Elluminate and Wimba Acquired

At last year’s Blackboard Conference (Bbworld ’09), I met Carol Vallone, the CEO of Wimba, who had been President and CEO of WebCT until it was acquired by Blackboard in 2006.

There were innuendos of something more than great synergy between the companies as we stood and chatted. It was one of those encounters that left one with one of those, “hmmm…” responses. I guess I know now.

Carol’s now sold another company to Blackboard.

I’m not complaining. Notre Dame uses Wimba and uses Blackboard. And there are enhancements we’ve noted which Wimba, as a smaller company, hasn’t been responsive to.

I am so looking forward to better integration between these two systems (read: GradeBook). But what of those schools who use Wimba with Moodle? Or Wimba with Sakai? Or Wimba with ..OH NO: Wimba with Desire 2 Learn???

Ray? Carol? Michael? Talk to us. What’s the plan?


3 responses to “Elluminate and Wimba Acquired

  1. Silly me! Ray, Carol and Michael addressed this question in the press release even underlining my main concern:

    “Further, we will also sustain the goal of improving collaboration broadly, rather than exclusively for those using Blackboard learning management products. In that regard, we will continue current Elluminate and Wimba integration work for open source products, and it is our strategy to sustain those bridges with other commercial LMS providers as well. Once we’ve ensured that a smooth transition is underway, we’ll begin the work of shaping a combined vision for Collaborate by working in combination with members of both client communities.”

  2. A few days earlier, I posted on how a “buyout means the software either dies or languishes for up to years before getting re-released as either a new brand or features in the buyer’s product”. Looks like Blackboard is just releasing a new brand name for two very different products without changing anything? Very confusing.

  3. Naturally this happened just days after we signed a contract with a different LMS vendor. Yes, we use both Wimba and Elluminate. :{