I thought I'd share this idea I've had for a while and that I want to build in the future. It's a 1:1 teaching network where people meet up and have 1:1 sessions teaching each other things they don't know. I've found that 1:1 teaching sessions are much more effective than a group teaching session or learning on your own. In a 1:1 teaching session you can keep asking the other person questions instantly and infinitely and you can learn really advanced topics really quickly.

Here's an example of how this meetup network would work. Let's say I'm an expert in Python. And let's say you're an expert in Ruby. And let's say you want to master Python and I want to master Ruby. So we schedule a meet up and I teach you Python for a few hours, and you teach me Ruby for a few hours. And we rescheduling meetups whenever we're both available.

The way I imagine it could be built is having a website where you indicate where you're at, what you're a master at, indicate what you want to master, and indicate the time that you've available. The system then matches you with someone and suggests a meetup.

I'd teach and learn and teach and learn forever this way!

There are so many other ideas that I want to build and I'll just keep sharing them in my "ideas for later" blog post series! See ya!


Ben Paul Permalink
January 21, 2013, 17:52


I tried this with a site called CommuniTeach.com. We had initial traction that never got beyond a few thousand registered users.

Please feel free to get in contact with me, I'd love to share lessons learned and see if if you'd like to have our domain name.

Ben Paul

January 21, 2013, 17:58

A few thousand users sounds pretty awesome. Although if they're spread all around the world then it's not much. Makes me think that this should be local to a city like SF. When I do this I'll just base it in SF. SFCommuniTeach. :)

January 21, 2013, 18:05

Actually I could just make a SF Learning Meetup as a new meetup at meetup.com. (That is when I'm in SF and I'm ready to do it.)

January 21, 2013, 18:10

Also I'm not interested in doing this for-profit.

January 21, 2013, 18:31

Hi Peter!
Have you tried LiveNinja?
It works similarly to what you describe in the sense that you search for someone who knows about a particular subject (iOS programming for example) and you can book them for 1 on 1 sessions. This is done via webcam instead of in person, but it is pretty cool.

January 22, 2013, 17:21

I haven't tried LiveNinja. Sounds interesting, I'll give it a go.

January 21, 2013, 20:38

Once there was TeachMate.org by Roman Snitko, now its sourses are published here https://github.com/nikosd/teachmate

January 22, 2013, 17:21


Rodolfo Permalink
January 23, 2013, 14:34

It reminds me an effective way to learn a second language when you are in another country: find a "conversation partner", meet in a cafe and speak half an hour in your language and half hour in your partner's language. Best way to get into other language, and productive for both. Can't fail for learning other kind of stuff too. Also, it can be optimized with a good matching-partner system (by knowledge, level of expertise, area of application, etc) in order to make both people satisfied.

knacker Permalink
February 12, 2013, 21:14

Hello Peter, Thanks for a fantastic site that keeps me interested and coming back. Love all the UNIX stuff, Bash History and vi are 2 favorites, but I really like this 1:1 idea. My mind races with all the posibilities & I do believe that I have a very different point of view than many here being someone who may have more skills outside the programming & IT wworlds, at least when you start to get above "intermediate level" or unfamiliar languages as I started learning this stuff in my 30's... I opened my first terminal at 33! I've come a long way and can most surley help many a Linux user with various things depending on their skill level while at the same time seeking help on the same topic, just at a level above what I was able to provide but freeing up others who can help with the more complex tasks. Also, as someone who got into tech late in life I have many desireable and valuable skills that have nothing at all to do with anything tech or even electric at times... I was an off-shore commercial fisherman for 15 years... Worlds apart but we are both curious by nature, more at catonmat than most places and our intrests should and do extend outside our favorite text editors, classrooms, etc... I would be happy to share any aspect of the kowledge I gained during years of doing very unconventional work where there is always a problem, no matter what type, and it will get fixed by you, it must and it will if you're two days from home.
I am enjoying learning how to solve problems from behind a keyboard for now, WARM:) I just wanted to throw out my ramblins to my favorite site about a topic that I believe to be important and see what happens... hello all. I believe this is my first post here but I lurk. Most polite comment section on the web!

February 23, 2013, 19:35

Really neat idea. I've always preferred self-teaching over group lessons but I think having a one on one session on occasion would greatly increase the rate of learning. Usually there are just a few hurdles that take most of the time. Having an expert available would remove these. Further, its always great to get a perspective based on experience.

I feel like a very simple site integrated with google calendar and video chat would suffice :)

Thanks to everyone who commented with sites that have applied similar ideas!

knacker Permalink
May 27, 2013, 12:38

"I feel like a very simple site integrated with Google calendar and video chat would suffice"

All the varied ideas sound great... except for the use of Google. I don't think a 1:1 idea needs to turn into a "1:1 + Google" idea to be successful.
Really guys, ditch the reliance on Google... It's not that hard when you have great search Engines like Startpage and Duckduckgo. Google is NOT your friend... No more than Apple or Windows is, or cares about its end users. Sorry for the rant, it's just that a true 1:1 type thing could be amazing and done right would be great!
Peter, I am not sure if you are familiar with Yue at Fuzicast.com site and his amazing videos which I believe to be some of the most effective on the net(much, much better than a 10hr O'Reilly Video series I just had refunded after paying 160 USD).
Sorry for getting off-track, I mentioned Fuzicast because he has also mentioned a "1:1" type learning format very similar to what you've mentioned and has not been making much progress either.


I would love to help, even potentially providing neutral locations in South East New England(donated by my fellow Chamber of Commerce members). I would also be more than willing to handle the Southeast New England area which I promise, needs more help than the NOR-CAL area:). Take care and thx for listening.

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