I was just reading the news piece on a U.S. Senate panel restoring some government funding for science and technology programs.
EE Times writer George Leopold writes:
"The Senate Appropriations science subcommittee earlier this week (June 21) approved $27.3 billion for federal technology programs. The panel restored $140 million for the Advanced Technology Program (ATP), which House Republicanshave been trying unsuccessfully to kill for the past decade. ATP is run by the Commerce Department's National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). Critics call the program corporate welfare."
I don't know that much about the Advanced Technology Program, but I doubt it's any more corporate welfare than hundreds of other pork barrel projects that get way more funding from Uncle Sam.
I also know thisif the U.S. doesn't get off the dime and realize how far we are falling behind in terms of our networking economy, we'll all be on welfare soon. An article in the New York Times today said that one of China's largest state-controlled oil companies made a serious unsolicited bid for Unocal. The move was the "first big takeover battle by a Chinese company for an American corporation" according to the article.
We ran an article last week, ZTE Corporation has been chosen to edit a new ITU recommendation for adaptive dispersion compensators. The move signaled a "continuing a recent trend for Chinese communications equipment providers to play an increasingly influential role in international standards setting," according to the article.
Now don't get me wrong. I'm not pooh-poohing global commerce or China's inevitable rise as a global economic power, I'm just saying it's time for our legislators to get serious about getting serious about the U.S. becoming a broadband enabled nation and doing whatever it takes to keep us up there at the top of the list when it comes to being a world leader in networking technology.
While it's certainly good news that the Senate panel let loose of some funds, one would think that it would be the other way around. Those in government should have lots of money to help us advance in technology. And, the trouble should be deciding where it all should go.
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