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Melinda Gates: Facebook Engineers Have Solved One of Education's Biggest Problem 162

theodp writes: Asked by the NY Times if Silicon Valley is saving the world or just making money, Melinda Gates replied, "I can say without a doubt — because I've seen it — that some of them [SV companies] are innovating in ways that make life better for billions of people." As an example, BillG's better half suggests that a handful of Facebook engineers have solved one of education's biggest problems with their 20% time project at billionaire-backed Summit Public Schools, a small charter school operator. Gates writes, "One of the biggest problems in American education is that teachers have to teach 30 students with different learning styles at the same time. Developers at Facebook, however, have built an online system that gives teachers the information and tools they need to design individualized lessons. The result is that teachers can spend their time doing what they're best at: inspiring kids." Some people — like the late Roger Ebert — might not be quite as impressed as Melinda to see Silicon Valley trying to reinvent the 1960's personalized-learning-wheel in 2015!
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Melinda Gates: Facebook Engineers Have Solved One of Education's Biggest Problem

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  • Problem? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by shortscruffydave ( 638529 ) on Thursday July 23, 2015 @07:37AM (#50166723)

    Facebook Engineers Have Solved One of Education's Biggest Problem

    Is that problem the bad use of English?

    • by nomadic ( 141991 )
      "Is that problem the bad use of English?"

      Trust me, if you want to solve the problem of bad English, don't go to an engineer.
      • Re:Problem? (Score:4, Insightful)

        by Feral Nerd ( 3929873 ) on Thursday July 23, 2015 @09:02AM (#50167101)

        "Is that problem the bad use of English?"

        Trust me, if you want to solve the problem of bad English, don't go to an engineer.

        Bad use of English usually boils down to some pain in the ass traditionalist who has nothing better to do complaining that languages have a tendency to evolve. People here delight in complaining about how non US forum members speak horrible English and yet from a British perspective the quaint English dialect spoken in the USA is a big steaming pile of bad English and quite franky I put more stock in their opinion since they invented the language. Having said that also think that talking about preserving the 'purity' of the English language is pretty funny since English is a pretty good example of a linguistic mongrel.

        • by Anonymous Coward

          Listen up! Failure to follow the rules of language results in bad communications and the failure to transmit information. That the human brain is so fault tolerant that it can usually parse through the absolute shit that some humans transmit as "language" is an amazing achievement in evolutionary biology. It is not, however, an excuse for bad use of language and failure to follow protocols. Language protocols are fairly fluid, as can be demonstrated by the changes that language undergoes over the course

          • English doesn't have "rules." Those are called "styles," and there are many to choose from. Your teacher was a liar, and an idiot.

        • People here delight in complaining about how non US forum members speak horrible English and yet from a British perspective the quaint English dialect spoken in the USA is a big steaming pile of bad English and quite franky I put more stock in their opinion since they invented the language.

          People on both sides of the pond have deliberately altered their language to sound less like one another, thus nobody's opinion is valid, since everyone has deliberately shifted English away from what it used to be.

    • Fuck all the people calling this "grammar snobbery" or inventing multiple Englishes. I thought it was amusing that a post about education would have a typo in the headline.
      • There are multiple Englishes -- there are things you say that I wouldn't, and vice versa. However, in this case, there was a clear accidental error. And I would agree that it raises a wee smile, given the context.
      • by tnk1 ( 899206 )

        I'd be more amused if it was an article decrying the current lack of proofreading for news outlets.

        Typos are not grammar errors, really. They're errors in composition. No one who makes a typo is asserting that they properly spelled something they typo'ed and they would invariably correct the error upon noticing it. On board with no edit feature, or articles that were posted and not proofread, you will see more typos.
           

  • Open content (Score:5, Insightful)

    by invictusvoyd ( 3546069 ) on Thursday July 23, 2015 @07:38AM (#50166733)
    I'd rather spend money ( if I had a billion dollars) on wikivarsity or wikibooks projects . We need quality open content in wiki form which is accessible to all .
    • wikivarsity

      Just make sure you get the name right on the check.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      That's you. Melinda, on the other hand, wants to create a system where a corporation can select the best of the crop and make them an offer to work for the big companies. She wouldn't want to jeaoperdize her virtual billions by not cultivating enough high quality drones, would she?

    • by Anonymous Coward

      Wiki form is great for casual consulting, but when learning is the main objective, there needs to be a step by step segmentation of the subject matter in a way that avoids overloading the learner with too much information at once. A well thought up set of problems that come with solutions and online verification go a long way into building the core knowledge of a subject matter, because best learning happens when there is not just input, but also output.

    • Re:Open content (Score:4, Interesting)

      by bangular ( 736791 ) on Thursday July 23, 2015 @08:58AM (#50167085)
      It's amazing we are still paying for algebra and physics books. These subjects haven't changed up to the undergrad level in many decades. Textbooks should be getting simpler and more streamlined, but they're actually getting way more complicated. The books are crazy thick with thousands of practice problems that contain errors and most don't look anything like real world problems. Let's slim down and create a small set of GOOD problems that are error free. Won't happen though. The book industry is too big.
      • by digsbo ( 1292334 )

        It's amazing we are still paying for algebra and physics books.

        Nothing amazing about it. It's a system set up by academic boards and educational publishers. Because there's too much money in education up for grabs to those who know how to game the system.

  • by The Real Dr John ( 716876 ) on Thursday July 23, 2015 @07:39AM (#50166741) Homepage

    Sounds like more work for the teachers, and my guess is that would be without extra pay. Even with the aid of technology, individual lessons means more time required on the teachers part. How about just reduce the number of students per teacher?

    • by ClaraBow ( 212734 ) on Thursday July 23, 2015 @07:56AM (#50166837)
      I just looked at their job postings and it seems that a teacher will only have between 16-24 students in a given school year. So, this would be very manageable for a teacher. This is a great model, but it will only educate a few. This is not novel in anyway. There are plenty of small, learner-centered schools, but they are expensive. As some pointed out, this has been done since the 1960s. There is no away to economically educate the masses with this educational model.
      • by Anonymous Coward

        I just looked at their job postings and it seems that a teacher will only have between 16-24 students in a given school year. So, this would be very manageable for a teacher. This is a great model, but it will only educate a few. This is not novel in anyway. There are plenty of small, learner-centered schools, but they are expensive. As some pointed out, this has been done since the 1960s. There is no away to economically educate the masses with this educational model.

        If out public schools had class sizes of 16-24 students, that's manageable for the current moethodology. Give one of their teachers 30-35 students and then let me know if you still think they solved one of "Education's biggest problems."

    • by jabuzz ( 182671 )

      How about streaming the pupils so that those of similar ability are grouped together for their classes. Ok it might not work at primary school level so much as these tend to be smaller often with only enough pupils for a single class per year. However even then you can arrange the class into groups of different abilities.

      • by cayenne8 ( 626475 ) on Thursday July 23, 2015 @09:15AM (#50167173) Homepage Journal

        How about streaming the pupils so that those of similar ability are grouped together for their classes. Ok it might not work at primary school level so much as these tend to be smaller often with only enough pupils for a single class per year. However even then you can arrange the class into groups of different abilities.

        You can't do that in the "PC" America today, no sir...

        You'll get hit right off to bat with shouts of "discriminaiton".....then classism, elitism...and just about any other -ism you can think of.

        No, in the US today, we really are trying to not even give merit to those that do excel despite todays education system. I think I read the other day about a high school that had something like 50+ valedictorians...?? WTF? Afraid to hurt someones feelings that they didn't make the cut?

        No, today int he US, you can't have any programs that single out folks for success, or even remedial needs...it might hurt Suzy or Johnny's self esteem and we all know that would be the end of the world. No, we have to keep them all together, and teach to the lowest common denominator.

        Any separation of the kids by merit or ability...could potentially lead to an imbalance in the racial or socio-economic mix of kids, and once that happens, the SJW's and other types will scream bat shit bloody murder that this is just another example of the man keeping people down and stripping them of opportunity.

        • The supposition that personalized structures will motivate kids who are only in school because they are forced to be there ignores the lack of motivation in today's society of a very large proportion of students.

          I know one 15 year old white kit who has never been seen carrying a book home. His single mom tells him he is going to be a famous baseball player, so "Why study?"

        • Look up studies on ability tracking. It has shown that when students are grouped into classrooms based on ability everyone does worse. Lower ability children benefit from exposure to those with higher abilities and higher ability children benefit from exposure to higher performing peers. If you ability track you reduce the lower track's exposure to good vocabulary and social skills. Often it clusters children with behavior problems which has been shown to increase behavior problems over time (kids learn bad
          • by jabuzz ( 182671 )

            Any study that shows that is complete and utter total crap. I know that to be a fact from the education I personally received in the U.K. It would have been simply impossible for me to have achieved the qualifications I did aged 16 if I had been taught in mixed ability classes.

            Explain to me how being grouped in maths class of clever students that where able to speed through the curriculum take the exam early and then speed through a Statistics O level ending up with two qualifications instead of one those i

            • UK-style streaming enforces a rigidity that have lifetime implications if someone is unlucky enough to be on the wrong side of the score.

              In your system, despite having technical talent, low secondary scores would have shunted me off to a vocationally-oriented school that would provide a very limited scope of highly precarious work opportunities. I would have to possess some favorable peerage status (or be from a very wealthy/influential family) to overcome that in any reasonable amount of time.

              On the other

              • by jabuzz ( 182671 )

                The 11+ was abandoned in England 30 years ago (well 29 to be precise it was removed in 1976). The system never existed in Scotland.

                There are still vestiges of the system remaining in various parts of the
                Grammar schools. I was streamed in a Comprehensive school that had been a secondary modern under the 11+ system. Its exam results regularly exceeded those of its paired 500 year old Grammar school in the next town

                https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/... [wikipedia.org]

                So basically you are talking out of your backside about a schoo

            • Clever children do better if they are streamed, and holding clever children back so they can pull other people back is completely unacceptable.

              Strenuously agree. In third grade I got in trouble for looking at other kids when I was supposed to put my head down on my desk (yes, really) and be quiet because I was finished with my work early. Punished for success. Since I had trouble doing that I had to write lines a lot. It still hurts me to write. More cursive than signing a check is right out. What is needed is a system where kids go to different teachers for different subjects, and they go to them based not on their age but their ability. If they

        • Mandatory streaming, as practiced outside the US, only makes the problem worse by divining one's entire life based on the performance of a small number of tests. Make the wrong score, get locked out of education save for bottom-tier, perpetually-unskilled vocational schooling.

          On the other hand, the US system does not lock in status and concentrates on continual display of merit. It takes anyone and gives them the best opportunity to succeed. In the US system, AP Honors is a nice thing to have but not nec

          • by jabuzz ( 182671 )

            More utter rubbish from someone who has never experienced streaming in a comprehensive school in the United Kingdom. I went to my local school it took everyone of all abilities. The next nearest school in county (think state if you are in the USA) was 15 miles away as I grew up in rural Northumberland. Inside the school we where streamed on ability. You could and pupils did move up the sets if you either showed the ability. Conversely pupils that dropped out where moved down the sets.

            The point is had my mat

        • I've been thinking for a while now that the answer isn't so much merit based. I think the answer, or at least a step in the right direction, is providing classes the way colleges do.

          It's ridiculous to think that 30 kids, of the same age, are going to learn the same way, at the same rate, as each other.
          A child who isn't as developed, put into the machine before he is ready, is going to start behind. He may very well have a rotten time, and just barely make it through each grade. So now he is the dumb
      • I've thought the same thing. There shouldn't be a first grade, second grade, etc. but rather several classes that for each topic that a student can progress through individually. Maybe Johnny can't read so good and needs to repeat the first sequence in reading, but is fine in all other aspects or perhaps little Suzy is a math prodigy and can jump ahead a sequence or two but isn't excelling in her other topics so she should just stay put in those.

        Such a system sounds far more preferable as it affords stud
        • by Bongo ( 13261 )

          I like that idea and to extend it, differentiated education could also be on-going, and we basically split the work week between continuing study and productive work.

          The old model—learn by rote and follow a clock and then do the same task in a factory all day for life—is long gone.

          Markets shift and adapt, and people need to be able to develop their abilities in whatever direction suits them, whilst working.

      • While it is admirable to try to speed-bin people, it makes things worse. For those caught on the wrong side, it amplifies faults while nullifying any gains.

      • In the Netherlands, we have had something like that for a long time now. After elementary school (at 12 years), children receive a recommendation for one of the various levels of high school: from lower vocational education (VMBO, 4 years) to pre-university (VWO, 6 years). It is possible to go from one level to the next, by graduating and then enrolling in the last-but-one year of the next level. That means you lose a year going up each level, which gives you an idea of the difference between the levels.
    • Because solving this problem needed 8 core powerhouses running on solid state drives with 32 gigs of ram. Any education problem that couldn't be solved on an Apple IIe is not going to be magically solved by modern computers and programs. This isn't a queuing algorithm that can be optimized with enough thought and manpower. We've known how to run well oiled classrooms for hundreds of years. Problem is too many greased palms and politicians playing games with tax money.
    • Worse still, it's more work that won't improve outcomes as there's a lack of good evidence [nyu.edu] to support that individualizing learning styles does any good. There are studies that have found negative results. [missouri.edu]

      This is just like the programs to give students a laptop, a tablet, or something else that's supposed to be great for education but won't result in any significant changes. It's made to sound nice and fancy so that schools will spend millions of dollars on it and who would want to question funding somet
  • by Anonymous Coward

    > "If you have three Pepsis and drink one, how much more refreshed are you? You, the redhead in the Chicago school system?"
    > "Pepsi?"
    > "Partial credit!"

  • If only... (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday July 23, 2015 @07:42AM (#50166761)

    If only there was a way to get kids with similar learning styles into the same classes.... some sort of test they could give kids, the same test even to all the kids, standardized to identify their strengths and weaknesses, and pickup on their learning styles and then group them into smaller organizations, a class or something so that a teacher that excels at one style of teaching can educate kids that excel at that style of learning....

    To bad that's impossible, or it'd be a great idea.

  • Why is Belinda Gates referred to as Bill's 'better half'? That's so wrong on so many levels. You can say that as a 'joke', but written in an article, it's very wrong.
  • by sjbe ( 173966 ) on Thursday July 23, 2015 @08:06AM (#50166873)

    One of the biggest problems in American education is that teachers have to teach 30 students with different learning styles at the same time.

    At some point that is pretty much an irreducible problem. You have finite (and too often shrinking) resources to spend on each pupil and teaching isn't something that generally scales very well, especially with young people and even more especially when you want to customize it per pupil. Furthermore it's not as if each of the 30 students "learning styles" have no overlap or that a non-optimized teaching method cannot still be effective. I think that it is great that people are working hard to try to improve education but I think the notion that we're going to somehow leverage some online system to make magical improvements is a bit naive. None of that is unique to the American education system - any teacher anywhere would have the same problems.

    Developers at Facebook, however, have built an online system that gives teachers the information and tools they need to design individualized lessons.

    Great they built an online system. They're hardly the first. Why should we believe this system will be any better than the innumerable past attempts? I read the article and it provides no real insight into what is different nor any data regarding how effective it is.

    The result is that teachers can spend their time doing what they're best at: inspiring kids.

    I am pretty involved in my local school (I have a part time staff position there) and work closely with many teachers throughout the school year. The notion that what most teachers do best is "inspiring kids" is nonsense, and as far as I can tell meaningless too. Some do "inspire" but it certainly isn't "what they're best at" for most of them. Furthermore you can inspire people all you want but that isn't the same thing as teaching them. Effective teaching requires more than getting students excited about a topic. And most teachers I've ever had weren't especially good at "inspiring kids". Many teachers have a pretty negative and cynical attitude unfortunately and more than a few don't exactly have a passion for teaching much less inspiring. Maybe this tool is great but my guess is that it really probably doesn't improve things much and likely only will work well in fairly specific circumstances.

    I deal with kids who have FAR bigger issues than worrying about tailoring a lesson plan. Getting food on the table, dealing with a disfunctional or abusive home life, parents who are simply not involved, etc. That's not to say tailored lesson plans aren't an important problem but it's no where near the top of the heap of serious problems facing our schools.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by drinkypoo ( 153816 )

      Great they built an online system. They're hardly the first. Why should we believe this system will be any better than the innumerable past attempts?

      Because it has better propaganda attached, of course. This time it's from the Gates foundation, which is pretending [latimes.com] to save the world! They'll never eradicate anything as long as there's whole countries they can't get into because they're actually doing the work of Big Pharma... the best the Gates Foundation can do is just suppress a disease for a time. But they can also weasel their way into education so they can really shit it up and become an unremovable part of graft and pork.

      • by Anonymous Coward

        I'm really pretty neutral about the Gates foundation, but the Gates have a history of being incredibly hostile toward teachers and the education system. I don't have any illusions that the US educational system is perfect, but I get the sense that they are arrogant and also naive in assuming they know what's wrong and how to fix it. This release seems consistent with their history, in assuming that some overly simplistic suggestion will turn the US into some educational nirvana--"hey! we have online persona

    • My high school physics was the most inspirational teacher I ever had. First year of college I was plopped right into remedial physics.
    • At some point that is pretty much an irreducible problem

      It's not. The truth is the whole concept of "learning styles" is basically like the pudding model of the atom: it's cute, but it's not real.

      Take me for instance: I'm more of an auditory or kinesthetic learner than a visual learner. Why? Because when I hear things, I turn sounds into images, feelings, colors, movement, ideas--my brain encodes sound in an explosive sensory manner. I process all of these things visually: emotions, movement, and abstract ideas are visual things--some don't have image

    • One of the biggest problems in American education is that teachers have to teach 30 students with different learning styles at the same time.

      At some point that is pretty much an irreducible problem.

      What if the students were in virtual classrooms (using VR headsets)? Each student would "jack into" the classroom with the teaching style that works best for them.

      • What if the students were in virtual classrooms (using VR headsets)? Each student would "jack into" the classroom with the teaching style that works best for them.

        Who is doing the teaching? The fundamental limitation is the amount of time that a teacher has to spend with each student is finite and I can assure you that most students are not highly motivated to learn. If you have heaping gobs of money you can improve this limitation to a point but sooner or later you'll hit a ceiling. Technology can extend the effectiveness of a teacher sometimes but not by much. This is not a technology problem. It is an economic problem - specifically a resource optimization pr

    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Reflecting back over my years of schooling, I find that some of the teachers I learned the most from were cynical, demanding, cantankerous bastards. They were the hardest to please, the hardest to pass, and the ones the average people didn't like. The average person in school is all about the easiest teachers so they can maximize their GPA doing the minimum work.

      One thing did happen with those teachers, I learned. I had to, because otherwise I was going to fail. We build robust systems by making them fa

    • Learning styles is a harmful myth:

      http://www.wired.com/2015/01/n... [wired.com]

    • by tomhath ( 637240 )

      One of the biggest problems in American education is that teachers have to teach 30 students with different learning styles at the same time.

      At some point that is pretty much an irreducible problem.

      The problem is easily solved, but the solution is not politically correct: Don't jumble 30 students of all different capabilities and intelligence levels together.

      Instead they system tends toward mainstreaming [wikipedia.org] so the little snowflakes get exposed to people who are special, instead of getting an education.

  • Paper (Score:5, Insightful)

    by fluffernutter ( 1411889 ) on Thursday July 23, 2015 @08:07AM (#50166881)
    I'm not really understanding. What does this Facebook solotion do that couldn't be done on a piece of paper? The problem is the work involved in developing each lesson, not in the tracking of each lesson once it is developed. Does this Facebook plan eliminate the work involved in coming up with separate plans?
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward

      What Facebook does better than a piece of paper is the requirement of a computer. What would make Facebooks solution even better was that it required Microsoft Windows 10 and a Microsoft Office Online subscription for the pupils and a Microsoft Server Educational Edition with a CAL per student per teacher per desktop per tablet per smart phone with a cost of 150 dollar per CAL. Than Melinda Gates could step up and show her good heart and donate 1000 dollar per student so students and tax payers only have to

    • Re:Paper (Score:5, Interesting)

      by bangular ( 736791 ) on Thursday July 23, 2015 @09:16AM (#50167179)
      The biggest problems in the school system can't be solved with technology. Technology won't make parents care about their kids. Technology won't stop politicians from playing games with school system tax money. Technology won't stop the textbook publishers from price gouging schools. Schools aren't screwed up because of lack of good algorithms. Remove all technology from schools and revert to pen and paper. The good schools will still be good and the bad schools will still be bad.
      • Education *is* technology! We learn the best way to teach, and do that! Unfortunately, it's also politics, so we don't actually do that; we just handwave, pat ourselves on the back for having ideas, never implement most ideas, select the least-effective ones to implement so nothing changes, and then talk about how important education is.

    • by plopez ( 54068 )

      "What does this Facebook solotion do that couldn't be done on a piece of paper? "

      Just a guess, spy ware.

  • by dltaylor ( 7510 ) on Thursday July 23, 2015 @08:15AM (#50166921)

    Maybe, if instead of skipping out on billions of dollars in taxes, Microsoft paid them, we could put enought teachers in the schools to cut the class sizes to more like the 18-20 they should be handling.

    • http://www.nea.org/home/rankin... [nea.org]

      When you talk about overloaded classrooms you're talking about STEM classrooms.

      We have plenty of teachers. In fact, we could fire a lot of them and still be below 18-20 per class.

      The issue is that we specialize in worthless teachers who collect full paychecks with empty classrooms because they're not competent enough to step in and teach a STEM period or two. As if the standards for becoming a K-12 math teacher are even particularly difficult.

      As a bonus for firing a lot of

      • Your number seemed very low from my experiences, so I took a look at your link and found this:
        "According to recent studies, the difference between student-teacher ratio and average class size in K-3 is 9 or 10 students "
        So in reality it's closer to 30 kids per classroom.
        • by KalvinB ( 205500 )

          Right, my point is that the average is 15.9. So if some classrooms have 30 kids and the average is 15.9, that proves the point that there are a lot of classrooms with less than 15.9 kids so that the average is 15.9.

          That's the whole point of averages.

          Every classroom could have 15.9 kids, but because we like paying people not to do anything, we have 30 kids in one room and (30 + x) / 2 = 15.9 which works to 30 + x = 31.8, x = 1.8

          For every 30 kid classroom there can be a classroom with 1.8 kids and the averag

  • by CPIMatt ( 206195 ) on Thursday July 23, 2015 @08:33AM (#50166981)

    This would be great, but it is likely not true. According to more recent research kid's learning styles is not true. This theory has been reported as fact, but is not backed up by science. In fact it is better to get a kid out of their comfort zone for them to learn more.

    https://thinkneuroscience.word... [wordpress.com]

    -Matt

    • You are absolutely correct.

      Research has shown over and over again that while people may have a preference for learning modality (visual, auditory, kinestetic), there is no such thing as a learning style that teaches you best. If you teach an "auditory learner" with visual techniques they will learn just as well as a "visual learner." There is no aptitude by treatment interaction for learning preference and teaching style. Learning styles is one of those myths perpetuated by people that want everyone to be

  • by Anonymous Coward

    Certainly students vary in ability and interests, but learning styles, in the sense that some learn visually, some aurally, etc., don't seems to exist. In increasing levels of rigor, see

    • by jabuzz ( 182671 )

      When it comes to learning to read in English at least there are several methods. My mother now retired who had a reputation of never letting a child leave her class unable to read (reception/ year one teacher) tells me that some children take to phonics and some to whole language/look and say.

      The skill of a good teacher is to identify the method that works best for the individual child and use an appropriate reading scheme.

      So while phonics on average works best, some children will never get it, and if you c

  • The result is that teachers can spend their time doing what they're best at: inspiring kids.

    It's yet another flipped classroom concept where the students are expected to learn the material on their own, with the teacher acting as de facto manager and cheerleader of the instructional process. It can work if the school devotes a lot of money to creating and maintaining the online content, and if the parents are actively involved in their childrens' education. Otherwise, it devolves into yet another failed a

  • Sure! One of Education's Biggest Problem: Getting advertizing into the classroom.
  • At one charter school? How did they measure the impact on teachers' time? What impact did it have on students? Was there a controlled study which compensated for Socio-economic status, age, regional differences, etc.? Was there a longitude study which tracked student performance over time? Or is this just wishful thinking and huckstering?

  • So when asked for a life-betterment achievement of Sillicon Valley, the oracle comes up with...yet. another. tech. solution. to solve a likely insoluble problem with no track record whatever. It's all bullshit. SV wants to make money. No more no less. Nothing wrong with that, but they abandoned religion and see themselves as gods. The tech 'titans' need to get over themselves.

  • Can you fix that crap? And while you're at it, can you install a politics filter that will automagically delete anybody's politically-motivated posting? That'd be great, thanks. Oh, and how about a Dislike button?

  • >>[SV companies] are innovating in ways that make life better for billions of people.

    She meant to say, "they are innovating in ways that make life better for the billionaire people."

  • by Anonymous Coward

    Call me old fashioned but I do not think teachers need be concerned with inspiring students. To be a student requires a strong desire to be educated along with a willingness to suffer to get an education. If that is not present simply dump the kid into the jungle and let them live a life of hard manual labor or the jail and prison routine. Frankly if a kid is not sharp enough to realize that huge fortunes can be made by acquiring a high level of education the kid is so out of touch and disoriente

  • by znrt ( 2424692 )

    the subject already scared the shit out of me.
    the abstract made me feel just sad.
    then i realized this is just surreptitious advertising and everything's ok again. sort of ...

  • The Mother of Clippy says that somebody mashed up some code to solve all the world's education problems. I say: something of a wild exaggeration. Not the part about mothering Clippy.

A man is known by the company he organizes. -- Ambrose Bierce

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