Linked by Howard Fosdick on Wed 21st Dec 2011 00:39 UTC
Editorial M.I.T. has just announced it is expanding its list of free online courses anyone can take. Attendees earn completion certificates. M.I.T.'s OpenCourseWare project already offers 2,100 courses used by 100 million people. OpenCulture, Free Ed, E-learning Center, and Alison offer competing free online courses, including many on computing and IT certification.
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RE[5]: certificates
by Alfman on Fri 23rd Dec 2011 03:27 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: certificates"
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"Back then physics also included nuclear energy and some binding energy stuff as well, enough to do rough calculations on energy which I have mostly forgotten. I want to get that back in my head to follow what is now coming along like SMRs."

I would have enjoyed more of an engineering background. I opted for CS early on because I was thrilled I could do just about everything on my own personal computer without prohibitively expensive equipment. However I hadn't considered that the low costs of computing would eventually enable third world countries to displace so many IT jobs. The barriers to entry are just too low to have comfortable job security.

"The last time I met a UK prof, they were very sad about the decline in University enrollments in physics, like 20* down over the 70s, nobody wants to study hard for it anymore."

To be fair, there may be other factors contributing to that. How many times over has the cost of education multiplied since those days? I went to school at a yearly expense which was 20X more expensive than my parent's, and I earn a fraction of what they did in medicine. I started courses during the IT bubble and graduated when it popped, pot luck I guess. I kind of regret that decision, but it seemed the perfect fit for me back then, so I doubt I could have known better.

"Kids I know that went the soft side into web dev haven't fared well either, easy degree means competing with kids from India."

I agree completely, competing in low barrier fields is extremely difficult when such different costs of living are factored in.

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