W3Schools Pathfinder.

Building an AI-powered personalised learning application on AWS.

  • Customer experience
    User-centric, personalised learning journeys for developers.
  • Advanced AI
    AI-driven learning paths and adaptive learning experiences.
  • Cost efficiency
    Serverless architecture saves costs and boosts scalability.

Project Summary.

In partnership with:
Client industry:
Client location:

W3Schools Pathfinder.

A lot of users came to w3schools with a specific mindset or outcome in mind, like wanting a job in tech industry, and needing a specific set of skills in order to do so.

Then, when they were getting their hands dirty in developing the skills, they would often have a lot of questions, like ‘should I learn this developer language?’ Or ‘do I need this specific qualification?’ Users often need a lot of guidance through this learning journey.

So, when W3schools wanted to introduce a new, personalised application to guide users through their developer learning journeys, W3schools Pathfinder was conceived.

W3Schools Pathfinder would be a new online application to help developers with personalised learning journeys based on their current skills and goals.

The challenge.

User experience

The app needed to be intuitive, and allow users to add details about themselves, their goals and study plans.
It needed to be able to assess the current skill level through an assessment engine and provide a gap report, between users’ learning goal and skill level.

User journey

It needed to guide the user through a bespoke learning path, while being constantly evaluated on the way.
It needed to be shining the light in front of the user, guiding them through the W3schools universe.

AI advancement

Before Pathfinder, W3schools had introduced AI across its customer-facing Spaces online coding sandbox: kAI, a chatbot assistant that helps guide users through different coding challenges. But, they needed a more robust, scalable, cost-efficient cloud-based solution to power the Pathfinder concept across its user base.

The approach.

Nordcloud, W3schools’ trusted cloud partner, helped support the project with the development of parts of the Pathfinder application, as well as helping secure funding from AWS for the application modernisation.

During the ideation phases, Nordcloud were extremely proactive with their support, proactively bringing new ideas to the table, as well as identifying challenges and mitigating them at an early stage.

And Nordcloud’s cloud-native experts worked alongside the W3schools team, in bringing the service to market in just 4 months. This included helping with technical and strategic input and ideas, to bring the concept through to full production on AWS.

The teams worked side-by-side in a flat structure, which was credited as a successful approach to project delivery, with each individual pushing each other in the right direction and taking ownership where needed.

The main thing we like about working with Nordcloud is how good it is having them in the trenches with us. When it gets hot, Nordcloud experts really own the solution, they own their work all the way into production.
Other developers might think it’s the job of someone else - like a QA or DevOps person - but the Nordcloud team really takes responsibility and owns the solution, takes care of bugs, and sees it through to the end.

Jan Magne Sola

Chief Technical Officer, W3schools

The solution.

Serverless setup

The application was built using a serverless approach on AWS, so W3schools could leverage native services to handle things like user data and profiles, message processing and notifications. With this setup, it means W3schools don’t have to worry about provisioning or managing servers and instead focus on writing the application logic.
It allows for quick development, seamless scalability, and cost-effectiveness, as W3schools only pay for the resources they use.

AI services

Based on creative use of AWS OpenSearch, open source version of Elasticsearch, we created a public cloud-based custom AI solution together with W3schools. The solution offers the scalability, cost-efficiency, rapid deployment and access to advanced capabilities as expected with cloud-based tools, enabling enhanced user experiences and competitive edge.


Nordcloud and W3schools collaborated in bringing a major new application to market in just 4 months, and 1.3 million users have used Pathfinder in the first 4 months after launch. And Pathfinder has brought W3schools a number of clear benefits.

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Innovative customer experience.

Pathfinder has further built upon W3schools’ reputation at the forefront of online developer education. By offering personalised learning journeys tailored to individual goals and skill levels, W3schools has set a new standard in the industry for user-centric education and continues to provide outstanding value to its large community.

AI advancement.

Leveraging AI technologies, Pathfinder provides users with real-time feedback, personalised learning paths, and adaptive learning experiences. This innovative service has further enhanced W3schools AI capabilities and will enable future projects.


By adopting serverless architecture on AWS, W3schools has achieved significant cost savings while ensuring seamless scalability and rapid development. It allows W3schools to focus on enhancing the user experience and expanding their educational offerings, rather than worrying about infrastructure management.

W3schools Pathfinder helps users:

  • Get the most out of W3schools learning platform and improve their developer skills
  • Identify potential skills gaps and deliver learnings in those areas.
  • Streamline the user journey, saving time in finding and using resources and so each achieving their learning goals faster.
  • Be part of an active community, sharing goals and achievements during the learning journey.

Get in Touch.

Let’s discuss how we can help with your cloud journey. Our experts are standing by to talk about your migration, modernisation, development and skills challenges.

Georg Pedersen LinkedIn
Account Executive