Latest news on the digital divide
The latest report from the feds reminds us that there's still a lot of work to be done to close the digital divide. Here are a few highlights from the report:
- 91% of school-age children use computers. The usage gap between white children and black children is 7%, the gap between white children and Hispanic children is 8%. Small gaps also exist for American Indian children and children with disabilities.
Perhaps most importantly, the federal data remind us that we cannot assume that students have computer and/or Internet access at home.
- Certain demographic subgroups are more dependent on schools for computer access. More students use computers at school (83%) than at home (68%). There is only a 7% school-home computer usage gap for White students. In contrast, the school-home computer usage gap for Black students is 36%, for Hispanic students is 32%, for American Indian students is 40%, and for students with disabilities is 21%. Large school-home computer usage gaps also exist based on educational attainment and family income level; in fact, students with well-educated and/or higher-earning parents have equal or better rates of computer usage at home than at school.
The federal data obviously are a few years behind but I'm guessing that these general patterns persist today. There's a wealth of information in the federal data tables for anyone who's interested.
Malcolm Gladwell teaches "Get over yourself and get to work" for Big Think Edge.
- Learn to recognize failure and know the big difference between panicking and choking.
- At Big Think Edge, Malcolm Gladwell teaches how to check your inner critic and get clear on what failure is.
- Subscribe to Big Think Edge before we launch on March 30 to get 20% off monthly and annual memberships.
We take fewer mental pictures per second.
- Recent memories run in our brains like sped-up old movies.
- In childhood, we capture images in our memory much more quickly.
- The complexities of grownup neural pathways are no match for the direct routes of young brains.
A consortium of scientists and engineers have proposed that the U.S. and Mexico build a series of guarded solar, wind, natural gas and desalination facilities along the entirety of the border.
- The proposal was recently presented to several U.S. members of Congress.
- The plan still calls for border security, considering all of the facilities along the border would be guarded and connected by physical barriers.
- It's undoubtedly an expensive and complicated proposal, but the team argues that border regions are ideal spots for wind and solar energy, and that they could use the jobs and fresh water the energy park would create.
It's one of the most consistent patterns in the unviverse. What causes it?
- Spinning discs are everywhere – just look at our solar system, the rings of Saturn, and all the spiral galaxies in the universe.
- Spinning discs are the result of two things: The force of gravity and a phenomenon in physics called the conservation of angular momentum.
- Gravity brings matter together; the closer the matter gets, the more it accelerates – much like an ice skater who spins faster and faster the closer their arms get to their body. Then, this spinning cloud collapses due to up and down and diagonal collisions that cancel each other out until the only motion they have in common is the spin – and voila: A flat disc.
SMARTER FASTER trademarks owned by The Big Think, Inc. All rights reserved.