Report Predicts Continued U.S. Tech Dominance

from the things-might-not-be-so-bad dept

With all the recent fears about how all American tech jobs are going to move to India and China, the Rand Corporation has come out with a report predicting that the US will continue to dominate technology. I tend to agree, but the report probably doesn’t do much to convince those who disagree. It just says that the US will continue to lead because we have a business environment that embraces innovation and change, and doesn’t try to protect our companies in ways that make them uncompetitive. What the article doesn’t answer is how this stops American companies from outsourcing all of their work overseas. Also, it doesn’t account for recent action (such as by the entertainment industry) to try to make American industry more protectionist by propping up obsolete business models.

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Comments on “Report Predicts Continued U.S. Tech Dominance”

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Anonymous Coward says:

Oh Canada

– Canada is (only) a bit better for personal rights vs IP/copyright mismanagement
– Canadian geeks are being send home with up to 6 years US market experience, to prospects of 1/3 as much takehome pay (1/2 as much gross)
– Canada’s really close to the States, and may share the odd time zone (NJ Landladies may think otherwise)
– Canada really doesn’t have the (retrospectively pointless) Sherman trials. Heck, Mulroney was apparently more corrupt than Gates.

I’m surprised by every quarter that goes by without some smart company not outsourcing to hungry, eager canadian geeks, all but willing to kill one another for a job with 1/3 the take-home pay as they used to have. Still, thankfully, lower crime, and select cities actually have a usable public transit system (don’t let any americans or Cdn municipal governments hear that, though, or one will disbelieve it and the other will prove it incorrect) and so people don’t have to sit in mindless traffic.

What are we even DOING down here? Everyone, meet me in Austin; the bus leaves at midnight, and it ain’t stopping until Calgary (New Austin).

Gimme my cookie.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Oh Canada

It’s because Canada has too many stupid laws requiring local this and local that. Stores are required to stock shelves with certain percentages of local brands. The bilingual requirement of labeling everything in French, producing everything in French versions, is also a turn-off. Canadian English differs significantly from US English, enough to cause major problems in legally sensitive work. If an American IT company tried to outsource in Canada, it would have to make French versions, pay much higher corporate taxes, and also have to deal with rampant anti-Americanism.

Anonymous Coward says:

What about criminal superpowers?

Russian criminal syndicates have hired hitmen or burglars over the net to come to the US to commit crimes, then fly back.

We hear a lot about child abductions happening because of relationships formed over the net. We’ll likely see more variants of chat-based crimes — e.g. in Japan, a group of four 6th-grade girls got abducted and were found in handcuffs. Maybe in the future, sophisticated predators can abduct entire classrooms of children and scatter them around the globe.

Anonymous Coward says:

It's American Because there is no other candidate

I think this Rand analysis is pretty obvious for the following reason: who else would take the lead? Remember that the U.S. GDP, at $10 trillion is nearly twice as big as number two Japan (and the EU isn’t integrated no matter what they say over there). So even if R&D percentage are less here, the dollars spent are going to be a lot more than other countries for a long time. The other things mentioned – venture capital, business conditions, etc. – just help all of that and the few regulatory items which are huring individual industries will probably eventually be worked out.

I was once worried about China and biotech based on some articles in Wired, but they apparently won’t be taking the lead any time soon based on their performance for the SARS outbreak. It was in their own country and Canada (see other postings) identified it before China did.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: It's American Because there is no other candid

Biotech comes in three flavors — green, white, and red. Green is for agriculture, red is for medical, and white is for miscellaneous industry.

As for agriculture, China’s farmers remain too poor to buy biotech seeds. There is also the basic problem that they don’t have huge tracts of land like we have in our Midwest to make agriculture a cash cow. Many other aspects of their agriculture need to be more modernized first.

As for medicine, China lacks the culture of safety or ethical standards to make products competitive with the West. They may have fewer cultural inhibitions against fetus-based or cloning technologies, but this would make them prone to economic sanctions.

As for industry, China remains a low-wage manufacturing outlet for Western nations. If they discover ways to make things even cheaper, it will hurt other poor countries while benefiting the West.

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