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1. WO2021111553 - METHOD, SYSTEM AND NON-TRANSITORY COMPUTER READABLE MEDIUM TO DELIVER A HIGH QUALITY EDUCATION EXPERIENCE THROUGH A MESSAGING SERVICE

Document

Description

Title of Invention METHOD, SYSTEM AND NON-TRANSITORY COMPUTER READABLE MEDIUM TO DELIVER A HIGH QUALITY EDUCATION EXPERIENCE THROUGH A MESSAGING SERVICE

Technical Field

0001  

Background Art

0002  

Citation List

Patent Literature

0003  

Summary of Invention

Technical Problem

0004   0005   0006   0007   0008  

Solution to Problem

0009   0010   0011   0012   0013   0014   0015   0016   0017   0018   0019   0020   0021   0022   0023   0024   0025   0026   0027   0028   0029   0030   0031   0032   0033  

Advantageous Effects of Invention

0034  

Brief Description of Drawings

0035   0036  

Description of Embodiments

0037   0038   0039   0040   0041   0042   0043   0044   0045   0046   0047   0048   0049   0050   0051   0052   0053   0054   0055   0056   0057   0058   0059   0060   0061   0062   0063   0064   0065  

Claims

1   2   3   4   5   6   7   8   9   10   11   12   13   14   15   16   17   18   19   20   21   22   23   24  

Drawings

1   2   3   4  

Description

Title of Invention : METHOD, SYSTEM AND NON-TRANSITORY COMPUTER READABLE MEDIUM TO DELIVER A HIGH QUALITY EDUCATION EXPERIENCE THROUGH A MESSAGING SERVICE

Technical Field

[0001]
In various embodiments, the present invention relates generally to the technology required to enable high quality education of participants in a scalable manner through an off-the-shelf messaging service.

Background Art

[0002]
In the above technical field, patent literature 1 discloses an audience response system that is implemented through utilisation of a messaging service, facilitate polling and providing feedback regarding the correctness of the format of the input.

Citation List

Patent Literature

[0003]
patcit 1 : US Patent Laid-Open No. US 2011/0047227 A1

Summary of Invention

Technical Problem

[0004]
In the system described in patent literature 1, the audience transmits their response to a polling question through a messaging service. In a classroom setting where the audience comprises of students, use of a messaging service aims to improve the quality of education of the students by enabling the teacher to receive real time information about the understanding of the students. The advantage of doing this through a messaging service is that it enables students, who are generally very familiar with such services, a low-barrier method of participation.
[0005]
However, the system disclosed in patent literature 1 is limited to an aggregate-response polling-style education activity, limiting the extent to which the quality of education can be improved. Innovations that would enhance the quality of education but cannot be delivered using the system described in patent literature 1 include delivering education reference material, providing questions and personalised responses to answers, as well as tracking the progress of such study and associating progress to the identity of individual students. As a result, the system described in patent literature 1 cannot be considered to deliver a sufficiently high quality education experience.
[0006]
That the quality of education delivered through such messaging services is insufficient is not surprising given the limitations of such services. Messaging services, being designed for general communication rather than education use, typically limit the format of the data that users can receive. Furthermore, the available input methods are limited to a few formats such as, for example, text, picture or video. These restrictions have limited the scope of available education applications and ability of students to engage with education content.
[0007]
As a consequence of the need to overcome such limitations, dedicated e-learning platforms have typically been utilised. Typical dedicated e-learning platforms offer a much-improved quality education environment, including access to reference material, questions and personalised responses to answers, as well as tracking of student progress. The interface can also be responsive, changing based on the context, making student interaction easier. On the other hand, there are significant disadvantages to using such e-learning platforms. By taking students completely out of the familiar messaging service environment, students often having difficulty using such technologies, for reasons such as requirements to download new software, navigating unfamiliar software interfaces and requirements to create and remember new usernames and passwords. This places a great burden upon teachers when students require help and removes focus from the subject at hand, hindering the effectiveness of the education and reducing the ability to scale to large numbers of students.
[0008]
The present invention provides a technique to solve the above-described problem.

Solution to Problem

[0009]
The present invention makes the best of both worlds possible. The present invention is a system that enables the delivery of a high quality education traditionally associated with dedicated e-learning platforms, through an off-the-shelf messaging service familiar to many students.
[0010]
{1} A method enabling delivery of a scalable high quality education experience through an off-the-shelf messaging service, the method comprising:
- receiving an initiating communication through operative communication with a messaging service, wherein said initiating communication includes (i) a unique identifier associated with an account provided by said messaging service and (ii) initiating information relevant to the education of a participant associated with said account; and
- adding part, whole or none of said initiating information to a record of initiating information associated with said unique identifier; and
- formulating educationally-relevant responding information based on (i) said initiating information and (ii) said recorded initiating information associated with said unique identifier and (iii) recorded initiating information associated with zero or more other unique identifiers; and
- transmitting a responding communication to said messaging service through operative communication with said messaging service, wherein said responding communication contains said unique identifier and said responding information.
[0011]
{2} The method of {1}, wherein said initiating information includes a proposed solution and said responding communication includes information regarding the correctness of said proposed solution.
[0012]
{3} The method of {1}, wherein said initiating information includes an indication of difficulty.
[0013]
{4} The method of {1}, wherein said initiating information includes a request to view educationally-relevant information, and said responding communication includes said educationally-relevant information or a reference to such educationally-relevant information.
[0014]
{5} The method of {1}, wherein said initiating communication includes a request for information regarding progress associated with said unique identifier through a subset of available education content and said responding information contains information regarding progress through said subset.
[0015]
{6} The method of {1}, wherein said record of initiating information is associated with a new unique identifier by
(i) said initiating information including a request to modify the unique identifier with which said record of initiating information is associated, and wherein
(ii) said responding information includes a prepared switching code, then
(iii) receiving a further initiating communication containing said new unique identifier, wherein said further initiating communication contains further initiating information, wherein said further initiating information contains said prepared switching code, after which
(iv) said record of information is thereon associated solely or additionally with said new unique identifier.
[0016]
{7} The method of {1}, wherein said initiating communication includes a request to define a name to be associated with said unique identifier, said name is added to said record of information.
[0017]
{8} A method of adding a new unique identifier to an existing defined group of unique identifiers that are authorised to be served a defined subset of educationally-relevant information, wherein said new unique identifier and defined group of unique identifiers are each associated with an account provided by an off-the-shelf messaging service, the method comprising:
- receiving an initiating communication through operative communication with a messaging service, wherein said initiating communication includes (i) said new unique identifier and (ii) initiating information containing an authentication code; and
- detecting the presence of said authentication code and confirming the validity of said authentication code by matching with an authentication code stored in a database containing a list of one or more valid authentication codes; and
- adding said unique identifier to said defined group of unique identifiers.
[0018]
{9} A system enabling delivery of a scalable high quality education experience through an off-the-shelf messaging service, the system comprising:
- a memory for storing a database of unique identifiers associated with accounts provided by said messaging service, wherein records in said participant database each include information associated with each said unique identifier; and
- a memory for storing an education database of education-related information; and
- a processor in operative communication with said memories, said processor being configured to:
* receive an initiating communication through operative communication with a messaging service, wherein said initiating communication includes (i) a unique identifier associated with an account provided by said messaging service and (ii) initiating information relevant to the education of a participant associated with said account; and
* write part, whole or none of said initiating information to a record of initiating information associated with said unique identifier, said record being stored in said participant database; and
* formulate educationally-relevant responding information based on (i) said initiating information and (ii) said recorded initiating information associated with said unique identifier and (iii) recorded initiating information associated with zero or more other unique identifiers; and
* transmit a responding communication to said messaging service through operative communication with said messaging service, wherein said responding communication contains said unique identifier and said responding information.
[0019]
{10} The system of {9}, wherein said initiating information includes a proposed solution and said responding communication includes information regarding the correctness of said proposed solution.
[0020]
{11} The system of {9}, wherein said initiating information includes an indication of difficulty.
[0021]
{12} The system of {9}, wherein said initiating information includes a request to view educationally-relevant information, and said responding communication includes said educationally-relevant information or a reference to such educationally-relevant information.
[0022]
{13} The system of {9}, wherein said initiating communication includes a request for information regarding progress associated with said unique identifier through a subset of available education content and said responding information contains information regarding progress through said subset.
[0023]
{14} The system of {9}, wherein said initiating communication includes a request to define a name to be associated with said unique identifier, and said name is added to said record of information.
[0024]
{15} The system of {9}, said processor further being configured to associate said recorded initiating information with a new unique identifier by said processor being configured to
(i) detect a request in said initiating information to modify the unique identifier with which said record of initiating information is associated, wherein said responding information includes a prepared switching code, and further be configured to then
(ii) receive a further initiating communication containing said new unique identifier, wherein said further initiating communication contains further initiating information, wherein said further initiating information contains said prepared switching code, then
(iii) associate said record of information solely or additionally with said new unique identifier.
[0025]
{16} A system of adding a new unique identifier to an existing defined group of unique identifiers that are authorised to be served a defined subset of educationally-relevant information, wherein said new unique identifier and defined group of unique identifiers are each associated with an account provided by an off-the-shelf messaging service, the system comprising of a processor configured to
be in operative communication with a memory containing a database; and the processor being further configured to
- receive an initiating communication through operative communication with a messaging service, wherein said initiating communication includes (i) said new unique identifier and (ii) initiating information containing an authentication code; and
- detect the presence of said authentication code and confirm the validity of said authentication code by matching with an authentication code stored in said database containing a list of one or more valid authentication codes; and
- adding said unique identifier to said defined group of unique identifiers.
[0026]
{17} A non-transitory computer-readable medium embodying information indicative of instructions for causing one or more machines to perform the method comprising:
- receiving an initiating communication through operative communication with a messaging service, wherein said initiating communication includes (i) a unique identifier associated with an account provided by said messaging service and (ii) initiating information relevant to the education of a participant associated with said account; and
- adding part, whole or none of said initiating information to a record of initiating information associated with said unique identifier; and
- formulating educationally-relevant responding information based on (i) said initiating information and (ii) said recorded initiating information associated with said unique identifier and (iii) recorded initiating information associated with zero or more other unique identifiers; and
- transmitting a responding communication to said messaging service through operative communication with said messaging service, wherein said responding communication contains said unique identifier and said responding information.
[0027]
{18} The non-transitory computer-readable medium of {17}, wherein said initiating information includes a proposed solution and said responding communication includes information regarding the correctness of said proposed solution.
[0028]
{19} The non-transitory computer-readable medium of {17}, wherein said initiating information includes an indication of difficulty.
[0029]
{20} The non-transitory computer-readable medium of {17}, wherein said initiating information includes a request to view educationally-relevant information, and said responding communication includes said educationally-relevant information or a reference to such educationally-relevant information.
[0030]
{21} The non-transitory computer-readable medium of {17}, wherein said initiating communication includes a request for information regarding progress associated with said unique identifier through a subset of available education content and said responding information contains information regarding progress through said subset.
[0031]
{22} The non-transitory computer-readable medium of {17}, wherein said record of initiating information is associated with a new unique identifier by
(i) said initiating information including a request to modify the unique identifier with which said record of initiating information is associated, and wherein
(ii) said responding information includes a prepared switching code, then
(iii) receiving a further initiating communication containing said new unique identifier, wherein said further initiating communication contains further initiating information, wherein said further initiating information contains said prepared switching code, after which
(iv) said record of information is thereon associated solely or additionally with said new unique identifier.
[0032]
{23} The non-transitory computer-readable medium of {17}, wherein said initiating communication includes a request to define a name to be associated with said unique identifier, said name is added to said record of information.
[0033]
{24} A non-transitory computer-readable medium embodying information indicative of instructions for causing one or more machines to add a new unique identifier to an existing defined group of unique identifiers that are authorised to be served a defined subset of educationally-relevant information, wherein said new unique identifier and defined group of unique identifiers are each associated with an account provided by an off-the-shelf messaging service, the method comprising:
- receiving an initiating communication through operative communication with a messaging service, wherein said initiating communication includes (i) said new unique identifier and (ii) initiating information containing an authentication code; and
- detecting the presence of said authentication code and confirming the validity of said authentication code by matching with an authentication code stored in a database containing a list of one or more valid authentication codes; and
- adding said unique identifier to said defined group of unique identifiers.

Advantageous Effects of Invention

[0034]
The effect is to realise a high quality education easily scalable to large number of students. This invention makes it possible to deliver a high quality education to a participant through an off-the-shelf messaging service, by enabling such features like the delivery of education content, personalised information about participant understanding and progress, and easy sign-up and account management.

Brief Description of Drawings

[0035]
[fig. 1] illustrates a block diagram of one embodiment of the system to deliver a scalable education experience through a messaging service through a cloud server processor in communication with a messaging service provider.
[fig. 2] illustrates a flow chart showing an example method of adding a unique identifier to a defined group of unique identifiers within one embodiment of a system to deliver a scalable education experience through a messaging service.
[fig. 3] illustrates a flow chart showing an example method of replacing a unique identifier in a database with a new unique identifier within one embodiment of a system to deliver a scalable education experience through a messaging service.
[fig. 4] illustrates one embodiment of delivery of an education experience through a messaging service utilising aspects of this invention.

Indication by Reference Numerals

[0036]
101 Messaging service provider
102 Communication
103 Initiating communication
104 Unique identifier
105 Initiating information
106 Responding communication
107 Responding information
108 Cloud server processor
109 Processor-memory communication
110 Cloud server memory
111 Participant database
112 Education database
410 State one of a communication device
411 First text
420 State two of a communication device
421 First response
430 State three of a communication device
440 State four of a communication device
441 Second text
450 State five of a communication device
451 Second response

Description of Embodiments

[0037]
As used herein, the term “off-the-shelf messaging service”, “messaging service” and “messaging service provider” refers to a messaging service in use for common communication. This includes, but is not limited to messaging services provided through applications such as Facebook Messenger(R), LINE(R), Skype(R), Snapchat(R), Telegram(R), Viber(R), WeChat(R), WhatsApp(R), as well as providers of email services. To use such a messaging service for communication, users must register for an account with the chosen service. By registering for an account, the user is able to send and receive communications to other users of the same messaging service or on a different messaging service. In order to correctly route communications to and from users, each messaging service assigns a unique identifier to each of its users. Thus herein, the term “unique identifier” refers to this unique identifier assigned by the off-the-shelf messaging service.
[0038]
As used herein, “users” are entities using the messaging service to send and/or receive messages to and/or from an electronic device. Such users may be human or electronic. Electronic users are commonly known by one skilled in the art as “bots” and can send and receive communications without requiring human intervention.
[0039]
As used herein, “a connection” means a connection between two electronic devices, including but not limited to Internet Message Access Protocol, Transmission Control Protocol, User Datagram Protocol, Secure Shell connection, and includes both a permanent connection and periodically polling a server for messages. Furthermore, note that there is no implied limit to the number of connections that a given processor or electronic device can make simultaneously.
[0040]
As used herein, “educationally-relevant information” refers to any information that contributes positively to the education, enlightenment or understanding of a participant. Those skilled in the art will appreciate that this includes any information of pedagogical value, including not only the subject of the pedagogy but also information relevant to creating and managing the environment required to deliver the information of pedagogic value.
[0041]
As used herein, the processor receiving a “request” means any form of instruction received by the processor to perform an action, including “direction”, “instruction” and so on. Furthermore, the performed action may not be the same as indicated in the “request”. For example, a processor can receive a request to “join course 11019”, and while the user subsequently experiences her request to have been fulfilled, the processor carries out a number of database operations and other operations that a user not skilled in the art would not necessarily recognise as being for the purposes of fulfilling her request. Furthermore, note that the exact form of the “request” is immaterial to the invention. What is important is that it is recognised as an instruction to the processor upon which the processor performs some relevant actions.
[0042]
As used herein, an “initiating communication” refers to a communication received by a processor from an off-the-shelf messaging service. As used herein, it contains both “initiating information” and a unique identifier assigned by the off-the-shelf messaging service. In some embodiments there is no distinction between the initiating information and the unique identifier. In other embodiments, the communication takes part in a plurality of transmissions. The exact structure of information contained within the initiating communication is immaterial to this invention. What is important is that initiating information and a unique identifier are included in the initiating communication in a way that the processor receiving the initial communication can identify. Furthermore, although the word “initiating” is used, this is purely used for reference and is not intended to indicate the order or timing of the communication relative to other communications.
[0043]
As used herein, a “responding communication” refers to a communication transmitted by a processor to an off-the-shelf messaging service. As used herein, it contains both “responding information” and a unique identifier known by the off-the-shelf messaging service. In some embodiments there is no distinction between the responding information and the unique identifier. In other embodiments, the communication takes part in a plurality of transmissions. The exact structure of information contained within the responding communication is immaterial to this invention. What is important is that responding information and a unique identifier are included in the responding communication in a way that the off-the-shelf messaging service receiving the responding communication can identify. Furthermore, although the word “responding” is used, this is purely used for reference and is not intended to indicate the order or timing of the communication relative to other communications.
[0044]
As used herein, “participant database” and “education database” refer to databases containing information associated with unique identifiers and information associated with education information, respectively. While an embodiment may treat these two databases as two separate databases, this is purely illustrative and the distinction between the databases is immaterial to this invention. What is important is that there are one or more databases containing such information.
[0045]
As used herein, a “participant” refers to a member of a defined group of one or more participants, each having an account with an off-the-shelf messaging service, engaged in a pedagogic activity, including but not limited to a class or course offered by an education institution.
[0046]
As used herein, “cloud server processor” is understood to be any computer or server such as a desktop computer, laptop computer, cloud computer, or any other device upon which a processor executes commands and instructions and is capable of operative communication with other electronic devices. The processor may be a general-purpose processor or be part of one or more special-purpose hardware or utilise any of a wide variety of other technologies. This includes but is not limited to microcomputers, mini-computers, mainframe computers, programmed micro-processors, micro-controllers, peripheral integrated circuit elements, a CSIC’s (Customer Specific Integrated Circuits), ASIC’s (Application Specific Integrated Circuits), logic circuits, digital signal processors, programmable logic devices such as an FPGA (Field Programmable Gate Array), PLD (Programmable Logic Device), PLA (Programmable Logic Array), RFID processor, smart chip, or any other device or arrangement of devices that is capable of implementing the steps of the processes of the invention.
[0047]
Embodiment(s) of the present invention will now be described in detail with reference to the drawings. If should be noted that the relative arrangement of the components, the numerical expressions and numerical values set forth in these embodiments do not limit the scope of the present invention unless it is specifically stated otherwise.
[0048]
A technology capable of delivering a scalable high quality education experience to a defined group of participants according to the first embodiment of the present invention will be described with reference to FIG. 1. This invention describes a method to achieve a high-quality education experience delivered through the medium of an off-the-shelf messaging service.
[0049]
As shown in FIG. 1, in this embodiment a cloud server processor 108 is in operative communication 109 with a cloud server memory 110; the cloud server memory 110 including both a participant database 111 and an education database 112. In this embodiment, the cloud server processor 108 is also in operative communication 102 with an off-the-shelf messaging service 101. In one embodiment, communication to the messaging service 101 is performed by the processor 108 in the context of sending instructions to a “chat bot” application processing interface operated by the messaging service 101.
[0050]
In this embodiment, the processor 108 receives an initiating communication 103 from the messaging service 101. This initiating communication 103 contains a unique identifier 104 associated with an account provided by said messaging service 101, in addition to initiating information 105.
[0051]
In one embodiment, the initiating information 105 includes a proposed answer to a question. The processor 108 determines that this initiating information 105 contains said answer, and then in reference to the education database 112 assesses the correctness of this answer, and formulates responding information 107 based upon this correctness. For example, if the answer is correct, the responding information 107 may include the text “You are correct!”, or else, if the answer is wrong, the responding information 107 may instead include an image of a red “X” with text saying “Sorry, that’s wrong, please try again!”. In another embodiment, the responding information 107 includes a helpful indication of what to try next based on the answer that was received. The exact content of the response to the answer to the question is not material to this invention. What is important is that the processor 108 detects the presence of an answer in the initiating information 105 and formulates appropriate correctness responding information 107 with reference to the education database 112. Note furthermore that the processor 108 is not limited to referencing only the education database 112, and can use any other available information to formulate the response, including but not limited to recorded information in the participant database associated with the unique identifier 104 that was included in the initiating communication 103, recorded information associated with any other unique identifiers in the participant database 111, and so on. In one embodiment, the processor 108 records the proposed answer contained in the initiating information 105 to a record of information associated with this unique identifier 104 in the participant database 111.
[0052]
In one embodiment, the initiating information 105 includes an indication of the difficulty of a question. In one embodiment, this information includes a rating of “easy”. In another embodiment, a difficulty score on a range from 0 (easy) to 10 (hard) is included. Note that the exact nature and format of the rating is immaterial to this invention. What is important is that the difficulty of a question is communicated through the content of the initiating information 105. In one embodiment, the processor 108 records the difficulty indication contained in the initiating information 105 to a record of information associated with this unique identifier 104 in the participant database 111.
[0053]
In another embodiment, the initiating information 105 contains a request to view educationally-relevant information. In one embodiment, the request is to view more details about a question or challenge. The processor 108 then determines that said initiating information 105 contains said request, and then in reference to the education database 112 formulates appropriate responding information 107. In one embodiment, the responding information 107 is text-based, including a hypertext link to a webpage that the user can open to access the educational material such as “You may view challenge 1 at http://www.example.com/challenge-1”. In another embodiment, the text includes educational information directly in the responding information 107, such as “What is the next number in the sequence 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 13?”. Note that the responding information 107 is not limited to text, and any format supported by the messaging service provider 101 may be used, including but not limited to images and video. In one embodiment, the processor 108 records the request to view educationally-relevant information contained in the initiating information 105 to a record of information associated with this unique identifier 104 in the participant database 111.
[0054]
In another embodiment, the initiating information 105 contains a request to view progress through a subset of education material. In one embodiment, the subset of material represents a series of challenges in an academic course. The processor 108 determines that this initiating information 105 contains said request, and then determines what challenges have been completed and what challenges still remain to be answered by reference to (i) the education database 112 and (ii) recorded information in the participant database 111 associated with the unique identifier 104 that was included in the initiating communication 103. In another embodiment, the subset of material represents a series of references to reading assignments. The processor 108 then determines what reading assignments have been viewed and what reading assignments remains to be viewed. Note that the exact nature of the subset of education material is immaterial to this invention. What is important is that the subset of education material represents defined collection of information, and the processor 108 evaluates to what extent completion criteria have been fulfilled for each subdivision of the information. Having completed this evaluation, the processor 108 formulates responding information 107 to describe that progress. Examples of such responding information include a text-based list of completed challenges and remaining incomplete challenges, an image with a progress bar indicating a percentage completion through available reading material, or any other means or format of indicating progress that can be communicated to the messaging service provider 101 in the responding information 107. In one embodiment, the processor 108 records the request to view progress contained in the initiating information 105 to a record of information associated with this unique identifier 104 in the participant database 111.
[0055]
In another embodiment, the initiating information 105 contains a request to define a name to be associated with said unique identifier. In one embodiment, the name represents the name of a user of the off-the-shelf messaging account that is registered with the unique identifier 104. In another embodiment, the name represents a team name. The nature of the name however is immaterial to the invention. What is important is that the name represents an alternative form of identification of the records associated with the unique identifier 104. The processor 108 then adds this name to the participant database 111 in association with the unique identifier 104. In one embodiment, the processor 108 formulates responding information 107 confirming the name now associated with the unique identifier 104.
[0056]
Following formulation of the responding information 107, the processor 108 formulates a responding communication 106 that includes both the unique identifier 104 and responding information 107, and this responding communication 106 is transmitted to the messaging service provider 101. In one embodiment, the messaging service may use the included unique identifier to forward the responding information to be read by the participant to which the unique identifier was assigned to by the messaging service provider 101.
[0057]
In another embodiment, the initiating information 105 contains a request to add a unique identifier to an existing defined group of unique identifiers that are authorised to be served a defined subset of information from the education and participant databases. In one embodiment, the existing defined group of identifiers represent messaging accounts controlled by participants taking a specific course at an educational institution. FIG. 2 illustrates a flow chart showing an example method to achieve this for a processor such as the cloud processor 108. At 210, the processor detects the presence of an authentication code in received initiating information. In one embodiment, this is the code for a specific course at an education institution. In one embodiment, the defined subset of information is a subset of the education material in the education database 112. In another embodiment, this defined subset of information is information about challenges that have not yet been completed by a participant associated with the unique identifier in an initiating communication. At 220, the authentication code is checked for a matching authentication code in the education database. At 225, if a valid matching authentication code is not found in the education database 112, addition of the unique identifier to the defined group is aborted. In one embodiment, a matching authentication code exists, but the processor determines that it is only valid until a certain time and that time has passed, so it is not valid. In another embodiment, there is no matching authentication code. At 230, the unique identifier is added to the defined group of unique identifiers. This unique identifier is now considered authorised to be served the defined subset of information.
[0058]
In another embodiment, the unique identifier 104 included in the initiating communication is not authorised to be sent the responding information 107 that would normally fulfil the request contained in the initiating information 105. Consequently, the responding information 107 includes information making clear the request cannot be fulfilled. In another embodiment, the responding information 107 contains useful information about steps to be taken in order that the same request made again in the future can be fulfilled. In another embodiment, the initiating information 105 cannot be understood by the processor 108. Consequently, the responding information 107 includes information stating the command cannot be understood. In another embodiment, the responding information 107 includes help about valid commands.
[0059]
In another embodiment, the initiating communication 103 contains initiating information 105 which contains a request to modify the unique identifier 104 associated with a record in the participant database 111. FIG 3. illustrates a flow chart showing an example method to achieve this for a processor such as a cloud processor 108 in operative communication 102 with a messaging service provider 101. At 310, the processor detects a request for a switch code in this initiating information. At 320 the processor creates a prepared switching code and adds this to responding information. At 330 this responding information is transmitted to the messaging service provider along with the original unique identifier. At 340, a further initiating communication is received containing further initiating information and a further unique identifier. At 350, the processor checks for the presence of a proposed switching code in this further initiating information. At 355, no match of a switching code in the initiating information with a valid switching code in the database has occurred, so the processor waits for a further initiating communication. At 360, the presence of a switching code is detected in the initiating information and it is checked against a list of zero or more valid switching codes in the database. At 370, the switching code in the initiating information is matched with a valid switching code in the database, and the original unique identifier in the participant database is replaced by the further unique identifier.
[0060]
In another embodiment, at 355 the processor performs other operations unrelated to the method shown in FIG. 3. That is to say that the processor is not necessarily idle while waiting. In a further embodiment, at 355 the processor aborts the process to modify the unique identifier. In one embodiment, at 340 the further unique identifier is different to the original unique identifier.
[0061]
In one embodiment, the processor 108 determines the intended meaning of the initiating information 105 by first determining the format of the initiating information 105. In one embodiment, the format is identified to be text. In one embodiment, having identified the format as text, the processor 108 identifies the intended meaning of the text by comparing characters in the text against a dictionary of known commands. In another embodiment, a probabilistic algorithm is used to determine the most likely intended meaning of the initiating information 105 based on a statistical model. In one embodiment this statistical model is derived from a machine learning model. In one embodiment, the first word is “C1” and the processor 108 uses this to determine the intended meaning is that the participant wishes to receive a link to challenge number 1 on a course. The processor 108 then compares the unique identifier 104 contained in the initiating communication 103 against a participant database 111 to determine the correct course to reference, and then accesses an education database 112 to obtain the correct link for challenge 1 from that course. The processor 108 then constructs responding information 107 containing introductory text and the link. In one embodiment, this responding information 107 is “View challenge 1 here: https://www.example.com/ode2019/c1”.
[0062]
An embodiment as viewed from the perspective of a participant will now be described with reference to FIG. 4. Here a participant sends an initiating communication 103 using a messaging application on a handheld electronic device that has a registered account with an off-the-shelf messaging service. In one embodiment, the application is in state one 410. In one embodiment, the initiating information 105 contains the first text “View C1” 411 entered by the participant. In one embodiment, the responding information 107 is a text-based message containing a Hypertext Transfer Protocol Secure (HTTPS) link to view the content of a challenge 421, resulting in the application being in state two 420. The participant then taps on the link to open it, presenting a rendered view of the challenge, resulting in the application being in state three 430. In another embodiment, the link opens a different application that is used to render the view of the challenge. In one embodiment, the participant then types their proposed answer to the challenge through a new initiating communication 103 sent through the application, resulting in the application becoming in state four 440. In this embodiment, this new initiating information 105 consists of the text “C1 13” 441. The processor 108 determines from this initiating information 105 that the participant intends to propose an answer to challenge 1 of an active course associated with this participant, and that the proposed answer is “13”. In one embodiment, the processor 108 determines by reference to an education database 112 that this answer is correct and the responding information 107 conveys this to the participant, resulting in the application being in state five 450. In one embodiment, the responding information 107 is text based and contains “That’s correct!” 451.
[0063]
The various components of the example systems and methods described herein may be produced using suitable software written in programming languages and tools including but not limited to C, C++, C#, Haskell, Java, JavaScript, Python, or a combination of languages and tools. The software may be embodied as an article of manufacture as a component of a system or as an entire system. Furthermore, it may be provided or maintained as part of a computer-readable medium. Other forms of software include but are not limited to forms that may be transmitted to a recipient through a network or other communication medium. Thus, in one embodiment, a computer-readable medium has a form of the communication medium as the software/firmware is downloaded from a web server to a user. In another embodiment, the computer-readable medium has a form of the storage medium as the software/firmware is maintained on a web server.
[0064]
The terms and expressions employed herein are used as terms and expressions of description and not of limitation, and there is no intention, in the use of such terms and expressions, of excluding any equivalents of the features shown and described or portions thereof. In addition, having described certain embodiments of the invention, it will be apparent to those of ordinary skill in the art that other embodiments incorporating the concepts disclosed herein may be used without departing from the spirit and scope of the invention. Accordingly, the described embodiments are to be considered in all respects as only illustrative and not restrictive.
[0065]
Reference throughout this specification to “an example”, “for example”, “one example”, “www.example.com”, “examples”, “the example”, “one embodiment”, “the embodiments”, “some embodiments”, “other embodiments”, “an embodiment”, “further embodiment” or simply “embodiment” means that a particular feature, structure, or characteristic described in connection with the example is included in at least one example of the present technology. Thus, the occurrences of the phrases “an example”, “for example”, “one example”, “www.example.com”, “examples”, “the example”, “one embodiment”, “the embodiments”, “some embodiments”, “other embodiments”, “an embodiment”, “further embodiment” or simply “embodiment” in various places throughout this specification are not necessarily all referring to the same example. Furthermore, the particular features, structures, routines, steps, or characteristics may be combined in any suitable manner in one or more examples of the technology. The headings provided herein are for convenience only and are not intended to limit or interpret the scope or meaning of the claimed technology.

Claims

[Claim 1]
A method enabling delivery of a scalable high quality education experience through an off-the-shelf messaging service, the method comprising:
- receiving an initiating communication through operative communication with a messaging service, wherein said initiating communication includes (i) a unique identifier associated with an account provided by said messaging service and (ii) initiating information relevant to the education of a participant associated with said account; and
- adding part, whole or none of said initiating information to a record of initiating information associated with said unique identifier; and
- formulating educationally-relevant responding information based on (i) said initiating information and (ii) said recorded initiating information associated with said unique identifier and (iii) recorded initiating information associated with zero or more other unique identifiers; and
- transmitting a responding communication to said messaging service through operative communication with said messaging service, wherein said responding communication contains said unique identifier and said responding information.
[Claim 2]
The method of claim 1, wherein said initiating information includes a proposed solution and said responding communication includes information regarding the correctness of said proposed solution.
[Claim 3]
The method of claim 1, wherein said initiating information includes an indication of difficulty.
[Claim 4]
The method of claim 1, wherein said initiating information includes a request to view educationally-relevant information, and said responding communication includes said educationally-relevant information or a reference to such educationally-relevant information.
[Claim 5]
The method of claim 1, wherein said initiating communication includes a request for information regarding progress associated with said unique identifier through a subset of available education content and said responding information contains information regarding progress through said subset.
[Claim 6]
The method of claim 1, wherein said record of initiating information is associated with a new unique identifier by
(i) said initiating information including a request to modify the unique identifier with which said record of initiating information is associated, and wherein
(ii) said responding information includes a prepared switching code, then
(iii) receiving a further initiating communication containing said new unique identifier, wherein said further initiating communication contains further initiating information, wherein said further initiating information contains said prepared switching code, after which
(iv) said record of information is thereon associated solely or additionally with said new unique identifier.
[Claim 7]
The method of claim 1, wherein said initiating communication includes a request to define a name to be associated with said unique identifier, and said name is added to said record of information.
[Claim 8]
A method of adding a new unique identifier to an existing defined group of unique identifiers that are authorised to be served a defined subset of educationally-relevant information, wherein said new unique identifier and defined group of unique identifiers are each associated with an account provided by an off-the-shelf messaging service, the method comprising:
- receiving an initiating communication through operative communication with a messaging service, wherein said initiating communication includes (i) said new unique identifier and (ii) initiating information containing an authentication code; and
- detecting the presence of said authentication code and confirming the validity of said authentication code by matching with an authentication code stored in a database containing a list of one or more valid authentication codes; and
- adding said unique identifier to said defined group of unique identifiers.
[Claim 9]
A system enabling delivery of a scalable high quality education experience through an off-the-shelf messaging service, the system comprising:
- a memory for storing a database of unique identifiers associated with accounts provided by said messaging service, wherein records in said participant database each include information associated with each said unique identifier; and
- a memory for storing an education database of education-related information; and
- a processor in operative communication with said memories, said processor being configured to:
* receive an initiating communication through operative communication with a messaging service, wherein said initiating communication includes (i) a unique identifier associated with an account provided by said messaging service and (ii) initiating information relevant to the education of a participant associated with said account; and
* write part, whole or none of said initiating information to a record of initiating information associated with said unique identifier, said record being stored in said participant database; and
* formulate educationally-relevant responding information based on (i) said initiating information and (ii) said recorded initiating information associated with said unique identifier and (iii) recorded initiating information associated with zero or more other unique identifiers; and
* transmit a responding communication to said messaging service through operative communication with said messaging service, wherein said responding communication contains said unique identifier and said responding information.
[Claim 10]
The system of claim 9, wherein said initiating information includes a proposed solution and said responding communication includes information regarding the correctness of said proposed solution.
[Claim 11]
The system of claim 9, wherein said initiating information includes an indication of difficulty.
[Claim 12]
The system of claim 9, wherein said initiating information includes a request to view educationally-relevant information, and said responding communication includes said educationally-relevant information or a reference to such educationally-relevant information.
[Claim 13]
The system of claim 9, wherein said initiating communication includes a request for information regarding progress associated with said unique identifier through a subset of available education content and said responding information contains information regarding progress through said subset.
[Claim 14]
The system of claim 9, wherein said initiating communication includes a request to define a name to be associated with said unique identifier, and said name is added to said record of information.
[Claim 15]
The system of claim 9, said processor further being configured to associate said recorded initiating information with a new unique identifier by said processor being configured to
(i) detect a request in said initiating information to modify the unique identifier with which said record of initiating information is associated, wherein said responding information includes a prepared switching code, and further be configured to then
(ii) receive a further initiating communication containing said new unique identifier, wherein said further initiating communication contains further initiating information, wherein said further initiating information contains said prepared switching code, then
(iii) associate said record of information solely or additionally with said new unique identifier.
[Claim 16]
A system of adding a new unique identifier to an existing defined group of unique identifiers that are authorised to be served a defined subset of educationally-relevant information, wherein said new unique identifier and defined group of unique identifiers are each associated with an account provided by an off-the-shelf messaging service, the system comprising of a processor configured to
be in operative communication with a memory containing a database; and the processor being further configured to
- receive an initiating communication through operative communication with a messaging service, wherein said initiating communication includes (i) said new unique identifier and (ii) initiating information containing an authentication code; and
- detect the presence of said authentication code and confirm the validity of said authentication code by matching with an authentication code stored in said database containing a list of one or more valid authentication codes; and
- adding said unique identifier to said defined group of unique identifiers.
[Claim 17]
A non-transitory computer-readable medium embodying information indicative of instructions for causing one or more machines to perform the method comprising:
- receiving an initiating communication through operative communication with a messaging service, wherein said initiating communication includes (i) a unique identifier associated with an account provided by said messaging service and (ii) initiating information relevant to the education of a participant associated with said account; and
- adding part, whole or none of said initiating information to a record of initiating information associated with said unique identifier; and
- formulating educationally-relevant responding information based on (i) said initiating information and (ii) said recorded initiating information associated with said unique identifier and (iii) recorded initiating information associated with zero or more other unique identifiers; and
- transmitting a responding communication to said messaging service through operative communication with said messaging service, wherein said responding communication contains said unique identifier and said responding information.
[Claim 18]
The non-transitory computer-readable medium of claim 17, wherein said initiating information includes a proposed solution and said responding communication includes information regarding the correctness of said proposed solution.
[Claim 19]
The non-transitory computer-readable medium of claim 17, wherein said initiating information includes an indication of difficulty.
[Claim 20]
The non-transitory computer-readable medium of claim 17, wherein said initiating information includes a request to view educationally-relevant information, and said responding communication includes said educationally-relevant information or a reference to such educationally-relevant information.
[Claim 21]
The non-transitory computer-readable medium of claim 17, wherein said initiating communication includes a request for information regarding progress associated with said unique identifier through a subset of available education content and said responding information contains information regarding progress through said subset.
[Claim 22]
The non-transitory computer-readable medium of claim 17, wherein said record of initiating information is associated with a new unique identifier by
(i) said initiating information including a request to modify the unique identifier with which said record of initiating information is associated, and wherein
(ii) said responding information includes a prepared switching code, then
(iii) receiving a further initiating communication containing said new unique identifier, wherein said further initiating communication contains further initiating information, wherein said further initiating information contains said prepared switching code, after which
(iv) said record of information is thereon associated solely or additionally with said new unique identifier.
[Claim 23]
The non-transitory computer-readable medium of claim 17, wherein said initiating communication includes a request to define a name to be associated with said unique identifier, and said name is added to said record of information.
[Claim 24]
A non-transitory computer-readable medium embodying information indicative of instructions for causing one or more machines to add a new unique identifier to an existing defined group of unique identifiers that are authorised to be served a defined subset of educationally-relevant information, wherein said new unique identifier and defined group of unique identifiers are each associated with an account provided by an off-the-shelf messaging service, the method comprising:
- receiving an initiating communication through operative communication with a messaging service, wherein said initiating communication includes (i) said new unique identifier and (ii) initiating information containing an authentication code; and
- detecting the presence of said authentication code and confirming the validity of said authentication code by matching with an authentication code stored in a database containing a list of one or more valid authentication codes; and
- adding said unique identifier to said defined group of unique identifiers.
 

Drawings

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