We already have a professor who's using an online social network of MIT alums to help educate students in programming. Just imagine expanding that in Facebook-fashion to tens or hundreds of millions of people around the world.
Concepts like edX and online learning will transform education. This will completely change the world. I believe that people will move to online learning, both on campuses and worldwide. We have a real opportunity to be able to bring people around the world into our fold.
A large number of students around the world don't really have access to high quality education. So, launching EdX allows students all over the world to have much better access to a high quality education from a university such as Harvard, MIT, Berkeley and others as we add more universities.
EdX will be a creating a platform which will be open source, not for profit, and a portal for a website where universities will offer their courses. For example, MIT courses will be offered as MITx and Harvard courses as HarvardX.