Funding, Grants & Awards | News

SIIA Selects Participants for Innovation Incubator Program

The Software and Information Industry Association's (SIIA) education division has selected 11 participants for its Innovation Incubator Program.

"The Innovation Incubator Program connects developers of promising new technologies with industry leaders, potential investors, and established organizations seeking partnerships, or prospects for acquisition," according to information released by the organization. "Program participants also receive veteran advice and mentoring from industry experts. The program is open to applicants from academic and non‐profit institutions, pre‐revenue, and early‐stage companies, as well as established companies with newly developed technologies."

This year's participants were selected according to criteria including:

The participants and the representatives likely to attend are:

  • How much their innovation represents a major change in thinking;
  • The potential for their innovation to enhance student achievement, increase teacher effectiveness, reduce costs, and improve efficiency; and
  • How well their innovation aligns with the theme for SIIA's Ed Tech Business Forum, "Doing Business in the New Normal."

Participants will present their ideas at the forum, taking place November 28-29 at New York City's Princeton Club, for the first round on November 28. After the initial round of voting, finalists will again present their innovations on November 29.

The participants and the representatives likely to attend are:

  • Lewis Johnson, CEO and chief scientist at Alelo, will present his company's use of social simulation technology and pedagogy to improve language learning in a scalable, multiple platform format;
  • Houssam Amer, vice president of North America for ITWorx, will present Connected Learning Gateway, a "dynamic, integrated, multilingual learning platform that incorporates a portfolio of teaching, learning and administration tools into a social networking environment for K-12 schools," according to information released by SIIA;
  • Eli, an online service designed to automate paper collection and improve writing by allowing students and teachers to more quickly conduct reviews, assess feedback, and learn from revisions, will be presented by Drawbridge CEO Andrew Henry and the product's co-inventor, Michigan State University Professor Jeff Grabill;
  • Founder and CEO of eSpark, David Vinca, will present eSpark, a tool designed to create custom playlists of educational apps, instructional videos, and audio books for elementary school students using iPads;
  • FluidMath, which allows teachers and students to use digital-ink enabled devices to create, solve, graph, and animate math and physics problems, will be presented by Donald Carney, CEO of Fluidity Software;
  • The Footsteps2Brilliance Early Learning Mobile Platform, designed to accelerate student achievement through cognitive research applied to mobile gaming technology based, will be presented by Ilene Rosenthal, CEO and founder of Footsteps2Brilliance;
  • David McConville, co-founder of Elumenati, will present the GeoDome Immersive Platform, a product designed to allow users to collectively and interactively explore a broad range of subjects via virtual worlds;
  • The School Mobile Application Builder and Manager is an online tool designed to allow teachers and students to build, publish, and collaborate on apps, and will be presented by Study By App President Troy Pressens;
  • Douglas O'Brien, TechSmith's director of strategic business, education, will present his company's free tool for turning an iPad into a digital whiteboard, ScreenChomp;
  • The First 4,000 Words is an interactive online vocabulary building program designed to teach English language learners and struggling readers in grades 1 through 4 the 4,000 most frequently used English words. It will be presented by Seward President Victoria Frank; and
  • John Ittelson, professor emeritus at California State University, Monterey Bay, will present Video Mentor, which "combines ease of use, audio enhancement in the classroom, and time-based video annotation into mobile technology, delivered on a secure platform. It is designed to meet high stakes assessment needs and to support interactive learning using video capture annotation in teacher supervision and mentoring," according to information released by SIIA.

"Even as school districts experience round after round of budget cuts and dramatically reduced federal and state aid--the use of video as a teaching solution is soaring," said John Shaw, chief operating officer, VBrick Systems. "The reason for this is simple: video has proven itself time and again as an incredibly powerful and efficient communications mechanism, and we are honored to play a central role in enhancing student learning at major districts around the country."

Pulaski County Schools serves approximately 8,000 students at eight elementary schools, two middle schools, two high schools, and a technology center with an annual budget of more than $45 million. With more than 550 educators and approximately 600 additional employees, Pulaski County Schools has won national awards for "efforts in making our students some of the most technologically literate in the state," according to information on the district's Web site.

More information on VBrick's IP video solutions is available at

About the Author

Joshua Bolkan is contributing editor for Campus Technology, THE Journal and STEAM Universe. He can be reached at [email protected].