An online (up)grade
So many courses, so many academies. What do you log into? Here's a handy guide to adding a new skill to your resume this year
This might very well be the golden age of learning. If you ever wanted to pick up a new skill, learn a new vocation or just pursue a hobby, it is all out there. Most of these sites use videos to teach, contain some basic courseware and a few exercises to test what you've learnt. It isn't expensive either, and in some cases it might even be free. So, which one should you pick? Here's a list to help you break through the clutter.
Udacity is hyper focused on tech topics, ranging from learning to be a Data Analyst to something as simple as drafting the perfect cover letter. While the simpler courses are free on the site, anything offering a micro degree or with some potential to get you a job will cost you. Unlike the courses on EdX and Coursera, most courses on the site are either sponsored by a corporate or feature teachers hired by Udacity itself.
Like Udemy, WikiHow is a people driven education platform. But instead of focusing only on academics, they specialise in telling you how to do almost anything under the sun. Want to learn how to paint your walls or repair the scratches on your car or start a vegetable garden? Chances are WikiHow already has a step-by-step guide to it. To make things even sweeter, the site mostly features free content.
Open Culture curates free educational resources like courses, textbooks and audio books. The site itself lists news, research and other interesting things from all over the world that an academically inclined person might appreciate. The site has also taken the effort to list the credentials you would earn at the end of every course.
If you want to learn how to programme, there are plenty of options available on all the sites listed here. Code.org make programming accessible, especially to children. The courses are all listed according to age group, with some even for kids who can't read yet. While this is mainly meant for children, there is a lot of potential for adult novices to learn the basics as well.
EdX specialises in providing courses that can teach the widest gamut of people almost anything. The site was created by Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and Harvard University in 2012. It is mostly academic driven and there are several courses sponsored by famous universities, including our very own IIT Powai. The best part is that most courses on the site are free; you only pay if you want a certificate.
Udemy is like a marketplace for education, most of the content on the site is uploaded by individuals who are experts in a certain field. That said, the topic selection moves way past the usual business, tech and science related to subjects like education, design and music. Most courses have reviews of previous participants so you can make sure you are getting the best possible deal. Another thing to remember is that to never pay full price on Udemy. Always try and find a deal, which make the costs significantly cheaper.
Khan Academy is the brainchild of Salman Khan (not the actor) and was started in 2008 as a non-profit. It produces short videos that try to teach a topic be it math, science or even English grammar in the least stressful way possible. The site focuses a lot on stuff you would learn in school. These lessons come complete with progress tracking, tests and a handy mobile app to access it all. The site also has support for multiple languages.
TED Ed is an offshoot of TED talks and the site is mainly filled with interesting educational videos. Most videos focus on academic and research topics explaining a very niche subject in under six minutes. It is a fun way to learn if you want to skim through subjects or you want to use this as an aide to remember something you might have studied a long time ago.
Coursera was also started in 2012 by some Stanford professors. The concept is similar to EdX with a lot of courses that you can try out for free. Coursera differs from EdX in that you can earn a legit degree by completing some of the online courses. You will have to fork out a significant amount of money to do the degree courses, prices start from $330 ('23,500) a credit and you need to complete around 120 credits.
Mobile World Congress cancelled
Organisers of the world's biggest mobile technology fair have cancelled the annual Mobile World Congress due to health and safety concerns over the virus outbreak in China. The show was originally expected to draw more than a lakh visitors from about 200 countries, including 5,000-6,000 from China. The decision to scrap the February 24-27 event in Barcelona was taken after dozens of tech companies and wireless carriers dropped out over the COVID-19 virus, including major companies like Ericsson, Nokia, Sony, Amazon, Intel and LG. The companies cited concerns for the safety of staff and visitors.
2 billion on Whatsapp
Whatsapp announced in a blogpost that it now has over 2 billion users worldwide. The Facebook owned platform also reiterated their commitment towards the end-to-end encryption, which according to them is crucial for user's safety and privacy. The same encryption has been the bane of some governments. India is Whatsapp's biggest market with over 400 million users.
PUBG to get team deathmatch in new update
The PUBG upcoming 6.2 update will feature an arcade mode where the developers plan to rotate different new modes. The arcade mode will first feature a new Team Deathmatch mode with 8vs8 player deathmatches that will take place in seven locations across the four maps. The first team to get 50 kills or the highest kills in 10 minutes in each round wins that round. You will have to win two rounds to win the match.
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