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Comment Good and evil (Score 1) 125

Like all new technology it will be used for good and evil. "The city will provide the data to entrepreneurs and students to develop applications." Have to have faith in the majority of people to use the technology for good and to punish those that use it for evil. However, if the information is in the hands of just a few then there won't be effective oversight and it will be used for evil. What they need to do is level the playing field and provide the data as close to real time as is technically possible to anyone that wants it. Not selectively, not piecemeal, not months later... real time.

Comment The cult of innovation (Score 3, Interesting) 359

Innovation, invention and discovery are certainly important and can allow us to more easily or efficiently address needs, but when we are talking about "innovation" or innovative people most of the time what we are really talking about is creative problem solving using already existing methods, knowledge and technology.

It is easy to look at IT and see how real innovations have contributed to a transformation of many aspects of society over the last half century and then fall into the cult of innovation as a sort of belief in perpetual innovation as a means for the betterment of society. But both a longer view and more critical view of our day to day society should confirm the importance of understanding that you already have many of the technological tools and methods needed to address today's needs. And a good application of those already known technological tools and methods should be the priority of problem solving rather than innovation merely for the sake of innovation.

Surely there is always a need for innovation, especially in medicine where virus are constantly evolving to maximize their contagion and our existing tools need to be adapted to new challenges. But in other technology areas the problem domain does not change as remarkably over time. And already developed technology is well suited for most day to day challenges.

Sure you can probably cite a thousand different examples where today's technology is inadequate to a problem or need, but I think the point is that it is no less noble or worthy to address the tens of thousands of those other problems and human needs that can be worked on without the need for any fundamental innovation.

Comment Re:Xenophobia (Score 1) 271

Sounds like free market competition to me.

H1Bs are not "free market", since it is difficult (although not impossible) for the visa holder to change employers. There should be several reforms to the H1B program:
1. The workers should be able to change employers at will.
2. Instead of a lottery, there should be an auction. That way the quotas go to the companies that need/value them the most, and it is doubtful they could be used for "cheap labor".

At the very least "Guest worker" programs should pay people 10% or 20% more than prevailing wages, let people change jobs "by right" without any additional paperwork and be capped well below demand and auctioned off according to the highest salary.

But much better to let people that actually want to come here and be Americans stay here as either green card holders and put them on a path to citizenship. There are already far too many people living here that are living in a society apart from the rest of us. Immigration has been the life blood of this country... not non-immigrant guest worker programs.

Students who come here for 4, 5 and 6 years for education should be a priority as they are usually already well socialized in American Society.

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