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.