I’ve been out of school for 4+ years now, and wikipedia is one of the primary vehicles I’ve been lucky to have to keep my mind active and learning. Wikipedia’s format allows us to learn in a much more real world exploratory way than most textbooks could allow (save for something like choose your own adventure).
If you have a question on something no matter how esoteric, you can start reading on the topic or person- and I start clicking on all the related links. Suddenly I have dozens of tabs open, and I’m learning dense amounts of information all at my own speed and based on what I’m most interested in knowing at that very second.
You can switch between the tabs- of course in each of those tabs you’ll click on their related topics and suddenly you’re exploring every nook and cranny of a knowledge tree- and very much in the format of a tree diagram.
Professor lectures are still great, because they usually have a very pointed approach and goal to get across. But if you’re just looking to absorb a topic generally, this is the easiest way to immerse yourself into it… in a much more interactive way than a textbook ever allowed. No trudging through a library and maybe or maybe not finding the book, or stacks of books when you just wanted to brief yourself on a topic and its related topics.
Now there’s not really much excuse in letting something someone said fly over your head or fall on deaf ears; since it only takes a second to find, and a minute to read.