Idea

Here’s an idea I would like to play with if only I had more time. If anyone out there is interested and decides to play with it, or if you want to pick my brain, tell me.

I was thinking about the shortage of programmers and tech workers and the shortage of most other kinds of employment these days. It seems to me that if good technical education were more accessible, a lot of people would be a lot better off.

So why not create a system to automate the education of people in programming? That would be the easiest: teaching people how to program automatically. Just set up online lessons with live teachers at first. Have an “ideal” solution for each assignment. Let the teacher grade projects by hand at first.

As the teacher teaches and grades, let there be an algorithm monitoring and recording all the questions and answers students ask during and after lectures. Let it also record the errors made in assignments and the teacher’s notes when corrections are made. Let the algorithm suggest responses to the teacher based on past answers given. Let students directly question the algorithm for information given in response to questions during and after lessons, and for questions regarding assignments they’ve already completed.

Eventually the algorithm would be able to take over the teaching of most of the classes. Students should be encouraged to help each other after each lesson as well, to answer questions the algorithm could not. These too could be used to enhance the algorithm, though they would need to be screened for appropriateness.

The project should be supported by donations and volunteers. Those who graduate from the program in particular should be encouraged to help the new students that come after them. This could mean participating in after-lesson talks or simply responding to questions the algorithm can’t answer yet.