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Squirrel AI Learning Attends Tech Crunch Disrupt, Explains How AI Revolutionizes Education

SAN FRANCISCO, Jan. 9, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- On Nov. 29 local time, more than 4,000 technologists, including founders of the world's leading technology startups, entrepreneurs, developers, venture capitalists and global famous technology media, gathered in Berlin for Tech Crunch Disrupt. Joleen Liang, partner at Squirrel AI Learning by Yixue Group, a Chinese AI education unicorn, attended the conference on invitation. She discussed cutting-edge technologies, the entrepreneurial process and other topics on the same stage with Saul Klein, a well-known European venture capitalist, Denys Zhadanov, marketing VP of Readdle that has created countless globally popular software, and Robby Stein, product director of Instagram.

Tech Crunch Disrupt, held by Tech Crunch, a global first-class technology and venture capital online publisher, is a popular business competition and technology event in the technology and venture capital fields. Many technology celebrities and giants have been invited to attend and give speeches, such as former Google CEO Eric Schmidt, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg and his wife Priscilla Chan, Dropbox CEO Drew Houston, Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi, Sinovation Ventures President and CEO Kaifu Li, former Google AI chief scientist and current Apple machine learning and AI chief strategy officer John Giannandrea, etc.

Joleen Liang, partner at Squirrel AI Learning, told the audience how AI can change the world comprehensively and revolutionize traditional industries. She said that AI would completely replace human beings in repetitive physical work in the next 20 years. She also introduced how Squirrel AI Learning can revolutionize education. Squirrel AI Learning is the first technology company in Asia Pacific to apply AI intelligent adaptive learning technology in K12 education. It develops and owns the first AI learning engine centered on advanced algorithms with complete proprietary intellectual property rights in the Asia Pacific. In many human vs machine teaching competitions with senior teachers, its teaching effect surpassed that of outstanding teachers. Its academic papers have been accepted by many top AI education conferences around the world. The company has been invited to give speeches at IEEE, ACM, IJCAI, AAAI and other top AI academic conferences and AI summits. Squirrel AI Learning's scientists are from Knewton, Realizeit, ALEKS and other global AI education unicorns. It has set up joint AI labs with Stanford Research Institute (SRI) and Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS)Currently, the company has opened more than 1,600 teaching centers in more than 300 cities of over 20 provinces in China. Its compound annual income growth has been 600% for three years in succession. The company has raised nearly $150 million in financing. It's valued at $1.1 billion. The company is rated one of China's top 20 AI unicorns.

Joleen Liang, partner at Squirrel AI Learning by Yixue Group, delivered a speech as a representative of the AI adaptive education industry

At the conference, famous European venture capitalist Saul Klein expressed his views on how to create sustainable ecosystems and how Europe should now compete with fast-growing markets, including China.

Readdle marketing VP Denys Zhadanov shared how his company developed the worldwide popular PDF software and created the legend of more than 100 million downloads without relying on a penny of financing. Denys said the secret of their success is to constantly update their software quickly, because small businesses can't compete with big companies like Apple, Google and Facebook if they slow down. He also shared the latest developments of the "email revolutionizing software Spark". Since its inception four years ago, Spark has got over 500,000 daily active users. Readdle may raise money for the first time to help Spark grow faster.

Robby Stein talked about how Instagram influences the way people around the world view themselves, how APPs should evolve to promote people's real self-expression, and how this concept can be part of Facebook's evolution. Before joining Instagram as product director, Robby Stein successfully developed an APP that could rate everything -- "Stamped". He served as CEO of Stamped, which was later acquired by Yahoo.

As the representative of a leading AI enterprise in China, Squirrel AI Learning's partner Joleen Liang's speech was acknowledged by the founders of technology start-ups, venture capital executives and technical elites present. Joleen pointed out that in intelligent assistant, face recognition, automatic driving, content distribution and other fields, AI has brought changes and upgrades that were previously impossible with past technologies, and it will bring disruptive innovation. Especially in education and medical care, AI will fundamentally bring disruptive changes. She summarized four key points about AI: versatile and know-it-all, tell big stories from small things, infinite computing power and self-evolution.

First, it's versatile and know-it-all.

IBM Watson can read 3,469 medical monographs, 248,000 papers, data of 61,540 experiments and 106,000 clinical reports in 17 seconds. Such a large amount of reading is probably impossible for a human doctor to complete in a lifetime.

In the field of education, Squirrel AI teaching robot can break down a subject's knowledge to more than 30,000 super-nano knowledge points and have a good grasp of the countless correlations between knowledge points. Being versatile and know-it-all, Squirrel AI system scans every student's user profile and countless knowledge points to know exactly which knowledge points students have mastered and which knowledge points they have not mastered.

Second, it can tell big stories from small things.

Zuckerberg thinks AI already can notice things that humans can't.

AI computer vision unicorns Face++ and SenseTime's in-depth AI research and application can reflect this point. It used to take three hours for people to pass security and customs, but now it is far more efficient due to how the AI system can divide human faces into millions of tiny pixels and analyze the subtle differences between different faces in a very short time, finishing face recognition and analysis more accurately and faster than human eyes.

It's the same in education. After Squirrel AI's detailed scan of students, they no longer need to do so many exercises or assignments. Squirrel AI teaching robot can analyze the subtle differences in real time in each student's learning speed and mastery of each knowledge point, thereby matching personalized knowledge points that students need to master.

Third, it has infinite computing power.

AI has an advantage in data processing over humans. Currently, hedge funds using complex AI models have achieved compound annualized rate of return as high as 35% in 20 years.

The infinite computing power of Squirrel AI is reflected in knowledge point splitting. At present, Squirrel AI knowledge point splitting has reached a super nano level. For example, it has broken down the 300 knowledge points in middle school math to 3,000 knowledge points, and then 30,000 knowledge points.

Fourth, it's self-evolving.

AI not only is versatile and know-it-all, can tell big stories from small things and has infinite computing power, but also is self-evolving.

In 2015, Peking University's math professor Meng Yuan said: "the third-generation Microsoft Xiaoice already can pass the Turing test." In 2017, Microsoft Xiaoice team revealed at a media conference that two short poems created by Xiaoice had been published in Changjiang Poetry under the penname "Smiling White" and in its public account; another poem created by Xiaoice had been published in Morning Post and Beijing Daily Messenger under the penname "Fingertip of Wind".

Such self-evolution is happening not only in literature, but also in education. Squirrel AI Learning's teaching system is derived from senior and special-class teachers, but its teaching level has far exceeded that of senior teachers and special-class teachers. Since 2017, Squirrel AI Learning has organized four human vs machine teaching competitions. The results showed that the teaching outcomes of machine-taught groups were better than that of human-taught groups. In the fourth human vs machine competition in 100 cities, the human-taught groups' score increased 0.7 points on average, while the machine-taught groups' score increased 5.4 points on average. The AI-taught groups learnt 42 knowledge points, far more than the 28 knowledge points leant by the human-taught groups.

Results of the human vs machine competitions organized by Squirrel AI Learning

Joleen said Squirrel AI teaching robot has taken over a great deal of work from human teachers in teaching, so human teachers can pay more attention to curriculum development and education.

According to public data, Squirrel AI Learning by Yixue Group was founded in 2014. In four years, it has opened more than 1,600 offline learning centers in more than 300 cities across China. The total number of users has exceeded 1 million, and the number of paying students has exceeded 100,000. In addition, its renewal rate is about 80%, far higher than the average 50% renewal rate of common education institutions.

Moreover, Squirrel AI R&D team is also extraordinary. Its main R&D team members respectively came from three world famous AI adaptive education enterprises RealizeIT, Knewton and ALEKS. Its chief scientist Dr. Wei Cui, with a post-doctoral degree in AI from the National University of Ireland, formerly was the core scientist of RealizeIT. Its chief architect Richard was the Asia Pacific technical director for the first American AI adaptive education company Knewton. Its chief data scientist Dr. Dan Bindman was a co-founder of American AI adaptive learning giant ALEKS and chief architect of core product algorithms. At the AIAED on Nov. 16, Prof. Tom Mitchell, the godfather of global machine learning, dean of CMU School of Computer Science, a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and the National Academy of Engineering, an AAAS fellow and AAAI fellow, officially accepted Squirrel AI Learning's offer of the position of Chief AI Officer. As Squirrel AI Learning's first person in charge in the field of AI, Mitchell will lead a team of more than 10 AI scientists and hundreds of AI application engineers and technical teams to conduct basic AI research in the field of intelligent adaptative education, as well as the development and application of related products.

At the end of her speech, Joleen Liang said: "as an AI adaptive learning unicorn, the ultimate dream of Squirrel AI Learning is to create an AI super teacher like Da Vinci + Einstein + Socrates, to provide every child with personalized education, to make education no longer painful, and to let every child's eyes sparkle with happiness, confidence and hope."


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