SLAM DUNK? Pearson-incubated startup Alleyoop launched last week, with a mission to promote college preparation and career readiness for middle and high school students. It's got all the sweet ingredients: an "adaptive" learning platform, heavy doses of gamification elements, and live tutors. Here's how it works: Alleyoop pulls content from partner vendors and websites to create a learning path for each student. The system tracks user interaction with these materials to develop a "DNA" profile that can predict the type of content (games, videos, readings, etc.) that the student enjoys most. Completing exercises allow students to earn virtual currency ("Yoops"--which can also be purchased) to access premium content and live tutoring, leading some folks to bring up Zynga comparisons. (Sites providing the paid services share revenue with Alleyoop.) The service currently only covers math, but plans to expand to other subjects. More details from TechCrunch. We'll see if this services pleases crowds like real alleyoops do.