Free Flat Icons

Sometimes when you’re creating a presentation or trying to create assets within Articulate Storyline, having the ability to modify the graphic size or its colors can be a handy feature.

Here are a few generic icons that I’ve made for those who use PowerPoint or would even like to save the icons as graphics.




Download (.pptx)


I have started a few more scientific-themed icons and hope to upload those soon! Stay tuned!

Free Course Starter Template

Each week when I start a new project at work, I love trying to think up ways to put a slightly unique spin on the experience while still staying true to the format I’ve been using. There’s something about consistency that is both helpful and boring at the same time. One on hand, the learner can concentrate on the content because they know what to expect out of the user experience–so no guessing on “How do I interact with this object,” or “what am I supposed to do here?”

But at the same time, the user can quickly become bored and think, “Not another lame eLearning.” This is where a slight tweak comes in handy.

I think it’s possibly to have unique “slides,” each serving their own purpose but still having the tie in of a theme through use of:

  • Color
  • Font
  • Image theme
  • Transition
  • Animation

This week I created a Storyline 2 template that is a blue photography theme. I’m hoping this will inspire others out there to download and modify the theme as needed. Change the images, modify the colors, choose a new font! Go crazy.



Download the Template

Creating the Ultimate Memory Game

This week, I took a look at a bunch of other Storyline 2 Memory games that were available online, and all of these card-flipping games left me longing for Simon.Capture

Everyone who was born in the 70s or 80s knows how awesome the game Simon was. The anticipation of the crazy pattern alone was enough to drive you crazy, and Simon gave immediate feedback, which sometimes was soul-crushing when you were incorrect.

Creating the buttons was easy. Thinking through the logistics of how to make it work was not so easy. I contemplated using a million layers (blah). It could have worked, but it was a workaround (boo). I toyed around with the possibility of using true/false variables, but this only really worked when I used two colors (one time each: blue, yellow).

I knew it was a matter of assigning numerical values to actions, but all I could think was this was going to turn into a crazy mathematical sequence from high school algebra or something. You remember…

5 (+3), 8 (+3), 11 (+3), 14 (+3)…

I also knew that I couldn’t have the value of any two clicks equal the same number. For instance, if the pattern was blue (+1), yellow (+1), I needed the computer to know that the person clicked blue, not yellow. With the same values assigned to both, this wouldn’t work.

I also knew that I might want the pattern to contain two of the same color in a row, so counting userClicks became important.

I actually have to give it up to my husband who mentioned prime numbers, and I tried that out…tada! It worked. Let’s explore how and why (for the first light pattern: blue then yellow).


Creating Variables

First I created two variables, clickNumber and sumTotal.


clickNumber = how many times the person has clicked

sumTotal = each colored button has a value assigned to it, and when you click on a button, it adds the value of the button

  • blue = 1
  • yellow = 3
  • green = 5
  • red = 7


Setting Variables to Zero

Then on the slide, you have to set the variables to equal 0 at the start of the slide so the math is done properly and matches up with your values later.



Officially Assigning a Value to Each Color

Now, I said above that each color has a number associated to it. You actually have to create the number values as triggers.




B (Blue)

When the user clicks blue, add 1 to the clickNumber (you clicked one time).

When the user click blue, add 1 to the sumTotal. (1 = blue).

For the first click (which is blue), the variable will have +1 added to it because blue = +1.


Notice above that each color has a different sumTotal associated with the color. G(reen) = 5, R(ed) = 7…yadda yadda.


Associating the Incorrect Response to an Incorrect Click

If you remember, Simon doesn’t reward you for tapping each correct button. It just keeps moving onto more difficult patterns if you press the easier patterns correctly. However, it does let you know when you are incorrect!

I made an incorrect layer that redirects you to the lights pattern again, and I also made a correct layer (for when you are finished the whole correct pattern, i.e., press blue then press yellow…correct!). Whenever the number of clicks doesn’t match up to the value it’s supposed to, the incorrect layer will display.

You can see in the trigger below that if the first click (clickNumber = 1) adds a value to the sumTotal that is NOT equal to 1, it will show the Incorrect layer; this means the player must have clicked another button (besides blue) since yellow, green, or red are not equal to +1.


On the second click (which is supposed to be yellow), the user should technically have these values:

  • sumTotal = 1 (from blue) + 3 (from yellow) = 4
  • clickNumber = 1 (from blue) + 1 (from yellow) = 2 total clicks

So we set up a trigger to show the Incorrect layer if the second click (clickNumber = 2) adds a value to the sumTotal which makes the sumTotal NOT equal to 4, it will show the Incorrect layer.



Associating the Correct Response to User Behavior

If you’ve followed the pattern correctly (blue then yellow), you will be automatically taken to the next “level” with a more difficult pattern.

So you need to show the Correct layer when the sumTotal variable changes and becomes correct, 4 (because 1 [blue] + 3 [yellow] = 4). This total of 4 should only happen with 2 clicks (so the clickNumber is equal to 2).



Making More Difficult Patterns

And for more difficult patterns, you add more of the Associating the Incorrect Response to an Incorrect Click steps. For example, if on the 3rd click you wanted the user to press blue again, then you would add another Incorrect trigger that says:

  • sumTotal not equal to 5 (1 [blue] + 3 [yellow] + 1 [blue]
  • clickNumber equal to 3 (3rd click)


Check out the demo or download the .story file to take a closer look.

Also, feel free to download the button files to change the colors as you wish.
Creative Commons License
Memory Game Buttons by Lauren Franza is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.


Freebie: Three (OK, Four) Interactive Tabs

When developing eLearning or online courses, it is important to remember that you are not just “information dumping” on the learner. But what happens when learners need to be presented with information that isn’t so interaction-friendly?

I recently had to create an Corporate Compliance eLearning where some of the information just NEEDED to be displayed for employees to read because it was mandatory that all employees were presented with and acknowledge that they received certain compliance regulations.

But we can still do it in a way that involves the learner being an active participant somehow…right!??! Of course.

In this particular case, I wanted to take these bits of somewhat-legalese and chunk them into more concise, digestible bits–so I got creative with interactive tabs.

Tabs are a great way to highlight key points, number steps of a process, allow a learner to choose to explore more information, and make it interactive.

I created a little freebie with a blue theme for anyone who’s interested.