Feeds

Customisation is BAD for the economy, say Oz productivity wonks

Bakers today, modders and makers tomorrow

Security for virtualized datacentres

Australia's Productivity Commission is complaining that high-value, highly-customised – artesan, in fact – products are a drag on national productivity.

In its latest productivity report, the nation's flint-eyed economists have decided that the best thing for the economy is for every possible product to sink into an identical low-cost, indistinguishable grey goo, apparently, like the generic "food" from the 1984 cult classic Repo Man.

It states, for example, that multi-factor productivity in the bread business has declined because those pesky specialists are spoiling the numbers by employing more bakers. Consumer demand for “products like international-style breads and breads with healthy additives such as whole grains” means there's a small shift away from the sugar-infused fluff that dominates supermarket aisles.

That means the growth in that sector is greater in “shop-based bakeries than in centralised factories”, the commission writes.

“Shop-based bakeries, which are usually small scale and less automated, do not achieve the economies of scale of large factories. For example, more labour is used per dollar of value added produced in shop-based bakeries (in part also because they sell their products directly to the consumer) than in factory manufacture.”

Even worse, it's really difficult to come up with any way to measure the economic value of product quality: “the higher quality of some of the output produced with these additional inputs may not be fully reflected in the measures of real value added growth for the subsector”.

At some point, El Reg is forced to speculate that the Productivity Commission will one day find out that there is a whole segment of the IT industry devoted to creating highly-customised, labour-intensive artesan products. Modders, be very, very afraid: your passion is eroding economic efficiency. Those of you creating bespoke software can also probably stop bringing the rest of us down. ®

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk

More from The Register

next story
Are you a fat boy? Get to university NOW, you PENNILESS SLACKER
Rotund types paid nearly 20% less than people who didn't eat all the pies
Emma Watson should SHUT UP, all this abuse is HER OWN FAULT
... said an anon coward who we really wish hadn't posted on our website
Japan develops robot CHEERLEADERS which RIDE on BALLS
'Will put smiles on faces worldwide', predicts corporate PR chief
Bruges Booze tubes to pump LOVELY BEER underneath city
Belgian booze pumped from underground
Let it go, Steve: Ballmer bans iPads from his LA Clippers b-ball team
Can you imagine the scene? 'Hey guys, it's your new owner – WTF is that on your desk?'
Amazon: Wish in one hand, Twit in the other – see which one fills first
#AmazonWishList A year's supply of Arran scotch, ta
SLOSH! Cops dethrone suspect - by tipping over portaloo with him inside
Talk about raising a stink and soiling your career
Ingredient found in TASTY BEER is GOOD for your BRAIN
You only have to drink 2k litres a day to see the effect...
Oz carrier Tiger Air takes terror alerts to new heights
Don't doodle, it might cost you your flight
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
The next step in data security
With recent increased privacy concerns and computers becoming more powerful, the chance of hackers being able to crack smaller-sized RSA keys increases.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.
A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.