Re: Tech welfare?

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From: Chris Olds (
Date: Tue Apr 11 2000 - 12:02:47 PDT

Good article. My circumstances were a little better than his, but food stamps,
medical coupons, and free school lunch programs made a tremendous difference in
my life too. While there are abuses, the much more common case is that people
just need some help to keep their heads above water; this is also why food banks
have such a high impact per dollar. People that think poor people must be
stupid have obviously never had to deal with the effort of 'just getting by'.
I've seen very intelligent people spend all of their time and energy (mental and
physical) on 'just getting by'; the system is brutal, but sometimes it's all
there is.

My previous employer adopted a school in Seattle and installed surplus computers
in a lab built by company volunteer labor. One of the IT guys spent 4 hours a
week doing sysadmin & on-site support for the school, which is an important
detail when bringing in a load of unfamiliar technology. The cost to the
company? Negligible, if any (I'm a programmer, not a tax accountant). The
benefit to the school? Enormous. When the school district started planning a
new building for that school, the network and server room were planned for them
by EDS. Welfare? I call that an investment.


"be conservative in what you do, be liberal in what you accept from others."
    - Jon Postel, RFC 793

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