Computers

Netflix’s founder saves the day for one education software startup

The Hechinger Report has been publishing excerpts from Richard Whitmire’s book On the Rocketship: How Top Charter Schools are Pushing the Envelope. In this third and final installment, Netflix founder Reed Hastings steps in to take over DreamBox. CHAPTER 25: Danner (and Reed Hastings) Discover DreamBox March 2010: Palo Alto, Los Altos, California; Bellevue, Washington […]

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The birth and near-death of one piece of educational software

Over the next week or so, The Hechinger Report will be publishing excerpts from Richard Whitmire’s book On the Rocketship: How Top Charter Schools are Pushing the Envelope. In this second installment, software engineer Ben Slivka finally ships his educational software but finds his real customer base isn’t what he expected. CHAPTER 20: Slivka’s Sci-Fi […]

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Just who are the people behind today’s educational software?

Over the next week or so, The Hechinger Report will be publishing excerpts from Richard Whitmire’s book On the Rocketship: How Top Charter Schools are Pushing the Envelope. In this first installment, software engineer Ben Slivka — inspired by science fiction — dreamed of creating truly adaptive learning software. CHAPTER 9: Sci-Fi-Inspired Software February 2005: […]

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The fate of big data after inBloom

Yesterday, a $100 million startup lost its last customer. According to a Politico article, the state of New York, inBloom‘s last remaining client, will delete all student data on the repository due to privacy concerns. InBloom’s company spokesperson told Politico the nonprofit was “pushing forward with our mission,” though at the moment there are no known state partners. The […]

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Guest Post: Blended Learning in Kigali

Note: Through March 27 I’ll be sharing this Digital/Edu space with some excellent professionals in the area of learning and innovation on Thursdays. In addition to bringing new voices and ideas to our readers, this will help me as I finish the first draft of my forthcoming book, The Test, on the past, present and […]

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Knowledge pills, robo-graders, brain implants and other dystopian edtech

It’s been a good week for the weird fringes of ed-tech. On Tuesday,  Nicholas Negroponte took the stage at the 30th anniversary of TED, the starry technology-entertainment-design conference. He’s the mastermind of One Laptop Per Child. It pioneered the idea of low-cost personal devices for students around the world. Negroponte has been criticized as an extreme apologist for […]

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Why it’s so hard to get schools online in the digital age

In recent months there’s been a lot of news about public, private and philanthropic commitments to getting our public schools access to broadband Internet. In February, coming off a State of the Union address by President Obama that highlighted the issue, the FCC announced that it would move money around to double the sum available […]

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The top 5 #EdInnovations to watch

The benefit of a big conference like SXSWEdu is a sort of ambient exposure to trends. Here are five concepts that everyone (or at least key, smart people) were talking about at last week’s conference, and that bear keeping an eye on for the future.   1) ConnectED . Companies including Apple, Microsoft, AT&T, Sprint, Verizon, Autodesk, Adobe, […]

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Live from SXSWEdu: Who’s Khan Academy in bed with now?

The White House, the College Board, Bank of America, and Comcast. What do they have in common? They’ve all announced partnerships with Khan Academy, the nonprofit provider of free educational videos and analytics tools, in the last 12 months. These partnerships combine various aspects of cash, content, and distribution. But in each case, the stodgier […]

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Live from SXSWEdu: #NewSATs or No SATs?

The big news coming out of SXSWEdu Wednesday was the New SAT. It even has a hashtag: #NewSAT. The changes to the test taken by millions of students each year, which will start in 2016 with today’s 9th graders, are, at first glance, puzzling. The vocabulary section will be simplified, with fewer “gotcha” words. The […]

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