That's more of a textbook than a teacher.
They're talking about the sci-fi version, which is basically a specialized AI that has access to all that information.
If you've read The Diamond Age, the Primer is a good example.
The short story "Dogfight" from the Burning Chrome collection has a young street criminal discover that he has a talent that could bring him a legitimate source of income and friends.
Since it's my answer to the title question, you can guess that it doesn't end well. The whole story's online here and a couple of other places.
I suspect some of the top people in the class went in with a full understanding of the subject matter, intending to test the class itself.
The plan requires high school students to take online courses for two of their 47 graduation credits.
This sounds like a cost-cutting measure. Online classes are for times when the alternative is not having the class. They're "better than nothing", not "better".
If a school wanted to offer students a course in programming but didn't have anyone capable, then it might make sense to arrange for them to take an online course offered by a third party (preferably a tech school or college in the same area). It doesn't sound like this is anything close to what they're doing.
This idea has been tried several times and it always ends the same way (with fail [wikipedia.org]).
Its neighbor could conquer it if the neighbor so desired, but that's true for many small nations.
It accepted aid offered by a neighbor during a disaster (the fire), but nations do that all the time.
It defeated an armed invasion by a group of mercenaries, and it has existed in a state of self-rule since 1967 (ignoring British firearm laws).
What would you consider a "success"?
I'm not trying to be confrontational -- I'm genuinely curious. Both B.Sc. and B.A. have breadth requirements, partly to encourage inquiry outside of the student's chosen discipline. If you strip those away, you're no longer talking about a university education but a trade-school-style training.
No, trade school-style training would be learning how to perform the basic tasks expected in an industry, with little if any of the theory.
Taking a good school's CS or mathematics program, stripping out the requirements for intro-level soft-science classes, and replacing them with more relevant classes wouldn't turn it into a trade school program. It would just be a more specialized university degree.
Having these filters as an option is a good thing; that's just a tool you can use to refine a search.
Having them on by default and invisible (or obfuscated) is not. In this case, information is being hidden from searchers who may not even realize that filtering is taking place.
The TED page for the speech has a transcript for those who don't have sound, or just don't want to sit through a nine-minute video.