The Obama Science Agenda

Seen something interesting in the news or on the intertubes? Discuss it here.

Moderators: Zamfir, Hawknc, Moderators General, Prelates

User avatar
mollusk
Posts: 33
Joined: Mon Aug 11, 2008 4:55 pm UTC

The Obama Science Agenda

Postby mollusk » Fri Jan 23, 2009 5:36 pm UTC

http://www.whitehouse.gov/agenda/technology/

I like it. Especially this part:

Double federal funding for basic research over ten years, changing the posture of our federal government to one that embraces science and technology.


As someone beginning grad school in biology this fall, this is music to my ears.
Last edited by mollusk on Fri Jan 23, 2009 9:49 pm UTC, edited 1 time in total.
John Hodgman wrote:...while the truth may be stranger than fiction, it is never as strange as lies . . . or as true.

User avatar
Jebobek
Posts: 2219
Joined: Tue Jun 17, 2008 7:19 pm UTC
Location: Harrisburg, Pennsylvania Geohash graticule

Re: The Obama Science Agenda

Postby Jebobek » Fri Jan 23, 2009 5:49 pm UTC

As another someone (hopefully) beginning grad school in biology this fall, this is earmusic.
Image

User avatar
Aikanaro
Posts: 1801
Joined: Wed Sep 24, 2008 1:43 pm UTC
Location: Saint Louis, MO

Re: The Obama Science Agenda

Postby Aikanaro » Fri Jan 23, 2009 5:50 pm UTC

Jebobek wrote:As another someone (hopefully) beginning grad school in biology this fall, this is earmusic.

....as opposed to pantsmusic?
Dear xkcd,

On behalf of my religion, I'm sorry so many of us do dumb shit. Please forgive us.

Love, Aikanaro.

User avatar
segmentation fault
Posts: 1770
Joined: Wed Dec 05, 2007 4:10 pm UTC
Location: Nu Jersey
Contact:

Re: The Obama Science Agenda

Postby segmentation fault » Fri Jan 23, 2009 5:51 pm UTC

is it considered irrational to hope that obama brings us to a point where i will never have a hard time looking for a job in the field of technology ever again?

and yes, it helps me sleep at night.
people are like LDL cholesterol for the internet

User avatar
Jebobek
Posts: 2219
Joined: Tue Jun 17, 2008 7:19 pm UTC
Location: Harrisburg, Pennsylvania Geohash graticule

Re: The Obama Science Agenda

Postby Jebobek » Fri Jan 23, 2009 5:54 pm UTC

Aikanaro wrote:
Jebobek wrote:As another someone (hopefully) beginning grad school in biology this fall, this is earmusic.

....as opposed to pantsmusic?
No, pantsmusic is ridiculous. shirtmusic.
Image

User avatar
Yakk
Poster with most posts but no title.
Posts: 11128
Joined: Sat Jan 27, 2007 7:27 pm UTC
Location: E pur si muove

Re: The Obama Science Agenda

Postby Yakk » Fri Jan 23, 2009 6:09 pm UTC

segmentation fault wrote:is it considered irrational to hope that obama brings us to a point where i will never have a hard time looking for a job in the field of technology ever again?

Yes. If technology becomes better employment-wise, more people will want to become technologists. The lower difficulty of getting a good job attracts more people. This can easily overshoot...
One of the painful things about our time is that those who feel certainty are stupid, and those with any imagination and understanding are filled with doubt and indecision - BR

Last edited by JHVH on Fri Oct 23, 4004 BCE 6:17 pm, edited 6 times in total.

User avatar
Aikanaro
Posts: 1801
Joined: Wed Sep 24, 2008 1:43 pm UTC
Location: Saint Louis, MO

Re: The Obama Science Agenda

Postby Aikanaro » Fri Jan 23, 2009 6:36 pm UTC

Jebobek wrote:
Aikanaro wrote:
Jebobek wrote:As another someone (hopefully) beginning grad school in biology this fall, this is earmusic.

....as opposed to pantsmusic?
No, pantsmusic is ridiculous. shirtmusic.

And now I kinda want pants that have a speaker on the front of them...I'm not sure what its intent would be, but I want them all the same...
Dear xkcd,

On behalf of my religion, I'm sorry so many of us do dumb shit. Please forgive us.

Love, Aikanaro.

User avatar
Jebobek
Posts: 2219
Joined: Tue Jun 17, 2008 7:19 pm UTC
Location: Harrisburg, Pennsylvania Geohash graticule

Re: The Obama Science Agenda

Postby Jebobek » Fri Jan 23, 2009 6:37 pm UTC

Aikanaro wrote:
Jebobek wrote:
Aikanaro wrote:
Jebobek wrote:As another someone (hopefully) beginning grad school in biology this fall, this is earmusic.

....as opposed to pantsmusic?
No, pantsmusic is ridiculous. shirtmusic.

And now I kinda want pants that have a speaker on the front of them...I'm not sure what its intent would be, but I want them all the same...
Probably for yo momma so she can beep when she backs up!

Edit: OK, Science Agenda. Any article not from facebook I can see?
Image

Heisenberg
Posts: 3789
Joined: Wed May 14, 2008 8:48 pm UTC
Location: Uncertain

Re: The Obama Science Agenda

Postby Heisenberg » Fri Jan 23, 2009 8:10 pm UTC

Jebobek wrote:Edit: OK, Science Agenda. Any article not from facebook I can see?

http://www.whitehouse.gov/agenda/technology/
Not really an article so much as the latest iteration of barackobama.org and change.gov

User avatar
EsotericWombat
Colorful Orator
Posts: 2567
Joined: Wed Sep 19, 2007 4:36 pm UTC
Location: Boston, MA
Contact:

Re: The Obama Science Agenda

Postby EsotericWombat » Fri Jan 23, 2009 10:09 pm UTC

Not specifically an act taken by the White House, but look at all the portents! http://uk.reuters.com/article/americasR ... dChannel=0

the FDA has approved human testing of embryonic stem cells. This news will likely be a firecracker under the asses of the Congress to remove restrictions on federal funding, as previously the only stumbling block was a veto.
Image

User avatar
podbaydoor
Posts: 7548
Joined: Sun Sep 02, 2007 4:16 am UTC
Location: spaceship somewhere out there

Re: The Obama Science Agenda

Postby podbaydoor » Fri Jan 23, 2009 11:16 pm UTC

Jebobek wrote:
Aikanaro wrote:
Jebobek wrote:As another someone (hopefully) beginning grad school in biology this fall, this is earmusic.

....as opposed to pantsmusic?
No, pantsmusic is ridiculous. shirtmusic.

No no, pantsmusic is actually awesome.
tenet |ˈtenit|
noun
a principle or belief, esp. one of the main principles of a religion or philosophy : the tenets of classical liberalism.
tenant |ˈtenənt|
noun
a person who occupies land or property rented from a landlord.

User avatar
hunsak
Posts: 100
Joined: Tue Jan 20, 2009 8:56 pm UTC
Location: Iraq

Re: The Obama Science Agenda

Postby hunsak » Sat Jan 24, 2009 12:10 am UTC

Yay Science.

Is this what our government should be spending its money on?

I'm not so worried about what's best use of our taxes, but more about where the government needs to step in and help, and where it is inappropriate to do so. We wouldn't want the federal government stepping in and funding certain things--churches for example.

Progression in science is a huge priority for any socities real progression. New techonolgies give us more power and flexibility.

It just seems unfortunate that we have to fund it in a way thats done by the federal government. Is it really necessary to force money out of the hands of every citizen to support science? There arn't enough of us willing to support it on our own?

What say ye? Is it the Feds responsiblity to fund science?

crowey
That's DOCTOR Crowey, to you
Posts: 1603
Joined: Wed Feb 20, 2008 10:52 pm UTC
Location: UK

Re: The Obama Science Agenda

Postby crowey » Sat Jan 24, 2009 12:25 am UTC

hunsak wrote:Progression in science is a huge priority for any socities real progression. New techonolgies give us more power and flexibility.

It just seems unfortunate that we have to fund it in a way thats done by the federal government. Is it really necessary to force money out of the hands of every citizen to support science? There arn't enough of us willing to support it on our own?

What say ye? Is it the Feds responsiblity to fund science?


Wuh?

Also: yay! I'd quite like to do a post doc in the US in a couple of years :)

User avatar
Jahoclave
sourmilk's moderator
Posts: 4790
Joined: Thu Oct 25, 2007 8:34 pm UTC
Contact:

Re: The Obama Science Agenda

Postby Jahoclave » Sat Jan 24, 2009 12:29 am UTC

Jebobek wrote:As another someone (hopefully) beginning grad school in biology this fall, this is earmusic.

As somebody looking into starting grad school in English this is-- Shit. Sheesh, at the very least he could throw the liberal arts a bone and legalize pot.

User avatar
Dream
WINNING
Posts: 4338
Joined: Tue Dec 04, 2007 7:20 pm UTC
Location: The Hollow Scene Epic

Re: The Obama Science Agenda

Postby Dream » Sat Jan 24, 2009 2:19 am UTC

hunsak wrote:Is this what our government should be spending its money on?
hunsak wrote:New techonolgies give us more power and flexibility.
It just seems unfortunate that we have to fund it in a way thats done by the federal government.


How do you square these three statements? What is a good reason to tax if not the betterment of the entire nation?
I knew a woman once, but she died soon after.

User avatar
Yakk
Poster with most posts but no title.
Posts: 11128
Joined: Sat Jan 27, 2007 7:27 pm UTC
Location: E pur si muove

Re: The Obama Science Agenda

Postby Yakk » Sat Jan 24, 2009 2:42 am UTC

Define enough? There is almost always more science to do.

People fund science out of their own pockets -- be it endowments, research labs for industry, or somebody doing science using their own pocket.

Now, after that point, is it worth it that the government invest even more money in science? Note I say invest. The trick is that the US is a large enough entity that general science advances, which generate broad-based wealth, can be expected to generate dividends for the US. New products, cheaper products, problems solved -- all make the world wealthier, and the US gets a good chunk of that just due to it's size.

Suppose each dollar invested into general science returns, after future discount factors, 2$ in present value to US as a whole. Is that worth taxing to provide? 100$? 1.1$?
One of the painful things about our time is that those who feel certainty are stupid, and those with any imagination and understanding are filled with doubt and indecision - BR

Last edited by JHVH on Fri Oct 23, 4004 BCE 6:17 pm, edited 6 times in total.

User avatar
Garm
Posts: 2241
Joined: Wed Sep 26, 2007 5:29 pm UTC
Location: Usually at work. Otherwise, Longmont, CO.

Re: The Obama Science Agenda

Postby Garm » Sat Jan 24, 2009 7:02 am UTC

Investing in science is investing in infrastructure. Infrastructure investment creates jobs whereas things like tax cuts really only help those who still have jobs. Hence, I'm in favor of this. I think it's sound economics. Not just that... I need something to do with my math degree.
Those who make peaceful revolution impossible will make violent revolution inevitable.
- JFK

Game_boy
Posts: 1314
Joined: Tue Mar 04, 2008 7:33 pm UTC

Re: The Obama Science Agenda

Postby Game_boy » Sat Jan 24, 2009 9:55 am UTC

Brilliant. It really is an investment that will help America in the future. I only wish Britain would do the same.
The Reaper wrote:Evolution is a really really really long run-on sentence.

User avatar
EsotericWombat
Colorful Orator
Posts: 2567
Joined: Wed Sep 19, 2007 4:36 pm UTC
Location: Boston, MA
Contact:

Re: The Obama Science Agenda

Postby EsotericWombat » Sun Jan 25, 2009 2:22 am UTC

Dream wrote:
hunsak wrote:Is this what our government should be spending its money on?
hunsak wrote:New techonolgies give us more power and flexibility.
It just seems unfortunate that we have to fund it in a way thats done by the federal government.


How do you square these three statements? What is a good reason to tax if not the betterment of the entire nation?


I'm guessing that he squares them through Small Government Conservative DoublethinkTM
Image

User avatar
hunsak
Posts: 100
Joined: Tue Jan 20, 2009 8:56 pm UTC
Location: Iraq

Re: The Obama Science Agenda

Postby hunsak » Sun Jan 25, 2009 7:40 am UTC

EsotericWombat wrote:
Dream wrote:
hunsak wrote:Is this what our government should be spending its money on?
hunsak wrote:New techonolgies give us more power and flexibility.
It just seems unfortunate that we have to fund it in a way thats done by the federal government.


How do you square these three statements? What is a good reason to tax if not the betterment of the entire nation?


I'm guessing that he squares them through Small Government Conservative DoublethinkTM


I square these statements by saying "i'm no hater of science, but i'm not for forcing people to give to it either. My issue isn't about the size of the federal government, it's about the money they take out of my wallet and 'invest' it to science. Maybe thats because I cant see a single personal return in that 'investment' in my lifetime. I'll admit that could be due to ignorance, but don't rule out it being due to almost invisible results.

Great, NASA developed velcro and pens that write upside down. We've come up with microwaves and weapons with govt funded money.... yada yada. I just feel like 90 percent of all money that goes to science is... meh... wasted...? No, dont like that word, better said not accounted for. What the fuck did 'science' do with its money? What oversight was there?

I seem to be very alone on this issue, so i'll not try to argue it more than I've done here. Anyone else feel this way?

Kudos to e' wombat for the 1984 reference.

User avatar
Pa-Patch
Posts: 124
Joined: Wed Jun 11, 2008 4:16 am UTC
Location: Winnipeg, MB

Re: The Obama Science Agenda

Postby Pa-Patch » Sun Jan 25, 2009 7:43 am UTC

hunsak wrote:I square these statements by saying "i'm no hater of science, but i'm not for forcing people to give to it either. My issue isn't about the size of the federal government, it's about the money they take out of my wallet and 'invest' it to science. Maybe thats because I cant see a single personal return in that 'investment' in my lifetime. I'll admit that could be due to ignorance, but don't rule out it being due to almost invisible results.


How are you enjoying the internet? I think it's pretty great, myself.

Just to pre-empt people saying universities are responsible: They aren't all of the story, and what do you think provides most of their funding?

User avatar
EsotericWombat
Colorful Orator
Posts: 2567
Joined: Wed Sep 19, 2007 4:36 pm UTC
Location: Boston, MA
Contact:

Re: The Obama Science Agenda

Postby EsotericWombat » Sun Jan 25, 2009 8:31 am UTC

The task of the Federal government, at its core, is to do what needs to be done to advance the country's interests and can be accomplished by no other body. Universities can turn to corporate entities for funding, but does anyone here trust the finding of a study on alternative energy funded by big oil?
Image

User avatar
hunsak
Posts: 100
Joined: Tue Jan 20, 2009 8:56 pm UTC
Location: Iraq

Re: The Obama Science Agenda

Postby hunsak » Sun Jan 25, 2009 8:44 am UTC

EsotericWombat wrote:The task of the Federal government, at its core, is to do what needs to be done to advance the country's interests and can be accomplished by no other body. Universities can turn to corporate entities for funding, but does anyone here trust the finding of a study on alternative energy funded by big oil?


so simply predictable. Big oil = evil (who exactly is big oil, or what they do we dont want to think about, but it has something to do with Bush)

They have high stakes in selling oil, therefore we think they'd not want alternative energy's researched.

I'll tell you what. No one like big oil knows how important it is to be the creator and controller of alternative energy.

I'd trust them to do an exhaustive study. They get big political points from it, not to mention the PR it does. Plus keeps them in control of what they really sell, that is energy.

Learn to out think recycled political cheap talk.

Government funding science in a way that made a realistic and practical use of alternative energy is a good use of my tax dollars. I retract my previous comments. Have a good day.

User avatar
e946
Posts: 621
Joined: Wed Jul 11, 2007 6:32 am UTC

Re: The Obama Science Agenda

Postby e946 » Sun Jan 25, 2009 11:29 am UTC

hunsak wrote:I square these statements by saying "i'm no hater of science, but i'm not for forcing people to give to it either. My issue isn't about the size of the federal government, it's about the money they take out of my wallet and 'invest' it to science. Maybe thats because I cant see a single personal return in that 'investment' in my lifetime. I'll admit that could be due to ignorance, but don't rule out it being due to almost invisible results.

Great, NASA developed velcro and pens that write upside down. We've come up with microwaves and weapons with govt funded money.... yada yada. I just feel like 90 percent of all money that goes to science is... meh... wasted...? No, dont like that word, better said not accounted for. What the fuck did 'science' do with its money? What oversight was there?


The first computers were a direct result of research funded by the government. The beginnings of the internet came about due to research funded by the government. The manhattan project, along with creating the first nuclear weapons, also created the beginnings of nuclear power plants.

The short version is that much of the technology you have today was brought about by government-funded research. Not knowing where the money goes and most of what comes from it does not imply that the money was wasted.

User avatar
Pez Dispens3r
is not a stick figure.
Posts: 2079
Joined: Thu Dec 04, 2008 3:08 am UTC
Location: Australia
Contact:

Re: The Obama Science Agenda

Postby Pez Dispens3r » Sun Jan 25, 2009 12:18 pm UTC

segmentation fault wrote:is it considered irrational to hope that obama brings us to a point where i will never have a hard time looking for a job in the field of technology ever again?

and yes, it helps me sleep at night.


Unless you suck as a scientist :P.

hunsak wrote:Yay Science.

Is this what our government should be spending its money on?

I'm not so worried about what's best use of our taxes, but more about where the government needs to step in and help, and where it is inappropriate to do so. We wouldn't want the federal government stepping in and funding certain things--churches for example.

Progression in science is a huge priority for any socities real progression. New techonolgies give us more power and flexibility.

It just seems unfortunate that we have to fund it in a way thats done by the federal government. Is it really necessary to force money out of the hands of every citizen to support science? There arn't enough of us willing to support it on our own?

What say ye? Is it the Feds responsiblity to fund science?


Pharmaceutical (i did not spell that by myself: firefox helped me) companies will develop beneficial drugs, funding the research with their own financial resources, and then charge inordinate amounts of money for the drugs. Which is fine, because the government steps in and subsidizes the medicine so its affordable. Which is where America is retarded, because that would be 'socialism', which is bad, as we all know. But in Australia my best friend with type-1 diabetes (that's the type that you got as a child) can afford a ridiculously expensive, more effective new insulin that came out because Australia recognizes that compulsory medicine should be widely available.

Government funded research is self-interested, but it can cover the ground that capitalism will neglect. Remember, there are such things as 'market economy failures' which includes, but is not limited to, the fact that a child pornography industry might be massively profitable. By its own nature, capitalism wouldn't have come to awesome scientific developments we enjoy now like the interbutts and GPS. Government and corporations both have a role and the point is that capitalism results in progression incidentally, but government funding can result in real scientific progress with a different agenda and a different outcome. And it'll benefit society in the long run, and is therefore a good investment (and consider the brain drain effect of the world's best particle accelerator being in Europe, meaning America's best physicists will want to employ their talents outside the country because the US government didn't want to foot the power bill).
Mighty Jalapeno wrote:I feel like you're probably an ocelot, and I feel like I want to eat you. Feeling is fun!
this isn't my cow

User avatar
TheStranger
Posts: 896
Joined: Wed Jun 20, 2007 9:39 pm UTC
Location: The Void which Binds

Re: The Obama Science Agenda

Postby TheStranger » Sun Jan 25, 2009 5:34 pm UTC

Government funded research also covers a good amount of 'basic' research... that is research that does not have an immediate profit potential. Look at things like observatories and particle accelerators... the research that comes out of these places is highly unlikely to have any profitability attached, and so it would be unlikely that a company would undertake the research. Yet these things still add to the common knowledge, and can lead to actual applications down the road.
"To bow before the pressure of the ignorant is weakness."
Azalin Rex, Wizard-King of Darkon


Return to “News & Articles”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: The Great Hippo and 14 guests