To be plain, this isn’t (strictly speaking) how to teach yourself programming, but it basically is. And it’s a pretty good opportunity to prove yourself.
The Stanford University School of Engineering is going to offer an online course this fall, for free, called “Introduction to Artificial Intelligence.” Not just uploading the course material, like MIT has with their open courseware, but offering the entire course online, for free. That’s homework, quizzes and graded exams.
Why take extra school? Because if you do well, you get a ‘statement of accomplishment’ for a Stanford AI course. Might not be the same as a diploma from Stanford, and it’s technically not an official certificate (read: you won’t get college credit), but if your resume says “CS Major who got an A in a Stanford AI course,” you look like some sort of superpowered geek. And that’s a good thing.
It’s an intro course, but not the most basic CS course Stanford offers. Point being, it probably won’t be easy. But it will be mostly video based, and there’s a recommended textbook as well. Check out this aptly-named video about the course:
The professors are going to respond to student questions–even though there will be tens of thousands of students. How will they do it? Slashdot, a geeky news site (seriously, their motto is “News for Nerds. Stuff that Matters”) got this response from the professors, regarding the issue:
“We will use something akin to Google Moderator to make sure Peter and I answer the most pressing questions. Our hypothesis is that even in a class of 10,000, there will only be a fixed number of really interesting questions (like 15 per week). There exist tools to find them.”
The course website has a place to sign up, though official registration doesn’t start until later in the summer. It’s recommended you get to it.
Read what I read:
- Course Description (w/ syllabus) for Intro to AI
- Spiffy course website, probably made in response to the media attention the announcement got.
- The recommended textbook’s webpage. You can buy it as an eBook for about $60 or get it used on Amazon for $40. Then again, you could also simply check if one of the state universities has it. Worth noting that the author (who happens to also be one of the professors of the course) will donate his earnings on the textbook to charity.