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A View From the Edge

Privilege and schools

This is a simple discussion when it comes to education and a complicated one when it comes to the free and capitalist society our republic has chosen. Say, you have money and you wish to apply it to your kids’ education. What could be more American than buying your kid a mechanical pencil, a calculator, better basketball shoes, hiring a coach for swimming or a tutor to catch up in math? If you feel these are acceptable, then it is very possible — and a very short walk — to the other side of the ethical line.  

The trouble with AI

Your brain works in a wonderful way. The things your eyes see, the senses of touch, the hearing – all these are data input traveling along nerves as electric signals, on or off, strong or weak. The brain then receives this data and organizes it along patterns it recognizes from learning since birth and stores it as engrams — analogue interpretation of data.

Society is right now at a turning point

Democracy and liberty are increasingly under threat around the world as capitalism and the digital revolution get together to rule your life. In fact, new and newer technologies are not only asking you — and you are willfully supplying — reams of data, but — and, here’s the big worry as outlined by Professor Shoshana Zuboff (one of the great minds at Harvard) — those collectors are modifying and manipulating your data even while you think it is still yours or certainly something you are clear about yourself on.

Indicators of sci-fi future

While we all get distracted by the body (im)politic there is a ton of news the major media people are not covering for you. Readers of this column will know I focus often on aviation since it tends to be a signpost for what are good — and bad — indicators of progress.

Indicators of humanity’s future in the air

While we all get distracted by the body (im)politic there is a ton of news the major media people are not covering for you. Readers of this column will know I focus often on aviation since it tends to be a signpost for what are good — and bad — indicators of progress.

Teachers — underpaid or undervalued?

Teachers’ pay issues are sweeping the nation. And if you think they are not coming to a state, city or town near you, think again. A large part of the problem here is not money. Yes, money is the negotiating platform on both sides (how else do we Americans value anything these days), but the issue is a fundamental one that we have all overlooked.

Teaching is now a full-time job. It wasn’t until the last four decades.

Memory overload and obliteration

Modern humans, especially, are being forced to plot their own demise. We all talk about overload — overload at work — overload of media—overload of opinion — overload of social media — the list seems endless. The truth is, all these pressures are self-inflicted.

What exactly is Defense?

What exactly is Defense?

Sustainable development vs. digital onslaught vs. work

People with serious money and past success often feel compelled to set aside time and brainpower to help solve critical issues around the world. High tech people, especially, feel this sudden urge to make things right or better. It is almost as if they suddenly realize that their many billions of dollars are worth nothing when compared with the world they fashioned — a world stripping away the ethic of work, with an enforced digital schedule set by machines, and, never least, the energy consumptive industries they have built.