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email:ong@stottlerhenke.com


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

STOTTLER HENKE OFFERS SIMBIONIC AND TASK TUTOR TOOLKIT
SOFTWARE FREE TO U.S. GOVERNMENT EMPLOYEES

Powerful new tools dramatically simplify and accelerate the development of intelligent systems
for simulation, tutoring, and real-time monitoring and control


SAN MATEO, CA., April 8, 2003 -- United States government employees can receive free copies of two new software products that dramatically simplify and accelerate the development of intelligent systems for simulation, tutoring, and real-time monitoring and control. Under a new program announced today by Stottler Henke Associates, Inc., developer of SimBionic and Task Tutor Toolkit software, federal employees can order both software products directly from Stottler Henke at no cost through Sept. 30, 2003. More information about the products is available on the web at www.stottlerhenke.com/products, via email at info@stottlerhenke.com, or at (650) 655-7242.

SimBionic is a visual authoring tool and C++ runtime engine for creating sophisticated situation assessment and decision-making logic that uses artificial intelligence (AI) reasoning techniques. It lets even non-programmers easily define intelligent behaviors of computer-generated people, processes, and equipment within simulations for training, education, planning, and design. This logic can also assess student actions in dynamic, free-play training simulations to evaluate students’ performance, knowledge and skills. It can also be embedded within intelligent real-time automation and decision support systems to detect significant conditions, analyze and interpret data, and carry out appropriate actions. SimBionic enables developers to speed their development time, while empowering subject matter experts to incorporate their expertise easily into the system, without programming.

“SimBionic makes it easy to create ‘smart simulations’ that provide more realistic, engaging, and effective training experiences, as well as assess and critique each student’s performance,” said Richard Stottler, president of Stottler Henke Associates, Inc. “With this free software distribution program, we’re making it as easy as possible for federal government employees to acquire tools that can dramatically speed and simplify building such smart simulations. It’s our way of giving something back to the organizations that enabled us to build SimBionic and Task Tutor Toolkit in the first place.”

The Task Tutor Toolkit (T3) is a set of Java software applications and libraries that lets trainers enhance training simulators with automated hinting and performance evaluation quickly and easily, without programming. The Task Tutor Toolkit coaches students in technical training areas such as using software, operating or maintaining equipment, and following organizational procedures and guidelines. However, the Task Tutor Toolkit teaches more than just rote memorization or mechanical skills. Scenarios let students apply their knowledge and skills, by:

  • Assessing realistic, complex situations (common and exceptional),·
  • Identifying relevant facts, procedures, guidelines, and strategies, and ·
  • Selecting and carrying out appropriate actions to achieve desired results.

About SimBionic

SimBionic has two major components: a visual authoring tool and a runtime engine. The SimBionic authoring tool is a Windows application that presents its logic graphically as a UML- like state chart, so it can communicate more information to more people compared to textual methods. This visual representation can be understood by experts and by software programmers alike, so they can speak the same language, resulting in superior collaborative development.

The SimBionic runtime engine takes the logic description, and makes it operational within a simulation or real-time system. The engine is efficient and highly scalable, and its modular C++ API lets developers interface it to a wide range of systems.

About Task Tutor Toolkit

The T3 Tutoring System provides the benefits of one-on-one coaching, automatically and cost-effectively, by:

  • Presenting the situation and goals to the student at the beginning of each scenario;
  • Monitoring and evaluating the student’s actions carried out within a simulator;
  • Assessing the student’s knowledge and skills by detecting correct and incorrect sequences of actions and simulation states; and
  • Providing context-sensitive hints and instructional feedback based on the student’s performance.
The Task Tutor Toolkit comprises three basic components:
  • T3 Tutoring System – a software module that interfaces with diverse simulators to create application-specific tutoring systems that run T3 scenarios. At the beginning of each T3 scenario run, the T3 Tutoring System presents a briefing that describes the situation and the goals the student should pursue by carrying out appropriate actions within the simulator. The T3 Tutoring System evaluates each student action by comparing it with the scenario’s “solution template” and with error rules that detect incorrect actions.
  • T3 Authoring Tool – a software module that interfaces with diverse simulators, enabling instructors and subject matter experts to create scenario-specific “solution templates.” The author can also specify “error rules” that infer failed course principles by detecting student actions that are incorrect when certain simulation conditions exist.
  • T3 Simulator – a built-in discrete event simulation engine and user interface, which allows users to prototype simulations quickly and easily, by specifying possible student actions and optional simulation rules that specify how the simulated world responds to each action or to the passage of time.

The T3 Tutoring System and T3 Authoring Tool are implemented as Java class libraries that can be interfaced with diverse simulators and embedded within Java applets or applications. The Task Tutor Toolkit also includes a built-in simulator and pre-built T3 applications that enable trainers to prototype simulation-based tutoring systems quickly and easily.

Funding for the development of the Task Tutor Toolkit was provided in large part by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and the U.S. Air Force. Development of SimBionic was supported in large part by R&D funding provided by the U.S. Air Force and the U.S. Navy.

Founded in 1988, Stottler Henke Associates, Inc. applies artificial intelligence and other advanced software technologies to solve problems that defy solution using traditional approaches. The company delivers intelligent software solutions for education and training, planning and scheduling, knowledge management and discovery, decision support, and software development. Stottler Henke's clients include manufacturers, retailers, educational media companies and government agencies. email:info@stottlerhenke.com Web: http://www.stottlerhenke.com.

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Copyright © 2003 Stottler Henke Associates, Inc. All rights reserved.