I’ve just been through the first week, and that one seem to fall into an issue that I’ve seen in a couple of other technical online courses. It turns into a “specsheet reading activity”, with all the time passing about “what”, and almost no time spent on “why”. Yeah, it’s nice to know what are the power consumption characteristics of Bluetooth, BLE, Zigbee and Wifi compared to each other, and their respective ranges, but it does not matter, that should be in the supporting docs. Concepts and technical words are thrown up with a slide and never explained, because no time, got to move on, because there are still a lot of specs to cover.
Just based on this first week, I think a better course would be picking some (one, max two) technologies and go a deep dive into them, analyzing why they are good, what are they doing, how everything comes together for the specific problem they solve. So for example “BLE for the Internet of Things”, and bring up interesting issues, use cases, actual problems to solve. I don’t think I’ve seen any such course yet, which doesn’t end up (or starts off as) a specsheet reading exercise, and I think there would be plenty of space and need for such courses to be made.
Still, those topics you mentioned are good ones indeed, and the lecturer was hinting at that they will talk in the later part of the course about the work they are doing at Columbia, so it can still turn into something better than it is extrapolated from the first week (and closer to the expectation due to the title:)
Anyway, just some thoughts, not sure if all of it really makes sense. I really wonder how much of the discussion about IoT is really missing the point.