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Comment: Re:That's a strange definition of "rich" (Score 2) 310

by bayankaran (#46816471) Attached to: In the US, Rich Now Work Longer Hours Than the Poor

There is no longer any room for doubt that we are living in a plutocracy, not a democracy. And according to a recent NASA study, that is a prime indicator that we are a society on the brink of collapse.

US might be a plutocracy, but not a society about to collapse.
US has a great middle class, and even with the current crises, they are yet to get into lower class/poor. And even when you are poor, you don't starve.
Unless a huge shift occurs and the current middle class starts starving the collapse you are worried about won't happen.
The Arab spring occurred in countries where the middle class was not really strong - in numbers and social indicators. In Tunisia a man self immolated out of the tragic circumstances of not being able to feed his family. This seminal event kickstarted the uprising.
Saudi Arabia for all purposes is ripe for spring cleaning, but the middle class gets a lot of handouts from the rulers and they get fat and lazy. So there will be a lot of diabetes and heart attacks, not society collapsing.

Comment: Re:oh (Score 1) 301

by bayankaran (#46813899) Attached to: Our Education System Is Failing IT
Here's why you are wrong on all counts.
First of all, you happen to *know 3 Indian IT* workers and you arrive at a conclusion on how good/bad/patriarchal they are. If this is not *generalization* then I do not know what is !!!
Second, India is a large country, our population is 1 billion. There will be ten or twenty Indian IT programmers for every Russian you can find. Plus, Indian IT companies are majorly into US market, there is no Russian equivalent of an Infosys, TCS, Wipro and so on. With that large pool of talent, you are going to find few who are horribly mediocre. Its simply law of averages.
There are excellent programmers, good and mediocre. They include Indians. And that's all.

Comment: Few Asian magazines... (Score 2) 285

by bayankaran (#46776601) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: What Good Print Media Is Left?
Internet is yet to obliterate Asian - especially Indian -magazines.
Caravan -
Open -
The above two are new ventures, here are some older ones...
India Today -
Frontline -
And no one has mentioned New Yorker - probably the best over the years.

Comment: Re:Standards of living... (Score 1) 870

by bayankaran (#46589955) Attached to: Job Automation and the Minimum Wage Debate

And instead of dirty and dangerous manufacturing jobs, people are moving to service and white collar jobs in a big way.

We will not have this conversation if the service and white collar jobs DID offset the loss of manufacturing jobs and any losses due to automation. That was the whole thread/post/page about.

Comment: Re:Standards of living... (Score 1) 870

by bayankaran (#46582751) Attached to: Job Automation and the Minimum Wage Debate are contradicting your own premise.

I was only making a larger point. Automation will result in reduction of number of hours, but unless some type of allowance makes up the deficit in income both with reduced number of hours and reduced work opportunities, the existing quality of life might decrease further. I was not contradicting any premise. Its also a complex issue with many possible permutations and combinations as outcome.

That is not something we can adopt, and it solve absolutely nothing.

"Lavish pensions" is only a symptom, not a cause. State will not be able to keep up the benefits unless some new revenue opportunity or tax base comes up. The same time, the automation will reduce existing tax base further. Its sort a double whammy. I have no idea about any solution.

Labor participation rate steadily increased throughout the 20th century despite the supposed decline of the kinds of "mass employment" job categories you imagine.

20th century was an exception...rapid industrialization happened which employed millions. Now that phase is need for more factories to produce widgets, and existing factories are getting automated. Look around yourself.
Whether I pulled my statement out of thin air...lets wait for the future to decide. You can come back here in ten years and decide for yourself.

Comment: Re:Standards of living... (Score 1) 870

by bayankaran (#46581941) Attached to: Job Automation and the Minimum Wage Debate

That is, if automation makes things twice as efficient, it means everybody can work half time and enjoy 20 more hours of leisure a week.

The above can be possible, but you may not get full time work even if you wanted. Not everyone can be retrained for software programming or robotics, and even if they were, you don't need millions and millions of people with such skillset.
That's why a growing acceptance or realization that some type of guaranteed allowance will have to be given to a majority when the jobs vanish. Many countries are already in that path - in US you have social security which kicks in after retirement, what if it kicks in early? (You need political will, and much greater acceptance to the truism "jobs are not there".) In India there is 'Right to Food', which can be the beginning of such programs.
Indian politicians and Chinese have may be a decade of "more growth for prosperity" philosophy to work its charm. US and other developed nations got no such space.

Of course, it's not actually true because people have an amazing capacity to come up with new products and services.

Here is the issue, the new products and services may not generate "mass employment". Amazon, Facebook and Google are great examples. The same with Tesla.
"Mass employment" happens with manufacturing or may be Walmart (not only employment at their stores, but building the stores to the driving the trucks), not with the new products or services you have in mind.

Comment: Standards of living... (Score 1) 870

by bayankaran (#46581341) Attached to: Job Automation and the Minimum Wage Debate
Your question has the answer you are looking for.
First define "standards of living".
The standard of living - even for the lower class - in most of the developed world, and for a decent percent of the developing world is already good. The advances in health care, communication, and transportation has made sure what was available to the upper class or 1% of the early 1900's is now available to the rest. That is indeed progress.
So, the next level of mechanization and automation is not going to push the "standard of living" higher by a greater margin. Here is a car analogy - what matters is you have a car to go from point A to B, you still reach B whether you travel in a 2000$ beat up old car or a new costly luxury version. Another analogy - there was a huge difference between VHS and DVD, but there is no such difference between DVD and BluRay. Good content can be equally enjoyed on both, and both the discs are equally durable.

Comment: Hype vs reality... (Score 4, Insightful) 251

by bayankaran (#46571839) Attached to: 3D Printing: Have You Taken the Plunge Yet? Planning To?
I almost bought an entry level 3D printer in 2010. And I am glad I did not.
3D printing is way over hyped like Segway or Bluetooth. It has its niche market/uses, but the proponents and true believers claim that will "change the world", everyone will start printing at home, things will be cheaper, more available, better, faster, stronger, wider and so on is pure BS.

Comment: What happens next? (Score 1) 704

by bayankaran (#46398001) Attached to: Bitcoin Exchange Flexcoin Wiped Out By Theft
How will the protocol handle stolen bitcoins?
How do you identify the stolen coins and remove them from circulation/flag it/return to the rightful owner? If not, how will a merchant/buyer/seller can successfully handle a transaction?
Answer to the above will also give a clue if the exchange owners themselves stole the coins.

Comment: The issue with whole foods... (Score 1) 794

by bayankaran (#46374051) Attached to: Whole Foods: America's Temple of Pseudoscience
The issue with Whole Foods and organic food movement can be seen with the idea behind veganism and other related lifestyle choices.

I asked a vegan friend when he was coming to my home if he will eat eggs. He replied 'yes' provided if the hen are kept free range and ethically treated. Yes, they are...but what if I kill and eat the birds after you are gone (which is what will happen to most of the birds - some hippie ecologist may plan for proper burial and cemetery service, but that's an exception.)

There are many foods/food items which do not deserve the organic label and/or should not be militant about such classification. I have seen "organic coconut powder" in Whole Foods. This is ridiculous - there is no "inorganic coconut powder". Its impossible for any coconut farmer not to use fertilizers, and coconut trees do not need insecticides - so such classification is pure money grabbing operation.

The above are examples - no ideology should be taken to the extreme, and organic food movement is no exception.

Man is the best computer we can put aboard a spacecraft ... and the only one that can be mass produced with unskilled labor. -- Wernher von Braun