enough, and have no reinforcement mechanisms.

Jensen believes AppDev has developed an alternative that will let SQL users customize training programs around their specific needs, not just based on the delivery mechanism. AppDev has produced an updateable series of training modules that can be delivered in a variety of formats, customized to fit specific job descriptions and learning styles. KSource, as the service package is named, is a collection of high-bandwidth, rich content video modules led by industry experts, and reinforced with interactive labs, pre and post module exams, and instructor-led coursework. AppDev offers KSource as both an updateable hardware appliance that can be installed behind the company firewall, as well as a broadband, high-bandwidth stream originating from its headquarters' servers. Check out http://www.appdev.com/rs_entry.asp for a free trial run to judge the quality of the content yourself.

 

—Sam Davenport