New York Times, "Virtual and Artificial, but 58,000 Want Course"

More than 58,000 people in 175 countries have signed up for a free online course at Stanford University taught by two leading artificial intelligence experts from Silicon Valley. Students in Sebastian Thrun’s and Peter Norvig’s class will not earn grades or credit, but will be ranked and receive a “statement of accomplishment.” The experimental course is one of three offered by Stanford’s computer science department. - HTN Foundation

Virtual and Artificial, but 58,000 Want Course

The teachers, from left, Peter Norvig and Sebastian Thrun.By JOHN MARKOFF
Published: August 15, 2011

PALO ALTO, Calif. — A free online course at Stanford University on artificial intelligence, to be taught this fall by two leading experts from Silicon Valley, has attracted more than 58,000 students around the globe — a class nearly four times the size of Stanford’s entire student body.

The course is one of three being offered experimentally by the Stanford computer science department to extend technology knowledge and skills beyond this elite campus to the entire world, the university is announcing on Tuesday.

The online students will not get Stanford grades or credit, but they will be ranked in comparison to the work of other online students and will receive a “statement of accomplishment.”