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Stanford Classes Now Available on iTunes

ScuttleMonkey posted more than 8 years ago | from the all-about-that-piece-of-paper dept.

Education 274

Chowser writes "Forbes is reporting Stanford University is now offering a wide range of content on iTunes. From the article: 'In an unprecedented move, Stanford University is collaborating with Apple Computer to allow public access a wide range of lectures, speeches, debates and other university content through iTunes. No need to pay the $31,200 tuition. No need to live on campus. No need even to be a student. The nearly 500 tracks that constitute "Stanford on iTunes" are available to anyone willing to spend the few minutes it takes to download them from the Internet.'" Talaper noted the Official Apple Page on the program is up as well.

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cheap degrees @ home (5, Funny)

hardticket (696737) | more than 8 years ago | (#14559400)

99 cents per lecture, get your ONLINE degree from iTunes today

Free as in beer? (4, Informative)

ModernGeek (601932) | more than 8 years ago | (#14559428)

By the sounds of it, they will be free as in beer and speech. The big notch universities tend to set information free like that for the public.

Re:cheap degrees @ home (5, Interesting)

ackthpt (218170) | more than 8 years ago | (#14559479)


99 cents per lecture, get your ONLINE degree from iTunes today

Not quite. The downside is these are a on-sided, read only participation of the material, which in my experience isn't quite as good as having it followed by a good old fashion Q & A session.

Also, the sheepskin from Stanford comes only with that Tuition deal. I don't think you'd get very far trying to set up your own school with them either, i.e. Bob University (based upon actual Stanford materials, but with our EZ-Pass exams!)

Re:cheap degrees @ home (5, Funny)

Zathrus (232140) | more than 8 years ago | (#14559712)

based upon actual Stanford materials, but with our EZ-Pass exams!

Hey, you can get the real exams too! You just need to get access to a fraternity/sorority's word file...

Re:cheap degrees @ home (1)

Fishstick (150821) | more than 8 years ago | (#14559891)

Isn't this more a reference to the spam degree offers? That's the first thing I thought when I saw this.

I don't think any reasonable person would expect this to replace a degree from Stanford.

Re:cheap degrees @ home (1, Flamebait)

dingDaShan (818817) | more than 8 years ago | (#14559897)

College: where you don't buy lectures, you buy grades. This has been a know fact for some time now. College students soon find that college professors are called professors for a reason, they don't teach. Teachers are for HS. In college, you pay for a degree, not the lectures

Re:cheap degrees @ home (1)

macadamia_harold (947445) | more than 8 years ago | (#14560052)

This is sort of weird to me. It sounds like a scam.

Straight A's (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14559419)

However if you do choose to pay the full $31,200, you will receive a 4.0 GPA and an undergraduate degree.

"No need to be a student" is overstating it (5, Informative)

SoCalChris (573049) | more than 8 years ago | (#14559425)

Of the 500 available tracks, only 39 are lectures. The rest are sports, music, and random "Heard on campus" tracks that look like a blog. The available lectures look pretty cool though.

Re:"No need to be a student" is overstating it (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14559461)

Please mod parent up for R'ingTFA; mod down submitter, editor and every other poster so far for not bothering.

Re:"No need to be a student" is overstating it (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14560007)

Correction, please mod grandparent down for cluelessness.

The words "no need to be a student" in the summary CLEARLY mean that you don't need to be a student to download these files. Grandparent poster is a moron for misreading it so badly that he thought they meant that these files replace the need for a college education.

Re:"No need to be a student" is overstating it (4, Insightful)

mzwaterski (802371) | more than 8 years ago | (#14559699)

I'm pretty sure the meant, no need to be a student to download the tracks. Not: No need to be a student because you can get your education through iTunes.

Re:"No need to be a student" is overstating it (2, Funny)

Fishstick (150821) | more than 8 years ago | (#14559818)

Exactly -- what, on your resume under 'Education' you're gonna list "downloaded everything I need to know on my iPod"?

Huh? (2, Funny)

jd (1658) | more than 8 years ago | (#14559901)

39 lectures to 461 random tunes/gossip... Sounds about the ratio most students go for. If anything, it might be a little heavy on the course material.


(I don't think anybody was seriously looking at iTunes as a rival to the UK's Open University program, where they've been doing remote broadcasts of lectures for a long time now.)

Re:"No need to be a student" is overstating it (1)

javaxman (705658) | more than 8 years ago | (#14559966)

Of the 500 available tracks, only 39 are lectures. The rest are sports, music, and random "Heard on campus" tracks that look like a blog. The available lectures look pretty cool though.

Actually, some of the more interesting stuff is in the "Hear on campus" section... places like Stanford often have cool guest speakers and ( sometimes ) interesting round-table discussion events. The Dali Lama stuff is pretty interesting.

Of course, this isn't "new". This launched sometime last year.

MIT OpenCourseWare (5, Interesting)

mysqlrocks (783488) | more than 8 years ago | (#14559426)

Glad to see other universities are following the trend set by MIT with their OpenCourseWare [mit.edu] project. It's interesting to see universities have faith that putting this content out for public consumption will not detract from their mission.

Without the diploma... (4, Funny)

everphilski (877346) | more than 8 years ago | (#14559481)

Without the piece of paper, the education is meaningless :)

Re:Without the diploma... (1)

servognome (738846) | more than 8 years ago | (#14559661)

Without the piece of paper, the education is meaningless :)

No, it just means the education is what you make of it. While you don't have "proof" of your understanding of the concepts you can leverage the information on a personal level. (eg Steve Jobs "dropping in" to calligraphy class)

Re:Without the diploma... (2, Interesting)

ZombieWomble (893157) | more than 8 years ago | (#14560041)

Statements like that are why the education system in many Western countries is in such a state. No longer do people pursue degrees for the love of the subject, they just want a nice piece of paper to wave in front of possible employers. It's a shame that for many personal achievement is now a distant second to what other people think of the letters after your name.

I know, for myself at least, that those notes often provide additional insight or alternate approaches to material I've studied, and are helpful when you want to grab a quick bit of information on something but don't want to have to hunt down the text books, dig them out of the library, and hope they actually cover what they claim to in the way you need it. But hey, that's just me.

Learning and Education (2, Insightful)

everphilski (877346) | more than 8 years ago | (#14560213)

Statements like that are why the education system in many Western countries is in such a state.

Holy generalizations. And bad ones at that. (a state of what?)

No longer do people pursue degrees for the love of the subject, they just want a nice piece of paper to wave in front of possible employers.

The point of college *is* to make yourself more employable.

It's a shame that for many personal achievement is now a distant second to what other people think of the letters after your name.

I'm proud of both my education and the fact that I provide well for my family. I was smart enough to do both, and not just one.

If I am learning for the sake of learning - and I do it regularly - I don't sit down and listen to a recorded lecture. I explore. My degree is in aerospace engineering. My interests also lie in other fields. Like robotics. I program AVR's. I play with digital image processing. I read papers by professionals, who I can then get in contact with regarding questions. I attend graduate school. I attend **real classes** and conferences (even unrelated to my field of work) where I can experance interactive education. Communing with people is where it is at.

Listening to recorded lectures is stupid. It is a one-way communication. Learning is a two-way street both for the student and the professor.

Definitely won't detract (5, Interesting)

sterno (16320) | more than 8 years ago | (#14559506)

Making the content available is all positive for these universities. If I downloaded everything they made, and studied it thoroughly, I might have a strong grasp of the subject matter but I still wouldn't have a degree from MIT or Stanford. In the end there's value in the degree because it certifies your knowledge. If you go for a job interview, etc, and say I downloaded Stanford's coursework from ITunes, I rather doubt they'd consider me on par with a Stanfor graduate.

It's a good thing for them because it builds their image. It shows an interest in promotion education in general and sharing knowledge with those who cannot afford the $30K+. It also gives prospective students a chance to see what that money would be going for before they shell it out. So really all around a good thing for them.

Finishing touch (5, Funny)

wombatmobile (623057) | more than 8 years ago | (#14559839)

If I downloaded everything they made, and studied it thoroughly, I might have a strong grasp of the subject matter but I still wouldn't have a degree from MIT or Stanford.

...until shortly after you downloaded Photoshop.

Re:MIT OpenCourseWare (4, Insightful)

Mrs. Grundy (680212) | more than 8 years ago | (#14559545)

I think the Universities understand that employers don't generally have the cognitive skills to understand whether an applicants is qualified for a particular job and must really on earned degrees from institutions to tell them if they should or in some cases even can hire somebody. With this idea so entrenched in our corporate culture the University need not fear giving away their content because that isn't what is actually valuable in the market--the degree is. A person who gets a degree from Stanford but retains no learning will have a much easier time getting a well-paid job than a person without the degree who nevertheless memorized and internalized every bit of information Stanford gives away.

Re:MIT OpenCourseWare (1)

antifoidulus (807088) | more than 8 years ago | (#14559803)

I think you mean "don't have the time" to evaluate all these candidates. Of course it isn't perfectly fair to throw out everyone who didn't get a college education, but how else can you quickly sort through the hundreds of resumes you receive for each job opening? You honestly expect a human who does have other duties to read through each one carefully and think, "Hmmm...does this person really know what they are talking about?" I know if I had that job I would go crazy. So unless you have some genious plan to stop unqualified people from applying to a job(and if you do, you should go get some VC and kick monster's ass) companies are going to have to use some type of filtering
Not saying a college degree is perfect, but I for instance paid my own way through college. That tells an employer not only do I know data structures and algorithms but when push comes to shove, I can get the job done.

Re:Mod Parent UP! Personal Story... (1)

mpapet (761907) | more than 8 years ago | (#14560174)

This is wisdom of the ages friends.

I personally made a very foolish mistake in college by attending a less prestigious school over a much more prestigious one.

I paid my way through university. At the time I was furious that they were teaching me things I had learned in community college. Same text books, similar lectures, only the professors would blather on about their research which had little to do with the subject of the day.

So I left. I felt I got a better education, but boy it doesn't show on paper. To this day I think I would have gotten better career opportunities (at least an interview) by sticking with that horrible school.

Knowledge is free. The school name on the diploma most certainly is not.

Re:MIT OpenCourseWare (1)

Midnight Thunder (17205) | more than 8 years ago | (#14559895)

Question is now: can I only access these if I live in the USA? It would be ashame if they limited this content's distribution.

This is impressive (5, Interesting)

ackthpt (218170) | more than 8 years ago | (#14559431)


Also consider that Stanford is a private university, not public.

Meanwhile the Vatican is defending copyrighting the Pope's pronouncements. Which, IMHO, is right up there with copyright of MLK's 'I Have A Dream' and Co$'s copyrighted "Trade Secrets"

Nice move ya floppy tree :-)

Re:This is impressive - Converting the Masses (1)

Nom du Keyboard (633989) | more than 8 years ago | (#14559830)

Meanwhile the Vatican is defending copyrighting the Pope's pronouncements. Which, IMHO, is right up there with copyright of MLK's 'I Have A Dream' and Co$'s copyrighted "Trade Secrets"

Sounds like an excellent way to keep both these "church's" pronouncements from spreading more quickly than they would otherwise.

And all along I'd been thinking that the whole point of a church was to convert as many people to your cause as possible because the world will be so much better once that happens. And yes, MLK was a preacher, so the term "church" applies to him as well.

Re:This is impressive - Converting the Masses (1)

ackthpt (218170) | more than 8 years ago | (#14559990)

And all along I'd been thinking that the whole point of a church was to convert as many people to your cause as possible because the world will be so much better once that happens.

You almost have it right. The idea of such organisations as religions and Co$ is the control of how the information is disseminated.

Education in reading was originally encouraged by churches so the followers could read the verse. Problems started when the flocks came to different interpretation or change of emphasis (i.e. this part is actually more important than that part) on the messages in the texts.

If Co$ were to open all their materials then the public would undoubtably have a field day with the wild ideas behind the "faith" Can't say I see that happening any decade soon.

Re:This is impressive (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14559850)

Copyright derives from creation. That the copyright exists is an artifact of it having been created. The creator can then choose to do as he will with his rights, but he doesn't do anything to originally gain them.

This will probably serve as good advertising for the school - makes them look hip and with it, the kids these days love those Internets right?

Kevin

good deal (1)

gEvil (beta) (945888) | more than 8 years ago | (#14559437)

Good deal. Sounds like a nice counterpart to MIT's OpenCourseWare. [mit.edu]

Re:good deal (5, Interesting)

tpgp (48001) | more than 8 years ago | (#14559718)

Good deal.

Sounds like a great idea!

Sounds like a nice counterpart to MIT's OpenCourseWare.

Unfortunately not... MIT's OpenCourseWare [mit.edu] is well... Open.

Stanford on iTunes however requires an expensive piece of software (OS X or Windows) to use it.

I don't have a Mac, I don't run Windows - how am I supposed to access this?

I guess this what you can expect from a University that puts a 1 page FAQ [stanford.edu] in a PDF (why dear god, why?)

Good for some people I acknowledge, but no OpenCourseWare.

Re:good deal (1)

nowhere.elysium (924845) | more than 8 years ago | (#14560019)

that's a cracking set of links, in there. cheers for pointing me over to it... i was completely unaware that MiT did anything like that :)

University of Wisconsin, others also (5, Informative)

daveschroeder (516195) | more than 8 years ago | (#14559439)

First of all, this has been around at Stanford since October 2005. This was covered at Ars Technica [arstechnica.com] a month and a half ago (including the Stanford on iTunes [stanford.edu] site and store [apple.com] ).

Second, this is also available at the University of Wisconsin - Madison [wisc.edu] , as well as other schools, such as UC Berkeley [berkeley.edu] .

What's actually "new" here is that Apple has productized this service for educational institutions in the form of iTunes U [apple.com] , announced yesterday.

Though those who haven't heard of it before may be interested in Steve Jobs' 2005 commencement address at Stanford [apple.com] .

Please note that iTunes U operates on a different server (deimos.apple.com) than the normal music store (phobos.apple.com).

Little more education for you... (2, Informative)

everphilski (877346) | more than 8 years ago | (#14559519)

Please note that iTunes U operates on a different server (deimos.apple.com) than the normal music store (phobos.apple.com).

Demios and Phobos are the moons of Mars (Terror and Fear, respectively)

Slowpokes (1)

jd (1658) | more than 8 years ago | (#14560089)

This was originally discussed [open.ac.uk] in the UK in 1926 and by 1970 you could study from the material transmitted and actually earn a degree from it. (Yes, 46 years is a long time to go from theory to fact, but the British Civil Service are notorious for delaying any good ideas politicians might have.)


The biggest differences seem to be that a lot of the iTunes material is audio only, is not examinable material, but is available on the Internet. (There would be nothing to stop the BBC from simulcasting the OU material over the Internet - NASA Select does - but the BBC aren't always guilty of having much in the way of intelligence.)


I see the future of "extramural" education of this kind as being Internet-based but much more along the OU lines in terms of quality of material and the option of taking an examination at the end.

Re:Slowpokes (1)

AnalystX (633807) | more than 8 years ago | (#14560184)

...and 44 years is almost as long.

Re:University of Wisconsin, others also (1)

javaxman (705658) | more than 8 years ago | (#14560229)

First of all, this has been around at Stanford since October 2005.

Actually, it's been around a lot longer than that, I'm told. The national press was slow to pick up on the story.

Now you tell me (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14559440)

I already *paid* the $31,200 tuition you insensitive clod!

Harvard Extension (4, Informative)

maynard (3337) | more than 8 years ago | (#14559471)

Harvard Extension, the night school at Harvard University, is experimenting with podcasting [podcastingnews.com] too. While a much smaller project, I look forward to a future where I can download official audio from classes that I missed due to illness or work schedule conflicts. And kudos to Stanford for opening up access to education and knowledge to the public.

Re:Harvard Extension (5, Funny)

ToxikFetus (925966) | more than 8 years ago | (#14559669)

classes that I missed due to illness or work schedule conflicts

You misspelled "hangovers" and "parties"

Re:Harvard Extension (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14559821)

Why would anyone enroll at Harvard Extension except with the intent to deceive future employers and associates with a Harvard-in-name-only degree? Most real Harvard students won't even give you the time of day, and rightly so. Good luck gaining access to tenured faculty or even university administration.

You wannabes should be made to wear armbands stamped X in Day-Glo colors. "Extension Verboten."

Commoditizing teachers (4, Interesting)

nharmon (97591) | more than 8 years ago | (#14559496)

My experience in college has been that a teacher spends most of his/her time helping a relatively small minority of a class. So it would seem reasonable that the rest of the students could learn as much, or more, in a class using pre-recorded lectures over the internet.

I would like to see this lead to a fairly nice public education model where online universities that are publicly subsidized allow students to take classes for free, and then the student pays for the teacher's time when he/she needs that extra help.

Non iTunes Availability? (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14559509)

This is a great and an idea I would definately invest time and money in. Had it non been on iTunes only. Way to alienate those of us who refuse to own the trendy, overpriced iPod and/or use their iTunes software.

C'mon Stanford, get with the program and offer this at different outlets. Again, something i'd love to pay for, but because of it not being in a widespread distribution method, i'll just download it free.

Re:Non iTunes Availability? (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14559814)

itunes is not a widespread distribution method? Dude, I understand you have principles but now you're just acting like an idiot.

Re:Non iTunes Availability? (2, Interesting)

shotfeel (235240) | more than 8 years ago | (#14559815)

To the extent that a large part of classwork in school (from high school through college) is essentially a one-way lecture, I think this is a geat idea. For example, instead of a High School English teacher giving the same 30 min lecture to 5 different groups of kids, with 20 min left for questions, let all the kids watch a recording of the lecture, which they can "rewind" to catch things they would have otherwise missed. That means the teacher can spend his/her time in smaller groups helping with problems and answering questions.

Some of my most frustrating times in classes were when I couldn't keep up with taking notes and trying to understand the lecture at the same time. A "pause" button sure would have been helpful.

Re:Non iTunes Availability? (1)

porcupine8 (816071) | more than 8 years ago | (#14560165)

Way to alienate those of us who refuse to own the trendy, overpriced iPod and/or use their iTunes software.

Except that you don't need to own an iPod, by any stretch of the imagination. So your actual statement is:

Way to alienate those of us who refuse to use their iTunes software.

Fair enough. Though I doubt they're too worried about alienating the 1% of people who somehow feel morally obligated to not download a free piece of software. Now, people who don't use Windows or OS X, and thus can't use iTunes, I can understand being annoyed. It would be nice if there were an option for those people.

Again, something i'd love to pay for,

But you don't have to pay for it - you just have to swallow your pride and download iTunes.

but because of it not being in a widespread distribution method

LOLZ! Perhaps you need to take a larger sample size than "in your head" before you pronounce iTunes to not be widespread.

i'll just download it free.

Just like the rest of us! Because, y'know, it's FREE on iTunes. Unless you made some bet with someone that you'd never download iTunes, and that's why you're so reticent.

Just stop whining and download iTunes already. Seriously.

Classes on iTunes (3, Funny)

BarkLouder (916884) | more than 8 years ago | (#14559528)

Man, when I first read the headline, I thought they were teaching about iTunes. That would be a popular class.

Pretty Useless (1, Troll)

MBraynard (653724) | more than 8 years ago | (#14559563)

No need to pay the $31,200 tuition. No need to live on campus. No need even to be a student.

And no coursework, no grades, and no degree.

The value of these classes with a few exceptions is to demonstrate your competency to get in the school, complete the courses, get the degree - not to demonstrate that you heard a bunch of lectures.

Re:Pretty Useless (1)

wesw02 (846056) | more than 8 years ago | (#14559804)

but its about the education your recieving :P

Re:Pretty Useless (4, Insightful)

Marc2k (221814) | more than 8 years ago | (#14559836)

Yes, clearly. Knowledge (especially free knowledge) is always a bad idea to arm the masses with. Allowing persons very interested in a particular subject access to informtion from a highly-esteemed university in spite of [perhaps] barriers that may have prevented them from attending that university (or any university at all) is indeed "pretty useless".
The commoditization of education as your (+3 Informative!) comment implies is one of the larger factors [in my opinion] in the steady decline of the US as a knowledge leader.

Re:Pretty Useless (1)

MBraynard (653724) | more than 8 years ago | (#14559948)

Just going to respond to you, as the other comment is reduntant, but you are FAR better off getting a book on the subject. You read about 5x faster than people speak and your lesson isn't interrupted by tards asking 'is this on the exam?'

Re:Pretty Useless (2, Insightful)

Martin Blank (154261) | more than 8 years ago | (#14560205)

You presume he learns better from reading than listening. Some people learn better hands-on. Some require a mix. One learning method isn't perfect for everyone.

Re:Pretty Useless (2, Interesting)

Happy Lemming (918671) | more than 8 years ago | (#14559863)

You can learn from canned lectures. I'm not interested in university credits - I have quite enough already - but I do like to learn things now and then. Recorded lectures are good for that.

So are "Ideas" on CBC Radio 2 & alt.binaries.sounds.radio.misc

Re:Pretty Useless (3, Insightful)

shotfeel (235240) | more than 8 years ago | (#14559869)

That takes a very limited definition of "value". I think you underestimate the number of people who would (informally) like to learn more. This provides a much easier avenue for doing just that. For some people, the line "learning is a lifelong experience" isn't just a line.

Re:Pretty Useless (1)

ZachPruckowski (918562) | more than 8 years ago | (#14559989)

No need to pay the $31,200 tuition. No need to live on campus. No need even to be a student. And no coursework, no grades, and no degree. The value of these classes with a few exceptions is to demonstrate your competency to get in the school, complete the courses, get the degree - not to demonstrate that you heard a bunch of lectures.

No, the reason you pay that $30k tuition is to get the student ID card, which lets you into the good parties. Duh.

Re:Pretty Useless (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14560035)

Fantastic! You brought a 24 pack, NOW it's a party, but oh wait, I'm sorry, you're going to have to take your beer and leave, you don't seem to have a valid student ID

Re:Pretty Useless (1)

toleraen (831634) | more than 8 years ago | (#14560016)

So as soon as you finish your degree, you completely stop learning? You've never picked up a non-fiction book? You've never read a FAQ? I suppose you're right though, I can't think of a single time where I've wanted to know anything that I didn't learn during college. I mean, "personal growth"? What's that craziness about? All my knowledge is contained in that slip of paper I got from the university!

I listened to some this morning (4, Interesting)

mccalli (323026) | more than 8 years ago | (#14559565)

This cropped up on macrumors.com last night, and I took the opportunity to grab the music tracks and a few lectures. I listened to "Why Zebras Don't Get Ulcers" this morning - can thoroughly recommend it. I chose it purely based on the title, it turns out to be a lecture on the physiological nature of stress and was very interesting.

The music? Well...I liked it, but sorry Stanford - it's mostly very derivative and most bands seem to be directly pretending to be another cmmercial one. What happened to colleges doing new forms of music and experimental stuff?

Cheers,
Ian

Re:I listened to some this morning (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14559774)

I listened to "Why Zebras Don't Get Ulcers" this morning - can thoroughly recommend it. I chose it purely based on the title, it turns out to be a lecture on the physiological nature of stress and was very interesting.

There are many kinds of ulcers, but most people mean stomach ulcers when they say ulcers. And
stomach ulcers [wikipedia.org] have almost nothing to do with stress.

CH34P UN1VER$1TY D3GR33$!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14559576)

CH34P UN1VER$1TY D3GR33$!! Get a univer$ity degr33 w0rking from h0me! N0t k1dd1ng! More info at http://www.apple.com/ [apple.com]

"Now, as you can see in this equation" (4, Insightful)

Animats (122034) | more than 8 years ago | (#14559675)

Audio-only lectures are kind of pointless for most interesting content.

A good project: develop an open-source way to transmit and store presentations in a useful and navigatable form. Lectures need three streams - the audio, the presenter's face, and the graphics. The graphics need to be at much higher resolution, and should be sent as clean still images when possible. One output should be a web page, with thumbnails for the graphics and clickable audio segments. Then you can find something in the lecture when you need it.

The presentation should be run through a voice recognition system, to make the voice searchable. It doesn't have to be perfect, just good enough for search. Similarly, OCR the graphics and pull keywords from them.

Re:"Now, as you can see in this equation" (1)

robertjw (728654) | more than 8 years ago | (#14559794)

transmit and store presentations in a useful and navigatable form.

Got it! It's called TV.

Re:"Now, as you can see in this equation" (1)

zhiwenchong (155773) | more than 8 years ago | (#14560124)

Apple's QuickTime can do some of that. Here are some examples:
http://www.seminars.apple.com/seminarsonline/index .html [apple.com]

There's a video panel, and presentation slide panel. There's also a table of contents (in some of the webinars) that allows you to skip to certain sections of the presentation.

There's no voice recognition or OCR though.

P2P lectures (1)

slashpot (11017) | more than 8 years ago | (#14559680)

I was thinking just the other day that a system - say P2P based or whatever - that allowed students to upload their own personal recordings of lectures/classes would be a great idea. If you missed a class - sure would be nice to go to a site and download it from a recording one of your fellow students made. Etc.. Etc...

With the added benifit that people like me that dropped out to take obscene salaries during the .com boom and now are too freakin busy to go back to school and finish a degree could at least listen and learn a few things.

Further proof (2, Insightful)

guisar (69737) | more than 8 years ago | (#14559690)

Education and knowledge seem to have no value- it's only the degree and the name at the top of the certificate which has any currency...

a solution to a problem that doesn't exist (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14559711)

Universities have ample server space and bandwidth to transfer audio files (especially heavily compressed ones at that) to their students. It'd be super easy for any University worth its salt to create a central repository that students (and possibly others) can access via a standard web browser in order to download some encoded audio files (perhaps ones that might even play on non-windows/apple OSes)

The only reason I can think why they would want to do this is if they are getting a bunch of $$$ from apple somehow because this is almost forcing college kids to go out and buy apple compliant hardware if implemented on a mass scale...slippery slope people...we don't want our educational institutions to lock up knowledge in a proprietary service like this.

My professors can figure out how to post lecture slides as pdf files on the class web page. Surely they could post an mp3 or ogg if they so desired. It's probably less hassle than dealing with this itunes u service. It just baffles me that this even exists because all a podcast is is audio and an RSS feed, both things that any university could roll on their own if they wanted.

MIT's open course ware is a step in the right direction because it's available to everyone and is platform independent. Why lock in to itunes when you can get the freedom of posting things yourself?????

I can see it now...10 years from now a new iPod paired with a "trusted computer" will be included in the tuition price of every college student entering university to ensure that they can became drones of Apple, inflate Apple's stock price, and kill any chance that a student would use some sort of open operating system....er umm, i mean... listen to required lectures..yes children, this is to make it easy for you to listen to lectures...not so we can control your purchasing habits....yup. :P

Re:a solution to a problem that doesn't exist (1)

pomo monster (873962) | more than 8 years ago | (#14559954)

They're distributed as unencoded AAC (MPEG-4 audio) files. Certainly there's nothing stopping you from playing them on your Communist distro du jour. More to the point, however, perhaps people who are already familiar with getting their podcasts and music through iTunes would rather just use the same interface for their university lectures, instead of having to learn an entirely new web-based system. There's nothing wrong with accommodating your customers' wishes, is there? Though I do tend to agree--the more options, the merrier.

Re:a solution to a problem that doesn't exist (1)

BeaverCleaver (673164) | more than 8 years ago | (#14560138)

Many Law courses at the my (anonymous but reasonably repuatble Australian University) already do this. Many of these law students don't go to classes at all, or even live in the same town. They are not studying via Distance Education, they have just neglected to tell anyone that they don't attend classes, and submit essays etc online (or in the case of my friend, have me hand it in for them;-)

Not to devalue My university's law faculty, I'm sure it's a great course, I'm just jealous as a science graduate who had to show up for all those &$% compulsory lab sessions.

Re:a solution to a problem that doesn't exist (3, Insightful)

javaxman (705658) | more than 8 years ago | (#14560195)

The only reason I can think why they would want to do this is if they are getting a bunch of $$$ from apple somehow

Well, these are hosted on Apple's domain. So Stanford isn't storing the content or paying for the bandwidth.

this is almost forcing college kids to go out and buy apple compliant hardware if implemented on a mass scale

How so ? You can access the iTMS from a Windows PC or an Apple PC and I'm pretty sure there are hacks to get at it from Linux, though those are unsupported... what hardware do you have to buy ? You don't need an iPod to listen to these, and they're easily transcoded into MP3s; they aren't copy-protected, and you could transcode them even if they were FairPlay DRM'd.

Why not just have directories of MP3s ? There's a fine question. I think the answer is probably because Apple is offering this service for free, and most users will find it easier to use than a directory of MP3s. It's great, serious, sneaky hardcore marketing, but you're making it out to be evil... which I'm not sure it is.

I feel like I just responded to a troll... is the lack of Linux/Unix iTMS client support what's bugging you about this? Because I think that's probably the only justifiable complaint a person could have- otherwise, this is very, very cool.

It's always the extras that get you (1)

Nom du Keyboard (633989) | more than 8 years ago | (#14559757)

"Stanford on iTunes" are available to anyone willing to spend the few minutes it takes to download them from the Internet.'"

Text books extra?

I'm reminded of Good Will Hunting (4, Funny)

rtphokie (518490) | more than 8 years ago | (#14559779)

"You wasted $150,000 on an education you coulda got for a buck fifty in late charges at the public library."

Apple offers iLearn... (1)

ClaudeVMS (637469) | more than 8 years ago | (#14559784)

Apple announced iLearn, a cortical implant, that allows students to attend the Standford classes offered on iTunes while sleeping. The implant requires users to undergo a simple outpatient procedure and suggests they wear a shower cap to prevent water from shorting out the device.

URL? (1)

tcornelissen (897694) | more than 8 years ago | (#14559791)

Is it just me, or is the url to the lectures missing?

Yawn... (0)

Doomedsnowball (921841) | more than 8 years ago | (#14559811)

Yeah... so what? College is about networking with soon-to-be successful people who might give you a leg up in your career choice. Sometimes, for some people, it's about being a research assistant on some cutting edge technology. Otherwise it's a glorified repository of information like... like a library! Who would have thought! I have an honorary degree in CS from Stanford. Rather than waste my time and money at the school, I interacted off campus with the researchers I was interested in, submitted my own paper to be published, and... ahem... that was that. I once heard a comedian say that if you are an economics major, you should quit after your first class (with the knowledge that college is a horrible investment of that amount of money). Local TV broadcasts of local college classes has been around (AND FREE!) for years all over the world. Some of these topics remind me of the bland herd mentality that kept me at a distance from "conditioned" students. Flagging this as flamebait would be like a screeching pod-person.

Just Downloaded (1)

space_juice (891879) | more than 8 years ago | (#14559833)

I just downloaded the "How to use public funds to create and spin off a private company", or "we_made_a_bundle_on_google.mp3"

Knuth's lectures (1)

colinrichardday (768814) | more than 8 years ago | (#14559884)

Are any of Knuth's lectures available?

Even Easier (2, Informative)

ranton (36917) | more than 8 years ago | (#14559906)

I like that Universities may now make it even easier to learn on your own instead of wasting your time in school. I routinely go to course websites at MIT, University of Illinois (I live in the state), and other colleges to basically take the classes along with the students.

They usually have quizes and homework posted along with solutions, and rarely have any passwords to get the information. I also can sometimes download blackboard screenshots, lecture notes, and even recordings of lectures. Sure beats sitting in class. And since I already run a company I dont need a peice of paper that says I am smart, so there is no need to go to college again.

I guess if I ever decided to do some kind of research I could go back to college and actually finish this time, but I am in no hurry.
--

Once in a while you can get shown the light (2, Funny)

digitaldc (879047) | more than 8 years ago | (#14559915)

No need to pay the $31,200 tuition. No need to live on campus. No need even to be a student.

Funny, that's exactly the way I felt about college when I went on tour with the Grateful Dead.

Education Useless? (1)

NixLuver (693391) | more than 8 years ago | (#14559931)

I see a lot of comments to the effect of "The education itself is valueless; the degree is all that matters", and I'm somewhat taken aback. Surely employment is an important goal, and surely education can serve that goal, but is there no curiosity in your soul? Do you have no desire to learn just to find out why? Am I the only one who just wants to *know*, even if it doesn't directly increase my momentary monetary market value? I still maintain that a thinking human being is more than a paycheck or a dollar sign. Learning feeds the mind the way food feeds the body and love feeds the soul. I say to all of the above mentioned "free-learning" endeavors: "Awesome stuff! Keep up the good work!"

And in the end, even my incidentally and casually acquired knowledge improves my long-term viability in the job marketplace, and improves my image with my co-workers and bosses. It's hard not to like someone who is *truly* fascinated with whatever it is that gets you going.

Explain to me... (0)

djupedal (584558) | more than 8 years ago | (#14559933)

...why these aren't on Apple's servers, via ITMS? I mean, if we're going to do it, why not do it right.

Re:Explain to me... (1)

javaxman (705658) | more than 8 years ago | (#14560067)

Look again. You have to link to it via http://itunes.stanford.edu/ [stanford.edu] but that just gives you an HTML page with an "Open Stanford on iTunes" button backed by
javascript:openWindow('https://deimos.apple.com/We bObjects/ITCSBrowse.woa/wa/Browse?destination=Stan fordPublic','_blank',1,1,0);

I'm pretty certain demios.apple.com is not a Stanford server. I'm also pretty sure Stanford isn't paying for this service...

In short, they did it right, but they also did it so you can't get to it from iTMS proper... you wouldn't want to, probably, you wouldn't really want this conent popping up in an iTMS search I don't think.

The interesting inclusion of the "StanfordPublic" tag leaves open the possiblity for a "StanfordPrivate" tag, which might require a SUID for access to current course material... something that I think actually does exist, although I'm not sure of it... it could easily if it does not...

tuition (1)

moosesocks (264553) | more than 8 years ago | (#14559943)

Somehow, I think that the $31,000 tuition figure is out of date by quite a few years.

I go to a public school, and it's almost that much. Most of the privates are somewhere in the high 40s. The cost of education in America today is appaling especially if you're from a state that lacks a decent higher-education system.

False. Mod parent down. (1)

squarooticus (5092) | more than 8 years ago | (#14560065)

Most elite private colleges are charging around $31,000/year in tuition and fees, give or take a thousand.

Perhaps you mean tuition PLUS room and board? Yes, then you're getting into the low $40's; but in general you can avoid that after your freshman year in most colleges by living off-campus.

Re:tuition (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14560257)

Yes, but for that additional money you can learn to spell "appalling"...

Re:tuition (1)

porcupine8 (816071) | more than 8 years ago | (#14560270)

I think you're confusing "tuition" with "total cost". Tuition for good private schools is around $30-35,000 - and for some of the better public schools out-of-state, as well. If you go to a public school and are paying that much for in-state tuition - on TOP OF room, board, etc - well, you're getting screwed.

Total cost, when you figure in room, board, living expenses, textbooks, etc, is in the $40k range, but tuition hasn't made it up there yet.

Available in Europe? (2, Interesting)

GekkePrutser (548776) | more than 8 years ago | (#14559945)

Is this available in Europe too? Or will we be excluded again like with every other cool content on iTunes Music Store (none of the TV series are available in Europe :(

Get rich quick! (1)

Markus Landgren (50350) | more than 8 years ago | (#14559947)

I found a few that criticise US foreign policy, and I'm selling the recordings to that conservative dork I read about the other day!

Streaming Video for Engineering, at least... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14559993)

Virtually all of Stanford's EE and CS courses have been available on-line with streaming video for the past several years. Of course you have to pay a subscription or be on-campus to access them, but http://scpd.stanford.edu/ [stanford.edu] has them all there. The production is excellent: they have a dedicated producer who sits through each class and zooms/rotates/switches cameras to make sure that the lecturer and all the notes are captures. They also take higher-resolution captures and put them next to the video so you can make out figures more clearly. It's all done with Windows Media Player, but it works surprisingly well.

No need to be a student? (1)

realinvalidname (529939) | more than 8 years ago | (#14560003)

No need to pay the $31,200 tuition. No need to live on campus. No need even to be a student.

No need to join an a cappella group, go to dorm meetings, fulfill political correctness requirements, or complain about how the Band / Gaieties / Chaparral / Psych 1 was so much funnier my freshman year? Oh, if only we'd had iTunes 20 years ago...

You pay for credentials, not education (2, Insightful)

squarooticus (5092) | more than 8 years ago | (#14560027)

While you can get a good education at almost any college, and be forced to get one to a greater or lesser degree depending on how rigorous the curriculum is, the tuition pays for the credential: a Bachelor of Science from Stanford means a lot more to potential employers than "I listened to all the lectures and did all the problem sets required for a Stanford degree. No really, I did!"

Carleton does this... (1)

khendron (225184) | more than 8 years ago | (#14560101)

According to this article [globetechnology.com] , they were the first University to do so.

How is this free, again? (-1, Troll)

bitspotter (455598) | more than 8 years ago | (#14560123)

It's free - except I need iTunes, and iTunes needs Windows or Mac OS X.

Oh. So it's NOT free.

I guess I'll stick with MIT, then.

iTunes, that's neat, how about some actual video? (1)

ihatelaserbeams (949421) | more than 8 years ago | (#14560125)

Everyone does iTunes podcasting, it's simple to set up and deploy. The University of Oregon, on the other hand, makes a lot of campus lectures and events available as a video feed: http://media.uoregon.edu/ [uoregon.edu]

Stanford on iTunes (4, Informative)

dantheman82 (765429) | more than 8 years ago | (#14560133)

There is no single class lecture on iTunes on Stanford's page. The faculty lectures are public-access lectures that have been recorded (audio-only) on campus and contain no class information. The "Heard on Campus" part is a bunch of PR material that has shown up on iTunes, including speeches by famous people (Steve Jobs, the Dalai Lama, etc.) and Stanford presidential speeches for all of you into that kinda thing. The entire presentation is a massive PR stunt between Apple and Stanford U. So, you can take the hype and chuck that as well...

And as for the free content for UC Berkeley courses, we have only 100-level (or lower) classes which are basically prerequisites for a UC Berkeley education. I'm sorry to say that if you were looking for course content, you'll need to look elsewhere.

So this leaves MIT, which actually does have a lot of content (although it depends on what is put up by the professor), like this page [mit.edu] if you are interested in Computer Language Engineering (upper-level, apparently).

These are not class lectures (1)

not5150 (732114) | more than 8 years ago | (#14560166)

Forbes is a bit late on the story. TG Daily ran an article about Stanford's itunes project back in early November. http://www.tgdaily.com/2005/11/04/stanford_itunes/ [tgdaily.com]

Almost all of the content is directed towards alumni to help them maintain a "connection" with the school. The lectures are NOT class lectures, but lectures from professors on specific topics. While still interesting, I don't see any actual student classes being offered via iTunes.

content must fit the medium (1)

DeveloperAdvantage (923539) | more than 8 years ago | (#14560191)

This is excellent news for the public at large. Even though this is a private university, there is still a lot of public money which gets funnelled into it (think of all the research funding, and more), so its nice they are giving something back.

That said, I don't think the optimum content is to simply record a lecture. The audio medium is quite different than a lecture hall, and thus the content really needs to be tailored to the medium in order for it to be effective. The same goes for most technical content. You can't just read a book into a microphone and expect your readers to understand what you are saying. You really need to start from scratch with the audio medium in mind. Also, I am really tired of all the umhhhs and ahhhs on most podcasts, and really look forward to the day of professional quality audio content (like the stuff we are working on!).

first steps... (1)

mangus_angus (873781) | more than 8 years ago | (#14560199)

Maybe a few years down the road we could get some video with this? In class lectures while being able to see whats being put on the board would would be great.

Law School Courses Available (4, Interesting)

Landaras (159892) | more than 8 years ago | (#14560218)

This is a shameless plug, but it's on-topic.

I've been recreating my law school lectures at the University of Cincinnati (where I am a first-year student focusing on copyright and technology law). Instead of recording the raw lecture audio, and dealing with the copyright and privacy concerns, I've been taking detailed notes, adding my own analysis, and capturing new creative expression. (Yes there are still some copyright issues, but my lawyer and I are in agreement that what I am doing does fall under Fair Use.) This new creative expression is then placed under CC-Attribution and the GNU FDL so others can do new and innovative things with it.

I recorded roughly one 15-20 minute episode per lecture, with about 40 lectures in each of my four substantive classes.

My episodes are available for manual download and in podcast format through the iTunes Music Store (search for "Life of a Law Student"). This semester I have recruited some additional students to come on board. This way we can expand to other law schools and to undergraduate law / political science courses.

Here is the site [lifeofalawstudent.com] , and I am still looking for students to help. Additionally, if you have technology skills (this is Slashdot after all), I need volunteers as we revamp our back-end software and deal with an influx of new material.

Contact me [lifeofalawstudent.com] if you are interested in being a part of this.

- Neil Wehneman

P.S. For those who are wondering if my "re-lectures" are credible, I scored a 3.77 GPA last semester. Although I don't get my class rank for a few more days, I've been told by the administration that this should land me in the top 10% of the class.
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