Technology Guilt

  • UconnDBA

    Default port

    Points: 1439

    Just a spinning wheel. With new solutions, new problems. We are just finding ways to keep ourselves busy, so we can ignore who we really are (spirit) and the voice of God. Someday we will step off this wheel.

  • bwillsie-842793

    Ten Centuries

    Points: 1359

    Technologic changes may have nothing to do with a recent college graduates inability to find a job.

    My daughter planned to get her degree in forensics. Third year in, her "adviser's" convinced her to change her major to a liberal arts degeree (Political Science) because "the US needs more social workers." From discussions with her, it sounds like a number of her friends were convinced to make similar changes.

    Guess who can't get jobs now that they have their "Poli Sci" degrees.

    Personally, I am convinced we place far too much enphasis on "get a college degree" and not enough on "learn a marketable skill set."

  • TravisDBA

    SSCoach

    Points: 15780

    I am reminded of something my father said to me when I was a little boy. He said "Son, when you become an adult, YOU are responsible for your own lot in life, not someone else." As result, I have only depended on one person to get me what I want and need out of life, ME. It's ultimately up to me. Survive. Adapt. Overcome. No guilt. That's the main problem with our "entitlement" society today. People want stuff just given to them because they feel they are entitled to it. No one wants to pay their dues in either a career or life anymore, they want it ALL now. πŸ˜€

    "Technology is a weird thing. It brings you great gifts with one hand, and it stabs you in the back with the other. ...:-D"

  • JChrisCompton

    SSCommitted

    Points: 1533

    It's a shame that some posters seem to be on the 'hate the rich/managers/etc' political position, because this is actually a good question that we should think about.

    Don't think about this in terms of political/social inclination, but in terms of what you are doing with your life.

    For the most part in my career I have not 'displaced' anyone. I have freed talented people to do other more vaulable things within the company (that they would have already been doing except those 'necessary' things had to be done by someone).

    An example from a decade ago:

    my (USA) company put hand held devices into hospital doctors hands so they could code their own diagnosis/procedure (ICD/CPT) sheets.

    The coders (people that used to receive those sheets, not programmers) weren't people that just keyed data into the computer - they had very specialized training so they could double check the doctor as they entered the codes into the computer.

    They were trained and put in that position to be valuable because a wrong coding can result in a question from the government or insurance company asking for an explanation - which caused more effort and of course delayed payment.

    They bought our product so that people (see above +some nurses) could spend more time doing more useful things. The (ICD/CPT) coders can now spend more time with any sheet that didn't look right instead of having to code x sheets/hour, and the nurses no longer had to do what the coders could now do and could spend more time caring for the patients (which increased their job satisfaction).

    Was there SOMEONE that was displaced because of my(our) automation actions? Sure, there are always 'unintended consequences'.

    The real question is, "Do I feel guilty for improving* patients level of care?" and I answer "No."

    Besides, if I'm not adding value, it is me that's going out the door πŸ˜‰

    FWIW,

    -Chris C.

    *Yes, a nurse that's happier does improve the patients LOC - ever dealt with a grumpy nurse?

  • bwillsie-842793

    Ten Centuries

    Points: 1359

    Chris.C-977504 (6/15/2012)


    It's a shame that some posters seem to be on the 'hate the rich/managers/etc' political position, because this is actually a good question that we should think about.

    Excellent point. Years ago I had a friend tell me "You will always get what you need, you may never get what you want."

    In the US 99% of those demanding "wealth redistribution" do so based on their wants and not on their needs. It's not the greed of others that is the problem. It's their own greed and individual choices that keep them dissatisfied.

    Disagree? Look at the people that have come out of abject poverty and/or from other countries that have made it to the top here. They did it by looking for opportunities and making things happen. IE, by exploiting change.

    The world will always change around you whether you want it to or not. Those that look for opportunity in the change and work hard to exploit it do quite well in this world. Those of us that sit around complaining about the change fall behind and eventually become extinct.

  • Cade Roux

    Ten Centuries

    Points: 1326

    Personally, I am convinced we place far too much emphasis on "get a college degree" and not enough on "learn a marketable skill set."

    I agree with the first part, but not quite with the second. Advising students to change their major because of a perceived market is clearly not in the students' best interest when the advice is bad. Yet it seems like you are advocating the same thing which caused the problem in the first place. Who determines the "marketable skill set"? In this case, they already got it wrong once with the PoliSci degree.

    Far better to encourage curiosity and pursuing their passions and give students the tools before and during college/university which allow them to complete their chosen course of study and be prepared for life.

    A University degree is recognition of passage through a challenging course of study which shows your ability to learn and complete a long-term goal. That itself used to be a marketable skill. In the future, it would appear to be this aspect which is most valuable as people have to negotiate a more rapidly changing work environment where no skills may need to be acquired more frequently or career changes made more unexpectedly.

    When degrees are awarded simply for showing up or paying fees, they do both students and society a disservice. As they have been devalued, they have ceased to be a reliable indicator of skill or merit.

    Degrees aren't for everyone, but for those who get them, they should be worth something.

  • jay-h

    SSCoach

    Points: 18816

    bwillsie-842793 (6/15/2012)


    Chris.C-977504 (6/15/2012)


    It's a shame that some posters seem to be on the 'hate the rich/managers/etc' political position, because this is actually a good question that we should think about.

    Excellent point. Years ago I had a friend tell me "You will always get what you need, you may never get what you want."

    In the US 99% of those demanding "wealth redistribution" do so based on their wants and not on their needs. It's not the greed of others that is the problem. It's their own greed and individual choices that keep them dissatisfied...

    The people obsessed with 'income disparity' seem to have a bizarre degree of obsessive jealousy. I am concerned with improving my own situation; what certain rich people posses has absolutely nothing to do with me. If I am so consumed with jealousy over what someone else has, I can't do a decent job of taking care of my own success.

    Let me take it a bit further. There's a lot of crafts people who specialize in very high quality work, work that is skillful and labor intenstive, and as such is too expensive for the typical buyer. Years ago, in a fit of class warfare, Congress imposed punitive tax on luxury items (yachts, etc) and in doing so put lots of skilled boatbuiding craftspeople in my area out of work. What a great idea that was!

    ...

    -- FORTRAN manual for Xerox Computers --

  • bwillsie-842793

    Ten Centuries

    Points: 1359

    Cade Roux (6/15/2012)Degrees aren't for everyone, but for those who get them, they should be worth something.

    My point exactly. Many people are not "best served" by trying to force fit them into a "college only" mold. But, because we try to, colleges frequently end up providing degrees that are of questionable value to both the individual and soceity in general.

  • Cade Roux

    Ten Centuries

    Points: 1326

    bwillsie-842793 (6/15/2012)

    In the US 99% of those demanding "wealth redistribution" do so based on their wants and not on their needs. It's not the greed of others that is the problem. It's their own greed and individual choices that keep them dissatisfied.

    Disagree? Look at the people that have come out of abject poverty and/or from other countries that have made it to the top here. They did it by looking for opportunities and making things happen. IE, by exploiting change.

    I just can't let this sit there without challenge.

    Nobel laureate economist Joseph Stiglitz: http://www.kqed.org/a/forum/R201206110900

    The opportunities in the US to change financial status are worse than they have ever been. Other countries have more opportunities and are passing up the US. This is very much due to the current state of wealth redistribution where wealth is being more and more redistributed to the top (to people who neither need nor can even spend a vast proportion of the money) while cutting support for leveling the playing field in many areas, whether it's enforcing the laws or simply manning the regulatory agencies adequately.

    Those who make the jump over that chasm are fewer and fewer. Of course, it's all averages, but I would prefer to be on the sea which raises all ships, than one where most are drowning and every now and then, some lucky person wins a lottery to keep the average high. The number of millionaires in other countries are growing more quickly than in the US - that tells me you have better opportunities elsewhere.

    But back to technology - I firmly believe that technology can fix a lot of this. The eradication of malaria is within reach - these things can ultimately make life better for more people - and make quite a few people very rich as well.

  • jay-h

    SSCoach

    Points: 18816

    Cade Roux (6/15/2012)


    bwillsie-842793 (6/15/2012)

    .... This is very much due to the current state of wealth redistribution where wealth is being more and more redistributed to the top (to people who neither need nor can even spend a vast proportion of the money) while cutting support for leveling the playing field in many areas, whether it's enforcing the laws or simply manning the regulatory agencies adequately.

    ..

    No. It is not a zero sum game, wealth comes from productivity and circulation, neither of which are inhibited by certain people acquiring pockets of wealth. What do you think happens to money that people 'can't spend'? It does NOT sit idle under their mattresses, it goes into stocks, bonds and investments... and that provides future businesses and jobs.

    ...

    -- FORTRAN manual for Xerox Computers --

  • peter.heinicke

    SSC Enthusiast

    Points: 156

    I agree with the person who said college degrees are overrated. Just look at the increase in tuition prices vs the general inflation rate. Another bubble, just like real estate prices. Eventually enough people will learn that its not worth it if you end up with a degree, no job, and 6 figures in debt.

  • Cade Roux

    Ten Centuries

    Points: 1326

    jay-h (6/15/2012)


    Cade Roux (6/15/2012)


    bwillsie-842793 (6/15/2012)

    .... This is very much due to the current state of wealth redistribution where wealth is being more and more redistributed to the top (to people who neither need nor can even spend a vast proportion of the money) while cutting support for leveling the playing field in many areas, whether it's enforcing the laws or simply manning the regulatory agencies adequately.

    ..

    No. It is not a zero sum game, wealth comes from productivity and circulation, neither of which are inhibited by certain people acquiring pockets of wealth. What do you think happens to money that people 'can't spend'? It does NOT sit idle under their mattresses, it goes into stocks, bonds and investments... and that provides future businesses and jobs.

    I never claimed it was a zero sum game. But when you look at the claim about "needs", the poster's argument is clearly inconsistent. He wants the poor to look only to their needs, which the rich can look to their wants.

    Future businesses and jobs are created by entrepreneurs and innovators, and only indirectly funded by investors. All demand comes from the bottom, having consumers being able to spend more money is the most effective way of fueling growth. Taking that money away with direct and indirect taxation or corporate subsidies reduces demand. Having more people being able to look beyond their needs is the only way to fuel growth.

    On the other hand, there is an argument to be made that growth itself can be tremendously destructive to the future of humans on this planet. I think we won't know the answer to that for many decades.

  • bwillsie-842793

    Ten Centuries

    Points: 1359

    I never claimed it was a zero sum game. But when you look at the claim about "needs", the poster's argument is clearly inconsistent. He wants the poor to look only to their needs, which the rich can look to their wants.

    Actually, I never said I wanted the poor to look only to their needs.

    What I want is the people who buy into the claim that "wealth redistribution" will fix all the world's social problems to understand there is a difference between "needs" and "wants". And, that happiness can exist despite the fact that only ones wants are fulfilled.

    In other words, quit thinking that the reason your unhappy is because the rich haven't given you everything you want.

    Ergo, my argument is consistent, it is only your interpretation that makes it inconsistent to you.

  • TravisDBA

    SSCoach

    Points: 15780

    I would prefer to be on the sea which raises all ships, than one where most are drowning and every now and then, some lucky person wins a lottery to keep the average high.

    Maybe it is just me, but the first part of this analogy sounds alot like socialism to me. Socialism is great until you run out of other people’s money. πŸ˜€

    "Technology is a weird thing. It brings you great gifts with one hand, and it stabs you in the back with the other. ...:-D"

  • Howard Perry

    Right there with Babe

    Points: 751

    Death and taxes used to be the unavoidable things in life, now it's death, taxes and change. Another quote is that 95% of all scientific discoveries will be made in your life time. Bottom line, change is unavoidable and its rate is accelerating. There is nothing you can do about that.

    I am an agent of change but I don't feel guilty as most of the work I have done in my career has made applications operate faster and more efficiently, so that their users are able to obtain information more quickly and serve their customers better.

    Technology change is a given but most inventors of change have no control on how it is applied. If you deny change or refuse to try to adapt to it, you lose out.

    I have friends who have no computer or access to the net. We rarely have contact, because I have to phone them, whereas I have ongoing regular discussions with those who are connected and this has deepened our friendship.

Viewing 15 posts - 16 through 30 (of 98 total)

You must be logged in to reply to this topic. Login to reply