On Wednesday, 9 December 2015 at 06:08:01 UTC, Chris Wright wrote:
On Wed, 09 Dec 2015 05:40:47 +0000, Tony wrote:

On Friday, 28 August 2015 at 13:08:36 UTC, Chris wrote:
On Friday, 28 August 2015 at 12:28:43 UTC, Russel Winder wrote:
On Thu, 2015-08-27 at 16:01 +0000, BBasile via Digitalmars-d-announce wrote:

That's courageous, particularly past 50 yo. It's a different culture, past 50 yo in Europe people choose security, but in USA, past 50 yo some people still take the risk to try something new. Awesome.

I say "bollocks" to your accusation that Europeans post 50 are a bunch of useless idiots.

I call double "bollocks" on the claim that only in the USA do people do anything.

I agree (I think it's the first time I agree with you!). Age is a state of mind. I've seen people in their 20ies who only think about a pension plan and watch TV every evening until they fall asleep.

But in general, people slow down mentally as they age. Most US companies - and Mark Zuckerberg of Facebook is leading the charge with his FWD.us lobby group - would prefer the government give them the capability to hire an unlimited amount of 25 year old foreign programmers instead of them having to hire 50 year old American programmers.

25-year-old people are more likely to work unpaid overtime. They generally get lower salaries. They're less likely to have families, which means lower health insurance costs. They're less likely to think about retirement, which means companies can advertise 401k matching as a competitive benefit without having to pay as much.

Companies have the option to offer 50 year olds the same salary they offer 25 year olds, and to not give them 401K plans and reduce or eliminate their medical benefits. The government would support that just as much as they currently support laying off 50 year olds to be replaced by 25 year old foreign non-citizen visa workers or hiring visa workers in lieu of American workers.

But they choose not to because none of that changes the fact that the brains of 50 year olds are not as good as the brains of 25 year olds, in the same way that the muscles of 50 year olds are not as good as the muscles of 25 year olds. The two situations are not entirely identical in that acquired knowledge and experience can help to level out the brain side more than it does on the muscle side. But the field of programming is one of the worst, if not the worst, for having past job experience match current job prospects.

The assertion that people slow down mentally as they age is pretty vague. While senescence does have mental effects, that wouldn't be hitting significantly at the age of 50 unless you have early onset Alzheimer's or the like. If there are some other effects impacting productivity, there are benefits to an extra 25 years of experience.

One thing that comes to mind to refute the contention that senescence would be insignificant at the age of 50 is notable technical achievement.

If we were to list the mathematical and scientific discoveries of the past - like calculus and theory of relativity, etc. - how many would have been done by someone at the age of 50 or older? How many milestones in computing history were achieved by someone 50 or older? How many were done by someone over 40? And I think most of the aging process isn't even quality (what would most impact notable discovery) - it's quantity (that is, slower clock cycle). And companies probably have more concerns about quantity of thought than quality.

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