The growth of e-learning websites

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CacheFly Team

Date Posted:

October 14, 2013

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E-learning websites have seen tremendous growth in recent years as more and more people look to gain knowledge in new, nontraditional ways. Providing courses and degrees to many people over the Internet rather than in a classroom has become an increasingly popular practice for both universities and private companies, but this approach carries unique challenges—many of which are structural in nature.

The unique challenges of online learning
While assuring that information provided via e-learning websites is high-quality and relevant is one challenge, the modality of the information used can also cause problems. Rather than yesterday’s static text files, many companies are finding that the use of video or multiple high-quality graphics is a more effective means of teaching and learning. The files needed to store this kind of information can be enormous in size and can bog down the performance of sites of all sizes. Contention for the same file by multiple users can cause massive degradation of delivery, and storing multiple copies of the same file to avoid this can drive storage costs through the roof.

Ensure a seamless learning experience with a CDN
Wide dissemination of files that are large in size is a problem faced by many companies. E-learning sites are just now realizing the need to adjust their technology to accommodate the increase in demand as their popularity grows. A simple solution is to optimize both performance and storage costs with a content delivery network (CDN) that is optimized for a site’s particular parameters. Through a CDN, one file can be accessed by multiple users without requiring the storage of multiple copies of the file. A website will be able to handle a geographically dispersed user base without incurring high latency and performance degradation from the connecting network. User satisfaction increases with good performance, and students will find content to be much more engaging if they do not experience unplanned halts and disruptions.
Optimization of network-delivered content is more than just a bells-and-whistles item that is added on to a site. It is a method that guarantees that the user will gain the knowledge they seek without unneeded distractions.
Image source: Wikimedia Commons

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