August Technology Updates

At Paxen Publishing, we strive to make all of our products support students, teachers, and administrators.  In our digital products we support our customers by using the most appropriate technology available to us.  Over time, we reevaluate the technology we use and update our products as needed.  SkillsTutor is currently in this technology reevaluation stage.

Where We Are Today

The current version of SkillsTutor uses a product called Adobe Flash, which was the best technology available to present rich content (such as animation and audio) across the Internet.  However, in the years since the original Flash implementation of SkillsTutor, technology has changed.  Flash is no longer needed to provide the rich content SKillsTutor is known for, and Adobe is phasing out support of Flash.

What does this mean for me?

As part of phasing out Flash, popular browsers such as Google Chrome have been making it more difficult to use Flash.  One way they have done this is by requiring users to enable Flash once a day for each web site that uses it.  This makes it hard for us to deliver a good user experience.  Students see this as a message that they need to install a new version of Flash even though they have the newest (and only) version of Flash installed.  They may also see error messages about blocked plugins.

Adobe Installation Error LinkPlugin Blocked error screenshot

How do I fix it?

We’ve developed a fix for Microsoft Windows users using Google Chrome.  This fix will allow you to run SkillsTutor lessons without having to make changes in settings every day.

  1. First, download the file linked to the right of this text.
  2.  Once the file has downloaded, it should appear at the bottom of your Google Chrome window:
    Example filename
  3. Click on the downloaded file.  A Security Warning window will pop up:
    Unknown Publisher dialog
  4. Click “Run”.
  5.  A window asking for permission or privileges will pop up.  Click “Yes.”
  6. Another window asking for permission will pop up:
    Windows registry warning
    Click “Yes.”  You may get warnings from antivirus or anti-malware programs.  Allow the changes to proceed.
  7. Finally a window will pop up telling you keys have been inserted:
    registry update success dialog
    Click “OK.”
  8. Completely close Google Chrome, including any background programs that might be running it.  The best way to do that is to restart your computer.
  9. Google Chrome will no longer prompt you to install Flash.
Windows Registry Logo
This file contains a "Windows Registry" entry.

Where Do We Go From Here?

We’re glad you asked!

We’ve been evaluating solutions and making plans for months now, and we’re actively working on the solution.  For now, we’re doing what we consider the baseline: recreate what SkillsTutor does today as much as possible using more modern technology.  This ensures the high quality content, practice, and student guidance that exists in SkillsTutor today will be there tomorrow.  On the educator and administrator side, very little will change at first.  But we’re looking forward to making sure that SkillsTutor remains the highest quality application for skill learning and reinforcement both today and tomorrow.

What Can I Do?

We’re glad you asked that, too!

We’ll be reaching out to our customers over the next months to find out how we can improve SkillsTutor and see if you’d like to participate in product research.  This may take the form of surveys, forums, or even live testing of new features.  We look forward to hearing from you!

As always, if you need help, you can reach out to