Bill Gates

Another of Labour’s concerns solved…by Kiwi indifference

Labour has their Future of Work Commission where they have signalled a worry that the robots are going to take people’s jobs.

The problem is that Kiwi workers don’t think they will so any political party pimping that message will have their policy fall on deaf ears.

Most Kiwis in the service industry aren?t concerned about the looming threat of their jobs being taken over by robots, a study has found.

Late last year, Massey University surveyed the opinions of roughly 140 employees from 50 companies throughout New Zealand and found 87.5% of them disagreed with the statement “smart technology, artificial intelligence, robotics or algorithms could take my job.”

Massey University school of management senior lecturer David Brougham completed the study and tells?NBR?he isn?t surprised by the result because there was less awareness about the issue last year.

?Despite experts like Bill Gates and Stephen Hawking warning about mass unemployment in the future, it seems few New Zealanders are making any plans to change out of jobs that might disappear over the next five to ten years,? Dr Brougham says. ? Read more »

Brilliant for the World – tragic for the Left/Socialism

Bill Gates has published his annual letter.

In it he states:

The lives of people in poor countries will improve faster in the next 15 years than at any other time in history. And their lives will improve more than anyone else’s.

and;

But we think the next 15 years will see major breakthroughs for most people in poor countries. They will be living longer and in better health. They will have unprecedented opportunities to get an education, eat nutritious food, and benefit from mobile banking. These breakthroughs will be driven by innovation in technology ? ranging from new vaccines and hardier crops to much cheaper smartphones and tablets ? and by innovations that help deliver those things to more people.

The rich world will keep getting exciting new advances too, but the improvements in the lives of the poor will be far more fundamental ? the basics of a healthy, productive life. It’s great that more people in rich countries will be able to watch movies on super hi-resolution screens. It’s even better that more parents in poor countries will know their children aren’t going to die.

Read more »

Al-Qaeda calls for ‘lone wolf’ attacks on UK airlines

Al-Qaeda is ramping up the stakes in the race to be the premier Islamic terror organisation.

ISIS has seriously dented their mosque cred but they are now suggesting to lone wolf terrorists to go and attack prominent British targets like British Airways, EasyJet and praising recent terror attacks.

Police and security services are investigating an Al-Qaeda magazine which calls for ‘lone wolf’ terrorists to blow up easyJet and British Airways planes using bombs made in their kitchens.

The chilling and widely-reported call to arms says high-profile airlines should be targeted in a bid to gain headlines and ‘crush the enemy’s economy’.

Released on Christmas Eve, the disturbing publication names British Airways because it is the ‘flag carrier airline of the United Kingdom’ and the largest airline by number of planes.

Budget carrier easyJet is equally targeted because it ‘is a low cost carrier, hence has a large number of passengers.’

A Home Office spokesman said: ‘We are aware of this publication and the police and security agencies are taking appropriate action. National security and protecting the public is our priority.

‘Our comprehensive counter-terrorism strategy includes measures to remove terrorist material hosted online, prevent radicalisation and protect the UK from acts of terrorism.’

Also targeted in the publication, which is called Inspire and has been widely reported by news outlets around the world, are Air France and U.S. carriers American Airlines, United and Delta alongside high-profile U.S. figures Bill Gates and Federal Reserve chairman?Ben Bernanke.

Continental Airlines is also singled out despite the fact that it stopped flying planes under its name two years ago after merging with United to form United Continental Holdings. ?? Read more »

No.1 Reason why the Left rant about Charter Schools: Fear of Success!

There are only 5 Charter School in NZ so far. The unions rant about them, misrepresent them and exaggerate their funding. Hipkins and Cunliffe (who also exaggerate their funding) refuse to even visit, let alone explain – face to face – to parents and children why they threaten to close down something that is working already. See South Auckland Middle School?or Vanguard Military School.

As the data set grows for Charter Schools the NZ Left’s biggest fear is exactly what is occurring – success and community empowerment without union or centralised control. Keep in mind that the NZ Left is years behind the play (best guess – 1970s) – Obama’s administration does understand that education is for children and their families.

The other thing that is clearly frightening NZ’s left is that major philanthropists in the US are seeing that the schools are avoiding the bureaucratic black holes of time and money and are actually getting results for needy kids – therefore they are prepared to help.

The Philanthropy Roundtable of the USA have just issued a book:?From Promising to Proven?about Charter Schools in the USA. It will frighten the unions and the political Left in NZ so much that they will avidly avoid reading it (as will most of the MSM). They prefer to blame the economy for any education failure and to see schools and teachers as helpless victims. The book has a different message so a number of points are summarised for them here (full references are in the book):

Bill Gates explains that after his foundation decided in the mid?1990s to focus on U.S. schooling, it poured about $2 billion into various education experiments. During their first decade, he reports, ?many of the small schools that we invested in did not improve students? achievement in any significant way.? There was, however, one fascinating exception.

?A few of the schools that we funded achieved something amazing. They replaced schools with low expectations and low results with ones that have high expectations and high results.? And there was a common variable: ?Almost all of these schools were charter schools.?

Other philanthropists had the same experience. Eli Broad, one of the biggest givers to education in the U.S., observed that ?charter school systems are delivering the best student outcomes, particularly for poor and minority students. They are performing significantly better than the best traditional school district systems.? Ted Mitchell of the NewSchools Venture Fund drew some bold bottom lines: ?Good charter schools have pretty much eliminated the high-school dropout rate. And they?ve doubled the college?going rate of underserved kids.?

Some broad strengths of charter schools

  • They attract more entrepreneurial principals and teachers into the field of education
  • School autonomy allows wide experimentation with new ways of educating
  • This same flexibility is used to circumvent bureaucratic obstacles that often block conventional schools from succeeding
  • Charters sidestep the dysfunctional labor relations of many urban districts
  • They erode monopolies and introduce competitive energy into public education
  • Research shows that charters are more effective at recruiting teachers who graduated in the top third of their college class
  • Charters give parents who cannot afford private schools, or moving, another choice besides their neighborhood school
  • They give nonprofits and community organizations practical opportunities to improve the education of local children
  • Their emphasis on student outcomes fosters greater accountability for results
  • By functioning as laboratories and alternatives, charters foment change in conventional schools as well

In the 2013 U.S. News and World Report rankings of public high schools, for instance, 41 charters made it into the top 200. Read more »

Thomas Sowell Slams Anti-Charter School Crap

Thomas Sowell?is someone who knows a good thing for minority groups when he sees it.

In this article he makes clear the fantastic changes occurring for poorer children in the US through Charter Schools and the philanthropy that goes with it.

“The Walton Family Foundation — created by the people who created Walmart — has given more than $300 million to charter schools, voucher programs and other educational enterprises concerned with the education of poor and minority students across the country.

The Walton Family Foundation gave more than $58 million to the KIPP schools, which have had spectacular success in raising the test scores of children in ghettoes where the other children are far behind in academic performance.

D.C. Prep, in Washington, whose students are mostly poor and black, has also received grants from the Walton Family Foundation. Its test scores likewise exceed those of traditional neighborhood schools, as well as the test scores of other local charter schools. Other wealthy people across the country have been doing similar things for years, including high-tech tycoons like Bill Gates and Michael Dell. It is one of the great untold stories of a unique pattern of philanthropy that makes America truly exceptional. ? Read more »

PPTA opposes courses because kids might get a job out of them

You really have to wonder about the state of mind of teachers who oppose literally everything in education, including the possibility of students getting jobs.

Russell Blackstock reports:

It is 7.40 on a humid Auckland morning and a dedicated group of wannabe IT experts is already lining up outside a classroom at Avondale College in the west of the city.

While waiting for their teacher to arrive, the students are busily updating their social media pages and browsing news sites on smartphones and hand-held tablets.

Most of their school friends are barely out of bed, still at home wolfing down breakfast.

The youngsters ? aged 13 to 17 ? are enrolled in the school’s new Innovation Programme, a partnership with United States giant Microsoft. The kids are hoping for a headstart into computer industry roles such as software and game designers, solution architects and project managers.

Bill and Melinda Gates, Mark Zuckerberg, Steve Jobs ? the computer whizzes of the past taught themselves to code at home in their bedrooms, but the geeks of the future will learn in the classroom.

The classes run from 8am every weekday before the regular school day starts.

The students also attend for three hours most Saturday mornings and even during the holidays.

So they even volunteer to attend classes outside of normal school hours…perish the thought that they might just be enjoying the courses.

David Officer is just 13 but is already devising a programme to help teachers mark students’ work.

Madeleine Day, 16, is developing a mobile asset-management system that she hopes will help the fuel industry make complex calculations about weights and measures.

“The course is fantastic and is geared towards preparing you for a job or further education,” Day says.

“I would like to become a software engineer or work in the gaming industry, ideally for the likes of Microsoft or Google.”

Sounds promising…but wait here come the whingers.

Not everyone agrees?that public-private partnerships are a good thing. The Post Primary Teachers’ Association has expressed concerns at such ventures.

John Guthrie, senior lecturer at the University of Otago’s Business School, warns that large corporations like Microsoft can simply use such courses to capture future customers and headhunt employees.

“It is not unlike a bank targeting youngsters and encouraging them to save with them,” he says.

“The hope is that if they get them early enough, the kids will become customers for life. It makes good business sense.

So the kids might end up with a job at the end of school? ?Yes, I can?see why some would view that as be a disaster. The teacher unions wouldn’t want kids to succeed now would they?

 

Source/ NZ Herald

The invention of ctrl-alt-delete

Using defamation to stifle free speech

Michael Tracinski has a great article about the current Mann vs Steyn defamation action being used by Michael Man in an attempt to shut down criticism.

I was reminded of this in coming across a little sidelight to Mann vs. Steyn, the defamation lawsuit filed by scientist-turned-activist Michael Mann in an attempt to suppress the speech of global warming skeptics, starting with conservative writer Mark Steyn.

As I have explained?elsewhere?Mann is attempting to legally punish any attempt to “question his intellect and reasoning”?that’s from the DC Superior Court, which preposterously backed his argument?on the grounds that Mann’s scientific claims have been investigated by multiple government panels, which have exonerated him.

This claim, by the way, is already falling apart. As Steven McIntyre?explains, one of the examples Mann cites is a British panel that did not actually investigate Mann?its focus was on the University of East Anglia’s Climatic Research Unit, the epicenter of “Climategate”?and in its announcement of its results criticized Mann’s methods as “inappropriate” and his results as “exaggerated.” At the time, Mann felt so exonerated that he sent harassing e-mails to the scientist who made that remark, demanding a retraction and an apology. Mann then went on to tell the BBC that such a retraction was forthcoming. It wasn’t. All of which tells you a great deal about Professor Mann’s credibility.

But that’s not the main issue. The main issue in the suit is Mann’s appeal to authority in the first place. He cites the various government investigations as reasons why, as the DC Superior Court put it, “to question [Mann’s] intellect and reasoning is tantamount to a [libelous] accusation of fraud.” Mann’s goal is to make it a legally punishable offense to question a scientist’s honesty or even his thinking method.? Read more »

Sunday nightCap

Bill Gates: Gangsta style

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