MIT 6.002x Is A Damn Big Deal. And About Electronics

From the site

“6.002x (Circuits and Electronics) is an experimental on-line adaptation of
MIT’s first undergraduate analog design course: 6.002. This course will
run, free of charge, for students worldwide from March 5, 2012 through June 8,
2012.”

What did you do?!?! Is it my birthday? Christmas? What just happened?

Thats right. MIT’s biggest ever online course offering, and their first attempt at a fully online course is on learning analog electronics. Not software. Not economics. Not civil or mechanical engineering. Not some bullshit social sciences course. But real, powerful and positively useful electrical engineering.

Why Electronics?

I have some guesses. First is the obvious: OpenCourseware (their last attempt at online education) was pushed strongly towards biology, electrical and mechanical. The second is with the advent of things like codecademy, the Stanford ai course, and their own 6.00 online course doing another such course for software would be redundant. And third of the remaining options my guess is they would have optimized for a course where they had material that was easy to serve and check in a web-based environments.

The last 12 months

Its been pretty exciting! A year ago there was nothing beyond the very simple Falstad simulations, a few small communities of professional engineers, some larger communities of makers and DIY hackers, and not much else. Since then about a dozen startups have launched into the open source hardware / electronics / designer community space all very much in an effort to change the way we build real things.

And now, if that wasn’t enough, MIT has bet their prize horse in their second stab at teaching people over the interwebs on an electronics course. Amongst a plethora of wildly successful software courses. It makes me glow.

What’s next?

I can only predict more. The idea of building with atoms and electrons will continue to become a bigger and bigger part of public consciousness. Incredible new ways of doing education will continue to be created. In our lifetime today is the day the fewest of us have personalized, designed, or created something in the real world. There is so much more to come.

About Upverter

Did I mention that Upverter makes it easier to design and build real things. Tomorrow’s pocket platforms and the most revolutionary hardware yet to be conceived is being designed in Upverter right now. I challenge you to take 6.002x, learn something about electronics, and design something real in Upverter.

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