Kurzweil Educational Systems Unveils New License-to-Go Features
LOS ANGELES and BEDFORD, Mass. - Kurzweil Educational Systems, Inc. unveiled Kurzweil 3000T for Windows Version 9 at the 2005 California State University of Northridge (CSUN) "Technology and Persons with Disabilities" Conference held March 14-19 at the Los Angeles Airport Marriott in Los Angeles, Calif. Kurzweil 3000 is a reading, writing and learning software designed for struggling students.
Kurzweil 3000 features License-to-Go, which provides a way for network users to access Kurzweil 3000 without being physically connected to the network. Schools can grant licenses "to go" to any laptop on the network, enabling usage of Kurzweil 3000 on that computer in or out of the classroom - whether at the library, resource room or even at home. Teachers or IT administrators can control the usage of the license by specifying the length of time that the license remains valid, whether overnight, a week, a semester or a year.
"I work in a number of schools and I like the new License-to-Go feature because I always have access to Kurzweil 3000 on my laptop whenever and wherever I need it. I can also show parents, teachers and administrators how Kurzweil 3000 can help their students - both at and after school," said Debra Reichard, assistive technology specialist for North Attleboro Public Schools in North Attleboro, Mass.
In addition to the new License-to-Go feature, both the network and standalone editions of Version 9 include a host of new instructional and learning tools for teachers and students as well as new writing, vocabulary-building and document preparation features, including:
- Additional Instructional Support with Bubble Notes - Bubble Notes allow teachers to add notes that come up when a user encounters one in a document. With Bubble Notes, teachers have access to a collection of tools to insert multiple choice, true/false, matching, and open-ended text response questions. Teachers can also insert comments that will appear when the student arrives at a particular section of text.
- Additional Read the Web and Online Information Sources - Kurzweil 3000 for Windows now supports the Firefox browser from the Mozilla Foundation. Firefox is a browser alternative for businesses, educational institutions, and individual users. Using Firefox, Kurzweil 3000's Read the Web feature has the ability to read text aloud within frames and new windows and supports the use of e-Learning course management systems. Kurzweil 3000 Version 9 also has the added ability to search online encyclopedias and other sources, such as Columbia Encyclopedia, Encyclopedia Britannica Concise (also Encyclopedia Britannica and Encyclopedia Britannica Student available by subscription), Wikipedia Encyclopedia (in English, French and Spanish), Bartlett's, and Respectively Quoted Quotations, so students can do research assignments within the software.
- New Voice Options - Two new integrated VoiceText voices from NeoSpeech - one male, one female - offer natural-sounding voices that adjust to the user's reading preferences.
- Expanded Writing Options - Kurzweil 3000 for Windows now includes Word Prediction options. Students can start with a small, medium or large Word Prediction vocabulary, depending on their writing level, or they can choose to start with only their own specific word lists. Students and teachers can also add additional words to Word Prediction by typing in new words related to a specific subject area or choosing specific word lists from existing Kurzweil 3000 Vocabulary Lists.
- Updated and Enhanced Document Preparation:
- New and Updated OCR Engines - Two new OCR engines from ScanSoft® and an update of ABBYY FineReader provide the most accurate available recognition.
- Added Scanner Optimization - Kurzweil 3000 for Windows incorporates scanning enhancements for settings such as threshold, brightness, resolution and speckle removal, providing a way to obtain recognition results and eliminate trial and error associated with scan settings.
- Enhanced Edit Underlying Text and Zone Editing - The Edit Underlying Text window is now WYSIWYG (What You See Is What You Get). Users can see where they are in the image document when editing and have the option of saving underlying text edits before or after zone editing (ordering the sequence in which blocks of text are read aloud).