Author Topic: Gender politics has now infected engineering as well.  (Read 74055 times)

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Offline Howardlong

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Re: Gender politics has now infected engineering as well.
« Reply #750 on: January 18, 2019, 11:21:16 am »
There are aspects that I don’t agree with, or understand myself. Sometimes ideas and opinions are still forming. Sometimes there even appears to be self-contradiction. That doesn’t necessarily mean I should discount everything else someone says, when the vast majority seems eminently reasonable.

This is where the dogma aspect comes in. For some reason, if someone says just one thing that is interpreted as being in some way against the proscribed doctrine, it is simply no tolerated in spite of all the other agreeing elements.

There is no room for questioning. There is no room for critical thinking. There is no tolerance of other ideas.

Aside from the arguments themselves, a good test is whether or not the individuals involved are demonstrably operating in good or bad faith.

I find it difficult to see how anyone would see Peterson as acting in bad faith.

I can see why some see him as “problematic”, because he doesn’t 100% share their world view, but his detractors don’t help their cause by repeatedly demonstrably misrepresenting his views. So far, that strategy has only increased his popularity, because people seem to like what common sense looks like. To me it seems strange how they see him as some kind of threat. If, by their estimation, he is a threat, they’re hardly helping themselves by repeatedly drawing so much attention to him.
 

Offline Nominal Animal

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Re: Gender politics has now infected engineering as well.
« Reply #751 on: January 18, 2019, 01:34:18 pm »
The survival needs of a human hunter gatherer's life are little different from any other hunter gatherer animal's life. Do you think they are all applying high levels of rational thought in order to survive?
No. You assume hunter-gatherers had no culture, because we derive culture from agriculture. This is incorrect.  You don't seem to know what hunter-gatherers actually did.

Here's an example:  The Pit-Comb Ware culture (4200 - 2000 BCE) is thought to be essentially hunter-gatherers (they did cultivate certain wild cereals like barley at least in small plots, according to seed findings), yet there is significant archaeological evidence showing that they had regular commerce/exchange between Finnmark (or the Scandic mountain range) in the Northwest and Valdai hills in the Southeast and amber from Lithuania; a roughly triangular area about 1,400 km in the North-South direction, and 2,000 km in the East-West direction.  Tools and other artefacts with components from opposite ends of that range are common.  They used rivers, and row boats especially suited for rivers. One of the oldest known fishing nets, Antrea Net, from about 8500 BCE, is roughly from the center of that area, in Karelia.

Do animals trade common items over distances over 2000 km?  Can you do such trade without careful planning?  No.
 

Online coppice

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Re: Gender politics has now infected engineering as well.
« Reply #752 on: January 18, 2019, 02:38:23 pm »
The survival needs of a human hunter gatherer's life are little different from any other hunter gatherer animal's life. Do you think they are all applying high levels of rational thought in order to survive?
No. You assume hunter-gatherers had no culture, because we derive culture from agriculture. This is incorrect.  You don't seem to know what hunter-gatherers actually did.
I said nothing about culture. We know, from archaeological evidence, that quite sophisticated cultures existed long before any signs of towns or agriculture can be found. The stone age goes back for about 2.5 million years, so creatures earlier than homo sapiens were able to develop primitive technologies. That doesn't mean rational thought played in big part in their lives, though. The key factors for survival were to be strong and fast.
Here's an example:  The Pit-Comb Ware culture (4200 - 2000 BCE) is thought to be essentially hunter-gatherers (they did cultivate certain wild cereals like barley at least in small plots, according to seed findings), yet there is significant archaeological evidence showing that they had regular commerce/exchange between Finnmark (or the Scandic mountain range) in the Northwest and Valdai hills in the Southeast and amber from Lithuania; a roughly triangular area about 1,400 km in the North-South direction, and 2,000 km in the East-West direction.  Tools and other artefacts with components from opposite ends of that range are common.  They used rivers, and row boats especially suited for rivers. One of the oldest known fishing nets, Antrea Net, from about 8500 BCE, is roughly from the center of that area, in Karelia.

Do animals trade common items over distances over 2000 km?  Can you do such trade without careful planning?  No.
You are talking about a transitional period with a hybrid economy. Some groups farmed. Some hunted and gathered. Trading allowed small groups to build towns, where a lot of early technological development occurred. Obviously hunter gatherers didn't wake up one morning as farmers, and its unlikely most early farmers relied 100% on what they farmed.
 

Offline Nominal Animal

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Re: Gender politics has now infected engineering as well.
« Reply #753 on: January 18, 2019, 03:58:07 pm »
That doesn't mean rational thought played in big part in their lives, though.
You must be using a different definition for rational than I am.  My definition is something along the lines of "reasoning; analytical thought; finding and applying causal relationships".

In the subarctic region the seasons vary a lot, and they're not regular.  Record high and record low temperatures for each of the winter months differ by about 60°C (110°F).  You do not react, you plan ahead.  Carefully.  You observe how various species behave, and share the observations over several generations, and plan accordingly, because otherwise you will not survive.  But they didn't just survive, they thrived.

The reason they thrived is they used rational thought for everyday tasks.  Not the Big Thoughts, but for small things like observing changes in their surroundings, and slotting it into their plans.  You just do not survive in the subarctic region in the winter without knowledge and the ability to adapt and plan ahead; that I call basic rational thought.  You observe, you find causal relationships, and you adapt, or you die.

The opposite, in my opinion, is dogmatic thinking.  Instead of adapting, you reinterpret things so they slot into the dogma.  You do not re-evaluate your model of your surroundings, because the dogma is Right, inviolable.  You do, act, and say what is Right according to the dogma, because adaptation or re-evaluation of your position or surroundings is not necessary.

With agriculture, humans had more time to think and talk, but dogmatic thinking no longer hindered survival.  On one hand, people had finally time to think about more than their immediate survival, about abstract stuff.  Science.  Philosophy.  On the other hand, survival became easier, and dogmatic thinking could spread more.

Consider, for an example, human height in the Eastern Mediterranean.  Average height for males was over 175 cm until 10,000 BCE or so, after which it dropped to 160 cm in 4,000 BCE, after which it bounced back slightly, so that 0 CE - 1800 CE it varied around 170 cm.  That kind of changes are indicative of something.
 

Online vk6zgo

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Re: Gender politics has now infected engineering as well.
« Reply #754 on: January 19, 2019, 02:22:08 am »
Before the earliest attempts at agriculture, a rational mind probably wouldn't have benefited a person's survival at all.
Hogwash.  Hunter-gatherers required much more rational thought and keen observation than those involved in agriculture, where learning by rote and listening to your parents and doing what they did sufficed.  In the subarctic regions (that at least in Finland, were populated as soon as the last ice age ended), an irrational mind would not survive for long.  You had to understand complex relationships, and make logical deductions.  In agriculture, you do as you're told, and you'll survive. Usually.
The survival needs of a human hunter gatherer's life are little different from any other hunter gatherer animal's life. Do you think they are all applying high levels of rational thought in order to survive? The key thing needed for survival in the wild is sharp senses and fast instinctive reactions to what shows up in those senses. Rational analysis is so slow it will leave you dead before you've reacted at all. Instinctive reactions lead to all sorts of false positives as we try to cope with potential dangers, but they ensure we usually react in time. Think through what is happening there, and you'll find the roots of a lot of unfortunate human behaviour. Most of the results from modern experiments in human behaviour indicate that much of what we consider rational behaviour is just post hoc rationalisation of decisions already made by instinctive processes.

Animals are limited to the attack & defence weapons Nature provides them, &, indeed, sharp senses & instinctive reactions are very important.
Even in this case, their capabilities are honed by learnt knowledge.

A Dingo, for instance, doesn't have to re-find a source of drinking water every time it is thirsty.

A mother animals doesn't usually abandon her offspring to "sink or swim", but teaches them useful knowledge, by letting them watch her do things.
A major limitation is that this knowledge can't be imparted more broadly, due to lack of language.

Humans living as "hunter gatherers" make artefacts & develop strategies which come from analysing situations & experience, & with language, can bypass the "show me how" step, by telling others what the things they made are for, & why the strategies are used.

The development of spears, for instance, reached a high level amongst the Indigenous Australian people.
Those people with longer arms, could throw a spear further, so why not make your arm longer artificially?
Hence, the spear thrower known to us as "Woomera".

There was always more "gatherer" in "hunter gatherer" lives, so the digging stick, to dig up edible plant roots, etc, or a "dilly bag" to carry the resultant finds were probably just as important as the more glamorous stuff the men used during hunting.

Indigenous Australians, as far as is known, arrived in Oz about 60,000 years ago, & eventually occupied the whole continent.
They must have been doing something seriously right, to be able to live in so many varied environments, whilst developing technology to help them in their day to day lives, (as well as old methods they brought with them so many centuries before).

They did dabble a bit with agriculture, but Australia, which is commonly regarded as having poor sources of natural food, actually provided for them in abundance, if you knew where to look.
Obviously,there were bad seasons, but they survived, keeping a spoken culture & beliefs strong over such a vast number of years.

History is always written by the victor, so the agricultural societies had a vested interest in "bad mouthing" the "hunter gatherers", as it made their own group seem the better culture.

The fact that the latter cultures existed & thrived for millennia, not only in Australia, but in Europe, Asia, Africa, & both North & South America, argues  strongly against the proposition that "sharp senses & fast  reflexes" are all they needed.

In fact, those abilities are still very useful in the lives of present day people.
Analytical thinking combines with "sharp senses & fast reflexes" to keep us safe on the road, the former for:-

"Is that car really going to turn off, so I'm free to go, or has the idiot forgotten his flasher is on?"

& the latter for:-

"Oh shit! The idiot just pulled out in front of me!"







« Last Edit: January 19, 2019, 02:23:52 am by vk6zgo »
 

Offline Nominal Animal

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Re: Gender politics has now infected engineering as well.
« Reply #755 on: January 19, 2019, 05:01:02 am »
Hence, the spear thrower known to us as "Woomera".
Here in Fennoscandia, bears have been hunted for as long as there have been humans here, so at least ten to twelve thousand years.  Humans are not strong enough to throw a spear hard enough to do significant harm to a bear (ursus arctos; similar to grizzlies in North America).  Instead, they used the bears' own behaviour to help them.  There is a short crosspiece attached at a specific distance from the spear tip.  When a bear is wounded, it makes this hugging and swiping motion with its forepaws, and the crosspiece is designed to catch so the bear actually itself pulls the spear in.  You must throw the spear so that the bear will pull it in through both its lungs and heart to make a sure kill, otherwise it'll catch you and rip your face off and eat your genitals and brain.

The Wikipedia article on bear spears is complete hogwash.  You need a pole thicker than your arm to keep a bear at bay; anything thinner, it'll just swat and break in half.  Even then, you're more like a lollipop to the bear than keeping it away; they're 200-300 kg of muscle, after all, and if they get to you, they do what they want, even to a group of strong men.

No, bear spears were thrown using woomera or atlatl-like spear throwers as well; and were quite heavy to have enough inertia to get through even the thick bear skin.

Don't misjudge the flint tips they used, either.  We still use flint knapping to make the best atomic force microscopy tips, because it provides the sharpest edge we can create (literally just a few atoms thick).  According to the conquistadors, the silly-looking Aztec macuahuitls (cricket bat with flint shards at the outer edge) were capable of decapitating a horse in a single blow.



One thing I've always been weirded out by, is snowshoes. Why would you torture yourself with those things, when you can have skis instead?

I learned to ski when I learned to walk.  In grade eight (14-15 years old), during the winter months, our gymnastics class, twice a week, consisted of skiing 5 km. We didn't complain because it was long (it wasn't, we skid for fun for much longer trips even younger); we complained because skiing the same route with one little hill there and back twice a week was frigging dull.  It is much easier than hiking, and you cover lot more ground.  Downhill skiing is downright exciting, love it.  The skis don't weigh that much either, so it's not like they're a heavy burden.  You can pull a sled with not much effort, with a lot of cargo.

Compared to bicycling in forest paths, I'd say skiing in the winter is easier.

In the prehistoric era, Finns used mismatched skis.  One was short, "kalhu" or "sivakka", usually on the right foot.  The other was long, "lyly", you glided with.  You used only one pole, so the other hand was free for your hunting weapon.  It was basically a mix between the "traditional form of skiing" (with your skis parallel) and the "skating form of skiing" (as if you skated on ice).  The oldest ski found in Finland is over 5,000 years old.  You'd be surprised to know how much they knew about different coatings (fur or tar), or using heat and different species of wood to get the best properties for each ski.



Anyway, getting back to the topic at hand, it looks like I'm not the only one puzzled and laughing, incredulously, at how stupid and unproductive things people are spending their efforts on, looking at humans not just as a snapshot of this particular moment, but in context, with all that history for us to be based on.  Silly buggers.
 
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Offline Marco

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Re: Gender politics has now infected engineering as well.
« Reply #756 on: January 19, 2019, 09:08:08 am »
That starts by saying women aren't going into STEM, and aren't going into engineering. Its true that they are under represented in engineering, but in the UK 52% of STEM students are now female. I think the figures are similar for the US. At what point are they no longer under represented?

Mostly when they stop dropping out or working part time to have kids ... so probably never. They're pushing on a string.
 

Offline Nominal Animal

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Re: Gender politics has now infected engineering as well.
« Reply #757 on: January 28, 2019, 09:53:35 pm »
The Wikipedia article on bear spears is complete hogwash.  You need a pole thicker than your arm to keep a bear at bay; anything thinner, it'll just swat and break in half.  Even then, you're more like a lollipop to the bear than keeping it away; they're 200-300 kg of muscle, after all, and if they get to you, they do what they want, even to a group of strong men.

No, bear spears were thrown using woomera or atlatl-like spear throwers as well; and were quite heavy to have enough inertia to get through even the thick bear skin.

It seems that researchers are starting to agree, kinda.  (Link is to Nature.)  Not on bear spears or throwers yet though; just that Neanderthals threw their spears, rather than used them as pikes.  Which is obvious to anyone who has seen an actual bear spear and the spears Neanderthals used.

I wonder how much of anthropology and archaeology is misinterpreted because of the researchers internal need of painting those before them as simpleminded irrational walking apes whose lives were filled with fear, combat, death, and simple beliefs in magic.  Similar to how today, everything not conforming to gender politics or social justice ideology is described as stemming from underdeveloped racist narrow minds, generated by fear and hate, and therefore not anything worth discussing.
 
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Online KL27x

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Re: Gender politics has now infected engineering as well.
« Reply #758 on: January 29, 2019, 01:05:42 am »
Quote
The key factors for survival were to be strong and fast.
Humans never were never good at being strong or fast. Communication, cooperation, tool-making, rational thought, planning, and endurance are how humans took their place at the top of the food chain.

We like to think strength and size are what made males better at hunting than females. I think the truth of the matter is that strength and size of males is more a product of intra species competition and politics. In absence of modern governance, being larger and stronger is a great help for winning arguments. When you are the top of the food chain, your main threat is other humans.

Today, we are taller and stronger than our ancestors, and for the most part, we do less physical work. This is popularly attributed to better nutrition. I think it's more to do with the consumption of animal hormones in the food we eat. Wild predators eat what they catch. Their diet is skewed towards the babies and the geriatrics of their prey. Even after mastering husbandry, humans raised cattle and goats and such for a much longer time. Animals were a store of wealth and a safety net, to be consumed in either a time of need or a time of abundance or celebration. Back then, there was no refrigeration or UPS. Today, we have bred animals for centuries to produce traits of fast weight gain and maturity. They are bred to be hormone factories. (In addition to also giving them steroids). And then we cull and consume them in their prime, when their natural hormone levels are at a peak. It's no wonder humans are bigger and heavier than probably any time in history.

Even with our own lifetimes, the average age of cattle at slaughter has dropped from something like 4 years old to 2 years of age. Don't quote me on that.
« Last Edit: January 29, 2019, 01:35:03 am by KL27x »
 

Offline EEVblog

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Re: Gender politics has now infected engineering as well.
« Reply #759 on: January 29, 2019, 01:32:28 am »
https://pursuit.unimelb.edu.au/articles/engineering-gender-equality

Quote
ENGINEERING GENDER EQUALITY
Women are under-represented in areas of engineering due to lack of role models and lack of other women - but how do we change that?

By Professor Graham Schaffer, University of Melbourne

Quality is enhanced by diversity. This is also true for engineering.

Actually, I would argue that it is particularly important for engineering. The purpose of engineering, as intrinsically a service profession, is to benefit society. Engineers do this by designing, building, operating and maintaining the artificial. To achieve this effectively, the makeup of the engineering workforce must reflect the society it seeks to serve.

This is not currently the case, nor has it ever been. Our technologies are largely designed by men, for men.

For example, when the automobile industry was developing in the early part of the last century, there were two options for the power plant - electric or petrol. The electric engine was more efficient for short trips, the petrol engine for long trips. Women wanted motor cars to assist with domestic duties. Men wanted weekend drives in the country. At that time, most middle class families could only afford one car, so they had to make a choice, and that is why we ended up with petrol engines.

Now to the magnitude of the problem.


Getting more women into technology careers. Now.
Read more
I recently reviewed the books in my personal library. There are only two books that are authored (actually co-authored) by women and they are both on engineering education. I do not have a single technical book on my shelves that was written by a woman.

The absolute number of domestic Australian female engineering bachelor graduates has increased over the last decade by 32 per cent. However, the number of male graduates has increased by 34 per cent – the number of male graduates is increasing faster than the number of female graduates. That mean the proportion of female domestic engineering graduates has actually declined over the last decade, although there is significant variation between universities. In Australia, a little over 14 per cent of engineering graduates are female.

Now we are not alone in this – it is a problem that is particularly prevalent in the Anglophone world. Our numbers in Australia are essentially similar to those in New Zealand, Britain, Canada and the US. However, equality is possible: MIT enrolls 500 brilliant men and 500 brilliant women each year.

The problem doesn’t lie in the pipeline of prospective students, contrary to common belief. A recent report has shown that Year 12 participation in Australia in Intermediate Mathematics is around 20 per cent for boys while for girls it is around 18 per cent. This suggests that the pipeline for girls into engineering isn’t too dissimilar to that for boys, yet girls don’t go on to choose engineering at the same rate. Other reports show similar trends.

The problem is also neither one of success nor retention.

The aggregated data for Australian engineering schools shows that women have a higher success rate, a higher institutional retention rate, and a higher engineering retention rate than men for both commencing students and continuing students. The impact of better female outcomes is that there is a greater proportion of female graduates than there are enrolling students.

While these somewhat depressing numbers indicate that we have a problem in engineering, we only have a problem in some disciplines of engineering. It is common that female enrolments very much depend on the sub-discipline.


Realising the promise of STEM education
Read more
For example, female enrolments in Chemical Engineering and Environmental Engineering typically exceed 40 per cent and enrolments in Biomedical Engineering approach, and can sometimes exceed, 50 per cent.

In contrast, female enrolments in Civil and Electrical Engineering are typically at the average, while Mechanical and Computer Engineering are well below the average.

The problem is therefore not recruiting female students into engineering generally, but recruiting women into certain disciplines of engineering. Some of the reasons for these substantial differences by discipline may be the curriculum, the pedagogy, the lack of role models and the lack of other women.

We also have to change the way we sell engineering to prospective students. We typically encourage students who are good at maths and science to do engineering, as if that is sufficient reason. To encourage girls, we use photographs of women in pink hard hats.

Seriously.

What we need to say, to girls and to boys, is that engineers change the world and have interesting careers. If you want to have an impact on the big issues of our time, such as food security, energy security or water security in the Anthropocene, then do engineering. Ability in maths and science is just the prerequisite, not the reason.

The engineering profession knows it has a long way to go. We lag behind law and medicine, perhaps by 30 years. But if those professions can change and achieve parity, then so can we. The good news is that the engineering profession is very much aware of the problem and is committed to doing something about it.

Major gender equity programs have been instituted by both our professional bodies, the Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering, and Engineers Australia; as well as the firms that are major employees of engineers, such as Rio Tinto, GHD and Arup; and industry associations including the Australian Power Institute and the Australian Petroleum Production and Exploration Association.

We know that there is a long way to go and we also know that there is no single, silver bullet that we can fire that will bring about the transformation we want.

Cultural change is never easy. This change will require many simultaneous actions and a sustained, coordinated effort by many people. And here at the University of Melbourne, the Melbourne School of Engineering is committed to change and committed to leading the change.
 

Online KL27x

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Re: Gender politics has now infected engineering as well.
« Reply #760 on: January 29, 2019, 01:41:40 am »
Heh. I'm too cynical. I read that and this is what I get.

"How do we make more money? We need more tuition. Hmm, looks like women are an under-tapped market. We should try to convince more women to get strapped with $200,000 in student loans, for the supposed reason of careers that a high number of them will never pursue/sustain."

This might be good for society, in some less obvious ways, though. I think it would ultimately reduce the birth rate.
« Last Edit: January 29, 2019, 01:45:15 am by KL27x »
 

Offline EEVblog

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Re: Gender politics has now infected engineering as well.
« Reply #761 on: January 29, 2019, 02:19:04 am »
We should try to convince more women to get strapped with $200,000 in student loans

It's about a 1/4 of that in Australia as a baseline.
 

Online rsjsouza

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Re: Gender politics has now infected engineering as well.
« Reply #762 on: January 29, 2019, 03:59:26 am »
Wow, the example of the car mentioned in the article is a sorry excuse to justify the point... A petrol car does both jobs, THAT'S why it was the tech of choice.
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Offline Circlotron

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Re: Gender politics has now infected engineering as well.
« Reply #763 on: January 29, 2019, 08:03:58 am »
This might be good for society, in some less obvious ways, though. I think it would ultimately reduce the birth rate.
Would reduce the birthrate amongst smart people.
Sounds like a plan.
 

Offline Howardlong

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Re: Gender politics has now infected engineering as well.
« Reply #764 on: January 29, 2019, 11:11:48 am »
Quote
ENGINEERING GENDER EQUALITY
Women are under-represented in areas of engineering due to lack of role models and lack of other women - but how do we change that?

By Professor Graham Schaffer, University of Melbourne

Quality is enhanced by diversity. This is also true for engineering.

Actually, I would argue that it is particularly important for engineering. The purpose of engineering, as intrinsically a service profession, is to benefit society. Engineers do this by designing, building, operating and maintaining the artificial. To achieve this effectively, the makeup of the engineering workforce must reflect the society it seeks to serve.

All of that article was driven by feelings, it was not data or evidence driven.

Sure, we'd all like to see a better representation of women in engineering, but engineering is competing against other careers that women, in the Western world, on average, much prefer to be doing. Where is the evidence that it's good to be pushing someone into a particular career because of their genitals exactly? That doesn't sound very progressive to me.

If you remove the choices available, or enforce quotas, against individuals' wills, then of course you can "fix" it. Perhaps we should be offering tax incentives to encourage women to take up engineering? I can see that going down well.

The article title "Engineering gender equality" perhaps sounds promising, why wouldn't you want gender equality? But it doesn't mean equality of opportunity, or earning a job on merit. In my experience, Women are just not discriminated against in engineering jobs, in fact quite the opposite, companies are falling over themselves to employ women in the field. What the title is referring to is equality of outcome.
« Last Edit: January 29, 2019, 07:35:52 pm by Howardlong »
 
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Online rsjsouza

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Re: Gender politics has now infected engineering as well.
« Reply #765 on: January 29, 2019, 03:34:58 pm »
Quote
ENGINEERING GENDER EQUALITY
Women are under-represented in areas of engineering due to lack of role models and lack of other women - but how do we change that?

By Professor Graham Schaffer, University of Melbourne

Quality is enhanced by diversity. This is also true for engineering.

Actually, I would argue that it is particularly important for engineering. The purpose of engineering, as intrinsically a service profession, is to benefit society. Engineers do this by designing, building, operating and maintaining the artificial. To achieve this effectively, the makeup of the engineering workforce must reflect the society it seeks to serve.

All of that article was driven by feelings, it was not data or evidence driven.
Exactly the point of my other post  ;D
https://www.eevblog.com/forum/chat/gender-politics-has-now-infected-engineering-as-well/msg2115334/#msg2115334

The article title "Engineering gender equality" perhaps sounds promising, why wouldn't you want gender equality? But it doesn't mean equality of opportunity, or earning a job on merit. In my experience, Women are just not discriminated against in engineering jobs, in fact quite the opposite, companies are falling over themselves to employ women in the field. What the title is referring to is equality of outcome.
Diversity is only useful if it acts as a progressive force. IMO the widespread use of the term is not applicable to all influences and values brought by diversity - being a foreigner living in the US, I can tell many traits and values from my culture that detract from the society and work environment I currently live. I imagine this can be extended for gender differences as well.
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Offline Nominal Animal

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Re: Gender politics has now infected engineering as well.
« Reply #766 on: January 29, 2019, 03:36:00 pm »
"You know, if you want to truly change the world, don't study politics, gender, or humanities with us. You need to go into engineering, because those guys are the ones who really change the world"  sounds like something a psychopathic kid would say to other, less smart psychopathic kids, to avoid competition.

It is always "you should do", "somebody should do"; never "I shall do".

Engineer and scientist types are the ones that tend to say "Lemme tinker a bit with that".  Changing the world is a side effect, a byproduct, not the end goal.



If you ask people to name a color and a tool, most will say "red" and "hammer".

So what?  I'm sure some will infer that it means that the desire for bashing others brains in/out just to see the red stuff come out is built-in to humans. (Male humans, specifically, because the hammer is so clearly an utilitarian phallic substitute; the archetypal representation of male oppression and sexual violence.)

Well, fMRI imaging disagrees: the areas of the brain that get activated there have nothing to do with violent responses; instead, pleasure and tactile centers do. Simply put, red is a color many people enjoy and think of first when asked about colors; and most people have handled a hammer and associate it as the archetypal tool, allowing one to do with it what would not be possible bare-handed. (Look at a small kid learning to use a hammer.  There is only pure delight at having a tool that fits so nicely in ones hand. And banging. Lots of banging. Cue AvE/Chickadee: "I would like to hammer something, dad." No wonder it comes first to mind for so many.)

On the other hand, if you said green piano tuning fork, so what?  Should we start subconscious bias training at very young age, so that an appropriate fraction answers in appropriate fashion?  I find that rather scary.  Yet, it is exactly what some Universities are already doing for their faculty and staff.
« Last Edit: January 29, 2019, 03:38:55 pm by Nominal Animal »
 
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Online rsjsouza

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Re: Gender politics has now infected engineering as well.
« Reply #767 on: January 29, 2019, 03:47:26 pm »
Changing the world is a side effect, a byproduct, not the end goal.
Exactly. You need to do a lot of sweeping on a large warehouse before you can see an actual difference in the cleanliness of the place. The "genius multi-million dollar idea" has been advertised to the population for several years (decades? generatios?) now, but it rarely comes to fruition without a lot of dedicated work, long hours, rejection and failure beforehand. The resilience against frustration has been decreasing steadily.
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Oh, the "whys" of the datasheets... The information is there not to be an axiomatic truth, but instead each speck of data must be slowly inhaled while carefully performing a deep search inside oneself to find the true metaphysical sense...
 
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Offline james_s

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Re: Gender politics has now infected engineering as well.
« Reply #768 on: January 29, 2019, 06:00:12 pm »
The article title "Engineering gender equality" perhaps sounds promising, why wouldn't you want gender equality? But it doesn't mean equality of opportunity, or earning a job on merit. In my experience, Women are just not discriminated against in engineering jobs, in fact quite the opposite, companies are falling over themselves to employ women in the field. What the title is referring to is equality of outcome.

It was announced recently at my company that for all open positions we are required to look for a "diversity candidate" first before we can consider someone else. That is literally saying white males must go to the back of the line. We already have 36% women which is far higher than the ratio of women graduating with engineering degrees. There is absolutely and irrefutably bias based on gender and race, but it is not in the direction the typical narrative suggests.
 
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Offline Marco

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Re: Gender politics has now infected engineering as well.
« Reply #769 on: January 30, 2019, 12:09:25 am »
Are white men a diversity candidate when the majority of a department is Asian?
 
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Offline Nominal Animal

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Re: Gender politics has now infected engineering as well.
« Reply #770 on: January 30, 2019, 04:15:34 am »
What did the white men do to become so reviled?
 

Offline Howardlong

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Re: Gender politics has now infected engineering as well.
« Reply #771 on: January 30, 2019, 03:55:00 pm »
As well as white men, do men of Asian heritage count as "diversity candidates" I wonder? Or are Asian men considered too successful?

Certainly at most of my customers, my many Asian acquaintances' participation far outweighs their representation in the population as a whole.
 

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Re: Gender politics has now infected engineering as well.
« Reply #772 on: January 30, 2019, 05:09:41 pm »
What did the white men do to become so reviled?

Plenty of things were done by white men, but assigning blame to individuals based on what other members of their race and gender have done in the past is the very definition of racism and sexism. It's true that the tech industry has largely been dominated by white males for a long time, although there are a LOT of Indians as well. I know I've said this before but when I was growing up showing an interest in computers or tech was absolute poison in a social setting, nerds and geeks were the target of teasing and bullying to no end. Back elementary and high school I don't remember knowing any girls who had any interest in engineering and it wasn't because boys wouldn't let them into our club. It wasn't until tech became big money business that I ever heard anyone complain about women being under-represented. 
 
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Re: Gender politics has now infected engineering as well.
« Reply #773 on: January 30, 2019, 05:22:38 pm »
You gotta play whack a mole with this shit. Essentially you pick one of those things on the list and you can prosecute people, get money and gain status in some kind of community. Then its protected under general clauses.

Makes it easy to defraud/rob/white collar crime.

I think it mostly has to do with finances, smart people with little morals realise they can make dough off inequality and prosecution. Doubt most of them give a shit about what they stand for. Then they get dumbass followers and it ends up making money.

Root cause might be a dry cleaner in detroit saying shit to his friends to pay his female employees less. Who the fuck knows lol
« Last Edit: January 30, 2019, 05:30:00 pm by coppercone2 »
 

Offline Nominal Animal

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Re: Gender politics has now infected engineering as well.
« Reply #774 on: January 30, 2019, 05:48:21 pm »
assigning blame to individuals based on what other members of their race and gender have done in the past is the very definition of racism and sexism.
No argument there.

It's true that the tech industry has largely been dominated by white males for a long time
By what definition of dominated?  The vast majority of workers in the tech industry have been white males, yes. Dominated? That's a loaded term.

Considering the prevalence of subfields where women have been majority workers (from textile factories to welding during wartime), I would say the tech industry has generally been more open to people of all backgrounds than the surrounding culture at the same time (meaning, both women and men accepted, without their family history and upbringing being involved, as was otherwise common at the time.)  That's not domination by any definition I understand.

smart people with little morals realise they can make dough off inequality and prosecution.
Sure, it's not like divide and rule is a new approach.  I'd just think that people who are studying in the highest academic institutions should trivially recognize such, and the ideological traps they're stuck in.  (The major one being the fight against free speech, to protect against negative emotions.  That's just bonkers.)
 


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