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Comment If these trends continue.... (Score 3, Interesting) 509

Remember the Simpsons where Disco Stu shows Homer how Disco album sales are up 400% for the year ending 1976? "If these trends continue.... Ehy!" While I'm not sure how to spell that sound, I am sure that the idea of future-proof career is a dream. What careers seemed future-proof thirty years ago, and could anyone have picked the winners and losers? There's a hindsight fallacy there. Just like the stock market, if there was such a thing as a future-proof career then everyone would want it, driving the salary to zero and making it worthless.

As other worthies have probably pointed out elsewhere in the comments, the best idea is to learn critical thinking and remain flexible. STEM education is valuable whether you're working in your specialty or not. Unlike Underwater Basket-Weaving or other majors that seem like a great idea as a freshman, STEM educations generally push students to learn basics about how the world works that can be universal (including submarine crafting mechanics). I have this same issue with my kids and I think the answer is just to let them know that building a network and constantly learning is the highest-payoff strategy but no guarantee. Anyone giving a job guarantee is, to paraphrase, lying or selling something.

Also I'm planning to have my drugs delivered by Amazon Drones(tm), so that's not a future-proof occupation either.

Submission + - First evidence of gravity waves ( 1

gewalker writes: "This is supposed to be published soon in "The Astrophysical Journal Letters", but in short researchers claim they have detected gravity waves from the husks of 2 stars 3000 light years away. They are losing energy and circling each other faster over time as the gravity waves remove energy from the orbits of the pair. This energy loss agrees with the prediction of general relativity — not a direct observation of gravity waves."
The Internet

Submission + - Obama: Web freedom will be part of Democratic platform (

NeverVotedBush writes: On Wednesday, during a visit with some of the most ardent open-Web supporters, President Barack Obama said Democrats will make a free and open Internet part of their party's 2012 platform.

"Internet freedom is something I know you all care passionately about; I do too," Obama wrote during an AMA ("ask me anything") on social-news site Reddit. "We will fight hard to make sure that the Internet remains the open forum for everybody — from those who are expressing an idea to those to want to start a business."

Data Storage

Submission + - Hard drive makers recover, but prices remain high ( 1

nk497 writes: "Hard drive manufacturers have mostly recovered from last year's floods, with production levels back to normal — but prices haven't fallen back to pre-flood levels. Last year, Samsung's Spinpoint F3 1TB drive was £49; when the floods hit it jumped as high as £109. That device is now available for about £65. Analyst Fang Zhang suggested prices might be propped up by consolidation in the market; a pair of big acquisitions last year have left the market with only three major players, Western Digital, Seagate and Toshiba."

Submission + - Who's Buying Your Congressman? (

itwbennett writes: "A new site called SopaTrack, created by ex-Googler Randy Meech, 'shines the light on whose votes are for sale, and for how much'. Blogger Dan Tynan spent some time poking around SopaTrack and found 'four US Congressfolk have perfect 100 percent records, which means they favor the bills that put more greenbacks in their campaign coffers every single time.'"

Comment Re:credit-unworthy or just greedy? (Score 1) 1259

Charging a higher interest rate for "credit-unworthy" people makes it more likely that they'll default, making it a self-fulfilling prophecy.

This is only true if you assume that people have no choice but to borrow. Young people have a choice. They can decide not to borrow an insane amount of money at an unaffordable interest rate. Higher interest is the market's way of signaling: "Are you SURE you want to borrow?" In most cases, if you can't afford the loan, there's a reason. Going to any college that you want isn't a right.

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