Behind the scenes

Improving the Linux Academy Experience

In our first behind the scenes feature, UX/UI designer John Bryan discusses his passion for user experience and how he’s applying it to Linux Academy.

My first job working with computers right out of college was pretty awesome. I was working in Technical Support for a small software company, telling old ladies how to find the spacebar and walking users through the simplest tasks imaginable. Not the dream job that college students imagine while sitting in class — being out in San Francisco, pushing the boundaries of tech in a small startup, making a ton of cash, and having a super interesting personal life. But I came away with something valuable from this time. I began to understand truly what a user’s experience was: Everything from how a user interacts with a piece of machinery to how they interact with software user interfaces. I began to recognize the value of things that were “user-friendly” and started looking for ways I could improve the experience of the people I spoke to every day. This is what kicked off my career in User Experience and User Interface design.

Introduction

Hi, my name is John Bryan, and I am a UX/UI Designer and Front End Developer here at Linux Academy. Those of you who are students here know that we value delivering high-quality education and tools to help you be successful in passing your certification exams and meeting your training goals. One of the ways in which we are striving to make sure you are successful is by continuously improving our software. This is my core responsibility here on the Linux Academy team and something about which I am passionate.

In my contributions to our blog, I am going to be chronicling some of the many changes that are taking place within the software and in some cases giving you a sneak peek into the how and why behind the improvements. I will be working hard to make sure that the Linux Academy experience continues to grow and improve.

What’s it like so far?

I have been on the team here for about three months now, and I have to say it has been so great to work with people who are so passionate about their students. I have already had many opportunities to dig in and make a lot of improvements. One of my favorite improvements thus far are the changes we made to the video lesson page.

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While this is just a first round of minor improvements, we solved some very large issues and made some great improvements to this page. One of the main things that we wanted to accomplish was to give students the ability to hide the sidebar content (notes, downloadable study guides, etc.) so that they can focus on just the video if desired. We added a feature to do just that: Show and hide the content next to the video.

We also increased the video size, reorganized the content related to the video lesson, created a slick navigation for the sidebar content, added in better integration for flash cards, and made other small changes.

Moving Forward

There is still a lot to accomplish and much more that we have planned, for not only the video lesson page but all the rest of Linux Academy, as well. We are working hard to provide the best learning experience out there. Expect to see more improvements in the coming months. Until then, best of luck on your training!

2 thoughts on “Improving the Linux Academy Experience

  1. Hi, I’m thinking about subscription, one question are there a notes to video lectures available?
    Cheers.

    1. Hello! Each course varies, but generally there are slides, study guides, and other written content to complement the video lectures available. All Live! Labs also contain written instructions.

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