[Edu-sig] IronPython 1.0 on Slashdot

kirby urner kirby.urner at gmail.com
Thu Sep 7 17:11:44 CEST 2006

On 9/6/06, Arthur <ajsiegel at optonline.net> wrote:

> I have nothing in particular against Microsoft. I do believe that
> technology has been a factor among factors disruptive of some sensible
> levels of sensitivity to issues connected to the corporate sponsorship
> of academic and educational endeavors. Not here in particular, but
> certainly in general, I think it has indeed had a tremendous impact in
> influencing the debate about the role of technology in education. There
> is little academy left, in its more idealized sense - from what I can
> tell, at least in the US. Things *really are* different, really have
> evolved into something else again. My own sense is that necessary
> equilibriums have been disturbed, and instead of Kirby's triumphalism
> about the role of technology and the Silicon Forest - I feels something
> closer akin to dread. There is evolution, and there are evolutionary
> dead-ends.
> Another friendship secured, I'm sure.
> Art

Interesting as always Art.

>From my perspective, USA school kids are already in enforced servitude
to Texas Instruments, a private commercial enterprise and maker of TI
calculators.  Whereas I recognized their keypads for distilling a lot
of key symbols to a small turf, their success has prevented our
advance to a new level, where open source is plentiful and gnu math
topics wonderful.

So in getting behind .NET and Monkey, you might see me trying to
puppet big industry into fighting with itself -- and you'd be right in
seeing that.  It's companies against companies.  We call that
competition and model it in sports (mostly for the competent) or in
war (mostly for the incompetent).  We put each other "out of business"
but also in a position to "learn from our mistakes" i.e. just because
that enterprise came to an end, doesn't mean you can't try again
another day.

So you see, there are certain aspects of being a capitalist tool that
I enjoy.  What I don't like is the uneven playing field set up between
artificial persons in the guise of real ones, and real ones -- an
issue not new to you.  One approach is to focus on "undoing mistakes
in the law" (a kind of debugging).  Another approach, mine, is to work
with tribal semi-sovereignties on defining new small, medium and large
enterprise models that simply operate outside "white man" jurisdiction
-- in the sense of *not* inheriting centuries of dreary boilerplate
(i.e. "crufty legalese" as we call it in geekese, a different coding
language).  The Pacific Northwest is a good state for this experiment
(lots of wealthy casinos).

So, does this mean Indian Gaming is getting involved in the public and
private education business, pushing back against the likes of TI and
MSFT, other stock ticker entities?  Yes.   Spirit Mountain (Grand
Ronde) has been instrumental in keeping OMSI going (our favorite
science museum). It also means we'll be trying out topics Pentagon
Math on the rez, well before we look at reaching the burbs.  The grand
strategy plan is pretty open source, spelled out in some detail (a lot
by Fuller, over decades).  My longer term readers will find nothing
new here -- they already know a lot more.


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