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Comment: Re:Not new (Score 1) 253

by russotto (#47421347) Attached to: US Tech Firms Recruiting High Schoolers (And Younger)

What's often left off of these reports is amount that student aid has also grown over time. Few people pay the full sticker price.
The college board trends does have a chart of this, but unfortunately it wasn't adjusted for inflation.

The College Board charts are adjusted for inflation. Even with student aid increases, net college costs have increased over time. They are much higher than they were 30 years ago. And if your family makes more than median income, at public institutions that student aid increase doesn't amount to much.

Comment: Re:actors and athletes get paid at 13 (Score 1) 253

by russotto (#47412191) Attached to: US Tech Firms Recruiting High Schoolers (And Younger)

Yes, but 13yo actors and athletes need special work permits and still need to attend to school whilst working.

These are summer internships; school is not an issue.

In many localities, they must have part of their earnings put directly into trust funds (e.g., a Coogan account in California) so neither they or their parents will blow all the money on something, or up something...

Four states, but the Coogan requirements in California and New York at least are specific to child performers, not all minors.

I doubt any of these internet companies are doing any of these even minimal best-practices/policies for these 13yo nerds (and these minimal things don't even prevent the Lindsey Lohans and Tracy Austins of the world)...

$18,000/year doesn't get you to Lindsey Lohan levels; she probably blows that in a night.

Comment: Re:The real problem here... (Score 2) 349

by russotto (#47411551) Attached to: Here Comes the Panopticon: Insurance Companies

Yup - there are some criteria that we've explicitly decided NOT to let people use (i.e. even if you could show that race and auto insurance costs were correlated, and that the relationship was statistically significant, you still couldn't charge people more for being black/white/Asian/whatever), but credit score isn't one of those.

Actuaries are pretty clever, they can typically find a benign-sounding proxy for the forbidden criteria.

Comment: Re:Not new (Score 5, Insightful) 253

by russotto (#47411379) Attached to: US Tech Firms Recruiting High Schoolers (And Younger)

In 1999, my company offered an 18 year old summer intern a programming job. He turned us down to attend college. Spending 4 years doing calculus and reading The Count of Monte Cristo was not going to improve his earnings potential. Spending 4 years in a real office doing real programming would have improved his earnings potential.

Short term. But when he tried to change jobs, he'd find a lot of opportunities closed to him because just about every company wants a degree. I've known a number of non-degreed programmers who have gone back to get one for that reason.

Quitting school to found a startup might make sense; at least it's honest gambling. Quitting school to take a regular job doesn't; the job or one like it will still be there when you graduate.

Comment: Re:I can't imagine something like that in the U.S. (Score 1) 159

by russotto (#47399805) Attached to: The AI Boss That Deploys Hong Kong's Subway Engineers

Riiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiight. It's those unions. Those ones whose membership has been steadily and measurably been decreasing for 30 years(almost exactly at the same rate as wage stagnation occurs, as a complete coincidence).

Public service unions are the major exception; the general decline is irrelevant when US mass transit is still almost completely union.

Comment: Re:OPEC to subsidize its demise? (Score 1) 374

The subsidies for fossil fuels by first-world western nations (and China) (those in a position to fund green energy technologies) are a small percentage of the total. Most fossil fuel subsidies are done by oil producing nations as a form of population pacification. The idea that these funds are available for redirection is ludicrous.

Sure, but that's only half the problem. The other half is the idea that throwing money at renewables will actually reduce CO2 production.

Prof: So the American government went to IBM to come up with a data encryption standard and they came up with ... Student: EBCDIC!"