Friday, November 13, 2009


There was a story yesterday in the Wall Street Journal about how it's become the hip thing at high end engineering schools to form up in clubs, pool tools -- especially fine tolerance machine tools whose prices have dropped dramatically in recent decades -- and tinker and make physical objects. Well, hip is one thing, extensible is another. It got me thinking about all the bubbas sitting around America drinking PBR, watching Glenn Beck and NASCAR, and generally freaked out and disempowered about having a black president. What if those guys had high-end tools and could tinker? I bet they'd feel kind of empowered, after being eviscerated by multiple decades of real income declines at progressively shittier jobs. And I'll bet they'd produce some interesting gadgets, too.

It's just a question of building out a little business plan (though not for profit), getting some seed funding from universities and Soros, and running a pilot at a community college or two here in the great state of North Carolina, where, thanks to Terry Sanford and others, we've got strong community colleges. This could be a scalable way to encourage innovation while making a bunch of rednecks shut the fuck up about the government always doing something for somebody else.

1 comment:

Mark said...

Though you might find some interesting weapons making going on in this demographic if given such tools. Perhaps this strikes deep at my prejudiced, yankee fears of the South?