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Subject: [IP] more on Losing Our Edge?

  • From: David Farber <>
  • To: Ip <>
  • Date: Thu, 24 Jun 2004 15:41:19 -0400

Begin forwarded message:

From: Bob Frankston <>
Date: April 24, 2004 12:13:11 PM EDT
Subject: RE: [IP] more on Losing Our Edge?

This reminds me of the fears about Japan getting the lead in AI because 
their fifth generation project. What I fear most are the attempts to 
"the edge" by clamping down on education and assuring that it is highly
tuned for the past.

Our lead over the long term is dependent upon not trying to over-tune 
educational system for a narrow vision.

It's our incompetence at imposing the one true solution that has kept us
from getting caught up in the local optima.

While the Nobel Prize is far form a perfect indicator I do note that 
for example, has very very few in the hard sciences.

This is one reason why I point out that the first amendment is an 
mechanism -- it is a way of providing opportunity for stupid ideas. It's
only with enough stupid ideas that we discover the brilliant ones.

I don't want to defend ignorance but neither do I see a focus on big 
R&D as
the necessarily that much better than a focus on quarterly results. 
Both are
optimized for the present.

The question is what environment is best for leverage individual 
Very few such efforts will succeed but that might be enough to seed the


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