DeadFIL t1_jeff1rd wrote

I think you're falling into the old trap of hoping for a single metric to perfectly sum up a complex situation. As is often the case, no single number does that. The price changes of everything get tracked and analyzed and used for various purposes. Looking at different areas separately can tell you different things. You can go look up how houses, food, and gas prices have changed - nobody is concealing this information from you. But if you want a number that perfectly summarizes inflation, you're simply looking for something that does not and can not exist. Inflation is complex and happens for different things at different rates.

So, yeah, some metrics exclude some things so that they can better see the other things. That doesn't mean that the excluded things don't matter, it means that whatever metric you're looking at just doesn't include those things. If you want to see an inflation rate including those things, look at an index that includes them.


DeadFIL t1_j1ao77v wrote


DeadFIL t1_iwjpc1o wrote

Supercomputers cost a lot of money and are generally funded for specific reasons. Supercomputers are generally not very general purpose, but rather particularly built to be as good as possible at one class of task. Some computers will have a lot of CPUs, some will have a lot of GPUs, some will have a lot of both, and some will have completely different types of units that are custom built for a specific task.

It all depends on the supercomputer, but some aren't designed to excel at the ML algorithms. Any of them will do wayyyy better than your home computer due to their processing power, but many will be relatively inefficient.


DeadFIL t1_iwhsmbr wrote

>You still do 30 hours per week or more for working as a researcher on top of a TA-ship.

At my school (probably through the whole UC system, but I don't know about the other UCs), a GSR (graduate student researcher) is paid at the same rate, ~$35/hr, as a TA. I don't believe you can be both at once, though I'm not certain about that. If you're doing research unrelated to a GSR then it would be your own research towards your thesis or dissertation, so literally school work.

Sure, my experience doesn't capture everybody else's, but it does a pretty damn good job of capturing that of other students who had a TA or GSR position because I've worked in both of those positions within the last two years at the UC with the worst housing market.

My big issue here is that half the grad students get (in my opinion) an excellent funding package while the other half gets (objectively) jackshit. If you're lucky and get a funded position like a TAship or GSRship, you're on easy street (relatively speaking). If you're unlucky and you can't get such a position, not only will you be unable to find a job that pays nearly the hourly rate TAs make, you'll also have to pay for your own tuition and fees (which are covered for TAs/GSRs/GSIs and cost $6000+ per 10 week quarter otherwise).

Instead of making the schools affordable for the students, they've just been constantly upping the compensation for the subset of the students that have funded positions. They could build more affordable on-campus housing or reduce tuition for all grad students or just generally make any attempt at making the process affordable, rather than jacking up the price of everything and then giving some students the ability to pay for it.


DeadFIL t1_iwh1s5u wrote

I went to the UC with the highest housing prices, at least at the time.

For a 25% TAship (10 hours per week), you're under the threshold for SNAP, so you don't need to pay for food.

I was making roughly $1400/month, and had around $600/month leftover after living expenses. That's sharing a room in a mediocre apartment. If you had your own room, then your $200-400 is probably close, but what you mean "left for living expenses"? That's after living expenses (rent, utilities, food). How would you have $200-400 before expenses? Where did the other $1000 go that you don't consider living expenses?

To me, the fact that I could work just 10 hours per week and pay my living expenses, let alone have a few hundred bucks afterwards, was great. I mean, how many people do you know who make enough that they could drop to 1/4 of full time and still pay rent? Particularly since I had just finished undergrad at the same school, where I worked 20+ hours per week and still needed to take out loans for housing (in addition to taking out loans for tuition), I was living on cloud 9 in grad school. Tuition was paid for, living expenses were paid for, I had a little money for fun, and I was able to chip away at my loans.

Again, if they get more money then good for them; I just never really got the complaints. That was undoubtedly the most I've ever been paid for unit of effort. But hey, most of these grad students are making more per hour now than they ever will again, so might as well get it while the getting is good 👍


DeadFIL t1_iweiabu wrote

I disagree with most of what your saying. UC TAs are almost always graduate students with degrees in their field and have successfully passed the course they TA with a decent grade (I think a minimum of a B was required, but I forget). That is specialized training and they should be paid as such.

That said, they make bank already. I was being paid over $350 hours per week for 10 hours of work to TA. And that 10 hours is no joke, either, you can pretty much just walk out of the room halfway through teaching a lesson if you hit your weekly hours and the union will have your back. I personally never got close to doing the full 10 outside of midterms and finals when we had lots of tests to grade. Also, they pay for all of your tuition and fees , valued at around $600 per week when I was there a couple of years ago. For anyone not following the math, that's a $95/hour compensation package; far better than almost any of these people will make after getting their degree.

The problem is that you can only get 10 or 20 hour/week positions, so you can't go at it full time (I'd still be there if you could lmao). But still, I always felt like I was making out like a bandit. I can eat, pay rent, smoke weed, have honbies, and go to class; all that comes from 10 hours a week of going over homework problems with undergrads. I was always shocked that people wanted to strike when I felt like I was living like a king. If they can squeeze the UC system for even more than more power too them, I guess (though you gotta wonder how many will then turn around and complain that the UC system is too expensive).