Your whole piece is a litany of reasons why nothing in the system is any good and why any attempts to fix it using technological approaches can’t possibly work. You say an idea for solving one problem is no good because it only solves one problem and there is more than one problem to solve. That’s a good rationale for doing nothing.

You seem to be comfortable complaining about a failed system and attacking efforts to make it better. But you are part of the failed system and do not have the perspective to step back and realize that embedded in your ideas are the assumptions and ways of thinking that cause the system to provide poor service to the homeless. In frustration you throw up your hands and advocate living on the street. Well that’s not good enough for the homeless and it’s not good for the rest of us.

This attitude of resignation to failure coupled with pompous moralizing is endemic to systems that don’t work well. Why are you so threatened by new ideas that just might make a small difference for the good? Technological changes like those being proposed also have a small but real chance of disrupting the whole system and setting off a reinforcing chain of quantum improvements. Why not develop apps to attack all the problems you listed and more? Shelter safety can be improved with apps and small video cams. Shelters for different populations of homeless can be identified and facilities customized. Counseling and job training can be targeted to those who would most benefit. Why don’t you get off the sideline, stop naysaying and start helping innovators refine and improve their apps?

Mathematician, Statistician, Businessman, and Academic. Student of history, poli sci , and the Bible.

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