Background

Educators have relied upon paper-based textbooks and other relatively static resources for more than 2000 years to teach students. The chalkboard was invented in 1801, and when students began carrying their own slates soon after, customization of lessons became somewhat simpler. In short, teachers have always had the freedom to create their own lessons and decide what they wanted to teach and how they wanted to teach. Even though the process was manual, it was manageable because of the relatively small sizes of the classrooms.

When computers were introduced into classrooms, educators used tools such as Microsoft Word and Powerpoint to create lessons, print them and hand them to kids to work in the classroom and at home. More sophisticated users created fancy worksheets using Photoshop and other pdf authoring tools. All these tools were solving the same problem – which is providing educators with the ability to create customized, personalized and individualized lessons.

While these tools provided the capability to build customized lessons, the created content is largely static in nature. There were no provisions for interactivity or ability for users to incorporate data capabilities into the content that will allow them to become smarter and dynamic. Because of these reasons, although technology helped with the creation and sharing of digital worksheets, they remained in a static form – thereby providing educators very limited opportunity to improve how teachers teach and how the students learn.

The internet offered better opportunities for educators to share and collaborate, but very little had changed with how lessons were created and incorporated into classrooms. When digital video became popular in the last decade, one of the major advancements was the arrival of tools like Camtasia that allowed teachers to create their own semi-interactive videos and incorporate them into their everyday lessons. While this is definitely more interesting and exciting compared to pdf worksheets, these videos are inherently static by nature.

Knomadix

The Knomadix vision is to enable an evolutionary leap in the education process. Our mission is to provide Educators with the tools and platform capabilities required to:

  1. create completely new interactive and individualized content,
  2. convert existing static lessons and intellectual property (existing MS Word, PDF or Video), into dynamic, interactive, and intelligent lessons,
  3. leverage digital workflow, interactivity and feedback, and data and analytics to enable a continuous improvement cycle in education

Knomadix shifts the orientation to student-centered learning vs. teacher-centered lecture models. We are moving from teachers using a single, perhaps interactive, Whiteboard to teach every student, to every student having a personalized, interactive device in their hands. The Knomadix platform is designed to allow teachers to manage the disruption to classroom workflow that such a shift entails, and to allow administrators to (a) maximize the value schools get out of their investments into these devices, and (b) meet their overall objective to improve student learning, retention, and overall performance.

We are in an era of ubiquitous, low cost, powerful handheld computers, and high speed network access, that has made anytime, anywhere learning a given. This requires solutions that are aligned with the associated use case scenarios and providing the necessary tools to automate workflow and simplify the day to day operations of the classroom when using such transformative technology.

Knomadix has spent a great deal of resources with simplifying the workflow between student and teacher, in such a fashion that even a Kindergarten student can easily use Knomadix solutions. We often joke that our head of R&D, Priya’s four year old son Aaryan is our system tester and keeps us all in check with the need to continually improve our already simplified workflow and interface — this is true.

Because of the ubiquity of smart phone and tablets, kids (and teachers) being digital natives, expect solutions to be interactive and available on mobile devices. Knomadix was created as a mobile-first application — purpose-built to take full advantage of touch-based interactivity, incorporating hand writing, drag and drop, audio and video features into all facets of our systems.

Knomadix has methodically built the components needed for schools to make an evolutionary leap in education consisting of successfully shifting from:

  • static, paper-based worksheets to dynamic lessons,
  • teacher centric to student centric,
  • one size fits all to individualized and personalized,
  • web-based to mobile-first.

These changes mark a major move from primarily paper-based learning system to the digital classroom of the future.

We are pleased by the results of our current pilots with innovative school districts and are excited and ready to launch this summer for School year 2015-2016. Please stay tuned .. and subscribe to get regular updates.

 

Ramesh Balan is the Founder and Chief Architect of Knomadix. As the child of a K-12 Educator, Ramesh has deep respect and passion for education, which has intensified over the last 30 years. Knomadix is the expression of Ramesh’s commitment to K-12 education and desire to improve how kids learn and how educators teach. Ramesh has successfully bootstrapped several enterprise and mobile software companies; before that, he worked as a product portfolio manager and architect at AT&T Bell Labs. Ramesh enjoys family time with his wife and two college-age daughters, as well as playing competitive tennis.