Larry Sanger

Online knowledge organizer. Co-founder of Wikipedia, Ph.D. Philosophy.

Is there a new geek anti-intellectualism?

Is there a new anti-intellectualism?  I mean one that is advocated by Internet geeks and some of the digerati.  I think so: more and more mavens of the Internet are coming out firmly against academic knowledge in all its forms.  This might sound outrageous to say, but it is sadly true. Let's review…

Is college a waste of time?

More from the anti-intellectualism dept.: I admit this is news to me: a "Thiel Fellowship" has been set up by PayPal founder Peter Thiel, which encourages tech entrepreneurship by under-20-olds with the requirement that the recipients not go to college for two years.  Peter Thiel, as it happens,…

The value of knowledge – the anti-intellectualism problem versus the philosophers’ problem

I need to complain about my fellow philosophers.  But maybe I'm confused.  Maybe some philosophers out there can set me straight, somehow. In recent years, as my interests have turned away from encyclopedia-building and toward education, I have become increasingly interested in the whole…

On Robinson on Education

This very striking video has been circulating, and I'm inspired to reply to it: First, let me say that the video design is very cool.  Moreover, Sir Ken Robinson is quite an excellent public speaker.  Finally, I agree with him entirely that standardization is the source of a lot of our…

Wikipedia’s proposed legal policies

It looks like Wikipedia might be, finally, accepting its legal obligations. Geoff Brigham, General Counsel of the Wikimedia Foundation (which is the legal owner of Wikipedia), has posted to the Foundation-l mailing list a link to a draft document described as Office of General Counsel "staff…

25 Replies to Maria Bustillos

In a recent essay, in The Awl ("Wikipedia and the Death of the Expert"), Maria Bustillos commits a whole series of fallacies or plain mistakes and, unsurprisingly, comes to some quite wrong conclusions.  I don't have time to write anything like an essay in response, but I will offer up the…

Can early education literally create geniuses?

I'm interested in this question, and I am asking in order to be enlightened by you, dear reader. Suppose you had twins, separated at birth, Norman (for "normal") and Gene (for "genius").  Norman receives an ordinary middle-class upbringing, without much special early learning.  Gene gets the most…

Ask DadDude: learning a second language

I regularly get questions from people asking advice about their early learning situations.  I always tell them that I'm not an expert, just a fellow parent who is highly involved in his boys' education and possessed of an interest in educational theory--but they don't seem to care.  So I think I'm…

Any volunteers to help with the reading tutorial?

I need some volunteers for my new free reading program, and I hope someone (or several someones) out there might be able to help!  I really need it!  If you are interested, please read on. As readers of this blog know, I am working on something that is tentatively being called WatchKnow Reader.…

Reviews of educational apps for little kids

Here are some app reviews I just posted on BrillKids.com.  Below that are some older reviews, still valid.   Five star apps National Geographic World Atlas HD - 5/5 - can't believe I didn't get this earlier.  Now one of our most-used apps.  For purposes of teaching, this has gotten more use,…