Every year, Ellucian hosts Ellucian Live eLive, where over 10,000 partners, vendors, and customers from thousands of Universities come together to learn about Ellucian solutions, discuss industry trends and insights, and see what the future of Education Technology holds. For the past three years, ETA has partnered with the Ellucian Applied Research group to create an Innovation Lab to help attendees experience firsthand the future of education. This year, the ETA and Ellucian teams pushed the envelope and put on the most innovative showcase yet. By featuring Augmented Reality, Virtual Reality, Artificial Intelligence, and APIs, attendees were able to see how the role of technology in education is increasing at an exponential rate.

The Innovation Lab showed attendees how, and why, technology is impacting education through the use of AR, VR, Artificial Intelligence, and APIs.

The eLive Exhibition Hall all set up and ready!

The eLive Exhibition Hall all set up and ready!

The Main Event

This year’s Innovation Lab included demonstrations of numerous future-state technologies:

  • Dorm Room of the Future: The focal point of this year’s Innovation Lab was a custom showcase using Amazon Alexa, Magic Mirror, Virtual Reality, and APIs to show attendees what a day in the life of future students may look like. Highlighting where AI can (and will) assist and automate daily tasks, the team put together a functional demonstration (running real code!) that uses Alexa to accomplish tasks covering almost all aspects of digital interaction, using only one’s voice. The Magic Mirror allowed the student to check the weather and use e-flashcards to assist with studying for a test while getting ready, and the VR goggles allowed her to go “hands-on” with a 3D model of the human heart.
Glynn showing off the Hololens!

Glynn showing off the Hololens!

  • Virtual Reality & Augmented Reality: The HTC Vive and Microsoft HoloLens demonstrated the ability to create immersive environments for teaching and training objectives. In the case of the HoloLens, Case Western Reserve University (an Ellucian client) had created.

  • 3D Printers: 3D printers are becoming more and more commonplace in both commercial and scholastic environments. During eLive, the Makerbot showed the low-cost of manufacturing, as well as the ease of sharing and working with design files. Participants could even scan themselves using an iPad and then immediately print a physical version of their scan.

  • Hologram Display: The custom Hologram Display was set to play multiple “lightning talks”, including one by Ellucian CEO Jeff Ray. These videos broadcasted videos in 3D for attendees without the need for any glasses. As new media formats become more prevalent, {directors/filmmakers} are adapting how they create content, and society will start to see these mediums used more frequently. In the case of companies like Facebook, many have already seen widespread success with 360 degree video as an educational aid.

Noah and Ellucian CEO Jeff Ray walking the plank on the HTC Vive!

Noah and Ellucian CEO Jeff Ray walking the plank on the HTC Vive!

During the Innovation Lab, the group also hosted several “lightning talks” covering a broad range of topics. From how to approach UX problems given by the head of Ellucian’s Design Team, to a presentation on Voice from the Marketing Manager for the Amazon Alexa team - the demonstrations showed how very real (and very nascent) technologies are already impacting Education Technology, as well as what that impact might be 5-10 years from now.

Impact

ETA was fortunate to assist in the conceptualization and execution of the Innovation Lab, as well as work with clients and partners that are pushing the boundaries of the possible. We are excited about where Ellucian, as well as the future of Education Technology, is heading, and look forward to helping others learn how they can apply future technologies to today’s problems.

Do you have an interest in learning or demonstrating how nascent technologies are disrupting your business? Contact ETA’s Corporate Innovation team to find out how we can help.