Canvas does a pretty good job of handling responsive design via the Rich Content Editor, but, if there is one thing that I have found I am not the biggest fan of, it is the video thumbnails. Dropping a video into a course and having it simply represented by a small thumbnail just bothers me. I know that I can just link to a YouTube video as an External Tool in a module as well, but I want to include buttons, links, and text in the pages to accompany my videos.
Additionally, simply copying the embed code of a YouTube video gives you set dimensions for the iframe that you drop into your page. The end result is a video container that is either too narrow or too wide depending on the device that you choose to use. Furthermore, while I could have easily set the width of the video container to 100%, making it fluidly adjust to the width of the page, the iframe's height would remain he same, which would give me black, spacing bars on either side of the video.
What I really wanted was to be able to embed my YouTube videos on a page so that I could also enable custom thumbnails for the videos and maintain their aspect ratio no matter the device that was used to view them.
<p style="border: 1px solid #d7d7d7; position: relative; padding-bottom: 56.25%; padding-top: 30px; height: 0; overflow: hidden;">
<iframe style="position: absolute; top: 0; left: 0; width: 100%; height: 100%; border: none" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/xcdzCwuFmCs?showinfo=0" width="420" height="315" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe>
You can view and resize the container itself on my jsfiddle account here. Another reason that I like to use the embeddable iframe element is that it also allows me to utilize additional video parameters that YouTube has available including video start/end times, modest branding, and autoplay.
If you would like to test it out using any other YouTube video, simply replace my iframe src parameter with the src parameter from the embed code of your video of choice!
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I'm a Texan, born and raised, though I spent all of my years in college and graduate school in the northeast. I attended MIT, where I obtained a BS in Biology, and then received a MS in Cell and Molecular Biology from UPenn. After leaving the northeast, I moved back to the Dallas area to be a bit closer to my family, and landed a job at Collin College. Initially, I was lab staff, and prepped and taught biology labs. I recognized early on in during my tenure that students across our campuses needed a consistent lab experience. To address this, I set to work filming video lectures and reviews and posting them to YouTube. The problem then was disseminating the information to students, and not just those in my classes. To develop a central repository of these videos, and other content, I taught myself to code in HTML and CSS. Over the last eight years, I have worked to better my understanding of web and graphic design. Along the way, I have picked up additional skills that have helped me to achieve this. Now, as I work on new strategic initiatives and projects, I do so with very distinct objectives: create functional, student facing assets, AND, ensure that those assets are clean, concise and well designed.