The Wealth of Khan…

If this post is the first exposure you’re having to Khan Academy, if definitely won’t be your last (whether you have school-aged children or not). The online collection of over 3,000 “mini-lessons” was started by Salman Khan (an ex-hedge fund analyst) as a way to tutor his niece on some challenging math concepts. He figured is was easiest just to post them on YouTube so she could access them anytime and lo and behold six years later the little simple approach he started has delivered over 135 MILLION lessons to people all over the world and is considered to be having a tremendously significant impact on the delivery of eduction to pupils and how to leverage the internet to do so.

I had heard about Khan roughly a year ago after the press got hold of Bill Gate’s endorsement of Salman and that Mr. Gates uses Khan Academy for his kids. After a recent 60 Minutes episode – I went there with my 10 year old to check it out and can now safely say that it’s a daily part of my son’s homework routine. Two videos per day – one has to be math oriented (currently multi-variant algebraic equations) and the other can be math or something else that interests him. If you haven’t been there – and you have kids (even if you don’t) – it’s a treasure trove a bite-sized 2-7 minutes “lessons” on almost all the major areas of human endeavor including math, physics, history, science, chemistry, biology, economics/finance, computer science, biology and many many more. Hey, if it’s good for Bill….


Tasty (Yucky) Tracks

Went to see these guys several months ago with a friend at the Independent where I had zero expectations. I had never heard of Yuck but my friend said the three magic words that will prompt me to check out any band… “wall of sound”.

For lovers of nineties shoe-gazers like Ride, Sonic Youth, My Bloody Valentine (“Loveless” is one massively influential record, see below for the amazing “Only Shallow” – had to include it here), Yuck will definitely satisfy.

The show was compact non-stop wave of music – with a mix of driving yet melodic layered gems like “Holing Out” (my fav) and “Rubber” (of which the latter half is beautiful slow thick whirlpool of feedback, layered guitars, vocals that mesmerizes) and the Sonic Youth-tinged slow downs “Suck” and “Suicide Policeman”.  A young crew – one American and three Brits – the leader Daniel Blumberg wears his love for Nineties lush-rock on his rolled-up sleeve. If they swing by your neck of the woods – definitely make the effort to check them out.

Yuck: Holing Out

Yuck: Suck

My Bloody Valentine: Only Shallow