Moonshot Education Project’s autonomous teaching software to reach 1B children by 2024.


New York City, September 22, 2014

Dev4X is leading a community of technology developers and education experts to develop an open source platform to autonomously teach children in the most challenging environments to read, write, and perform basic numeracy within 18 months. This effort, called the Moonshot Education Project, aims to provide a 10X improvement in the education of the world’s poorest children, to reach a billion children in the next 10 years, and to do so at a 100th the cost of current approaches.

According to the XPRIZE Foundation, “The goal of the Global Learning XPRIZE is to empower children in the most remote places in the world to develop the skills to be critical and creative 21st century thinkers who ask questions, challenge assumptions, solve problems and communicate effectively … The competition will invite teams from across the globe to develop a tablet-based software application capable of fostering self-directed learning among young children (age 5 to 12) in communities with little or no access to quality education.”

Previous XPRIZE competitions have tackled some of the world’s grandest challenges by creating incentivized competitions in areas such as private spaceflight, 100 MPG cars, oil-cleanup technology and, most recently, competitions to return to the Moon, address ocean acidification, and revolutionize healthcare.  Winners such as Scaled Composites, Masten Space Systems, and … have parlayed their XPRIZE wins into successful businesses.

“This is a profoundly important challenge to solve. It will impact the lives of these children, their communities and bring nations out of poverty.” said Bodo Hoenen, founder of Dev4X. “Current approaches will take generations to tackle these challenges. We need to think bigger, together. If the organizations that care about this challenge collaborate as an open community, we can solve this within our generation. That is our mission.”

The Moonshot Education Project’s open community model pulls together individuals and teams who share Dev4X’s passion for solving this grand challenge. One of these passionate teams is Princeton AI, which developed a chat bot in the early 2000's as a hobby project and then earlier this year found that it beat the Turing Test (an historic milestone in artificial intelligence set by Alan Turing, the father of modern computer science). Another is the Serval Project, which will provide the mesh networking technology that allows our platform to work in parts of the world that have little or no network service.

“This challenge is truly world changing,” said Hoenen. “It does not matter who wins the competition – what matters is our children’s future. That is the real prize!”


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