Now I generally try hard to keep up with things and I admit that is pretty much a losing cause. With the pace of change and the sheer amount of information at our finger tips it may seem to be too daunting a task. In many of my talks to Teachers and Educators I point out that I never even sat in front of a computer until I was 40!! Once I did, I made a promise to myself to “learn at least 1 new thing every day of my life”. It didn’t matter what it was as long as it was something that I felt made me a bit smarter and more competitive. To rationalize my thinking, I put a figure against any achievement. It could be something as simple as learning a new way to cut and paste or save a new RSS feed or something deeper like understand Cloud computing. Whatever I learn I say that I now have knowledge that “10,000” people don’t know. It was a random number choice but it works for me. I have been true to this for over 20 years and can smugly sit and say that every month I’m better informed or more knowledgeable that 300,000 people!! It’s quite satisfying in that context and I tend to forget there are over 6 billion people and I will never even know as much as I would like or even be the smartest guy in the room most of the time.
So last evening I was watching Charlie Rose on CNN and saw his interview with Sal Khan. They were talking about the Khan Academy and the work Sal has done all on his own to bring online learning to thousands and thousands of students and teachers around the world. He did all of this in his spare time to help one of his cousins with math homework. He lived in Boston and she lived in New Orleans. As a result of this, other cousins, family members and friends started to watch his videos. This has grown into the Khan Academy and he has over 2,100 videos and 100 self-paced exercises. He has now set the company up as a not-for-profit and gets funding from some of the biggest players in the world like our own Bill Gates through the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. I don’t know how I missed this on the Gates Notes website or on the Foundation Facebook site.
I know I’m very late in the game but I’m willing to bet there at least 10,000 people in the world who don’t know about this, so tick that daily 10k box for me today
I found this very inspiring and hope that more and more students and teachers become aware of this fantastic online resource.