I totally agree with this article and it's the reason why I will always prefer to learn by reading rather than video.

Text is the most efficient communication technology. By orders of magnitude. This blog post is likely to take perhaps 5000 bytes of storage, and could compress down to maybe 2000; by comparison the following 20-pixel-square image of the silhouette of a tweeting bird takes 4000 bytes:

graydon2 | always bet on text


@ScottMortimer Maybe one can find text better suited to learn than video (and, to some extend, I kind of agree with such position), but I think that justifying this position by counting bytes is pointless and irrelevant.

I agree to disagree. There is no better way to measure information efficiency than size. Information needs to be stored and transmitted and size has major implications for both.

@ScottMortimer Yes, but with size, you measure the efficiency to store/transmit/etc, not to learn from. Typically, if you compress some text, it is much more efficiently stored, but much less easy to learn from (and the twitter bird example is not fair: a vectorised version of the bird is probably just a few thenth of bytes long).


That being said, I agree that, often, videos contains useless information (e.g. we do not care about the background, but it has to be stored). However, the post shows no evidence that such useless information significantly decreases the ability to learn. IMO, I have the feeling that such the effect of such useless info is quite small compared to the inability of person who present the subject to teach.

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