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The coming adaptive world

by Jose Ferreira, Knewton Founder and CEO

This is the year of adaptive learning. Everyone is fired up about it, from Arne Duncan and Bill Gates to individual teachers and students the world over. Ironically, as the idea of adaptive learning is becoming more popularized, confusion about it is increasing exponentially. So please bear with a little introspection, but I think now is the time to clarify matters. Let me start with an analogy…

In 2006, my old Harvard Business School classmate Andy Jassy realized that all computing would ultimately move to the cloud. A senior manager at Amazon, he got approval from Jeff Bezos to launch Amazon Web Services, which is today the leader in cloud computing infrastructure. Startups, and even many big companies like Netflix, outsource their hosting infrastructure to AWS.

Knewton’s goal is to be like AWS for education. We’ve created a shared data infrastructure platform that makes it fast and easy for anyone to build extremely powerful adaptive learning applications with Knewton. As our platform gets stronger over time, with more features and more data, every product built using our platform automatically gets stronger too.

Despite our constant protestations to the contrary, observers often confuse Knewton with the many adaptive learning app makers who are now popping up. Or they confuse app makers with platforms. Or they think we’re all competitors.

In fact, it is Knewton’s mission to help all these adaptive learning app makers.

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Breaking the prison cycle

Investment in prison education pays off. This new infographic shows how education — and blended learning in particular — helps prevent recidivism.

Ed tweets of the month

Knewton @ ASU

Watch Knewton Math Readiness students travel through personalized learning pathways:


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The edtech industry is growing rapidly. But for schools with slow, outdated computers and no budget to replace them, all the new software in the world won't make a bit of difference.

Enter Neverware. Neverware’s mission is to make old computers in schools run like new. How? 

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Strapping jet engines to stagecoaches; or iPads in schools (Education Week)

Need a job? Invent it (New York Times)

A failing grade for broadband (Slate) 


Welcome to our seven newest team members!


Find Knerds at: 

NewSchools Summit (April 30 - May 1): A discussion about how entrepreneurs can help transform education for underserved students. 

EdInnovation (May 1 - 2): An edtech innovation showcase in Calgary, Canada. Knewton Founder and CEO Jose Ferreira will give a keynote address.


Thursday, April 25 is NY Tech DayWith over 450+ companies and 10,000 attendees expected, the expo bills itself as the largest startup event in the world.

Plus, Knewton is co-hosting the official NY Tech Day After-Party. Details & registration here.

After-party not your thing? Swing by Knewton HQ instead for a Bigvis meetup featuring Hadley Wickham. Register here.