Y'all are a bunch of wankers!

Why science careers suck

"But no matter—I would soon have a Ph.D. in a scientific field, my own ticket to vast riches and free bacon. The job offers would pour in, and I’d sit atop a pile of letters from universities and pharmaceutical companies weighing the benefits of a seven-figure salary on a vibrant and dynamic campus versus a seven-figure salary in a vibrant and dynamic industry. In fact, I could probably show up at any of these places, whisper, “I have a Ph.D.,” and live off of the $100 bills thrown at my feet, provided I could pick them out from among the rose petals.

There was, of course, a third option: a postdoctoral fellowship, living in a cardboard box, and drinking my own pee. Choices, choices."
Permalink Io 
January 10th, 2018 7:11am
Yesterday I got strangely hellbanned by the COT site who thought I'm a spammer so I'm weary providing the link, but here it is: http://www.sciencemag.org/careers/2012/07/help-not-wanted
Permalink Io 
January 10th, 2018 7:12am
According to the article - it's not that they suck, it's just that they suck if you want to make money in STEM.
Permalink Home Despot 
January 10th, 2018 7:46am
Making "arrogance level" money is not comparable to not making enough to live at homeless level of poverty.

"The competition for funding and positions means that not only the hopes of getting a job are really lousy, but that people become nasty. Like, really nasty. I’ve seen more than once people “helped”  during a project, only to find all credit for their work taken by the nice and smiling people who scammed them by “helping” them. There are endless horror stories like that. Everywhere. Now, do you want to work in a place full of insanely clever people who are also insanely cynical and determined to do everything to get on top of you? If so, you can do top level science." ( http://blog.devicerandom.org/2011/02/18/getting-a-life/ )
Permalink Io 
January 10th, 2018 8:50am
http://philip.greenspun.com/careers/women-in-science
Permalink Wabi-sabi 
January 10th, 2018 8:54am
Greenspun has a PhD to go with the chip on his shoulder about how underappreciated he is.
Permalink Zaq 
January 10th, 2018 8:57am
He's early retired 🤣
Permalink Wabi-sabi 
January 10th, 2018 9:08am
There are few PhDs who own so many inventions that make them lot and lot of money. Look at Qualcomm for example.

Irwin Mark Jacobs
Andrew James Viterbi

Both have PhD and rich as hell. They started Qualcomm.
Permalink AlFranken 
January 10th, 2018 9:59am
It's about porn-obability. There are a few lottery winners who are rich as hell. That doesn't make "lottery winner" a valid career in life. Dedicating  your life to lottery winning while living from unemployment to temp jobs and studying 14 hours per  day lottery sysyems makes you precisely an idiot.

Yet guys who do just that in science for the same odds are curiously mislabelled 'geniuses'.
Permalink Io 
January 10th, 2018 10:23am
Why does going into science have to be akin to winning the lottery?  Why can't it be a profession that pays okay that incrementally contributes to human understanding?

Right now it's structured as power law shit.  A few scientists get all of the fame and money and the rest struggle.
Permalink Wabi-sabi 
January 10th, 2018 12:04pm
> Why does ... why can't ...

1. There's no economic need for as many professors and researchers with PhDs as the education system produces.

2. The education produces too many because they make money selling these degrees, and they also greatly benefit from oversupply which means that they can have "take it or leave it" low paid high work load adjunct and lecturer positions.

3. Supply and demand. You have a glut of supply compared to demand, the price falls.

People should evaluate this when deciding that just because they did well at their undergraduate and feel shy about entering the workforce that the answer is to spend 6-10 years getting a PhD while acquiring massive debt.

How to fix this? Stop the universities from admitting so many PhD candidates. Stop the universities from granting PhDs that involve theses that are incoherent and pointless and no one ends up reading.
Permalink Reality Check 
January 10th, 2018 12:28pm
> There's no economic need

Yes, I'm aware that we collectively need to value science more for this to change.
Permalink Wabi-sabi 
January 10th, 2018 12:35pm
A trivial example!  The US had the option of building the Large Hadron Collider right here in the US, but Congress skipped it, because science is gay and won't score points with the American electorate.

So, ten years later, it got built in Europe.

So... 10,000 science jobs sprout up in Europe instead.  Because Europe is comfortable looking faggy, I guess.
Permalink Wabi-sabi 
January 10th, 2018 12:42pm
How many PhDs are actually researching something useful?

I'm all for people dedicating themselves this way, but they do it because they like it, there's no particular reason why society should also massively reward them for doing something with no beneficial output.
Permalink Zaq 
January 10th, 2018 12:43pm
Who said massively reward?  I said "ok" money.

We're going to end up with mass unemployment anyway.  Why don't we direct people towards science instead of having them sit at home in trailers collecting welfare while they aimlessly troll internet forums.  Like realSockPuppetGuy does.

We could alternatively have them exterminated too, if that would suit you.
Permalink Wabi-sabi 
January 10th, 2018 12:48pm
We need a list of PhD in fields that we can approve and disapprove?
Permalink AlFranken 
January 10th, 2018 12:51pm
To do a PhD probably requires an IQ over 135 (?) so that's maybe 1 - 2 people in a hundred?

Most of those are going to go into law, medicine, entertainment, IT etc.
Permalink Zaq 
January 10th, 2018 12:55pm
I say we don't need many PhD in history, psychology, social studies, sociology, English, political sciences, etc.
Permalink AlFranken 
January 10th, 2018 12:57pm
and economics!
Permalink AlFranken 
January 10th, 2018 12:57pm
If everyone with an IQ over 135 actually wanted to go into science let's do it.  Pay for their education and throw them each $70k/year.

Get on board already, dickheads.  There's no time to lose
Permalink Wabi-sabi 
January 10th, 2018 1:04pm
When they can be multi-millionaires doing something else?

Why would they?
Permalink Zaq 
January 10th, 2018 1:07pm
Right. Bill Gates and Zuckerberg are both Harvard dropouts. They don't see the need for PhD.
Permalink AlFranken 
January 10th, 2018 1:11pm
Steve Jobs?
James Cameron?
Permalink Zaq 
January 10th, 2018 1:15pm
"we collectively need to value science more"

Science and technology are already massively overfunded in the US as it is. One problem is funding stupid bullshit like weapons development, profitable penis hardening pills. But even bigger is the widespread corruption in the field.

You're like the people who say to solve education problems teachers need less autonomy, the system needs more centralized power, and needs more funding.

Both have the same results. A lot of wasted effort for piss poor results.

US should cut its science funding by 95% at least.
Permalink Reality Check 
January 10th, 2018 1:48pm
"Large Hadron Collider"

Which has proven to be a complete waste of time and money.

"10,000 jobs"

That's not real job creation, that's taxpayer's being fleeced for bullshit that doesn't do fuck all to help their lives in anyway at all.

They've spent $14 billion on that collider project. That's $1.4 million cost for each of those 10,000 jobs.

But it's even worse. Almost all of your 10,000 jobs were temporary jobs in construction. Those jobs are done and gone.

What happens if you spend $14 billion instead on infrastructure and incentives for small businesses?
Permalink Reality Check 
January 10th, 2018 1:53pm
Penis hardening pills were an accidental result of research into treatment for cardiac problems.
Permalink Zaq 
January 10th, 2018 1:54pm
"there's no particular reason why society should also massively reward them for doing something with no beneficial output"

One of the highest IQs in any profession is Philosophy. Which is a completely and totally useless field. Though it's not as bad as anti-degrees such as feminist studies, which has extreme negative value since no sane company in their right mind would ever hire anyone with such a degree, whereas if your degree is in english or visual arts you can at least get work as a janitor.

Should philosophers be paid a lot because it's a high IQ profession?
Permalink Reality Check 
January 10th, 2018 1:59pm
What happens if you spend $14 billion instead on infrastructure and incentives for small businesses?

You get very efficient ways to deliver penis hardening pills for consumers who post hardened penises on small social networks.
Permalink Io 
January 10th, 2018 2:01pm
penis hardening pills don't work on people who don't have that problem. Otherwise, it would sell like weeds.
Permalink AlFranken 
January 10th, 2018 2:05pm
A typical "research" university will graduate 10+ PhDs per year, and hire one new permanent tenure-track faculty member every 3+ years.

There's an oversupply.  If you have a PhD, (except in certain niche areas of CS) your only job that uses your degree is university researcher.  In the private sector, for most jobs, you'll be behind someone with 5 years of experience instead of a PhD.

Foreign students are eager to get a PhD, for the possibility of a greencard/citizenship after they graduate.

For the market-savvy US students, almost anything else is better.

There are some (a handful) of superstar scientists in each field.  That helps draw in the rubes, because they think they'll be the next superstar scientist.  The handful of stars are necessary to keep the pyramid scheme attractive to newcomers.

That's why I left a Math PhD program.  I realized that the best-case scenario for me would be a tenure-track job at the #200 ranked school in the middle of nowhere.  The worst-case scenario would be permanent adjunct status with no marketable skills at age 40.
Permalink FSK 
January 10th, 2018 6:28pm
Back in the 1950's, it was unusual to have a college degree. Lots of people could get decent white collar jobs right out of high school. Somebody with a college degree was rally cut out for upper management.

Then once everybody had a college degree, it was no big deal anymore. Then it became mandatory to have one before you could get even the shittiest of jobs.

Then there was the MBA craze in the 90's. If you wanted to boost your career, you had to get one .. until everybody had one. Now nobody gives a shit about your stinking MBA.

The same is happening with the PhD. It used to be very rare. Having one put you in the stratospheric echelons of academic achievement. Now? Every fucking yokel has one. Shit they even have part-time PhD programs now for working mothers.
Permalink Humanoid 
January 10th, 2018 6:45pm
Yeah Humanoid.  At one time, a Math/Physics PhD pretty much guaranteed you a quant job at a bank.  Now, it (maybe) gets you an interview.  But you do need the PhD to get an interview, even though most quant stuff isn't fancier than precalculus/calculus and numerical approximation of the solution to an equation.
Permalink FSK 
January 10th, 2018 6:50pm
Looking at job ads for data scientists where they require PhD or Masters in Math - I see that pay about the same or less as Java coder jobs at banks.
Permalink Home Despot 
January 10th, 2018 7:04pm

This topic is archived. No further replies will be accepted.

Other topics: January, 2018 Other topics: January, 2018 Recent topics Recent topics