TED Conversations

Jerry Yang


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What do you like to learn about, and how has that impacted your life?

Our education shapes our futures. And in these days of high-stakes testing, our education shapes our lives. What do you think?

Topics: education

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    R H 30+

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    Apr 7 2013: I like to learn about everything, constantly - and that has had an extremely negative effect on my life in many ways. In these days of 'high-stakes testing' I believe we are rewarded for great knowledge on specific subjects, not a great well-rounded understanding of many subjects. This has evolved (in my opinion) into the current debate of liberal arts vs. STEM education, which is basically jobs versus humanity. What do I think about it? I think that we are entering a stage in human history unlike any other. We will be facing moral and ethical questions, as a result of our technology (I'm using a very broad brush here), that we don't even have words for yet. Our zeal for knowledge and 'gadgetry' in technology, and it's profitability thereof, is far eclipsing the consideration of the long-term humanistic/social ramifications that these efforts will produce. I'm not talking about ipads and cellphones here, I'm talking about genetic farming of body parts and whole replacement people, personality download and sale, custom-ordered children, who gets access, who decides what is allowed, etc. So, I guess what I like to learn about effects my life, there's just so much to consider. It's very exciting, yet formidable.

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