Why I Am Not a Maker: When tech culture only celebrates creation, it risks ignoring those who teach, criticize, and take care of others.

I read through the whole article and honestly, to me the author just comes off as bitter that society values the contributions of "makers" more than her contributions--especially because she spends a lot of space arguing that makers have an easy job compared to hers, and that her jobs is more impactful. It'd be a stronger article if it was more self-reflective and she attempted to discern why makers are valued so highly and then base her arguments off that, but instead she starts off from the conclusion that makers should be valued the same as non-makers and then works backwards, which leads to very weak supporting arguments--for example:

As Kate Losse has noted, coders get high salary, prestige, and stock options. The people who do community management—on which the success of many tech companies is based—get none of those.

This is about supply and demand. There are a lot more people qualified to be community managers than people qualified to build your new app from scratch. It's the same reason why the receptionist and the janitors aren't getting cushy stock packages.

Consider the instant gratification of seeing "hello, world" on the screen; it’s nearly the easiest possible way to "make" things, and certainly one where failure has a very low cost.

I think she's really downplaying the difficulty of programming. It's pretty easy to build a tower out of Legos but that doesn't mean that being an architect is easy. I also strongly disagree that "failure has a very low cost," software engineering boondoggles do happen and end up costing a lot of money, not unlike any other field of engineering. I think you could make a convincing argument that failure has a lesser cost than other fields, but I wouldn't say it's "very low". As an aside, the article she linked to really doesn't support her point at all, which gives me the sense that her claim is very unfounded.

Code is "making" because we've figured out how to package it up into discrete units and sell it, and because it is widely perceived to be done by men.

I think that the former is way, way more important than the latter as far as classifying an occupation as "making". Lawyers, doctors, university professors, investment bankers, etc. are all traditionally male-dominated fields, but I don't think she'd consider any of those to be "makers".

It’s the Searle’s "Chinese room" take on the deeper, richer, messier, less reproducible, immeasurably more difficult version of this that we do with people—change their cognition, abilities, and behaviors. We call the latter "education," and it’s mostly done by underpaid, undervalued women.

I think she really needed to expand on this to have a good argument. Her logic is sound: education is harder than coding, educators get paid less than coders, therefore educators are underpaid. The problem is that she has no support for her first premise: it's essentially just her opinion that education is tougher but she doesn't actually provide any sort of objective evidence that might support her claim. So the rest of her argument just falls apart.

When new products are made, we hear about exciting technological innovation, which are widely seen as worth paying (more) for. In contrast, policy and public discourse around caregiving—besides education, healthcare comes immediately to mind—are rarely about paying more to do better, and are instead mostly about figuring out ways to lower the cost.

I think this is another fallacious argument, most technological innovation is about lowering costs, either financial cost or human cost or time cost. Investors got irrationally excited about the internet circa 1999 because they perceived that the technological impact of the internet would drastically reduce costs. People love smartphones because they can perform the functions of twenty different devices for the price of one.

There are certainly many instances where consumers are paying more for an upgrade: many people upgraded to HD televisions even if their old SD set worked fine because the better experience was worth the cost. I feel that the willingness to upgrade technology comes from the objective superiority of the new versus the old, and I think that also explains the unwillingness of many to spend more on education (it's much tougher to determine if your extra funding is actually having a significant positive impact). I feel that she could have a reasonable discussion here, but she doesn't seem to want to explore it.

As an educator, the work I do is superficially the same, year on year.

I think she really should have spent more time on this, because I think it really gets to the heart of why I feel that makers tend to get more attention. It's not because makers are men (maybe that's part of it, but I don't think it's the primary reason) it's because new stuff is exciting. It's innovative, it's interesting, it makes you think about how that new stuff will directly impact me.

Caregiving, at least how she describes it, isn't news. I think that most people recognize it as a vital and essential part of our society, but we've all seen it before, it's just not super-interesting. Maybe my selfishness comes from my innate human nature, or maybe it comes from societal conditioning (and I don't think that the author argued well for this), but I ultimately don't care.

In my mind, the author has the same problem that occurs when people post pictures of their kids on Facebook. To her, education is this amazing opportunity to be personally involved in shaping young minds and watching them grow and achieve--and she just can't understand why others aren't similarly excited. I feel if she stepped back for a moment she would realize that the vast majority of people don't have that same personal connection with her students that she does, and that's why no one is really excited.

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