Digital textbook platform Kno is upping the ante when it comes to the traditional read-assimilate-regurgitate textbook model. While other players are getting into the digital textbook space with fancy-pants PDFs, Kno is focusing its energies on interactivity and the actual learning process. Fresh off the heels of its most recent additions, Quiz Me and the Journal, Kno announced Monday that it’s unveiling two new features: video and 3D.
With Kno’s new Smart Links feature, students can get video tutorials on difficult concepts in their digital textbooks by simply tapping on the page and tapping the link icon, which brings up a list of video tutorials on various concepts discussed in that chapter. The tutorials come courtesy of Khan Academy, which provides free instructional videos, assessments, and practice exercises for students. Khan Academy is sharing over 4,000 instructional videos with Kno, ranging from math and science to history and finance, and Kno is making those videos even more relevant to students by embedding them into digital textbooks by the chapter subject matter.
Along with the new Smart Links feature, Kno is adding 3D graphics to chemistry textbooks, which turns typical chemistry figures into interactive 3D models. Students can zoom in and rotate the object to get a better understanding of how the molecules are bonded and work together. Kno says that it’s initially starting with chemistry, but it sounds like other subjects featuring 3D imagery are sure to follow.
“Kno’s new 3D and Smart Links features are bringing interactive learning to a new level,” said Babur Habib, Kno CTO and co-Founder, in a statement. “These features extend beyond the classroom giving students an opportunity to get hands on and explore concepts within the context of what they are already studying in a completely new way.”
Kno has been moving at a pretty quick clip these days. Earlier this month, the digital textbook platform introduced its new Quiz Me feature, which allows students to take any image, block out all text, and then take an interactive quiz to test their knowledge. At the same time, Kno also debuted the Journal, which takes note-taking to the next level by allowing students to transfer highlighted text, images, videos, and more into a digital notebook.
Kno has also brought some 100,000 textbooks to the Web and Facebook for those students who don’t have an iPad. And to spread the word, Kno recently launched a new promotion. The company is giving away $1 million worth of digital textbooks in a new Facebook game that lets students play for Facebook credits, which can be redeemed for real purchasing value. Students can play by visiting Kno’s Facebook page, where they can spin the “Wheel of Knowledge.” Each player gets ten spins to start, and each spin will earn them Facebook credits that translate to a dollar amount. Individual students can earn up to $50 by playing the game, which they can redeem at the Kno store for digital textbooks. The promotion ends September 30, 2011.