There're two main parts of this email.
First Part: Announcement 2:
We're on Facebook:
Or you can search for "firstname.lastname@example.org" or for "Mung Chiang" (but pick the one that's for this course, rather than the instructor's personal account).
Friend us (we'll accept all requests) or Subscribe to us (we opened subscriber mode).
We'll use Facebook for two things:
1. Post and share lighter moments in the course (for homework/lecture help, coursera forum is the way to go). Prior experience suggests that people talk about the course in different ways on Facebook than on a course forum.
2. Organize local study groups through Facebook group/events. As Mung (the instructor) goes on business trips, he'll also try to schedule in-person meetings with local groups when the travel schedule allows, to hear directly from you on thoughts about the course content and the learning experience.
So we'll create Open Groups on Facebook, starting tonight with a Washington DC group and a Boston group, as Mung will be available to meet on Sept. 20 evening in Washington DC and on Sept. 24 in Boston (assuming there's a reasonable number of you in those cities who are interested and available to meet up). You can join those groups and indicate availability for the event starting tonight.
Second Part: Clarifications (based on your feedback):
A. Certificate: Princeton University's general policy on coursera as of now is that it will not sign certificates. We will want to see how you do in quizzes and homeworks and exams that will be provided on coursera. And we will have two alternative mechanisms to reward the excellent students in the course: Grand Challenge Homework and Kudos. More on these in later emails this week.
B. Prerequisite: If you want to understand 100% of all the lecture modules, you'll need linear algebra and multivariable calculus. If you're OK with skipping the parts of the modules (usually module D or E in each lecture) that assume these tools, you'll still get about 80% of the course material (and coherence across lectures) without these prerequisites. In May 2013, we'll have a version of the course that only uses additions and multiplications and nothing more.
C. YouTube video volume: Earphone or speaker should work well. We'll adjust the volume soon too.
That's it for this email.
We'll be shooting you one email every day this whole week, leading up to the Sept. 17 launch. Each day we'll talk about a feature of the course. Today's about Facebook groups. You'll see another feature in tomorrow's announcement.
Talk to you then.
Mung Chiang (email@example.com)
and Network FMB Teaching Staff at Princeton
(Follow us on Twitter @network20q too!)
Coursera classes are back up
Today, GoDaddy (our domain registrar) suffered from a service outage which resulted in millions of sites going down. Unfortunately, www.coursera.org was one of those.
GoDaddy's servers are still recovering, but we've since switched to using Amazon's domain name services instead. Our site was down for a few hours in the transition period but everything should be back to normal now, though you might encounter a few residual issues as our domain name changes propagate through the internet.
You can read more about the GoDaddy outage here.
We apologize for the inconvenience. Thank you for bearing with us as we were working to restore access!
The Coursera team
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