Sunday, November 11, 2012

Polls, Votes, and the Ultimate American Franchise

Now that presidential election is over, people can actually compare the performance of various public opinion polls that were used to gauge this election. The New York Times compared 23 such polls in their article. The famous Gallup poll ranked last among the 23. In addition, internet based Google Consumer Survey actually ranked second in that list.

Almost half a century ago, a novel named "Franchise" depicted a futuristic world where computer estimated public opinion polls can be so accurate such that the entire presidential election can be decided purely based on computer polls and the actual voting become obsolete. Many Asimov sci-fi enthusiasts may remember this story. Yet the story was set in 2008, and we are nowhere close to that kind of polling, 4 years past that projected era.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Majors for Top 1% Earners

A recent statistics about the college majors for top 1% income earners (in America) shows an interesting trend: pre-med majors have 11.8% chance of becoming top 1% earners.

Is that a surprise? Given the cost of healthcare expenses?

In the list for top 25 majors for 1% earners, there is no sign of computer science or electrical engineering. In fact, only chemical engineering makes the list at no. 19.

So the next time we talk about enrollment in computer science and engineering, perhaps we should also consider competition from other majors. Many kids may be interested in technology related majors, but they are also smart enough to consider the long-term reward for themselves.