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Chinese AI Language-Learning Company Listed on Wall Street

Chinese AI Language-Learning Company Listed on Wall Street | Language Tech Market News | Scoop.it

LAIX is a Chinese AI that creates and delivers products and services to promote English learning. "We want everyone to become global citizens," said the company's Chairman & CEO Yi Wang. The company is on the Forbes China "50 Most Innovative Companies" list for 2018. It will begin by teaching English to the Chinese.

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Japan to Boost English Teaching in Schools with AI robots

Japan to Boost English Teaching in Schools with AI robots | Language Tech Market News | Scoop.it

English-speaking artificial intelligence (AI) robots will be helping out in some 500 Japanese classrooms from next year as the country seeks to improve its English skills, particularly among children and teachers. The education ministry is planning a pilot project costing around 250 million yen (US$227,000) to improve Japanese students’ notoriously weak oral and written English, an official said.

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Research: Using #VR to Add Embodiment to Language Learning 

How could we tap into the connection between language and body to enhance the way we learn? In order to explore this question, we developed an application for the HTC Vive called Words in Motion, which leverages two powerful elements of VR:
- the ability to create meaningful context and
- the ability to understand kinesthetic interactions using body tracking.

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Using Mobile Tech to Help Language Learning for Newly Arrived Migrants in Sweden

Using Mobile Tech to Help Language Learning for Newly Arrived Migrants in Sweden | Language Tech Market News | Scoop.it

The study indicates that focused linguistic training with a pronunciation app is useful for developing spoken language skills, which can lead to improved integration. The participants expressed need and interest in having more mobile apps for both language and culture training.

LT-Innovate's insight:

Results sound obvious, but where is the continent-wide effort to accelerate migrant language learning using language tech in EU?

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Using Smart Robots to Save Indigenous Languages in Oz

Using Smart Robots to Save Indigenous Languages in Oz | Language Tech Market News | Scoop.it

Project in Australia: The long-term ambition of the project is to build the AI language recognition software into CoEDL’s robot, Opie, that’s designed to teach kids to understand Australian indigenous languages. Opie is a simple, low-cost robot, made of wood, some tablets, a speaker, a mobile router and a Raspberry Pi computer. One of the tablets is made for showing stories, playing games and teaching lessons, while the other works as the interactive personality of the robot, with a face that reacts to the child’s actions. These kinds of lessons could easily be implemented into apps on phones and tablets, but the robot adds an extra aspect and will enhance learning for kids aged 2 to 5, which is regarded as the best age for learning languages.

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In Finnish Experiment, Robots Teach Language Classes

In Finnish Experiment, Robots Teach Language Classes | Language Tech Market News | Scoop.it

Elias the robot. The language-teaching machine comprises a humanoid robot and mobile application, one of four robots in a pilot program at primary schools in the southern city of Tampere.
The robot is able to understand and speak 23 languages and is equipped with software that allows it to understand students' requirements and encourage learning. In this trial however, it communicates in English, Finnish and German only.
The robot recognizes the pupil's skill levels and adjusts its questions accordingly. It also gives feedback to teachers about a student's possible problems.

LT-Innovate's insight:

Presumably, robot-led classes will be constantly video-watched for potential problems and to see how seriously kids learn.

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@Mondly Launches the First Augmented Reality + #ASR to Teach Languages

@Mondly Launches the First Augmented Reality + #ASR to Teach Languages | Language Tech Market News | Scoop.it

Mondly, a language learning platform with 30 million users, has released MondlyAR - the first language learning app powered by augmented reality and chatbots with speech recognition. Mondly worked in close collaboration with Google to launch MondlyAR as part of the first wave of augmented reality apps available in Google Play.

LT-Innovate's insight:

Hope someone tests the efficiency of this sort of language-learning environment, and compares it with other approaches. 

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#ASR Apps Help Improve "Personalised" Literacy Among Kids

"Speech recognition technologies are supportive of the learner because they allow them to use personally, culturally relevant grammar," Baker said in a press release on the project. "Children all have different backgrounds, and this technology allows them to learn to read while using their own frame of reference."

LT-Innovate's insight:

The individual way a learner speaks gets transcribed by ASR as the way to write as public discourse. Many would probably disagree, but you have to address a multiculti world of education in many countries.

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@Ananas the Language Exchange App

@Ananas the Language Exchange App | Language Tech Market News | Scoop.it
Language Exchange app. Meet new people and learn language the natural way.
LT-Innovate's insight:

There appears to be a trend for social language-learning apps emerging from Asia. Even KLM's airport "translate" seats play to social contact, if not actually learning another language. Ironically, the tech encourages a return to using translation as a language learning strategy...

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@lingvist: Datafication for Language Learning

@lingvist: Datafication for Language Learning | Language Tech Market News | Scoop.it

Estonian startup Lingvist aims to help us pick up a new language faster than usual.  Founder Mait Müntel was working as a physicist at CERN, and wanted a quick way to learn French. So he decided to take a data-driven approach, and fed over 40,000 movies complete with French subtitles into an algorithm that was running on the CERN supercomputers.  Through this, he was able to identify the key words and phrases that make up the bulk of French speaking, which in turn enabled him to master around 95% of those words in just a few months. This approach has been used successfully by around 1 million users who are testing and refining the system as well as learning one of a handful of languages via the app.  In initial tests, Müntel claims that learners have outperformed peers undertaking traditional classroom based tuition by four times.

LT-Innovate's insight:

Data needs context to be useful for human learning. How did he program in context/situation to his usage data?

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English Language iTutoring: Automated Assessment of L-Learning

English Language iTutoring: Automated Assessment of L-Learning | Language Tech Market News | Scoop.it

Paul Butcher, CTO of English Language iTutoring that develops The Write & Improve programme, an AI-driven language-learning assessment service launched last year. This is a joint venture between exams group Cambridge Assessment, Cambridge University Press and a group of technologists all based around Cambridge, UK.

LT-Innovate's insight:

AI-driven language learning assessment tools are so far quite rare. Butcher was involved in SwiftKey, the smart keyboard company, also inspired by academic work in Cambridge

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Same Language Subtitling for Literacy Drive in India

Same Language Subtitling for Literacy Drive in India | Language Tech Market News | Scoop.it

So how did Keni bring her abilities to the next level? Surprisingly – by watching a lot of TV. She used a programme that combines eye-tracking technology with karaoke-like subtitles that helps people learn the words at the same rate as they’re spoken or sung. It could be one way nations build up literacy globally.

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US Statement on the Role of Technology in Language Learning 

ROLE OF TECHNOLOGY FOR LEARNERS
Technology can and should be used by language educators to enhance language instruction, practice, and assessment, as articulated in the World-Readiness Standards for Learning Languages. Through the purposeful use of technology:
Students read, listen to, and view authentic, engaging, and timely materials from the target culture.
Students practice interpersonal skills as they interact via video, audio, or text in real-time with other speakers of the target language. 
Students collaborate on presentational tasks with their peers or teacher, anytime, anywhere.
Students work at their own pace as they access online content and/or utilize computer adaptive programs managed by their teacher.
Students practice discrete skills with engaging online games and applications.
Students benefit from differentiated instruction where multiple applications can be used to assess students, assign varied tasks, track data, give real-time feedback, and manage classrooms and lessons.

LT-Innovate's insight:

The jobs problem, again.

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Microsoft’s TextWorld is the OpenAI Gym of Language Learning…

How can we establish a repeatable and quantifiable mechanism for training AI agents in sophisticated conversational capabilities? Recently, researchers from the Microsoft Research Montreal Lab, released an open source project called TextWorld, which attempts to train reinforcement learning agents using Text-Based games. The ideas behind TextWorld were captured in a recent research paper published by Microsoft.
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Teach Alexa to Speak a New (Indian) Language

Teach Alexa to Speak a New (Indian) Language | Language Tech Market News | Scoop.it

Users can now teach Amazon' Alexa local Indian languages such as Hindi, Tamil, Marathi, Kannada, Bengali, Telugu, Gujarati and other Indian languages. The more they use this Cleo function the more it will improve Alexa's speech recognition and natural language understanding in the long term.

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Global Digital English Language Learning Market to Grow at +23% CAGR to 2023

Global Digital English Language Learning Market to Grow at +23% CAGR to 2023 | Language Tech Market News | Scoop.it

Companies profiled in this report includes:
Berlitz Languages, Pearson ELT, Sanako Corporation, EF Education First, Inlingua, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, LearnCube, McGraw-Hill Education, Onwards Learning, OKpanda, Oxford University Press, Rosetta Stone, Transparent Language, Voxy.

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Memrise Raises $15.5M As AI-based Language-learning App Passes 35M Users

Memrise Raises $15.5M As AI-based Language-learning App Passes 35M Users | Language Tech Market News | Scoop.it

Ed Cooke, CEO (UK) “We believe that the idea that Google Translate is an easier solution is a misunderstanding about language learning,” People don’t want to learn languages for pragmatic reasons but to be socially credible. You have to engage as a human being and be interested."

LT-Innovate's insight:

There's still money (and time for attention) in this well-explored, game-like service.

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Augmented Reality App to Revitalize Endangered Secwepemctsin Language

Augmented Reality App to Revitalize Endangered Secwepemctsin Language | Language Tech Market News | Scoop.it

Canada: The iPad lights up with a 3D image of a forest. Narration in the Splatsin’s traditional language, Secwepemctsin, begins to spill out of the device as the two delighted children listen intently to a story about how Porcupine got his coat. This new #AR app is helping revitalize the traditional Secwepemctsin dialect, a language spoken by just 10 to 15 people in the community, most of them in their 90s, says Aaron Leon, president of the Tsm7aksaltn Splatsin Teaching Centre. Stamped out by residential schools and the era of the Sixties Scoop, the language is considered endangered.

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jassi patayon's curator insight, April 13, 2:01 PM
Augmented reality that utilizes visuals and sound
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Sana Labs Wants to Disrupt $5 Trillion Edtech Market, Including Language Learning

Sana Labs Wants to Disrupt $5 Trillion Edtech Market, Including Language Learning | Language Tech Market News | Scoop.it

Sana Labs (Sweden). A testament to Sana Labs' deep learning approach was its recent win in Duolingo's Global AI competition: Sana Labs beat traditional AI platforms in predicting future mistakes that learners of English, Spanish, and French would make based on the mistakes they had made in the past.  Identifying these sorts of learning gaps is what then enables Sana Labs to tailor the right sort of content for each student –bye bye, standardized 20th century education.

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Automating English Learning Lessons Using CNN Stories

Automating English Learning Lessons Using CNN Stories | Language Tech Market News | Scoop.it

WeSpeke and CNN announced a partnership for a new platform called en.news, a free website and mobile app that automates English lessons from existing editorial content on CNN.com.
“You’re not going to change your habit of consuming the news,” CEO Mr. Elchik said. “Everybody tends to get up and check the sports scores or headlines ... we’re allowing you to follow your habits and learn English at the same time.”

LT-Innovate's insight:

Not the first time learning apps have joined forces with existing "real" language producers such as broadcasters. But the emphasis can now be on your behaviour (checking your smartphone for news) rather than your learning targets.

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How Babbel Built an Online English Test

How Babbel Built an Online English Test | Language Tech Market News | Scoop.it
The Babbel English Test powered by Cambridge English is now live! It’s possible to take the entire test online, and it offers our learners the chance to accurately assess their reading and listening skills in English and certify levels from A1 to B1 and above. The result is displayed in a personalised certificate with your photo, which you can add to your CV or share on social and professional networks.
LT-Innovate's insight:

Evaluation of speaking skills as well as writing/reading etc is now possible in online language testing. Could lead to disruption...

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@Liulishuo (FKA LingoChamp) Sets up AI Lab in Silicon Valley

@Liulishuo (FKA LingoChamp) Sets up AI Lab in Silicon Valley | Language Tech Market News | Scoop.it

Founded by Yi Wang, Hui Lin, and Ben Hu in 2012, Liulishuo is the world's leading "AI + Education" company. The Company has developed the world's first "AI English Teacher" based on deep learning, which provides a personalized and adaptive learning path for every learner. It is proven to triple the learning efficiency (reduce the required learning time to one third) compared to human teachers in the CEFR standards (Common European Framework of Reference for Language), according to a study using the TOEIC Bridge Test from ETS. The Company's flagship mobile app product "Liulishuo" has more than 50 million registered users and over 600K paid users, from 379 cities in China and over 175 countries around the world.

LT-Innovate's insight:

Language learning, though crucially part of EU educational policy, and a very popular if difficult activity for all sorts of individuals, has attracted very few major language tech companies or minds dedicated to inventing new ways to learn. 

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AI-Powered Language Learning Promises to Fast-track Fluency

AI-Powered Language Learning Promises to Fast-track Fluency | Language Tech Market News | Scoop.it

According to Glossika CEO Michael Campbell, machine learning algorithms mean there’s “no need for language experts to figure out what to teach in what order – our AI figures out the complexity and sorting of any language automatically.”
The platform, which works in-browser on computer or mobile, features customizable lessons that take around 10 to 20 minutes. Users are advised to get a full night’s rest between lessons — there’s no powering through a week’s worth of material to ‘level up’ or anything like that.

LT-Innovate's insight:

About time someone started disrupting language learning with ML. Will it succeed where suggestopedia, sleep learning, and all the other tricks presumably failed?

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David Stapleton's curator insight, December 2, 2017 5:24 PM
As we need health physicaly our minds are generating a need to grow faster as the future unfolds before our eyes
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Post-Brexit Language Skills 'a Priority' Says British Council Report

Post-Brexit Language Skills 'a Priority' Says British Council Report | Language Tech Market News | Scoop.it

The British Council report calls for a “bold new policy” to improve language learning in the UK and says it a “concern” that only just over one in three Britons say they are able to hold a conversation in another language. The Languages for the Future report says Spanish, Mandarin, French, Arabic and German are the languages the UK will need most once the country leaves the European Union.

LT-Innovate's insight:

Another opportunity for advanced language-teaching apps

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Mondly Launches the First VR Language App With Speech Recognition for Daydream

Mondly Launches the First VR Language App With Speech Recognition for Daydream | Language Tech Market News | Scoop.it
ATi Studios, creators of Mondly, the language app with over 20 million downloads and recently crowned 2017 Facebook "App of the Year" in EMEA, launches MondlyVR, a first-of-its-kind language experience for Google's Virtual Reality platforms Daydream and Cardboard. MondlyVR allows people to take part in life-like conversations with virtual characters in 30 different languages by combining a voice chatbot, speech recognition, and VR technology. The app offers instant immersion, feedback on pronunciation, suggestions that enrich learners' vocabulary, and interactive scenarios that make learning languages fun and easy.
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