iKnow! Demos Breakthrough New Application at AsiaD: All Things Digital Conference

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Virtual personal assistant for learning debuts text parsing functionality for customized language study anytime, anywhere.

Cerego Japan Inc., the Tokyo-based learning technology company, today unveiled a breakthrough new application for iKnow!, its virtual personal assistant for learning.

The iKnow! assistant guides users’ study, setting a pace and tailoring lessons to meet stated goals and optimize retention. It leverages Cerego’s patented adaptive learning engine.

The new application is special because iKnow!’s text parsing tools transform text into learnable, customized content. For the first time, a user can initiate asynchronous learning on content from any electronic text, ranging from Web-based news articles and Twitter streams to email and documents, in real-time.

With this new functionality, iKnow! now recognizes and automatically incorporates key terms and concepts from disparate, unstructured sources, adding them to its repertoire for ongoing, personalized study. Sessions can now take place around both formal and informal content, concurrently.

This new feature is currently in private beta, debuting for iKnow!’s English to Japanese curriculum, and will be expanded to other language offerings in coming months.

Paired with the high-fidelity, proprietary content iKnow! is known for globally, this new functionality balances traditional, curriculum-based learning with interest-based specialization. Learning science shows that both modalities are critical for overall learning effectiveness and efficiency.

Once a user selects new content, iKnow! parses the text and automatically identifies new words and key concepts for study. The user can then choose which of these she wants to prioritize.

Cerego shares this news from the prestigious AsiaD: All Things Digital conference in Hong Kong, where the company is selected as one of only four companies to demo onstage and debut new technology. The demo will offer the first public presentation of iKnow!’s new application on Friday, October 21st at 9:15 AM HKT.

“Cerego’s unique learning engine is based on longstanding research that reveals an optimum moment to review content, ensuring maximum retention,” said Andrew Smith Lewis, Chairman and co-founder of Cerego. “With iKnow!’s personal learning assistant technology, we now have not only the capability to generate adaptive learning schedules for each user based on our own award-winning content, but we’ve also added the ability to create and study a nearly infinite variety of material from around the Web. Language learning just got a lot more interesting.”

iKnow! is driven by algorithms that generate optimal learning schedules for discrete items of declarative learning content. Intelligent scheduling of study at the item level is achieved by gathering metadata on individual user performance and modeling optimum memory retention patterns for every item.

iKnow! acts as a learning assistant by calculating the optimum moments of review across all the content a user studies.

Today’s language learning systems are static. Each learner goes through the same lessons and learns the same words and phrases in the same order. Language learners are at the mercy of the system and must follow a predetermined sequence of topics, regardless of interest and relevance to each specific user.

With iKnow!'s new abilities, users are now able able to construct a novel learning experience on the fly, one that directly matches their interests, and seamlessly supplements the official, proven curriculum that Cerego has developed over the past decade.

For the English-speaking market, iKnow! also recently launched the Chinese Core 2000, in both simplified and traditional Chinese. By analyzing Gigaword (a corpus of over 1 billion words), a web-based corpus, and the HSK Chinese Proficiency Test, Cerego has curated the top 2,000 words that are most important to any learner of Chinese. Mastering these 2,000 words and 4,000 sentences will give the student of Chinese a solid foundation for embarking on independent study.

About Cerego and iKnow!:
Cerego Japan Inc. was founded in 2000 as a learning technology company with a mission to enhance the efficiency of the learning process. Based on years of applied research in collaboration with PhD specialists in cognitive psychology, experimental psychology, and neuroscience, Cerego has developed and patented a science-based method for learning faster, remembering longer, and performing more effectively than with other conventional approaches.

Cerego’s core service is iKnow!, a science-based virtual personal assistant for language learning that allows you to learn faster, remember longer, and perform more effectively than with other, conventional approaches.

To learn more, please visit: http://www.iknow.jp

About All Things Digital:
The Wall Street Journal's All Things Digital (http://www.allthingsd.com) is devoted to news, analysis and opinion on technology, the Internet and media. Co-edited by Walt Mossberg and Kara Swisher, the site is the online extension of the annual "D: All Things Digital" conference started by Mossberg and Swisher in 2003 and attended by the digital elite. The award winning site is a mix of columns, blogs and video - featuring a stable of smart, insightful and dedicated writers creating a vibrant fusion of different media styles, topics and formats.

In the past year, Mossberg and Swisher have extended the conference franchise to include D: Dive into Mobile, D: Dive into Media and the highly anticipated AsiaD conference, taking place this week in Hong Kong.

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Doug Freeman
Jones-Dilworth, Inc.
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