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Honest work (14/09/17 19:23:49) Reply
    Thank you, GS, for waking me from my slumbers.
    ---

    I saw Donald Trump on TV today. He was visiting Florida to show himself to the people who had been hit by the hurricane Irma. Nothing of the erratic clown here. He gave acknowledgement and praise to the rescue workers. And it strikes me: These days there are far too many people in the highest position who do not acknowledge the value of honest work and praise it as much as it deserves. And not only at the top. Routine work is looked down upon. Developing routines - the daily bread - takes resources from the posh research and is thus discouraged or sabotaged. Youngsters are discouraged to go for practical work; theory is much more fashionable.

    With increasing sophistication of computer hardware and software we can see that a number of jobs will disappear. Banking has already disappeared in my country. Accounting can be done by subscribing to a cloud service. Self-driving cars are no more science fiction. Airliner piloting is now a brief education because the planes are self-driving. No need any more to fly by the seat of one's pants. I have noticed that landings nowadays are far softer than they used to be when landings were manual. A whisky distillery can make it with one single employee (in the control room).

    So what are people going to do? How can we as a society give the young a meaningful life where they can do useful work and earn a decent living? How are we going to cope with illiterate immigrants with criminal attitudes and practices towards little girls? How can we facilitate a transformation of those theologies that preach God as a sponsor of murder and molestation?

    Fruitful thinking can only be done by people who do not fear that discussions will limit their careers.

    There is plenty to discuss.
e

Think tanks (17/09/17 08:31:04) Reply
    Today's newspaper had a commentary regarding a local think tank called Agenda - originating from the social democratic party, and supported by a trade union and a radical billionaire.

    So - the thinking is from a basis of power. Mainstream politics and money.

    Most of the participants have a background of social sciences - which at best is a descriptive science, not an experimental science. (I think I would call it a branch of philosophy rather than a science.) So they have little more insight than the common womand and man in the nuts and bolts that will be forming the future. It's all soft - governed by opinion, emotion and and consensus-seeking. Conventional wisdom.

    A real agenda-setting think tank needs techies. Working techies, not retired techies or wannabe technies. Serving in a think tank inevitably softens a techie - so techies need to be replaced often enough - like all the others. Stale, routine-thinking think tanks are not up to the task.

    It's like governments that are re-elected too many times.
e

Simple jobs and complex jobs, jobs with people and jobs with things and jobs with concepts and ideas (20/09/17 10:19:38) Reply
    According to folklore based on a hypothesis from some Nobel laureate, the left brain is a square and limited thinker, while the right brain is an inspired and holistic artist.

    Not verified by experiment

    http://www.healthline.com/health/left-brain-vs-right-brain#overview1

    --

    There is a need for experts with holistic views based on solid knowledge. Holism based on hearsay is too vulnerable to political, economic and emotional pressure. Holism should be based on facts and reasoning where facts are unavailable or ambiguous.

    Creativeness,too, needs to be based on knowledge of the existing art. Creativeness without knowledge of the field is just a waste of time. Most acts of creation have already been done similarly by others. My experience is: I have a good idea. Then I look in the databases - including Wikipedia and Google. And then I can read the articles about it. Nothing new. Forget about it. Think of something else.

    --

    Creating jobs needs to take seriously that there are different people and different jobs. Talents are different. Some talents run in families and are heritable together with money. Some families are burdened with little talent and seem destined for poverty because there is no inheritance and little possibility of good earning. The great task is to help those people into useful and agreeable positions in society: converting potential losers into reasonably satisfied citizens. Pulling them through theoretical schools and universities is a very bad idea. I think today's preoccupation with higher education is just a game for hiding unemployment. When I look at what comes out at the other side, I still see hidden unemployment, even if they rise to become my bosses or political leaders or members of their teams.

    Some right-wing people seem refuse to admit that losers must be helped. That's no solution. Making people unhappy is dangerous. Making them happy is much nicer. In my experience the nicest way towards happiness goes through coping. So people should be helped to find ways of coping.
e

Simple jobs and complex jobs, jobs with people and jobs with things and jobs with concepts and ideas (20/09/17 21:23:22) Reply
    We might start with the left brain vs right brain.

    According to folklore based on a hypothesis from some Nobel laureate, the left brain is a square and limited thinker, while the right brain is an inspired and holistic artist.

    Not verified by experiment

    http://www.healthline.com/health/left-brain-vs-right-brain#overview1

    --

    There is a need for experts with holistic views based on solid knowledge. Holism based on hearsay is too vulnerable to political, economic and emotional pressure. Holism should be based on facts and reasoning there facts are unavailable or ambiguous.

    Creativeness,too, needs to be based on knowledge of the existing art. Creativeness without knowledge of the field is just a waste of time. Most acts of creation have already been done similarly by others. My experience is: I have a good idea. Then I look in the databases - including Wikipedia and Google. And then I can read the articles about it. Nothing new. Think of something else.

    --

    Creating jobs needs to take seriously that there are different people and different jobs. Talents are different. Some talents run in families and are heritable together with money. Some families are burdened with little talent and seem destined for poverty because there is no inheritance and little possibility of good earning. The difficult and important task is to help those people into useful and agreeable positions in society: converting potential losers into reasonably satisfied citizens. Putting everybody through universities certainly is no remedy, although some on the left side seem to believe it. It mostly looks like a convenient and cheap way of disguising unemployment. Leaving them unsatisfied and using the police against their anger and despair isn't a good idea either.

    But someone has to pay for it. Count me in.
e

Re: Honest work (17/09/17 11:14:00) Reply
    "So what are people going to do? How can we as a society give the young a meaningful life where they can do useful work and earn a decent living?"

    They has been a great drive towards Artificial intelligence, every tech company is investing some how into this sector. The best employees will be the ones who are able to fuse technology skills into some other skill, but not everyone has the capacity to do that and its a very difficult thing to do. So yes all these industries can be automated but they needs to be some cross transfer of knowledge from A to B. In essence technology works best when they is a routine, if a thing is done the same way all the time why not write a program for it?

    If you are conscious of these routines you can write the program for yourself, or find some one who has done so and improve on it, if you are not you will be at the mercy of AI, which will map these routines out of your every day behavior and then resell them to you at a high price in the form of software or appliance.

    Yes technology does make life easy but it also makes us lazy, to even think. And this has been an aged old truth that those who get comfortable never go far even in the age where technology didn't exist.

    The shift should come from eduction, its outdated. People cant comprehend what the future is going to look like so they cant plan for it properly, and this is where techies, can be of most use, especially those who have cultivated the skill of fusing tech into another skill.

    Society still See's university degree's, masters, doctorate degrees as the alpha and omega, so they cant come to the conclusion that the whole education system needs to be over hauled.

    Governments have for years been developing a workforce for jobs which will not exist, unemployment is inevitable. This has resulted in billions now been spent on technology consultants to bridge the gap, the only problem is they don't know where or who to spend it on, do you give it to A or B and hope they can find C
d

Re: Re: Honest work (17/09/17 21:42:35) Reply
    maybe related, maybe not... but some stuff i read last months:

    http://firstmonday.org/ojs/index.php/fm/article/view/519/440 - attention economy and the Net ( from 1997 !)

    http://www.paulgraham.com/addiction.html - "We'll increasingly be defined by what we say No to."

    https://aeon.co/essays/how-work-changed-to-make-us-all-passionate-quitters

    https://newrepublic.com/article/143004/rise-thought-leader-how-superrich-funded-new-class-intellectual

    http://expressiveegg.org/2017/01/03/four-kinds-dystopia/

    https://www.edge.org/conversation/geoffrey_west-why-cities-keep-growing-corporations-and-people-always-die-and-life-gets

    https://www.socialcooling.com/

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/parenting/wp/2017/08/24/melinda-gates-i-spent-my-career-in-technology-i-wasnt-prepared-for-its-effect-on-my-kids/

    talking about kids... i know ~16y old boy who's studying IT profile in "elite" school.. he said they still repeat what item7 in 3rd menu of M$word will do. Without even touching (or noticing) the actual science+art of text publishing.. Education? pff. what's that for? just spend 12years doing nothing.
svd

Intellectuals working for the powers that be (19/09/17 07:52:45) Reply
    It's nothing new. Religions have been doing it for centuries. Presently we have a mixture of the new power propagandists with the old ones: the decline of the universities and learned societies together with an upsurge of "revelation"-based beliefs.

    Common to all the new opinion leading persons and organisations seems to be suppression of free exchange of opinions. And this is not only in the open society - it is also like that in large publicly-owned organisations. New Public Management - I've felt its methods at very close quarters. It is surprising how cheaply people can be bought.
e

Re: Intellectuals working for the powers that be (19/09/17 10:54:30) Reply
    If the importance of substantiated and simple facts and simple intellectual decency are toned down, then the system is open for all sorts of external influences. Religion is one. Political correctness is another. Truths are defined before the facts, or in spite of the facts. If facts and truths differ, the facts lose.

    Resurrection of the body? With subsequent eternal life somewhere physical?

    Is it possible to combine political correctness or religion with intelligence and honesty?
e

(firefox problem - or a bad CPU core - or both) plus operator hmmmm age (n/t) (20/09/17 21:46:24) Reply
e

Prophets (20/09/17 08:16:47) Reply
    These days of religious recoil after the atheist and secular age of reason (initiated by the pioneering works of Spinoza) it could be an idea to read selected passages of the biblical Old Testament, specifically the Book of Jeremiah. The text makes a clear distinction between genuine prophets and false prophets. Briefly: The genuine prophets are strongly critical of the powers that be - for their evil ways and their godlessness. The false prophets are those who are on good terms with kings and clergy and who defend the present situation and policies. Jeremiah was thrown into a well to die, but was saved because the Persians came and toppled the regime he had jeopardised his life criticising.

    In this context it may be of interest that Jesus made an effort to weaken the economy of the present-day clergy by chasing commercial activity out of the Temple. This, in my opinion, is sufficient to brand him a genuine prophet.
e

Re: Prophets (03/10/17 05:48:01) Reply
    I some times sit and think to myself, how can someone be my master and the only way I could think of is that they come between you and god. The true masters I believe are those that direct you towards god so that you can look for him by yourself within yourself, it doesn't matter really how you define god but the bottom line is that only you and you alone can experience him, only you and you alone can know yourself

    d
d

Re: Re: Re: Honest work (21/09/17 21:21:46) Reply
    Some commentator on TheRegister recommended "Profession" (from the collection "Nine Tomorrows") by Isaac Asimov.

    I saw this in my former younger colleagues and bosses - cramming with insufficient understanding. Understanding comes from the multidimensional application and extension of the stuff that has been crammed - in other words: honest work. But honest work would mean committing errors and having learning curves, and these people make no mistakes.
e

Re: Re: Re: Re: Honest work (23/09/17 19:55:28) Reply
    hm. homo interneticus...
    http://firstmonday.org/ojs/index.php/fm/article/view/1155/1075
    2004. not so long ago..
svd

"The drumbeat of new publications" (04/10/17 19:03:16) Reply
    The other day I looked through abstracts of some new PhD theses from our universities. Three out of four were what I would call typical textbook stuff, stuff that I learnt at medical school 40+ years ago. OK, there may have been a twist or two, but that's about it.

    As long as the journals publish the stuff (because publishing is what they do to earn their money), this will go on. The time and expense associated with reading up-to-date literature is too much. And the risks to high with research at the bleeding edge. Such research will depend on development of new tools, which is a slow and difficult task.
e

Re: Honest work (23/10/17 22:46:19) Reply
    You're welcome ;)

    (Got a real lot on my hands myself, therefore hardly any time for this ancient place of the web. But I promise to step over once in a while)
gs


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