Eva's Café

Start Up Considerations

For those of us who are interested in moving forward with a start up after this course, please consider the following article from the BBC:


This article interviews three venture capitalists as to what qualities a new venture should have to get their attention. A must read. An interesting point they raise is that they do not accept ‘cold calls’. To get their attention, you must first get to know someone they already know. They never fund projects ‘off the street’. Knowing the right people is as important as it has always has been.

Best Wishes


Question and Answer

Weekly A2 Forecasts have dissappeared out of the nav menu/category

All of the the weekly A2 forecasts have disappeared out of their category archive. I logged in to check in on the Week 10 forecast discussion and couldn’t find it any longer! It looks like clicking on anything under the “Forums” category brings up a list of website suggestions being ranked rather than bringing up the requested stream. For anyone normally going to the “Forums > W05/12 Opportunity Forecasts (A2)” as a part of their routine to find the weekly launchpads,  W10 Launchpad, it is located here. Where/how should we be looking for the weekly OER presentations and activities now?



Eva's Café

Blog Post on Vendors’ focus

I came across this blogpost summarizing ISTE 2014. If anything the ISTE conference is as much about teachers coming together to learn and share as it is vendor’s hawking their wares. This blogpost focuses on a pet peeve of mine and that is the never wavering focus on technology, the latest gadget, rather than teaching and learning supported or enhanced by the technology. It is something to keep in mind as we pitch our projects.


“Walking through the Expo Hall at ISTE is — in many ways — a frightening experience.  You are surrounded by hundreds of companies peddling their products, working to convince you that their features would revolutionize education.  What frustrated me was that 90% of the crap on display did nothing to give kids the chance to learn about, participate in, or improve the world around them.”tweet

Eva's Café


Leah recently posted about coworking spaces and we ended up in a discussion about the different forms of spaces available some of which are accelerators that have specific focuses. One of the global spaces I know of from living in Bogotá is called ImpactHub. Turns out the Seattle Impact Hub was involved with Google on something called ImpactOnAir where people can share their pitches for their ventures. Recently they did one about educational ventures, so I wanted to pass along the Youtube link to the Google Hangout they did.

Eva's Café

Co-Lab and Interesting Collaborative Venture

An interesting business venture which I wanted to share with everyone. Co-Lab is a new business venture in the Philippines. As a new entrepreneur if you have a new big idea but need a collaborative business space to work in Co-Lab offers that capability. I think this is especially important and great for anyone starting a new business if they need the start-up or don’t have the investment pull yet to have all the needed supplies and office space. The space can be used either part-time or full-time.

This is their definition of Co-Lab on their website: “Co.lab offers a coworking space created to spark collaborative fusion among like-minded individuals. The word co.lab can be short for collaborate or co-laboratory, where ideas synergize and ideas are set on fire. Co.lab has no cubicles but instead a variety of different areas which offer coworkers the freedom to work from a desk or a sofa, a communal table, or a lounge chair—whatever is more conducive for their productivity. Coworkers can come in from 9AM-6PM, Monday-Friday with whatever materials they need to get their work done such as laptops, cameras, and pens. They must select the package of their choice and make their payment, then begin co-working.”

Thought I would share this venture with everyone. If your pitch comes to fruition, another similar company within your area could be created as a collaborative working space area.


Cooperative Learning venture space

Eva's Café

Canadian Start-ups

If you are still considering a company to focus on for your A3 assignment I just finished my MaRS monthly meeting with a few suggestions.  The following are startups with MaRS that you might want to learn more about or use for your pitch assignment.

Raise Your Flag – https://raiseyourflag.com/?skip_landing – Just saw their pitch – great job, I’d invest 🙂

Ooka Island – http://ookaisland.com/category/ookawave/

Clapfoot – http://www.clapfootgames.com/

LEO Fitness Intelligence – https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/leo-fitness-intelligence

MUSE – brain sensing headband – https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/muse-the-brain-sensing-headband 

Synergyse – Google product training – http://www.synergyse.com/

Eva's Café

Is Silicon Valley Funding the Wrong Stuff?

During my research, I stumbled upon an interesting article where Christopher Mims presented his interesting view on Silicon Valley VC funding startupspublished in The Wall Street Journal on July 6, 2014.

What has been funded lately in Silicon Valley?

  • Social networks that allow you to send only the message “Yo” to your contacts.
  • Food-delivery services valued at $400 million.
  • Startups that deliver rolls of quarters to your home (just $27 for $20 in change!).

It isn’t hard, looking at a lineup like this, to conclude that Silicon Valley has jumped the shark. The entire Bay Area appears to have given up on solving anything but its own problems: those afflicting the same 20-somethings who are building these startups.

That’s a pretty cynical take on what’s going on in technology.

And what about Google and Facebook buying everything in sight for billions?

But, to my surprise, the partners of one Silicon Valley venture-capital firm made the very same case to me: That their kind had lost its way—and, in the world of startups, money wasn’t flowing where it should anymore.

Read more here: http://online.wsj.com/articles/is-silicon-valley-investing-in-the-wrong-stuff-1404688048

Regards, Milorad.

Question and Answer

Q & A: VideoScribe Emerg

I know there are a lot of people in this course with diverse experience using video tools online – so I wanted to pick your brain. I have a video due for another course, and used videoscribe (7 day trial, and i have two days left) — for my initial video, it allowed me to upload it to Youtube. The second video, I wanted to upload to Youtube today and the option was gone…

I am trying to figure out another way to give my professor access… I uploaded it to the Scribes online account, but it still does not allow anyone to view it…
This is new territory for me, so I was hoping someone would know more.

Any info would be great ASAP! thanks,

Question and Answer


Hi David(s),

Is there any way that I can create a subpage for our week. I can’t seem to do it with the permissions I have.

I’d like to keep everything in one place so people are clear where they post and how.




W5/12 Opportunity Forcasts (A2)

Week 12 – Wearables

Opportunity Forecasts (A2)

W09 Review

I personally like Edomdo. I found the activities very useful and informative. I would suggest using more tools available on Edmodo some of which are free and available on Edmodo store. Using Socrative was a great idea. Maybe it would be a good idea to divide students into smaller groups with different tasks and asking students to evaluate different groups activities (peer-to-peer evaluation) exactly how our course is being design.

522 Feedback

Website Suggestions

Thanks Bobbi for helping explain and improve the functionality of the site. I too have found the navigation a bit difficult at times.

My suggestions relate to the use of images, icons and colour to help with navigation.  Currently there is some disconnect between the use of image and navigation. For example the titles in the images don’t align with the headings or subheadings. These images would be great for navigation but they would need to connect to other pages.

website design

The image at the bottom of the page is my suggestion for the website design and navigation. I don’t necessarily see a long tab at the top but created this image to show all the possible layers in the site. Perhaps rather than including Week 5-12 as separate tabs, there would be a Week 5-12 tab with images that link to the weeks:


When the user clicks on a week it would take them to a page with the week’s Introduction, Activities (if housed on the site), Week review/summation and the Comments sections. In this way people would know where to post everything and if they wanted to add an image (which I don’t believe right now is doable in a comment) they could post their review/comment under the correct section.

I think the use of icons would help define various aspects of the site that repeat such as overviews, information, actionable tasks and summaries or critiques. In my image I used a pin to signal information/overview, a checkmark for summations/reviews, a question mark for important questions and answers and a lightbulb for items that require participation or action. I included colour-coding to help participants visualize where they are in the course and on the site. I also used colour to  show progression over the first four weeks (light to dark).  In the best of all possible worlds the front page would be a visual diagram with buttons leading to the 15 pages – from introductory weeks, to weekly activities, to final pitches and Q&A –  keeping this page clean and clear and concise. I’d also like to see the removal of the running stream to the right of the page. It adds visual clutter and would most likely not work on a mobile device.

Finally, I included the YouTube image in my video as I think a quick screencapture video going through the site, how and where to post would be helpful for many people.

Website construction

MTC Kendra


Week 8 Review

Thank you week 8 for your facilitation last week. Your choice of topic is focused and relevant with educational filed in the point of privacy and security matters. It gave me the opportunity to think about cloud technology from a very new angle, and I think that is a good experience to me. I liked the layout and image of your presentation. As other people have mentioned on the problem of the choice of collaborative platform, I would like to add the point of openness. I appreciate your experiment in opening our collaborative discussion processes because we are to create an OER. On the other hand, through the process, it made me wonder what would be the objective and product of this open discussion. In our group, we were not as active as our regular brainstorming process of adding ideas and pooling anything without filtering or sorting. The discussion quality is different from the reviews, reflections and discussions on the regular open threads on the ETEC522 site. I wonder the experiment of opening our process creating the assessment tool could add to the readers more value.

522 Feedback

Website Suggestion

I have found this website difficult to navigate because I have never used a Word Press site that uses so many of the features. I have one suggestion. There are a few students, esp. Bobbi K (Thank you!) who are reminding or explaining how to use the site properly. I would like to be able to see all of these posts in one place. If there was a ‘sort by’ for helpful hints on the right hand side, I’m sure that would be the first thing I checked every time I logged in.

Eva's Café

Crowdsource Funding: Considerations

Here is a link to an interesting article regarding issues and limitations in regards to crowdsource funding.


I think we all hear stories (like this one about Potato Salad) and imagine that raising capital through these tools is simple and a solution to all of our problems in funding new ideas. However, the Forbes article is an interesting reality check as it tends to illustrate some of the legal limitation (at least in the US) regarding what can be done with such venture finance.

Best Wishes


522 Feedback, Question and Answer

Website suggestion – 522 anatomy helpful?

As a website feedback suggestion (tagged in the 522 feedback category) I’m wondering if an “anatomy of 522” image might be helpful? I know this is explained with text and images in the intro, but maybe a simple anatomy is more clear?

The biggest learn curve and complication is that “posts” refer to something different in the WP environment (they create separate artifact/post pages), whereas “comments” and “reviews” add  commentary to an existing “post.”  It can be  confusing when we need to submit a post versus a review. In this case, students may refer to the “how to use this blog page”  and see only instructions on how to create a new ‘post’ when what they need to do is submit a review on the bottom of an article/post.

Maybe in the next evolution there is an explanation of reviews on the “how to use this blog” page, and/or more elaboration in weekly tasks to submit reviews using the reviews feature (located at the bottom of a post)?

Anatomy of 522

522 Feedback

W08 – Review

Through your focus on cloud services in the medical field, I learned a lot about an area I generally do not deal with. Using a focus other than education to examine the merits of a service was a unique experience. Although informative, I am not sure how effectively the topic links to educational technology. Education of staff within the health care system is required with the use of cloud applications, but this is a very small part of your content. Another small link to education was made with the information about educational institutions and how they used cloud services within their medical programs. The layout of your site was simple and easy to navigate, and the “cloud” theme was consistent. The concept of working within our groups was effective and provided a forum for discussion. Unfortunately we had a lot of difficulty using Stormboard. The program is very similar to Padlet and does not lend itself well to extensive discussion or collaborative projects. In the end we used a Googledoc to complete our assessment tool. Although Stormboard did not work for this particular application, now that I have had the chance to experience the program, I can see myself using it for other purposes. A final suggestion relates to the assessment tools created by each group. Right now they are available through links that need to be copied and pasted. It may be more effective and easier to access if they are either added directly to the website page or if hyperlinks are created. Thanks for an informative week!


Eva's Café

Do Cryptocurrencies Increase Access to Education?


I have been further investigating a closed resource from W08’s OER called Treehouse because I am considering buying their product. I noticed that the company proudly accepts Bitcoin, touting its crucial role in increasing access to education. Moreover, dozens of educational institutions are now accepting Bitcoin claiming that it lowers the cost of education! Consider the following statements from ventures and institutions accepting Bitcoin:

“As one of the fastest growing payment methods, Bitcoin will give more people across the world the opportunity to learn with Treehouse. Our mission is to bring affordable Technology education to people everywhere, in order to help them achieve their dreams and change the world, and we believe that Bitcoin can help us accomplish that.” – Treehouse

“The King’s College seeks to transform society by preparing students for careers in which they help to shape and eventually to lead strategic public and private institutions. Allowing Bitcoin to be used to pay for a King’s education decreases our costs while simultaneously allowing our students to be a part of this exciting new technology.” – The King’s College, NYC, US

“Digital currency will create more efficient services and will serve as a mechanism for spreading financial services to under-banked regions of the world. In this light, we consider it appropriate that we implement digital currency as a method of payment across all our institutions in all cities and countries of our operations.” – University of Nicosia, Cyprus

Treehouse reports that learners’ most often pay with credit card, which usual cost 2-3% per transaction. Furthermore, international students need not bother with fluctuating currency exchange rates. Everyone also enjoys Bitcoin’s minimal transaction fees. Although Bitcoin currently has a high buy-in, the popularity of other cryptocurrencies is also rising.

Here are three questions to consider about the developing future role of cryptocurrencies in the marketplace of education:

1.Is it inevitable that ventures in education technology will accept cryptocurrency as a standard method of payment?
2.Are cryptocurrencies a reliable source of funds for small start-ups like Treehouse?
3.Most importantly, are ventures and institutions accepting cryptocurrency truly empowering learners?



Get Your Education On: Treehouse Now Accepts Bitcoin For Coding Courses

Tech Education Startup Treehouse Looks to Bitcoin Payments for International Advantage

Eva's Café

Northern Ontario: My Local

I am not sure about you, but I know for myself it has been interesting watching my friends being their own ventures and forays into business…. and in Northern Ontario that is a big challenge (isolation, low populations, and sometimes a little bit slower to adopt new tech). I wanted to share with you, in case any of you are from the area, some of the new ventures that I have been connected with that involve media, the community and education on some level that have been formed at a grassroots level by local artists and entrepreneurs.

Near North Mobile Media Lab – I have utilized the N2M2L to take workshops and private lessons in using Final Cut Pro, incorporating video and digital images into projects. They have a mobile trailer that has been customized to include a media lab, they drive around to Northern communities and do workshops to teach people how to use these tools.


Thinking Rock Community Arts – this project was initiated by a dear friend of mine in the Algoma Region (Sault Ste. Marie) and has really taken off in the last year. Through art projects this organization seeks to build community and foster positive change (ie. various youth programs etc).


These initiatives are so interesting because they use media to build like-minded communities, to share information with other communities, create networks and links between communities and overall improve accessibility to information, technology and positive change. I just thought these ventures might spark something in you to look a bit closer at your own community, or greater community because usually there are some hidden gems there!

Question and Answer

W07: Review

Hi Team W07,
First, I was struck by the look and feel of your site. It is clean, polished and easy to navigate. I have an interest in coding, having tried my hand at several tools, so I really enjoyed the variety of activities. Activity 3 that takes a look at the opportunity horizons of various applications is very useful. I appreciate the wide selection of applications and know that I will be revisiting your site to explore further. Thanks for putting the OER together and for taking the time to respond to each comment posted. Great job!

Question and Answer

Review: Week 7

Week 7 — I loved your website, I loved the layout and the detail to provider the user (me) with instructions to navigate. I really enjoyed the diverse information, hyperlinking, incorporation of images and elaborate discussion. I applaud your group for the flow and cohesion that the site and information had, because I like many of our classmates understand how challenging it can be to get that cohesion when working with others at such a distance. I feel like I got a lot of your site, for me code is a whole different world, it is intimidating and I often am deterred to explore further, but your site was very welcoming.

Great job!

Analyst Reports (A1)

A1 – Uversity Analyst Report

Hi Everyone,

Here is my report please follow this link to my Prezi version: http://prezi.com/h9c-34u9n0r3/?utm_campaign=share&utm_medium=copy&rc=ex0share

Please let me know if there are issues with the presentation as I was having some last night.


Working at a Post-Secondary institution and discussing the product with our Social Media Specialist there are benefits of utilizing products like Schools App and UChat especially for Student Engagement. I found out that the Social Media Specialist has made a request that SAIT invests in the product and that SAIT is currently on the wait list. I don’t know if this product would do anything for our enrollment here at SAIT as we are at an all-time high for enrollment and applications.

As for me in doing this assignment I don’t think I have a business type acumen. I really need to push myself to think this way, which is a great reason to take this course. This is something that I want to work on.

Opportunity Forecasts (A2)

W08: Cloud Learning Launchpad

Welcome to Week 8, where we will be delving into the world of cloud learning as it specifically relates to education in the medical field. Our OER will look at:

  • A brief overview of the cloud
  • How the cloud is currently used in the medical field
  • How the cloud can support current goals in medical education
  • A survey of cloud solutions for the medical field and medical education

Our aim is to immerse you and your team members from Assignment 2 in a cloud environment to solve a problem.

Please join us at http://etec522cloudlearning.weebly.com/ to find out more. Click on the start button to view an introductory video that will explain the site and activities for the week.cloud learning

Please do not hesitate to ask questions as we go along. We hope you enjoy Week 8!

Riea, Erin, Aaron, Kuljinder, Brendan, Laura

Analyst Reports (A1)

A1 Venture Analyst Report – PresenceLearning

Hello Everyone,

I chose to analyze PresenceLearning, an online service that provides speech language therapy and occupational therapy to K12 students.  It is predominantly used in the U.S. as this market has a greater demand at the moment for this type of service.  As a high-school educator who has encountered many of my students who are in dire need of speech language therapy or occupational therapy, this service was of great interest to me.  So many of my students are not diagnosed or assessed in time to get the help that they need to enhance their academic achievement.  It would assuage the financial cost of private one-on-one therapy within a medical setting but also would advance flexibility and timely assessment of learners in  need of communication or motor skills aid.

The medium I chose to use is completely new to me, please enjoy and offer any feedback, insights or input directly into the blog of the site or under the comments below.


Thank you!


Analyst Reports (A1)

A1: Analyst report on SHOWBIE (updated)

Please take a look at my updated Educational Venture Analyst report  on “SHOWBIEa homework drop box for tablet classrooms. Showbie was born in Edmonton, my city and in a year and half skyrocketed to wide popularity. I took the opportunity to thoroughly research, analyze and explore Showbie to get ready for the actual proposal and possible implementation in my PSE environment. Enjoy it here: http://youtu.be/CuJQ1Pv3RO8


  Any suggestions related to Showbie analysis, experiences and implementation are welcome.



Analyst Reports (A1)

Educational Venture Analyst

Greeting. So after trying several different ways to post my presentation, I finally concluded that if you wish to view it you will have to download it. I couldn’t upload a slide show presentation (.ppsx) file  to the Media section of the ETEC  site so I had to use my Google Drive to host it. The link is below and don’t worry, it’s safe – it will play as a slide show only. There are 3 slides that contain audio. Please let me know if there are any problems. Thanks


Jonathan’s Brief Reflections 

I chose Aspen Student Information System (SIS) because ConnectEdBC (the successor to BCeSIS) is based on the same platform and interface as Aspen SIS. Like most teachers in BC I despised BCeSIS although I still used the grade book extensively.  I was also one of the trainers at our school. But since there will be a new SIS, I thought I might as well become more familiar with it sooner than later. I will probably end up becoming a training for ConnectEdBC too. Feel free to share any BCeSIS stories you may have.  Cheers

Analyst Reports (A1)

A1: Analyst Report on GeoGebra

About Me

I am an educational venture analyst who is currently working for an Ontario school board. Besides this role, I have been teaching high school Math for many years here and abroad. Currently I am interested in sourcing out smart and viable educational technologies that could  be integrated successfully in the classroom and that are in compliance with our board goals. As a mathematics teacher, I believe that automatization of math and learning with technology provides real-life context where inquiry based learning is enabled and Math becomes alive.

The Board Initiative

The board initiative promotes not only 21st century skills but ICT literacy that will augment the student overall learning. The current need of the board is to integrate smart and effective  technologies that promote high-quality teaching and learning while keeping the existing budget in mind. The curriculum document for learning math/science specifies that students ought to use technology (e.g. In my opinion, this should be extended beyond learning with calculators) to resemble the current market.

To support the above, please refer to pg. 37 of Ontario Grade 11-12 Math Curriculum Document.

Before A Proposal  

Before the product is presented to our superintendent, a sample Likert Scale Survey would investigate how many teachers and students already use this software out of their choice or the competitive one (GSP) or any other one; the overall experience of the use of dynamic software in the classroom, the existing and potential barriers, etc. The findings would be integrated into my proposal to point out its strengths and weaknesses and how to address them adequately with this particular product integration.

A Proposal to Our Superintendent:

After extensive research, I propose that we consider integrating GeoGebra, an award winning, dynamic multi-platformed math and science software, for all levels of  Math teaching and learning that comes with in many languages. The application is free, open, and could be downloaded from the internet. It joins geometry, algebra, tables, graphing, statistics and calculus in one easy-to-use package. It it being used in a growing number of schools globally and its community is growing fast. However, there are potential obstacles and suggestion on how to overcome them.

You could check one of  the GG’s demos here: [youtube]http://youtu.be/w7lgMx8-1c0[/youtube]

This software was created by an academic who has strong experiences in math education, computer science, and education research. Please see the creator’s profile here. Also, this app is extensively supported by peer-reviewed academic research and some interesting ones come from Cambridge University by Dr. Lavizca.

I would suggest that we start with a pilot project in few schools, and if the results are favourable, we are to expand it all schools.

At the moment, the board is using the Geometer’s Sketchpad (GSP) that comes with a steep price tag, the upkeep of  licences, and some bugs. On the flip side, GSP is already being used in our board, belongs to McGraw Hill Education, has a solid tech support, and it does come with textbooks and other resources that integrate the software in a meaningful way. However, as we are moving more and more away from traditional textbooks this feature might become obsolete in the near future.

The Return on Investment (ROI) in adopting GeoGebra that is free could be significant if we are to consider all schools in the board and that we no longer will need to purchase the licences for GSP. We are looking to be eliminating the cost of roughly $200,000 per 2-3 year span (a licence cost of $15/computer x average 100 computers/school x 107 schools = $160,500 +$40,000 approx. cost for troubleshooting and upkeep costs in terms of time).  The figure is dependant on the lifespan of our computer equipment that currently is enduring quite heavy wear and tear and on average needs to be replaced every 2-3 years. The figure above could address some of many of our more dire and immediate needs and becomes significant in savings if we are to look at in the long run. The cost is the training of our staff that could be done during already mandated professional development days and therefore, reduced. The workshops could be led by our GG teacher experts, or we could pay for the outside experts as well at the estimated cost of $500 per workshop. To become a proficient user of GG, on average of 30 hours are needed. This could be accomplished with 4-5 PD sessions in a year. The additional cost would be around $2,500/year. The additional cost would be in terms of  time needed for our tech staff to download the software onto the schools’ computers. However, this could take (10 min x approx.10, 700 computers) to staggering 1,783 hours. To reduce this number, teachers and students could download the app as it is quite straightforward.

GeoGebra brings other features that GSP doesn’t have and therefore, contributes to overall added value to our schools. For example, it has more versatile tools and features, runs on more platforms, has a thriving community since it is open, comes in 60 languages useful for our ELL learning and teaching, it is fueled by relevant peer-reviewed research and not only profit, written by math instructors, etc.  In addition, it is much stronger than other free products similar to this one. Please see the comparison table below:

GeoGebra and Other Products Comparison Table

Screen Shot 2014-06-29 at 5.27.44 PM

Comparison between GeoGebra and GSP

When comparing and deciding on GeoGebra, I have used the below table of criteria to support my recommendation. I’ve decided to compare the two since GSP is the existing software in our board. Although GSP does meet some criteria better than GeoGebra, GG has a stronger cummulative value based on the criteria used in the table below:

GeoGebra Geometer’s Sketchpad
1. More versatile tools and features
2. Easy-to-use interface and friendly; intuitive
3.  Windows, Linux, Mac OS X, Android, iOS, Windows RT.
4.Extensive open resource centre on GeoGebraTube
5. multilingual; with 60 languages it caters to our growing ELL population enabling teachers to assess their students more appropriately and ELL students understand better what they are learning
6. Written by math instructions considering math education for all levels; fueled and supported with credible research and social venture
7. No support over the phone or online chat; only desk help e-mail contacts available that could be timely or forum options
8. Calculations are possible, macros, loci, animations, assignments, webexport, no proofs
9. open and free
10. Thriving community
11. Imo, easier for calculus
12. few ways of installing it
1. Not as many tools
2. Easy-to-use interface and friendly; intuitive
3. Windows, Mac OS X (Java), now mobile explorer as well, Linux but with bugs
4. Comes integrated in textbooks (schools can buy them along with software) and with online resources
5. English only

6. Profit-based venture

7. Solid help-desk support over the phone, online, etc.
8. Calculations are possible, macros, loci, animations, no assignments, limited webexport, no proofs
9. Closed and costs
10. Some community
11. Imo, geometry and measurements are easier to do
12. Only one way of installing it



GeoGebra could be used for K-12, higher education, and commercial use as well.

In our case, the product is marketable across our board, and potentially on a provincial and national level of our public school system.

However, in this context, the focus is to offer this software to grades 9-12 of our local board. The diversity of the product is that it could be implemented for earlier grades as well; the potential benefit is that the students could grow academically while getting familiar with the software use from an early age. Just imagine the competency and expertise in software manipulation if they were exposed to it from the get go.


This interactive software connects both geometry and algebra, and can be used for learning of statistics and calculus. “The software offers two representations of every object: the numeric algebraic component shows either coordinates, an explicit or implicit equation, or an equation in parametric form, while the geometric component displays the corresponding solution set” as mentioned by a student. The interface is easy to use  yet it comes with many powerful features. There is also an authoring tool to create interactive learning materials as web pages. The software is used on Windows, Linux, Mac OS X, Android, iOS, Windows RT.

Although there are other softwares on the market, this one comes with close to 94,000 materials on GeoGebra Tube that could make a life of a teacher much easier and is available in over 60 languages. Please see here: http://tube.geogebra.org.

There is a blog with regular updates regarding the product. Please see here:  http://blog.geogebra.org

The forum provides materials for beginner users, guiding packages, troubleshooting, and a thriving community willing to share: http://geogebra.org/forum/. However there is no formal tech support service available via phone or instant online trouble-shooting but there are help desks contacts available.

The institutes are all over the world, and those interested in GG could become their local ambassadors. The certification is also available, as well as the workshops. However, the conferences and workshops are tied to physical spaces and specific dates and therefore not readily accessible to everyone.

The application is rooted in an academia and supported by research. It is open sourced with a growing number of contributors. The community is quite large and growing. The team consists of research, software development, finance, community support (teacher training and research),a STEM rep, advisors, volunteer translators, etc.


Please refer to an earlier section of this document. However, the buyer could be any educational institution/organization and the product could be bought centrally. The buyer could be individual teachers who see the value of the product, a parent,a learner, or a commercial institution. In our context, the buyer would be our local board that specifically buys it for grades 9-12.


We are talking about the market where there is a need for interactive and dynamic math software for teaching and learning and with “access” to internet: Anglophone countries, “European” countries with language skills and those requiring translation, and a few “Asian” countries. Those regions with restricted or poor quality internet service might be able to download the software to be used offline but would need to keep updating it for it to stay current.


Based on preliminary face-to-face informal interviews, there are many teachers who use or would use this or a similar product in their classroom in our board. Given this context, I would look at the market as a number of math teachers and students in our local board. Based on that and the initial sample survey, I would compile a pie chart that exemplifies uses and practices of this/similar product and analyze other components as well to provide an accurate “market” status breakdown.


This technology works well with the system in place as long as teachers are willing and see the value in using it. In this context, this learning technology “could” be imposed and compete with the existing one (GSP). Instead of the term imposing, I would rather use “the teachers are given the opportunity to see the value in adopting such a technology” along with adequate incentives in terms of professional development on “school’s time”, and plethora of materials to integrate it in their practice. Teachers are convinced that this technology would make their teaching more effective and current.

Potential Barriers and Overcoming them

Teacher ability to switch and adopt the “new” technology quickly; training time might be needed, and teacher willingness to adopt could be some of the barriers that might need  to be addressed. What I see on a daily basis, although there is an initiative on promoting technology, that the use of technology is at times met  with a use of a graphing calculator. Often teachers resort to this option as the curriculum is dense and time is limited. There ought to be a push for a change to be reflected clearly in the curriculum document along with the  development of technology skills coupled with learning of math/science/other subjects.

Teachers need to be willing to adopt the new technology. Many incentives ought to be in place: some teachers could become board experts by getting a certification, others could become school leaders in the area, etc. Teachers need to see the value in using this technology or switching to the new one. Students get to use it for free on their own devices and hence have more opportunities to become self-regulated and independent. Also the new technology is more flexible, caters better to our school population, etc.

Teachers could see a new technology as a one more thing to learn in their already busy lives and be resistant to it.   Teachers ought to be given time to learn the new features on the school’s time, through PD, and see that their lives could become “easier” with an extensive library of resources and new tools and features to be taken advantage off. Clear how-to guides could be helpful, and providing comprehensive lesson packages with how to instructions along with the curriculum expectations could be seen as having a real value. These packages should have the option to be easily tweaked to suit specific needs.

Besides this, learning how to use this software by both teachers and students should be straightforward. The learning curve is steep, and should be effective when everything else is in place!

Analyst Reports (A1)

A1: Analyst Report on NoRedInk

I have created my Analyst Report on NoRedInk because it is a site that I have used in my own teaching and have shared with colleagues and everyone seems to really enjoy. The concept uses effective teaching practices and learning analytics to help students learn grammar rules in order to improve their writing.

I really enjoyed looking at the site from the role of an Educational Venture Analyst because it has helped me in revising my own venture. While I love NoRedInk as a teacher, I have noticed that there are actual many ways in which they could really improve the product and expand their possible revenue, so this type of thinking is what I need to apply when looking at my own pitch. Of course, there is also the issue of pricing which has not been made public and I think this is an additional downfall and might turn off potential purchasers.

The fact that they do not have a mobile app and that everyone requires an internet connect to function has been the main area that worries me, and so I am trying to think of how I can use an offline mobile app to improve my educational technology venture. One really needs to wear multiple hats in order to be an entrepreneur these days!

Analyst Reports (A1)

A1 Analyst Report – Glogster

ETEC 522 Analyst Report – O’Connor

I decided to do my analysis on Glogster. Glogster is a platform that I have used a few times in the classroom and I wanted to know more about its product. I currently use the free subscription and have had great success with it in the classroom. It was interesting to learn through my research that they are attempting to phase out/limit their free platform in hopes of promoting their paid premium accounts. Additionally I didn’t know that they had closed their public account in hopes of promoting their education website. The ability create a poster online requires different thinking from creating a poster using the traditional method with pen and paper. I like that the product appeals to the web 2.0 generation and allows students to express their creativity and understanding in a new medium.

While working on this analyst report I found that I caught myself numerous times trying to sell the product. I had to remind myself that this was not the task and that instead I needed to provide a critical review of the topic. While an analysis seems like an easy task to do, it is easy to become an advocate for these technological learning ventures as you use them in your classroom and believe in the success and usefulness of the product. I’ve realized that it becomes difficult to separate being a teacher and an educational venture analyst. However, the ability to think critically from both positions provides a new opportunity to analyze learning technologies and products.

Given that Glogster is a company that has been around for seven years, it was very difficult to find any information about their founders and current management team and the potential to invest. Their “about us” page was short and did not go into too much detail. It was frustrating that very little information was shared about the company. In preparation for my Opportunity Pitch I will consider this information and make sure it is included.