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Tiny Deev
So, what does a school look like in Shadowrun? Are they all corporate, or are they just sponsered? How well would security be? You think a corp could do some tentacle like experiments with schoolgirls?
Basically, what I am asking about is; If you're playing 12 year olds, how would you do a run into a school?

Mongoose
Read Vernor Vinge's new book, "Rainbow's End". Its a near future novel set in a school for 12 year olds (and technologically inept adults). One of the main thrusts of the book is the impact of ubiquitous computing and AR.

quick edit- the corps (in Vinges book) are a lot more interested in sticking tentacles into the kids BRAINS (and imagination / social networking / careers) than their bodies.
Khyron
I'd imagine the public school system in UCAS would be more or less a giant prison with beatings rather then lessons. Corpschool and private school academies would be better.
Draco18s
Don't forget The race to educate the world by 2050! ;D

Ray Kurzweil (and some other futurists) are so naive. "2010 World Summit on Cognitive Development," my ass. What crisis caused that to happen? I ask. The article merely states that it happened, and would happen "in the next 10* years."

*This number hasn't changed in 10 years, I might add. I haven't re-read the article in its entirety, but I don't think we're any closer to solving all of the world's issues than we were in 1999 due to things like politics and human greed, which they didn't take into account.
Tiny Deev
QUOTE (Mongoose @ Mar 10 2010, 09:02 PM) *
quick edit- the corps (in Vinges book) are a lot more interested in sticking tentacles into the kids BRAINS (and imagination / social networking / careers) than their bodies.


Sounds interesting, for what purpose though?
nezumi
1) The current paradigm of one teacher teaching 30 (or even 100) kids is unprofitable. Instead, you'll see chirpy expert systems with encyclopedic knowledge at their disposal, programmed by psychologists and sponsored by corporations, teaching 90% of all kids. (Clippy is back - and this time, he's taking attendance.) The exception would be the very rich and the very poor.

2) Schools will still exist. Parents need daycare, and schools provide a better nutrition and health program, and better multimedia involvement than at-home teaching in most cases. Schools will be staffed by plenty of low-wage 'assistants' to help keep the kids safe. Imagine a school full of cafeteria ladies and crossing guards, where the classes are all taught by animated characters.

3) Schools will emphasize things that make money - critical skills (math and science), recognizing and working with/around magic, etc. They likely will have a scaled down music program (i.e. an online keyboard or somesuch) because those things are shown to increase grades. They will teach highly modified 'history'. They will be heavily subsidized by a single corp (either outright owned, or run by on behalf of the government) which will constantly spam their advertising message and get first pick of aspiring students.

4) 'Dropping out' at fourteen will be tolerated. By this age, you can generally tell who will put themselves forward and who won't, who is smart and who is dumb. The lazy, stupid people are not likely to provide more value by staying in the system longer (at least not value significantly comparable to the cost). Ergo, letting these people go straight into 'work programs' set up by the parent corp will be encouraged. Of course, the brilliant or hard working will be kept on, likely with barely concealed bribery and flattery.

5) Social networking will be hugely more important in successful schools.
Daylen
QUOTE (nezumi @ Mar 10 2010, 09:49 PM) *
They will teach highly modified 'history'.


already happening. and the latest attack on history is the elimination of american history before the 1870s. Seems Independance and Freedom are not relevant anymore.
The_Vanguard
In my campaign classic schooling, i.e. a room full of pupils and one teacher, is only encountered on the very high or very low end of the social ladder. Most corps favour the traditional system because it allows them to keep a close eye on the kids, including monitoring their in-the-meat social competence which will be very important in their work life later. On the street level firm and usually secluded communities like the Tarislar elves, the Ork Underground and the First Nations use the system out of necessity. Here, outstanding community members take turns to teach the kids something about their specialities, usually very practical minded. The curriculum depends on who has time to spare or debts to pay right now.

The public schools in between have been replaced by virtual classes with tutor soft access. These are often corp-sponsored and full of ads and propaganda - get 'em while they're young. Access to them is usually a work benefit for middle-class jobs, but individual children can also get an account through social wellfare (not likely) or through a scholarship (even less likely).

Street kids that grow up in an anti-social community cannot expect to get any education at all. Sometimes, a socially minded hacker from the hood might fork over some faked accounts for the virtual classes, or the china import-export on the corner might give away a box full of tutor soft chips that were supposed to be BTLs (and maybe there is a couple of actual beetles mixed in-between), but these are just lucky exceptions.
sunnyside
I think something important to the flavor of shadowrun is that while corps are greedy they aren't stupid, and usually their actions make sense and aren't so bizzare.

One of the older sourcebooks when they still had almost as much decker chat as content, maybe corporate download or one of the matrix ones, featured one of the deckers brining in one of the teaching programs.

The upshot is that the kids at the school her kid at least had been going are indavidually taught by a copy of an expert program. Which would blend useful skills in with a shot of propaganda.

I'd imagine it a bit like the vulcan school you see in the new Trek movie, except with trode rigs instead of a pit.

I'd imagine there is a "teacher" present as well, but they'd probably have a room with a ton of kids and most days they'd just sit there as a teacher would while giving a test. Just making sure the kids are staying jacked in and diligent, giving out hall passes, and maybe doing a little troubleshooting.

Heck, you could probably rate the schools by the rating of the program used.

Poor schools have drekky rating 1 used stuff in a shoddy building. In an upper middle class one, every day is like being in an episode of "the magic schoolbus" or whatever.
Tiny Deev
The mini-runners are going to have to break into the school, plug in a device on the principal's office so the decker can connect to it and change some grades. (It won't be on the Matrix, I think) I want them to find out something dark, and try to survive/fix it. You know.
nemafow
I think Nezumi has hit the nail on the head, thats exactly how I pictured it, corporate tentacles into everything I say.
hobgoblin
QUOTE (sunnyside @ Mar 10 2010, 11:45 PM) *
One of the older sourcebooks when they still had almost as much decker chat as content, maybe corporate download or one of the matrix ones, featured one of the deckers brining in one of the teaching programs.

virtual realities 2.0 have a opening text where a mother have gotten hold of a matrixpal cyber terminal and basically plugs its tutorsoft into shadowland seattle, with hilarious results.

i think at one point one commenter talk about burning his own chips to break out of the walled garden of a school provided terminal.
The_Vanguard
QUOTE (Tiny Deev @ Mar 11 2010, 12:04 AM) *
The mini-runners are going to have to break into the school, plug in a device on the principal's office so the decker can connect to it and change some grades. (It won't be on the Matrix, I think) I want them to find out something dark, and try to survive/fix it. You know.


Sounds like a standard b&e run in a low to mid level security environment. Put maglocks on the entrances and the most important rooms, but everything else will have mechanical locks at most. Additionally, some motion detectors and weapon scanners in central areas. The latter ones are meant for the students, so they will bein plain sight for psychological reasons. Some sensors may be non operational due to vandalism. You can spice things up with one or two patrol drones, but they will be unarmed or carry tasers at most. Also, keep in mind that the security system will have matrix access because it needs to be able to alert the cops. That way the hacker will be able to mess with the security until the inside team sets up the connection to the isolated system.

Possible dark secrets:
* The principal has just struck a deal with a corp that will abduct kids with magic talent in order to stick tentacles into them. If one of the runners is awakened, his name may be on the list.

* Alternatively, the corp might want to test a new tutor soft with subliminal psychotropic brain washing on the kids.

* The new janitor is actually a toxic shaman that tries to sacrifice a hooker this night. He plans to blow the whole school up eventually.

* The principal is posessed by a toxic spirit of guidance that delights in messing up the kids' education as much as possible. He will surprise them while they're on site and, since they most likely won't have the means to fight him, a life or death chase will ensue.

Backup plan: If they don't manage to crack the system you can have the ghost of a pupil that was killed for knowing to much stalk the halls at night.
Kumo
I bet teachers in corporate schools often work remotely via AR and VR. And there are a fully virtual schools (like a "Matrix-based philosophy night class" mentioned in "Augmentation" - I love this story).
Of course, there will be some kind of goverment education program in a poor areas. Maybe even some corps will act this way - to find a potentially valuable future employees, help their PR or test new teaching/brainwashing/mind control methods (Horizon?...)
And there are always "nonexistent" schools for criminal education, like "The Faraday School" mentioned in "Vice". Hell - from what I heard, there is some kind of a RL school of thieves in my city (illegal, of course) in a present day!

QUOTE (nezumi @ Mar 11 2010, 12:49 AM) *
They will teach highly modified 'history'.


Believe or not, but I know this from my own experience...
nezumi
QUOTE (Tiny Deev @ Mar 10 2010, 06:04 PM) *
The mini-runners are going to have to break into the school, plug in a device on the principal's office so the decker can connect to it and change some grades. (It won't be on the Matrix, I think) I want them to find out something dark, and try to survive/fix it. You know.


That I disagree with. Right now teachers' systems are connected to the Internet, so they can post grades, and schools rarely have the resources (in cash or knowledge) to properly secure a system.

In regards to security for a school facility...

Let's assume this is a "public" school, not on a corporate campus.

Primary concern is dealers/gangers/pedophiles coming into the school, and kids leaving without permission. There is no expectation of privacy.

The building is large, three levels high and a sub-basement, and pretty old. The designer used to build prisons. Windows are placed high on the walls and don't open or close. The walls are unusually thick for this sort of a building. The building can be easily segregated into two wings and a gymnasium. The two wings each have two sets of stairs, a set of bathrooms on each level, etc. The wings can be locked off from each other with large doors. There is one main door past the office, two back doors, and a freight door. All are locked and controlled by the main office. The main doorway has a weapon/cyber detector built into the frame.

The building is on a reasonably large lot, with a large parking lot and several asphalt playing courts which are underutilized. The entire lot is surrounded by an eight or ten-foot tall fence, possibly topped with razor wire. The facility has a single officer, and several employees serving as security (mostly just keeping an eye out). Every entryway, several hallways, the parking lot and much of the grounds are covered by camera surveillance.


Now to take that real school and update it...

Each classroom is pretty large, holding 60-200 students. Kids spend most of their time sitting at desks, either reading terminals or watching via trode net. One TA is responsible for one or two classrooms. One teacher is responsible for 4-10 TAs. 1-2 techs are responsible for the school. There is an exercise period every day (there are still PE teachers). Lunch period isn't too different from now, except no one may bring in their own food. Bringing in food may not properly fulfill the stated nutritional needs, and invites the possibility of lawsuits.

Every student is given either a badge or bracelet. This is required to gain access to the building, and has a tracking beacon built into it. It may use biometrics. It may have a built in camera.

Every hallway is camera monitored. Chem sniffers are at every doorway. Locker checks are regularly scheduled. There is an intercom at the gate to access the lot, which includes a license plate/vehicle chip checking device. Every room door has a low-rating maglock controlled at the main office. The exterior doors have rating 4-5 locks.

Matrix access is highly limited. It can only access a certain corporate subnet, in order to limit undesirable content. This means a decker from the outside must break into the corporate subnet FIRST, then filter through. However, the school system is poorly maintained and poorly guarded. The software is out of date. The actual tutorsoft is locked down as hard as Fort Knox - that's a valuable piece of hardware/software that is likely run off a remote server. Breaking into the tutorsoft is extremely difficult. While the tutorsoft has the technology to verify the posted online grades, it has not been configured to do so, so actually changing grades is pretty easy.

Magic support falls under the local security contractor. The office had a low-level ward. It doesn't any more.


The principal is a business administrator. His primary concern is moving money. The vice-principal is the catch-all, managing teacher issues, disciplinary concerns, security, so on and so forth. Teachers are facilitators, making sure everything is ready for the tutorsoft, helping to present non-virtual artifacts or lessons, leading "real life" workgroup experiments, etc. The TAs do the closest thing to actual teaching, helping individual kids use their tools, explaining difficult concepts, spending extra time with troubled students, giving first advice on holding students back or moving them forward, etc. Teachers and TAs are under just as much security scrutiny as the kids, so they don't have much chance either to leverage their access for profit, or to teach anything outside of the curriculum. Teaching "more" is a serious offence that will be dealt with.

Techs have relatively free reign, since they belong to the tutorsoft's company, not to the teacher, officially have little or no contact with the kids, and they know all the ins-and-outs of the system. If anyone is going to skim a little off the top, probably by selling camera footage from the locker rooms to dedicated subscription lists on the matrix, it's these guys.
Penta
Nezumi's concept works great for an urban school.

For suburbia, you may want a different concept.

The way I view schools in SR, in the suburbia I grew up in at least:

The physical plant (the building and stuff) may be up to 100 years old, though retrofitted to take advantage of modern tech. It's cheaper to replace wiring than the whole building.

One teacher per 25 kids is a max in the lower grades (K-cool.gif - they're more comfortable edging towards 25 than the usual 18 they have today because of tutorsofts, but there's still a good deal of "live" teaching. High School (9-12), you'll see closer to 30 kids.

A lot of your support staff (that, as most people can attest, really make a school run) like secretaries, custodians, etc. have been replaced by drones and tech, where possible.

Suburban schools have an advantage urban schools don't - the people in suburbia make more than those in urban areas, so the schools get a healthy flow of non-corporate private donations, plus appreciable tax dollars. (Never underestimate the power of nostalgia upon the writing of someone's will, either.) This means that while they may not be able to afford the latest in capital improvements, they hold their own with private schools and corp schools.

Security is provided by staff during prep periods and the like - you don't get in past the front door except by buzzing in, and you don't get past the front office without a security bracelet issued to kids and staff only.

Weapons scanners are in evidence at every entrance.

Cameras are not uncommon, either.

Classes are still much the same as you'd find in RL, maybe with new electives added at the HS level.

Tutorsofts provide the basics, then texture is provided by the teacher - who in suburban schools usually has a Master's or a Doctorate in their field by this time.

Downsides:

It's boring. It's very boring. One of the first things to go in suburban schools in Shadowrun was probably the gifted and talented programs. Teachers make a good deal of extra money providing tutoring on the side, helping to keep the gifted kids in school, at least.

There isn't an obvious slant to the teaching of, say, history, but the atmosphere is one of almost smug self-assurance. It's suburbia. These kids know they'll grow up, go to college off mom and dad's savings or scholarships, get recruited by a corp, and go from there. Some do go on to the military, trade school, or whatnot...But most go on to college. 90-95% go on to college.

The weight of expectations is what keeps kids conforming - it's not expected that you'd drop out, so you don't even consider it, really, for example. The pressure from parents, teachers, friends, etc. is that you'll stay in school, graduate.

If you're special education? You're mainstreamed almost without a second thought. Fortunately, most teachers get a basic grounding in how to handle special ed kids by now, but that isn't perfect or even all that much. This covers kids with physical disabilities, mental retardation, emotional issues, you name it. There are alternative schools, but to send even one kid there requires a vote of the full school board. Most kids, schools try to deal with in-house.

I know, my version may be a little too rose-colored for some tastes, but that's how I see it in suburbia.
Saint Sithney
If kids try to skip class in my game, they catch 5S from the dumpshock.


Why would there be any physical public schools when you can just buy a Nexus per class and make the kids jack in for x hours a day? Government would just outsource the job to NeoNET and wash their hands of it.
hobgoblin
i wonder how much of suburbia in SR is really walled gardens for A-AAA corps...
Draco18s
QUOTE (Saint Sithney @ Mar 11 2010, 01:54 PM) *
Why would there be any physical public schools when you can just buy a Nexus per class and make the kids jack in for x hours a day? Government would just outsource the job to NeoNET and wash their hands of it.


If you read Psychotrope there is a brief description of a classroom environment where the kids did jack into a nexus, though they were all phsyically in a classroom as well.
Brazilian_Shinobi
QUOTE (Saint Sithney @ Mar 11 2010, 03:54 PM) *
If kids try to skip class in my game, they catch 5S from the dumpshock.


Why would there be any physical public schools when you can just buy a Nexus per class and make the kids jack in for x hours a day? Government would just outsource the job to NeoNET and wash their hands of it.


Because kids should have physical education classes to avoid obesity and all the stuff that comes from living all your life without leaving your bed? grinbig.gif
nezumi
QUOTE (Saint Sithney @ Mar 11 2010, 01:54 PM) *
Why would there be any physical public schools when you can just buy a Nexus per class and make the kids jack in for x hours a day? Government would just outsource the job to NeoNET and wash their hands of it.


There are a couple reasons.

One is parents don't like leaving their kids alone at home all day. Even if the kid is plugged in and thereby under remote observation, it just doesn't lend that 'your family corporation is taking care of all of your needs' feeling. If they drop Timmy off at school, they know he's being watched.

The second is simply control. Controlling your mind is great, but controlling your mind AND your body is even better - it means they can control your activities, they can verify your involvement, control your diet, monitor any behaviors, pick out kids for alternative tracks, catch any possibility of magical potential... and best of all, it gives a degree of control over the kids that even the parents don't have. The corporation wants the kids, when they finish school, to remember spending their best time with the CORPORATION, not with mom or dad. Finally, while the kids are held in a corporate/government controlled facility, mom can't defect to a competitor because it would require a double, simultaneous extraction - plus all the other leverage the corp has by having your child hostage for 8 hours a day.
Brazilian_Shinobi
QUOTE (nezumi @ Mar 11 2010, 07:17 PM) *
plus all the other leverage the corp has by having your child hostage for 8 hours a day.


Something that the japanacorps might actually treat as keeping the offspring as hostages. After all, during the feudal age, the noble "prisoners" were actually hostages, well treated hostages that could pretty much anything they wanted except leave the castle.
hobgoblin
i think some european royalty did things the same way. Heck, the french knights expected to be ransomed, not killed, until they faced english forces.
Saint Sithney
QUOTE (nezumi @ Mar 11 2010, 02:17 PM) *
There are a couple reasons.


I was thinking more for UCAS citizens than corporate citizens. Corps would totally break up the family unit as soon as possible for indoctrination purposes.
Khyron
QUOTE (Saint Sithney @ Mar 11 2010, 11:45 PM) *
I was thinking more for UCAS citizens than corporate citizens. Corps would totally break up the family unit as soon as possible for indoctrination purposes.



If the parents are already indoctrinated, there's no need to break it up as it would occur naturally and cheaper.
Saint Sithney
QUOTE (Khyron @ Mar 11 2010, 10:54 PM) *
If the parents are already indoctrinated, there's no need to break it up as it would occur naturally and cheaper.


If the parents are indoctrinated it's because they were taken off by the corp at a young age and put through the grooming and sorting process which made them the happy slaves they are today. When do you stop doing something that has been proven to work? Besides, not all corp citizens will be from a family heritage of corp citizenship. Extraterritoriality and corporate states aren't that old.
Manunancy
QUOTE (Saint Sithney @ Mar 11 2010, 07:54 PM) *
Why would there be any physical public schools when you can just buy a Nexus per class and make the kids jack in for x hours a day? Government would just outsource the job to NeoNET and wash their hands of it.


Probably because having a whole generation of kids growing up with both reality impaired (from so much time jacked up into VR) and uncouth (from having only VR interactions with software rather than peoples) disadvantage is going to be an horrible mess.

Note on the 'breaking the family as soon as possible' : I'd rather think it's something the corps will be careful around. Sure you'd rather have the kids growing up attached to the corp rather than their parents, but you're going against some rather deeply rooted biology. And even if you get some thoroughly indoctrinated drones ten years down the line, making half your workforce mad at you in the process will bite your butt well before that. It's made even worse by the fact that most of the added value come froms peoples with creative, problem-solving minds (wether they'reorientd toward material or social issues). Which are the most likely to notice and react poorly to that sort of heavy-duty manipulation.
Valashar
Not sure which SR4 book it was in (Unwired, perhaps?), but it's mentioned that Horizon acquired the contract to provide and maintain all educational software for schools in the UCAS and were working on the same for other nations as well.
Ascalaphus
QUOTE (Brazilian_Shinobi @ Mar 11 2010, 09:17 PM) *
Because kids should have physical education classes to avoid obesity and all the stuff that comes from living all your life without leaving your bed? grinbig.gif


Simple, give them a Dietware implant. For only 2500 nuyen.gif , obesity is now only a problem for the underclass.
Mongoose
QUOTE (Tiny Deev @ Mar 10 2010, 08:51 PM) *
Sounds interesting, for what purpose though?


It was a metaphore. Basically, they use kids as contract workers, because the computer systems are advancing so fast that anybody who didn't grow up with them is effectively obsolete. They also do stuff like getting them hooked up with custom smart drugs, posing as children "on line" to interact with them, etc.

Ascalphus- a slimworm won't help with muscu-skeletal development, though. Honestly, I think with the popularity of AR games, getting kids (and adults) to exercise would be a snap.
nezumi
It's never "simple" installing cyberware on kids. They grow, they change, their physiology is inherently different. not to mention, dietware does nothing to encourage bone density or muscle growth. Yes, you could spend $20-60k/child, plus $10k/yr tweaking and maintaining that gear to make them all instantly "healthy" - but you can also have an empty field and a gym teacher to do that for half the cost, and without causing permanent harm to any prospective mages, and without the liability concerns.
Ascalaphus
QUOTE (nezumi @ Mar 12 2010, 06:13 PM) *
and without the liability concerns.



Let's be realistic: PE is full of liability concerns. Injuries, psychological damage from consistently being picked last for a team, sexual abuse by teachers.. all manner of things that could go wrong.

I wouldn't be surprised by bioware designed to streamline and assure the proper development of kids' bodies; it just isn't very relevant for adult runners, so it's not in Augmentation. But it fits in neatly with Clean Metabolism, Dietware, genetic optimization, and a lot of the other therapies available.

"Don't let my kid out of the vat until he's past puberty!"
Mongoose
Hell, you've got parents giving kids growth hormone shots already, just to avoid them being in the lower 5-10% of normal height. Yeah, "growthware" would probably be a big market, though it would more likely come in the form of drugs and gene treatments than implants.
hobgoblin
yay, adhd kids with roid rage...
nezumi
QUOTE (Ascalaphus @ Mar 12 2010, 12:22 PM) *
Let's be realistic: PE is full of liability concerns. Injuries, psychological damage from consistently being picked last for a team, sexual abuse by teachers.. all manner of things that could go wrong.


We have a pretty strong legal tradition of those not being suable offences (except the lattermost, which would be controlled by 24/7 surveillance). So a school really shouldn't be worrying about that. However, installing 2 essence-worth of cyberware in Johnny, only to find out later that Johnny had significant unawakened magical potential which will forever be curtailed is asking for not only a lawsuit, but a very, very heavy one.

Remember, essence isn't something we can 'heal'. It doesn't fix itself. It can't be created through geneware or diet-mods. And it is absolutely critical for that 1% of the population upon whom something like 20% of the economy balances. It is measurable, it is real. I don't think that any school would do anything which might be construed as possibly resulting in the loss of even .1 essence because of the very serious physical and legal ramifications that come with that.
Kumo
QUOTE (Ascalaphus @ Mar 12 2010, 08:22 PM) *
I wouldn't be surprised by bioware designed to streamline and assure the proper development of kids' bodies; it just isn't very relevant for adult runners, so it's not in Augmentation. But it fits in neatly with Clean Metabolism, Dietware, genetic optimization, and a lot of the other therapies available.

"Don't let my kid out of the vat until he's past puberty!"


But how profitable would it be? Corp has to invest nuyen in every child, without guarantee of payback. Being a corp executive, I'd gave a discount for some 'ware for kids' parents - they install it for own responsibility (partly - it's their decision; corp doesn't force them to buy it, right?), they pay for it, and they are happy because beloved corporation gave their child good upgrade for a lower price.
And there's always risk of losing a part of valuable Awakened or Emerged asset - child loses a bit of Essence, after all.

QUOTE
Let's be realistic: PE is full of liability concerns. Injuries, psychological damage from consistently being picked last for a team, sexual abuse by teachers.. all manner of things that could go wrong.

But raising a generation of healthy employees is IMO worthy a cost of some traumatized children. They will pay a price, not the corp. And PE fit in some corps' image - like "zaibatsu spirit" of japanacorps (you learn teamwork and "friendly" rivalry during exercises). Or a "proud, strong man" of Ares.
Draco18s
QUOTE (nezumi @ Mar 12 2010, 12:57 PM) *
Remember, essence isn't something we can 'heal'. It doesn't fix itself.


Actually, we can heal it. But very slowly and very expensively.

Still not worth the risk though (unless you're doing something small, like a data jack--1% odds you need to pay ~85,000 to remove it and get the 0.1 essence back, if the mage so desires).
Ascalaphus
QUOTE (Kumo @ Mar 12 2010, 07:02 PM) *
But how profitable would it be? Corp has to invest nuyen in every child, without guarantee of payback. Being a corp executive, I'd gave a discount for some 'ware for kids' parents - they install it for own responsibility (partly - it's their decision; corp doesn't force them to buy it, right?), they pay for it, and they are happy because beloved corporation gave their child good upgrade for a lower price.
And there's always risk of losing a part of valuable Awakened or Emerged asset - child loses a bit of Essence, after all.


Don just look at it from a corporate viewpoint, think of the parents. If installing growth controller ware at 3 makes the kid likely to develop an average of 4 in attributes as opposed to the normal average of 3, that investment can really pay off in the long run. It allows the have-parents to outperform have-not parents even more, which is nicely dystopian.

QUOTE (Kumo @ Mar 12 2010, 07:02 PM) *
But raising a generation of healthy employees is IMO worthy a cost of some traumatized children. They will pay a price, not the corp. And PE fit in some corps' image - like "zaibatsu spirit" of japanacorps (you learn teamwork and "friendly" rivalry during exercises). Or a "proud, strong man" of Ares.


Those are good points. It's always interesting to see how corporations approach things differently - like MCT emphasizing drones while Ares focuses on manpower when it comes to defense. Just like that, corporations could have different philosophies on how to raise kids. That might be a good reason for soon-to-be parents to organize a volunantary extraction to a more child-friendly corp!

QUOTE (Draco18s @ Mar 12 2010, 07:04 PM) *
Actually, we can heal it. But very slowly and very expensively.

Still not worth the risk though (unless you're doing something small, like a data jack--1% odds you need to pay ~85,000 to remove it and get the 0.1 essence back, if the mage so desires).


Let's not forget that not everyone has Essence 6 to begin with, only the prime metahuman specimens that typical shadowrunner PCs are made of. Also, many mages choose to implant wares anyway - perticularly some of the useful general performance enhancement wares like cybereyes.

You could use the one essence hole created by the child's growth control implant and use a series of alternate implants.

You could have a trade in second-hand growth control implants. Yuk smile.gif
Warlordtheft
QUOTE (nezumi @ Mar 12 2010, 12:57 PM) *
We have a pretty strong legal tradition of those not being suable offences (except the lattermost, which would be controlled by 24/7 surveillance). So a school really shouldn't be worrying about that. However, installing 2 essence-worth of cyberware in Johnny, only to find out later that Johnny had significant unawakened magical potential which will forever be curtailed is asking for not only a lawsuit, but a very, very heavy one.

Remember, essence isn't something we can 'heal'. It doesn't fix itself. It can't be created through geneware or diet-mods. And it is absolutely critical for that 1% of the population upon whom something like 20% of the economy balances. It is measurable, it is real. I don't think that any school would do anything which might be construed as possibly resulting in the loss of even .1 essence because of the very serious physical and legal ramifications that come with that.


Also, for kids you really can't implant cyber as it is very costly to replace after every growth spurt. Generally (from the books, like the Arcoology shutdown), in SR it is frowned upon to do that to kids for those reasons.
Penta
I don't see cyber/bio/gene ware for kids.

Pediatric everything is really different from adult medicine. Even adolescents are really different.

Plus, yes, there's always the risk of damaging any potential magical ability (even a Magic of 1 might be useful!).

Y'see, that's the funny thing. The tech might change, but I don't see kids (or childhood) being too different outside of, say, the Barrens.

I could see the corps actually stunting the evolution of childhood, trying to keep to "traditional" notions, as that guarantees markets.
---

Also:

Outside of arcologies, I don't see the corps running too many schools for kids. They'll take the slim risk of security/other problems, for some simple reasons:

1. Running a school, even with software helps, is expensive.
2. All the indoctrination in the world can be broken by normal adolescent stuff, limiting the usefulness of that severely.
3. The Balkanization of countries and the like means you'd effectively have to run different schools in each country, to accommodate differing cultural/linguistic/sociological requirements. Kinda kills the economy of scale the corps rely on.
4. Running a school requires a much different mindset than running a regular corporate division. Limits personnel transferability.
5. It's incredibly difficult to predict at any age under 18 what someone will be like as an adult, limiting the usefulness of "talent scouts". Adolescence in particular brings way too many changes.
6. Any profits are long in the future. Corps, I presume, still live and die by quarterly earnings statements.

More likely, they heavily support public and private schools in the better-off areas. They compete for influence with the nations, the private sponsors, private educational foundations, and the like.

Education, see, is sort of like infrastructure - sure, the corps could do it all themselves, but they aren't going to unless they absolutely must. It's nowhere near profitable enough, and even the best PR would take a huge hit if something happened at a corp-run school. And stuff would happen.

More likely: Corps don't go near the educational stuff, except in the same way, say, textbook publishers do today - very indirectly. More likely, they provide "ancilliary services", the "central office" stuff every school system needs but tends to do badly. Things like providing payroll services, tech support, so forth. (Security would likely be awarded to whomever does municipal security for public schools.)

Plus, as someone noted - Corp extraterritoriality is really young still. It's heavily intimated in Corp Shadowfiles (for instance) that from 2001 up til about the 2020s, the corps were limited in their use of extraterritoriality. Sec forces were more heavily armed, and they may not have paid taxes, but they still acted more like the corps we know than like nation-states.

It was only after the first crash that things started changing. (Shadowrunning is said in one sourcebook to have only made its "modern" form in the 2040s, I seem to remember)

It still seems to me that directly corp-run schools, thus, might be something the corps haven't done yet - and may not get to doing.
nezumi
I think you forget the basic tenant of Shadowrun - government is failing to provide these basic services, and so hires (and regularly pays) the corps to do it for them. Schooling is not in and of itself profitable, but when the government is paying you two million a year for a school that costs 1.5M to operate, well... I don't think any of the corps are going to turn up their noses at that.
hobgoblin
now i find myself wondering if ares would be pushing the "rugged individual", or even "objectivist" ways.
Brazilian_Shinobi
I think that most public schools would still exist with several corps helping fund them so they can pick talents later on. They might give cheaper food, chips, infra-structure, but let the government manage.
hobgoblin
indeed, nothing gives the chills as a corp running what first appears to be a services for the less fortunate, only for them to pick and choose between the best and brightest. heck, they may even give run the whole thing, and give the local government a good deal on the cost.

heck, not just schools, but clinics to, with lax to non-existent government oversight, and plenty of "willing" test subjects.
Saint Sithney
QUOTE (Manunancy @ Mar 12 2010, 03:55 AM) *
Probably because having a whole generation of kids growing up with both reality impaired (from so much time jacked up into VR) and uncouth (from having only VR interactions with software rather than peoples) disadvantage is going to be an horrible mess.


That's a lot of assumption there. Who is to say that these children don't have real teachers and real classmates? Only the environment where they meet needs to be artificial. VR sense feedback can make it just as real as any physical location. As I've said in the past, the technology for fully-real UV nodes is old and outdated by 2070. Strap the kid in to flexible reatraints, turn off the ambulatory control paralysis, and the kid will even get his exercise as he dreams of kickball and jumping jacks.

QUOTE (Manunancy @ Mar 12 2010, 03:55 AM) *
Note on the 'breaking the family as soon as possible' : I'd rather think it's something the corps will be careful around. Sure you'd rather have the kids growing up attached to the corp rather than their parents, but you're going against some rather deeply rooted biology. And even if you get some thoroughly indoctrinated drones ten years down the line, making half your workforce mad at you in the process will bite your butt well before that. It's made even worse by the fact that most of the added value come froms peoples with creative, problem-solving minds (wether they'reorientd toward material or social issues). Which are the most likely to notice and react poorly to that sort of heavy-duty manipulation.


"As soon as possible" should perhaps be read as "as soon as profitable" instead. So, rather than rearing the kids from robot nipples, perhaps they're taken at 12 for specialized career training. All the time before that, their studies have turned them towards this path and away from the nuclear family unit.
Ascalaphus
QUOTE (Warlordtheft @ Mar 12 2010, 08:12 PM) *
Also, for kids you really can't implant cyber as it is very costly to replace after every growth spurt. Generally (from the books, like the Arcology shutdown), in SR it is frowned upon to do that to kids for those reasons.


The whole beauty of growth regulation implants is that growth spurts aren't random anymore. Instead of leaving the development of your child to fate, you can guarantee they'll grow to a healthy size, have normal or normalplus brain development, and avoid the messier sides of puberty.

Really, as a teenager, if you could get an implant that totally prevented acne, you'd get it.

Teenagers and their parents are insecure; insecure people are easy marks for the bioware salespeople. And unlike our current age, their products may very likely actually work.
Saint Sithney
Here's an idea. Maybe kids can heal essence as they grow up. That's something which ties back into the discussion of Genetic Heritage costing essence. Seems like everyone over a certain pay grade would get a quick gene treatment to remove their pollen allergies...

But, since the body has all its cells replaced every, what, 7 years? I'd say that a kid could get something in, then have it taken out and by the time he's of age, it would be no matter.
Kumo
QUOTE (hobgoblin @ Mar 12 2010, 11:59 PM) *
indeed, nothing gives the chills as a corp running what first appears to be a services for the less fortunate, only for them to pick and choose between the best and brightest. heck, they may even give run the whole thing, and give the local government a good deal on the cost.

heck, not just schools, but clinics to, with lax to non-existent government oversight, and plenty of "willing" test subjects.


There are other possiblities: corps could implant memes, test new advertisement on pupils, or even test new drugs.
Example:
MCT developed a new brainbender. In secret they found a non-profit organisation (which uses money from MCT and donations from a helpful people). Non-profit organisation opens some schools in places under Yakuza control. Yakuza sells new drug to pupils and teachers, maybe uses them as some cheap muscles. So MCT has free guinea pigs, may find some talented employees, or profit on something else. Yaks have profit from drug dealing and some little helpers. Everyone is happy (who cares about children and teachers, anyway?).
hyzmarca
Schools adapt, but they don't adapt quickly. I was in school with the Berlin Wall fell. For a very long time afterward those social studies textbooks were extremely inaccurate. Public schools are likely to be outdated. And given the vintage of Shadowrun, overrun by gangs.

Think The Substitute starring Tom Berenger; the ideal public school teacher is a military special forces guy/professional mercenary.
Saint Sithney
QUOTE (hyzmarca @ Mar 13 2010, 11:28 AM) *
Schools adapt, but they don't adapt quickly. I was in school with the Berlin Wall fell.


Aye, but how long after the wall went up do you think East Berliners were being taught from the old books. Sweeping changes is what authoritarian government is all about.
Things only move slow where there is a) bureaucratic interference or b) a deficit of means.

An authoritarian government can push through anything it likes, and, if you give a mega corp free reign to mold millions of young kid's minds for a one time cost of 100 a head, then they'd uniformly jump at that contract. Hell, they'll lobby their asses off just to make it happen and then lowball on the contract.
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