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Old 16th December 2007, 12:59 AM
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Americans really are stupid "Facebook for Dummies"

http://www.amazon.com/Facebook-Dummi.../dp/0470262737
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Old 16th December 2007, 01:16 AM
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Re: Americans really are stupid "Facebook for Dummies"

holy shit, i have to blog about this.
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Old 16th December 2007, 02:50 AM
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Re: Americans really are stupid "Facebook for Dummies"

don't for "myspace for dummies" or the oldies, "email for dummies" and "The Internet for Dummies"

Maybe one of us should write "IDN for Dummies" whoops probably alittle to advanced for the audience.

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Old 16th December 2007, 09:04 AM
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Re: Americans really are stupid "Facebook for Dummies"

Quote:
Originally Posted by IDNCowboy
They are not entirely stupid, they are simply the results of living in a nearly 100% "service and convenience society" where everything is spoon fed to them.

Not only that, but the "service and convenience sector" perpetuates their own existence by refusing to allow consumers to adjust the knobs on their own or provide them with the tools to do so. They also lobby congress to make it illegal for consumers to adjust the knobs or create their own tools. Everything must be done at an "authorized service center" or the warranty becomes void.

This is America (USA). I believe Britain is actually not too far behind, either. Stories about about the person who installed linux on his new computer (software) and as a result the store refused to service hardware failures.

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Old 16th December 2007, 09:19 AM
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Re: Americans really are stupid "Facebook for Dummies"

I think you have missed the point. The service personnel have been so de-skilled that if the User fiddles with the knobs it becomes beyond their capability to rectify the settings!


Quote:
Originally Posted by jacksonm
They are not entirely stupid, they are simply the results of living in a nearly 100% "service and convenience society" where everything is spoon fed to them.

Not only that, but the "service and convenience sector" perpetuates their own existence by refusing to allow consumers to adjust the knobs on their own or provide them with the tools to do so. They also lobby congress to make it illegal for consumers to adjust the knobs or create their own tools. Everything must be done at an "authorized service center" or the warranty becomes void.

This is America (USA). I believe Britain is actually not too far behind, either. Stories about about the person who installed linux on his new computer (software) and as a result the store refused to service hardware failures.

.
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Old 16th December 2007, 09:54 AM
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Re: Americans really are stupid "Facebook for Dummies"

Link bait title, but I'll bite:

I think that some members of our society are not so familiar with computers and the web. My mother might be a good candidate for such a book, if I really wanted her on Facebook. I have a cousin who might need such a book. He can operate heavy machinery, though. Can you?

The 'for Dummies' series is aimed at anyone who feels like a novice. It covers many, many different topics. The publishers don't necessarily fill a void. They pick something popular and create a niche product. Because the book series exists means nothing about Americans.

I am sure that British, French, Japanese, Chinese, and Latin American grandmothers & grandfathers are much more 'Facebook' savvy than Americans. Or are they? Maybe the fact that the book exists says more about our curiosity and willingness to connect across generations.
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Old 16th December 2007, 10:14 AM
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Re: Americans really are stupid "Facebook for Dummies"

I see it rather differently. I think we are in new Ideological battle ground. This may have overlapped with Communism to some degree, but it is probably even more essential for all of us. Unfortunately, this battle is going to be much more like Civil Warfare.

On one side you have big business and on the other side you have the artisan.

Big business whether intentional or by default is seeking to enslave us with with debt. We are all expected to borrow far more than we can afford, so that we not only make them rich but are enforced to tow the company line. This is most evident in America, which claims to have higher quality of life than just about anywhere else. The bottom line, however, is that they work longer hours, take shorter holidays, are more indebted, worse educated and suffer worse nutrition than just about anywhere else in the Developed World.

De-skilling means training people to do a specific task very efficiently, but rather like a slave breaking rocks. De-skilling means that yours skills are specific and therefore have no market value. You cannot command a premium for your ability, and often you will struggle even to transfer them to new employment.

On the other side of the coin, you have the individual who seeks to be creative and to learn more to achieve self-actualization, and a market premium. Generally, he wants work to be part of a balanced life that allows him or her to spend time travelling, experience other cultures or activities, enriching his life by having meaningful relationships with family and friends. All of which is practically heresy to big business where it goes beyond the point of productivity gains.

Big Business was definitely gaining the upper hand, and is still gradually shifting the goal posts away from where we all want to be. The Internet, however, has offered hope to the individual. It provides a cost effective way for the individual to address a global market. However, of course this is seen as threat by a lot of vested interest, so this errant behaviour needs to be controlled or better extinguished.

The real battle for the freedom of humanity has really just only engaged. I am hopeful that individual freedoms will triumph, but it will take a lot more than just being born in the "The Land of the Free", to achieve such goals.
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Old 16th December 2007, 10:22 AM
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Re: Americans really are stupid "Facebook for Dummies"

I wish I could write that much about an 'Ideological Battle Ground' but ..

My aunt saw me on facebook and/or pictures of me posted by other people on facebook one time and then called my mother about the pictures, who in turn called me, because she wanted to see the pictures too but didn't know what facebook was. I wouldn't say either of them is more intelligient than the other, just that my aunt is a hell of alot more nosy, and is one of those people that still wishes she were young. My mom dropped it and still doesn't know what facebook is.

Quote:
Maybe the fact that the book exists says more about our curiosity and willingness to connect across generations.
Agreed.
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Old 16th December 2007, 10:31 AM
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Re: Americans really are stupid "Facebook for Dummies"

Excellent post, RD.

BTW, a series of books "for Dummies" would never sell well in Finland, a country where 85% of the population has at least a College Degree, and 60% of the population has a Master's Degree. Folks would likely only use that sort of book as wiping paper at the summer cabin's outhouse.

The truly scary bit, though, is when you see books like "Home Chemistry for Dummies", etc. Empowering idiots is never a good thing, and may result in more than a few kitchen explosions.

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Old 16th December 2007, 10:38 AM
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Re: Americans really are stupid "Facebook for Dummies"

LMAO! This whole thread is amusing. Pass the popcorn!

Funny story, Noemi! :p

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Old 16th December 2007, 10:43 AM
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Re: Americans really are stupid "Facebook for Dummies"

I'm so sick of all that European college elitism... as if college directly makes you any smarter or more successful. In Europe college is basically handed to you on a silver platter, and is based mostly on merit, but the standard is pretty low, and they encourage everyone to further their education.

Ironically, I grew up there and lived there, and both my parents got their master's there. Despite all that education they still can't fork over $15,000 per semester at UCLA. It's just a different situation in a place like Finland. You can't even begin to compare the two.

Quote:
Finnish education system is an egalitarian Nordic system, with no tuition fees for full-time students.
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Old 16th December 2007, 10:47 AM
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Re: Americans really are stupid "Facebook for Dummies"

This is just another symptom. By creating so many degrees they erode the market value of an education. Unfortunately, they also erode the value of the traditional degrees that have an intrinsic value because nobody in their right mind wants to work that hard for something that is not adequately remunerated. So we end up with highly articulate but innumerate engineers. Great!
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Old 16th December 2007, 10:54 AM
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Re: Americans really are stupid "Facebook for Dummies"

Quote:
Originally Posted by Noemi
I'm so sick of all that European college elitism... as if college directly makes you any smarter or more successful. In Europe college is basically handed to you on a silver platter, and is based mostly on merit, but the standard is pretty low, and they encourage everyone to further their education.

Ironically, I grew up there and lived there, and both my parents got their master's there. Despite all that education they still can't fork over $15,000 per semester at UCLA. It's just a different situation in a place like Finland. You can't even begin to compare the two.
Go, Bruin, go!



If I had not been on scholarship and working, I could not have graduated from USC.



Agree 100%! College is not very affordable here.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rubber Duck
This is just another symptom. By creating so many degrees they erode the market value of an education. Unfortunately, they also erode the value of the traditional degrees that have an intrinsic value because nobody in their right mind wants to work that hard for something that is not adequately remunerated. So we end up with highly articulate but innumerate engineers. Great!
I am not sure that I agree that engineers are so articulate. Competent. But not overwhelmingly articulate.

.

Last edited by burnsinternet; 16th December 2007 at 10:57 AM.. Reason: Automerged Doublepost
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Old 16th December 2007, 10:59 AM
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Re: Americans really are stupid "Facebook for Dummies"

Lol, I'm not a Bruin. I'm a nothing ... yet
My boyfriend went to a top liberal arts school and had 50% payed off in scholarships, but he's still paying it off. Now he's off doing volunteer work so that the gov't will pay for more of it. It's really pathetic, he's a graduate and he should have a good job or getting a masters, not doing volunteer work to pay off debts.

Maybe Finnish people have a better quality of life and more important things to talk about at lunch, but I don't know how college expands your knowledge of Facebook. You can't learn to understand things faster. Some do and some don't.
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Last edited by Noemi; 16th December 2007 at 11:01 AM.. Reason: Automerged Doublepost
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Old 16th December 2007, 11:02 AM
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Re: Americans really are stupid "Facebook for Dummies"

Well my experience is that they are becoming better and better at seeming to become better managers, often without having a clue about what it is that they are supposed to be managing.

Quote:
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I am not sure that I agree that engineers are so articulate. Competent. But not overwhelmingly articulate.

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Old 16th December 2007, 11:05 AM
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Re: Americans really are stupid "Facebook for Dummies"

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rubber Duck
This is just another symptom. By creating so many degrees they erode the market value of an education. Unfortunately, they also erode the value of the traditional degrees that have an intrinsic value because nobody in their right mind wants to work that hard for something that is not adequately remunerated. So we end up with highly articulate but innumerate engineers. Great!

No actually, the problem is that a lot of the master's graduates go to work in Britain or USA where they can make real money compared to Finland.

While it is true that people here are entitled to as much free education as they want, don't kid yourself into thinking that people who don't meet the cut are accepted into University, or that the ones who are accepted are simply handed degrees after 6 or 7 years - you still need to meet very high standards every step of the way and do a very good thesis in order to graduate.

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Old 16th December 2007, 11:12 AM
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Re: Americans really are stupid "Facebook for Dummies"

The top 2% of a population is a high standard.
Even the top 10% would be a high standard.
85% looks more like a majoirty to me.

I'm not saying they're not smart or they have low-quality education, I'm just saying they don't have setbacks like money and are pretty much hand-held through the proccess.
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Old 16th December 2007, 11:14 AM
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Re: Americans really are stupid "Facebook for Dummies"

Quote:
Originally Posted by jacksonm
No actually, the problem is that a lot of the master's graduates go to work in Britain or USA where they can make real money compared to Finland.

While it is true that people here are entitled to as much free education as they want, don't kid yourself into thinking that people who don't meet the cut are accepted into University, or that the ones who are accepted are simply handed degrees after 6 or 7 years - you still need to meet very high standards every step of the way and do a very good thesis in order to graduate.

.
My comments we not really aimed at Finland, although I can appreciate the Brain Drain problem.

If you want a reasonable benchmark for the standards of technical innovation you only have to do a comparison between Nokia and Motorola. :p

Quote:
Originally Posted by Noemi

I'm not saying they're not smart or they have low-quality education, I'm just saying they don't have setbacks like money and are pretty much hand-held through the proccess.
Isn't that what we should be trying to achieve? Perhaps that is why Finland is finding its niche whilst the US is just losing its way?

In my view there is plenty of time for the Darwinian selection process once kids leave college. My main criticism is that college is often not adequately geared towards teaching what to expect of Industry, probably because most academics know bugger all about it in the first place.
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Last edited by Rubber Duck; 16th December 2007 at 11:21 AM.. Reason: Automerged Doublepost
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Old 16th December 2007, 11:34 AM
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Re: Americans really are stupid "Facebook for Dummies"

I think the chief problem here is the price. Money is probably the biggest reason for NOT going to college here. If it were just merit-based, that would be different.
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Old 16th December 2007, 11:36 AM
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Re: Americans really are stupid "Facebook for Dummies"

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rubber Duck
Isn't that what we should be trying to achieve? Perhaps that is why Finland is finding its niche whilst the US is just losing its way?
Well, a good majority of the US Biotech companies run their R&D operations in Finland because people speak damned good english, are a western culture, are highly educated, and will work for 4-5k EUR per month. You could find 3 out of the above 4 in India, but the one which is missing is the most important...

The reason why Finland creates so many Masters Degrees is simply protectionism, especially after entering the EU. When the minimum standard to get a decent job here is a Master's Degree and quite often competent Finnish language skills, the place doesn't easily get flooded with foreigners who come looking for work.

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