May 12, 2017: Friday news roundup

Did you celebrate Teacher Appreciation Day this week? Udemy sure did. We’d be nowhere without the expertise and energy of instructors from around the world, and we applaud the hard work of teachers every day. Catch up on this week’s news roundup and then, if you haven’t already, go hug a teacher!

Owning Your Own Future
Well, this one sure sounded familiar to us; it echoes a sentiment our CEO Dennis Yang has been talking about for years. Here, NY Times columnist Tom Friedman explains why he, too, believes career success requires lifelong learning. The money quote: “The notion that we can go to college for four years and then spend that knowledge for the next 30 is over. If you want to be a lifelong employee anywhere today, you have to be a lifelong learner.”

Talking to Yourself (Out Loud) Can Help You Learn
No need to feel self-conscious about asking and answering questions out loud as you go about learning something new. This article introduces us to a university psychology professor who took a computer science course and used “self-explaining” to outperform his much-younger classmates. Apparently, people who explain ideas to themselves learn almost three times more than those who don’t.

An Analysis of 50,000 Managers Reveals the Trait that Best Predicts a Leader’s Success
This one gets bonus points for using Lisa Simpson as a role model. That’s because she embodies the trait of “interpersonal warmth,” which, researchers found, correlates highly with long-term leadership success.

Real or Fake? AI Is Making It Very Hard to Know
For this week’s dose of scary robot news, we read about machine-learning techniques that alter audio and video so realistically, you’d think you were watching authentic footage. Developers working on this technology realize this presents serious ethical and security implications.

An American Conversant in 20 Languages Delights Strangers in Their Native Tongues
A language teacher in Ohio has an unusual way of entertaining himself (and others). He walks around his local Walmart and engages strangers in conversation in order to practice the “20 or so” languages he speaks. And he does it while wearing a hidden camera in his hat (legal in Ohio), so the rest of us can watch him chatting up folks in Swahili, Mandarin, Wolof, and more.