I am kind of a busy girl right now. Moving x last minute wedding planning before you leave the country in two weeks = not much time for anything else. So, in the spirit of wanting to continue posting regularly and not neglect this blog, but also respecting the fact that I have about a million things to do today, I am dedicating this post to something I think is incredibly valuable, but will only take a few minutes to put together: education.
And not just any kind of education, FREE education. As I continue to wrap my head around what taking the literary world that I so love off the page and onto the web looks like, I am looking to other innovators who use the internet for more enriching activities than spreading viral videos of crazy cats doing kooky things. Not that I am knocking those cats. They give me a good laugh as much as the next guy. But a lot of really smart people out there are sharing their knowledge, and for the first time in I don't know, EVER, it is easy to access and doesn't require a pedigree or a fat bank account.
What I would like to do eventually is have a resources page on my site where any one can go and get their learn on if that is what they want to do. I recently have started subscribing to Yale's YouTube channel, where you can audit undergraduate classes online for FREE. I hope that sounds as incredible to some of you as it does to me. Once upon a time I thought I would end up in a university like Yale, and things didn't go according to plan to say the least. My alma mater is nothing to be ashamed of, but being able to sit in my bedroom and follow a lecture on foundations for modern social thought taught by an acclaimed Ivy league professor really blows my mind.
I think that there is limitless potential as to what the internet can do for a person if they take advantage of what is out there. So if you know of some other resources that fellow literatis might find interesting, share! You can throw it in a comment below, or e-mail it to me. Ok, here goes:
Open Culture is an invariable gold mine!
"Open Culture editor Dan Colman scours the web for the best educational media. He finds the free courses and audio books you need, the language lessons & movies you want, and plenty of enlightenment in between."
As mentioned above, holy sh*t! Yale is giving courses away for FREE!
Wait! Harvard has one too? Of couse they do. They can't have Yale showing them up.
As it turns out, MIT did it first. Thanks MIT.
Completely free, completely online university out of the UK, Open Learn.
NASA has an impressive site with videos and podcasts, still photos, you name it. I don't know a whole lot about space, but I would like to.
Don't let the name fool you. TED offers speeches and lectures by heavyweight intellectuals from all imaginable disciplines.
And how about some resources for learning languages, or just practicing the ones you already know:
I am saving the stuff closest to my heart for last. Access to millions of books, online, for free:
Gutenberg, a non-profit project where you have access to a ton of public domain works. Get it.
Free textbooks. Really.
This site has their books formatted for an e-reader, Ipad, etc. And they are ad-free.
Over 2,000,000 PDF book files, for free.
Ok, that should hopefully keep everyone busy for a bit while I continue to run around like a mad woman. Bookmark it and come back when you have the time to really use this list. I really, really hope that even just a handful of you find these resources helpful, interesting, enriching, entertaining, or inspiring. I personally wish I had 10 lifetimes to delve into all of this beautiful knowledge.
<3, Stephanie Pearl