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Pragmatic Capitalism

Capital for Living a More Practical Life

The productivity stealling metaphorical “dog”

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CR: “Millions of Americans are dealing with this problem where dogs are getting in the way of their productive lives on a daily basis.” Is this a metaphorical “dog”? My laptop is my “dog”. Trying deal with unrecalled passwords, constant updates, crashes, popup ads, firewalls, hackers and of course facebook is slowing my otherwise productive retirement way down! This “dog” is keeping from the beach.

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Posted by Dennis
Posted on 10/22/2016 5:25 PM
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Time stealing spellcheckers are “dogs” too!

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Posted by Dennis
Answered on 10/22/2016 5:28 PM
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    There are a lot of moving parts in this discussion….

    I actually don’t think the productivity slowdown is a big deal. It just measures unit output per worker. We have slowing output on average that I believe is a product of mean reversion to a lower and more sustainable long-term rate of growth. So, with more workers and slowing output growth you get less unit output per worker.

    If you buy my theory that growth is reverting to a more sustainable long-term mean then the slowdown in productivity is fully expected.

    Then again, I’d also argue that, like GDP, productivity measurements don’t measure all the right stuff. After all, a lot of technological changes are produced for no cost (like Wikipedia), but obviously make us all much more productive. But we don’t measure all of this stuff in output so it doesn’t get tracked as being productive.

    So, there’s measurement errors here and reasonable explanations for the slowdown. But no, I don’t think technology like computers are making us less productive. If anything, they make us much more productive and we are measuring that output incorrectly.

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    Cullen Roche Posted by Cullen Roche
    Answered on 10/24/2016 1:45 PM
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      I was teasing my wife a little this weekend about how when I show her just one cute post (often about a dog or cat) on Facebook – on my smart phone – she often gets sucked in to looking at other posts on Facebook. Then we both wondered how much social media, especially Facebook (and I suppose Twitter, but I don’t do Twitter) has become a negative impact on productivity.

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      Posted by Steve W
      Answered on 10/24/2016 5:57 PM
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        It’s a huge tax, that’s for sure. Hence why I don’t use Facebook. It’s the tabloid of social media.

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        Posted by MachineGhost
        Answered on 10/27/2016 5:04 PM
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