Tag Archives: aakash

DataWind Aakash IPO

HEDLINE: DataWind, Maker of the Aakash Tablet, raises $28 million in IPO

DataWind, the company behind the low-cost Aakash tablet, raised $30 million CAD ($28 million USD), in its IPO at the Toronto Stock Exchange last week.

The money will be used to expand the implementation of DataWind’s products in emerging markets.

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EDUKWEST Sunday Review

Sunday Review: Emerge Education Launch, Aakash and Rosetta Stone

Emerge Venture Lab launches its Edtech Accelerator in London

On Thursday the team of Emerge Venture Lab opened the doors to their new edtech accelerator program in London. Located at Level 39, the startup hub at the top of London’s Canary Wharf, Emerge Education is now accepting edtech startups for their first class to start in January 2014.

Besides the usual accelerator package of a £15k living stipend, office space (with a view) at Level 39 and business support, Emerge Education wants to offer a highly specialized set of services to the participating education technology startups.

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Aakash 2

Aakash 2 unveiled – Price now at $21 for Students

Aakash 2

A year ago the highly anticipated Aakash tablet was officially announced. Though the promise of a $35 price tag did not become a reality back then the pricing at $50 still was way below the iPad and other Android tablets that were on the market in October 2011 (but no one remembers them).

Yesterday, the Aakash 2 was officially announced. This time Datawind made sure that there is no discussion about the pricing. The Aakash 2 is the cheapest tablet on the market. According to an article on Quartz even China can’t compete with the $40 price of the Aakash 2 retail version. And it gets better, students will be able to purchase the tablet for $20.

There are even plans to hand out the Aakash for free to primary schools. Right now, all textbooks for primary schools in India are based on a public domain curriculum. The shipping of the printed textbooks costs the government about $13 per year per student. If those printed books were replaced by e-books for the Aakash each device could be recouped over the projected three-year life span of the tablet.

On top of that students would get access to the other benefits of working with a tablet and eventually the Internet for the same price of the current printed textbooks.

Now, we all know that the story of the Aakash has been a rocky one, so far. Lots of problems with the hardware, late or no delivery yet the Indian government and Datawind seem to be determined to make this experiment work.

The specs of the Aakash 2 include a 7-inch touch panel, 1GHz Cortex-A8 processor, 512MB of RAM, 4GB of Flash storage, Android 4.0.3, built-in WiFi and a front-facing VGA camera according to Engadget.

The article on Quartz goes into some more detail on how low cost tablets like the Aakash might end up disrupting the PC market and end up being handed out for free to consumers. I don’t agree entirely with the idea that those ultra cheap (or free) devices will become our main devices at home or at work but it makes an interesting read, nevertheless.

Source: Quartz | Engadget

ENT Audio Podcast

Ed News Ticker #2 for April 18th 2012 (Audio)

ENT Audio Podcast

Ed News Ticker #2

  • recorded: April 18th 2012
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More problems with the Aakash tablet

The Aakash tablet may be facing further delays en route to schools everywhere, as DataWind, lead manufacturer of the device, has sued its Hyderabad-based manufacturing partner, Quad Electronics, for allegedly signing a deal with IIT Jodhpur–the designers of the tablet. IIT Jodhpur and DataWind, collaborators in the early stages of the Aakash project, fell out over the final features on the devices DataWind turned out.

Source: Fast Company


Web based video chat services Tinychat surpasses 20m users – is profitable

Tinychat surpassed 20 million users. Just about a year and a half ago Tinychat only had about one million users. The site currently sees about 400,000 daily users and signs up about 50,000 new users every day. The average user now spends a good 22 minutes on the site per session.

Source: TechCrunch


Microsoft planning web based Skype version?

New Microsoft job listings say that the company is looking for new hires “to help us bring [the] Skype experience on to the Web.” There is not much more information but there have been rumors about this project a couple of months ago, already.

Source: The Verge


Link to your Kickstarter or IndieGoGo project directly from inside a YouTube Video

YouTube creators can now link their videos to projects on Kickstarter and Indiegogo. The company says that these crowd-sourced fundraising platforms were already being used by many YouTube creators, so it wanted to make it easier for those folks to connect their YouTube viewers to their project’s page.

Source: TechCrunch


StaighterLine raises $10 million for online college education platform

StraigherLine offers a low-cost, subscription-based service that allows students to take a variety of accredited, general ed courses online. The round was led by FirstMark Capital, with contributions from City Light Capital and existing investor Chrysalis Ventures, among others. StraighterLine will use its new capital to accelerate its outreach to colleges, employers, and students, and focus on building a viable, next-gen market for credit-bearing, web-based general ed courses.

Source: TechCrunch


Schoology raises $6 million Series B from First Mark Capital

Schoology, an online learning platform that helps teachers organize lessons and collaborate with students, announced a $6 million Series B round of funding led by FirstMark Capital. It supplements the firm’s existing education investments in companies like Knewton, StraighterLine and Lumosity.

Source: Forbes


Coursera launches with $16 million funding

Stanford computer science professors Daphne Koller and Andrew Ng are on leave to launch Coursera, which will offer university classes for free online, in partnership with top schools. Coursera helps support its university partners in creating their own courses, which are listed under each school’s brand. It is backed with $16 million in funding led by John Doerr at Kleiner Perkins and Scott Sandell at NEA. It has no immediate plans to charge for courses or make money in other ways.

Source: All ThingsD


2tor announces securing a $10 million revolving credit line with Comerica Bank

The announcement comes on the heels of the company’s $26 million Series D financing, closed on April 2, 2012. Comerica Bank arranged a $10 million credit facility based on 2tor’s strong industry track record and anticipated growth. The new credit line will provide 2tor the flexibility required to fund its growth and execute on strategic initiatives.

Source: 2tor


Dr. Dalton Conley new Dean of Arts & Sciences at University of the People

UoPeople announced the appointment of Dr. Dalton Conley as Dean of Arts & Sciences. Dr. Conley succeeds Dr. Preetha Ram, who will remain involved with UoPeople as an advisory member of the Arts & Sciences Advisory Committee.

Dr. Conley is currently University Professor and Dean for the Social Sciences at NYU. He is also Adjunct Professor of Community Medicine at Mount Sinai School of Medicine, a Research Associate at the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER), and serves as a Senior Advisor to the UN Millennium Project.

Source: UoPeople


Google wants to to inspire Computer Science students with the Computer Science Summer Institute

Google has created the Computer Science Summer Institute (CSSI). Up to 60 aspiring computer scientists will be selected to attend one of the all-expenses-paid CSSI sessions at either Google’s headquarters in Mountain View, California or Google’s office in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Our first session will take place from June 24 – July 12, 2012, while the second will take place from July 22 – August 10, 2012.

Source: Google


Rosetta Stone and Lodi Unified School District Announce Language-Learning Program on the iPad Device

Lodi Unified School District adopted the Rosetta Stone TOTALe Course HD iPad app for second- and third-grade English language learners whose language development had reached a plateau. Lodi Unified School District is utilizing a blended learning model that combines classroom instruction with individualized independent study using the full Rosetta Stone TOTALe® solution, including the TOTALe Course HD application.

Source: BusinessWire


Citeligher partners with Cengage to turn databases into virtual note cards

Citelighter, a browser extension for collecting notes online, is teaming up with Cengage Learning to turn paid research databases such as Questia into a stack of free virtual note cards.
With Citelighter’s first product, students can highlight any text on any web page and click a “capture” button to save it in a virtual notebook.

Source: Mashable


Taliban poison 150 schoolgirls to oppose female education in Afghanistan

About 150 Afghan schoolgirls were poisoned on Tuesday after drinking contaminated water at a high school in the country’s north, officials said, blaming it on conservative radicals opposed to female education. Some of the 150 girls, who suffered from headaches and vomiting, were in critical condition, while others were able to go home after treatment in hospital, the officials said.

Source: Reuters


Study wants to know how valuable users consider their personal information

Researchers at Queen Mary University in London are starting a new project aimed at finding out just how valuable we consider our personal information. The study asks volunteers to download a free Android app, which feeds users basic questions, such as “How are you doing?,” “Where are you?” and “Who are you with?” every day for two weeks. They think these answers will mimic the sort of information data companies are mining from our phones.

Source: Mashable


Study show a significant perception bias of high school math teachers against white girls

A study by two University of Texas sociologists, Catherine Riegle-Crumb and Melissa Humphries, has indicated that high school teachers tend to view white female students as being weaker at math than white male students even when test results indicate similar ability. The study if the first to show a significant perception bias against white girls.

Source: Education News

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ENT - The Ed News Ticker

Ed News Ticker #2 for April 18th 2012

ENT - The Ed News Ticker

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More problems with the Aakash tablet

The Aakash tablet may be facing further delays en route to schools everywhere, as DataWind, lead manufacturer of the device, has sued its Hyderabad-based manufacturing partner, Quad Electronics, for allegedly signing a deal with IIT Jodhpur–the designers of the tablet. IIT Jodhpur and DataWind, collaborators in the early stages of the Aakash project, fell out over the final features on the devices DataWind turned out.

Source: Fast Company


Web based video chat services Tinychat surpasses 20m users – is profitable

Tinychat surpassed 20 million users. Just about a year and a half ago Tinychat only had about one million users. The site currently sees about 400,000 daily users and signs up about 50,000 new users every day. The average user now spends a good 22 minutes on the site per session.

Source: TechCrunch


Microsoft planning web based Skype version?

New Microsoft job listings say that the company is looking for new hires “to help us bring [the] Skype experience on to the Web.” There is not much more information but there have been rumors about this project a couple of months ago, already.

Source: The Verge


Link to your Kickstarter or IndieGoGo project directly from inside a YouTube Video

YouTube creators can now link their videos to projects on Kickstarter and Indiegogo. The company says that these crowd-sourced fundraising platforms were already being used by many YouTube creators, so it wanted to make it easier for those folks to connect their YouTube viewers to their project’s page.

Source: TechCrunch


StaighterLine raises $10 million for online college education platform

StraigherLine offers a low-cost, subscription-based service that allows students to take a variety of accredited, general ed courses online. The round was led by FirstMark Capital, with contributions from City Light Capital and existing investor Chrysalis Ventures, among others. StraighterLine will use its new capital to accelerate its outreach to colleges, employers, and students, and focus on building a viable, next-gen market for credit-bearing, web-based general ed courses.

Source: TechCrunch


Schoology raises $6 million Series B from First Mark Capital

Schoology, an online learning platform that helps teachers organize lessons and collaborate with students, announced a $6 million Series B round of funding led by FirstMark Capital. It supplements the firm’s existing education investments in companies like Knewton, StraighterLine and Lumosity.

Source: Forbes


Coursera launches with $16 million funding

Stanford computer science professors Daphne Koller and Andrew Ng are on leave to launch Coursera, which will offer university classes for free online, in partnership with top schools. Coursera helps support its university partners in creating their own courses, which are listed under each school’s brand. It is backed with $16 million in funding led by John Doerr at Kleiner Perkins and Scott Sandell at NEA. It has no immediate plans to charge for courses or make money in other ways.

Source: All ThingsD


2tor announces securing a $10 million revolving credit line with Comerica Bank

The announcement comes on the heels of the company’s $26 million Series D financing, closed on April 2, 2012. Comerica Bank arranged a $10 million credit facility based on 2tor’s strong industry track record and anticipated growth. The new credit line will provide 2tor the flexibility required to fund its growth and execute on strategic initiatives.

Source: 2tor


Dr. Dalton Conley new Dean of Arts & Sciences at University of the People

UoPeople announced the appointment of Dr. Dalton Conley as Dean of Arts & Sciences. Dr. Conley succeeds Dr. Preetha Ram, who will remain involved with UoPeople as an advisory member of the Arts & Sciences Advisory Committee.

Dr. Conley is currently University Professor and Dean for the Social Sciences at NYU. He is also Adjunct Professor of Community Medicine at Mount Sinai School of Medicine, a Research Associate at the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER), and serves as a Senior Advisor to the UN Millennium Project.

Source: UoPeople


Google wants to to inspire Computer Science students with the Computer Science Summer Institute

Google has created the Computer Science Summer Institute (CSSI). Up to 60 aspiring computer scientists will be selected to attend one of the all-expenses-paid CSSI sessions at either Google’s headquarters in Mountain View, California or Google’s office in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Our first session will take place from June 24 – July 12, 2012, while the second will take place from July 22 – August 10, 2012.

Source: Google


Rosetta Stone and Lodi Unified School District Announce Language-Learning Program on the iPad Device

Lodi Unified School District adopted the Rosetta Stone TOTALe Course HD iPad app for second- and third-grade English language learners whose language development had reached a plateau. Lodi Unified School District is utilizing a blended learning model that combines classroom instruction with individualized independent study using the full Rosetta Stone TOTALe® solution, including the TOTALe Course HD application.

Source: BusinessWire


Citeligher partners with Cengage to turn databases into virtual note cards

Citelighter, a browser extension for collecting notes online, is teaming up with Cengage Learning to turn paid research databases such as Questia into a stack of free virtual note cards.
With Citelighter’s first product, students can highlight any text on any web page and click a “capture” button to save it in a virtual notebook.

Source: Mashable


Taliban poison 150 schoolgirls to oppose female education in Afghanistan

About 150 Afghan schoolgirls were poisoned on Tuesday after drinking contaminated water at a high school in the country’s north, officials said, blaming it on conservative radicals opposed to female education. Some of the 150 girls, who suffered from headaches and vomiting, were in critical condition, while others were able to go home after treatment in hospital, the officials said.

Source: Reuters


Study wants to know how valuable users consider their personal information

Researchers at Queen Mary University in London are starting a new project aimed at finding out just how valuable we consider our personal information. The study asks volunteers to download a free Android app, which feeds users basic questions, such as “How are you doing?,” “Where are you?” and “Who are you with?” every day for two weeks. They think these answers will mimic the sort of information data companies are mining from our phones.

Source: Mashable


Study show a significant perception bias of high school math teachers against white girls

A study by two University of Texas sociologists, Catherine Riegle-Crumb and Melissa Humphries, has indicated that high school teachers tend to view white female students as being weaker at math than white male students even when test results indicate similar ability. The study if the first to show a significant perception bias against white girls.

Source: Education News

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