Brainy Quote of the Day

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Bench Warmers...

Credit: Unidentified Appellation
A bench warmer is the last thing any high school or college athlete ever wants to be. The person that "shows up"; always there; parents in the audience steaming because their kid didn't get any play on the court or field. Resentful when time is finally granted, they typically become a self-fulfilling prophesy of disaster, and promptly sat back down to sulk the rest of the game/season.

We can't afford that now, nor could we ever.

Our technological innovation is screaming past us literally at light speed. We're demanding faster, cheaper, more apps meaning smaller physical features in Silicon: FinFETs, Carbon Nanotubes - pushing towards and beyond the Moore's Law limit - needing less humans to design or manufacture it. Or at least, less of them in the USA. We need a real debate on these issues; not delay/stalling tactics that in a real game bore to tears, and everyone in the crowd goes home (accept the frustrated parents). No wonder congressional approval is slightly above snail sweat. Getting ye old standardized test scores up - "teaching to the test" ("we don't do that") is insane when all the other industrialized nations whipping our collective assets (as we sit on them) aren't doing it quite that way.

Socially, technologically we can't be bench warmers. As we go, so does the world. If the issue is employment hovering at 7 - 7.5% here, it's only exacerbated in other countries trying to "follow our lead." The season I used metaphorically is our current condition globally, our definitions of "unemployment" and none for "under-employment," or what "full employment" looks like going forward; our continuance of a moribund stratification and unequal social and educational system straight from 1953; our collective shoulder-shrug that other countries are coming on the academic court and running the boards on us.

And for the countries that are imitating us, they too, can't afford bench warmers...

Patrick Mylund Nielson: Our Technological Adolescence
OECD: Indicators 2012

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