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Look Who Tops New World University Rankings



The Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) has risen to the top spot of the annual QS University World Rankings.

Last year's top two universities, Cambridge and Harvard, both lost out to the science and technology university, being bumped down to second and third place respectively.

Ben Sowter, head of research for Quacquarelli Symonds, the publishers of the university rankings, said in a statement Tuesday morning: "The rise of MIT coincides with a global shift in emphasis toward science and technology ... MIT perfects a blueprint that is now being followed by a new wave of cutting-edge tech-focused institutions, especially in Asia.”

The US and the UK dominate the top 10, with American institutions claiming 13 places in the top 20 universities and 31 places in the overall top 100.

The Guardian commented that continental Europe has a disappointing record in the table with no German institutions appearing in the top 50. Switzerland has two universities in the top 30, including the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology at number 13, and there are two French schools in the top 50: the École Normale Supérieure and the École Polytechnique.

Le Figaro today reported that the nine leading French universities that appear in the rankings have all dropped down the list. The daily newspaper reported that there is a worrying decline in the number of foreign students choosing to study in France.

However, Asian universities continue to fight their way up the table, with universities from South Korea, Hong Kong, China and Japan all doing well. Hong Kong University, the University of Tokyo and the National University of Singapore all appeared in the top 30.

Latin American and Middle Eastern countries are also making progress.

The statement also read: "A record 72 countries are featured in the top 700, following a rapid acceleration in international mobility. The top 100 universities average nearly 10% more international students than in 2011, the biggest single-year increase in the rankings’ nine-year history."

“The unprecedented acceleration in international recruitment reflects an escalating global battle for talent. Total number of international students now exceeds 4.1 million globally,” Sowter said.

The Wall Street Journal reported Monday on a new university ranking system named the "Alumni Factor." Based on data collected from alumni in the US, some of the outcomes are suprising, with several Ivy League schools falling short.

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Look At This Crap! The "Enshittification" Theory Of Why The Internet Is Broken

The term was coined by journalist Cory Doctorow to explain the fatal drift of major Internet platforms: if they were ever useful and user-friendly, they will inevitably end up being odious.

A photo of hands holding onto a smartphone

A person holding their smartphone

Gilles Lambert/ZUMA
Manuel Ligero


The universe tends toward chaos. Ultimately, everything degenerates. These immutable laws are even more true of the Internet.

In the case of media platforms, everything you once thought was a good service will, sooner or later, disgust you. This trend has been given a name: enshittification. The term was coined by Canadian blogger and journalist Cory Doctorow to explain the inevitable drift of technological giants toward... well.

The explanation is in line with the most basic tenets of Marxism. All digital companies have investors (essentially the bourgeoisie, people who don't perform any work and take the lion's share of the profits), and these investors want to see the percentage of their gains grow year after year. This pushes companies to make decisions that affect the service they provide to their customers. Although they don't do it unwillingly, quite the opposite.

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Annoying customers is just another part of the business plan. Look at Netflix, for example. The streaming giant has long been riddling how to monetize shared Netflix accounts. Option 1: adding a premium option to its regular price. Next, it asked for verification through text messages. After that, it considered raising the total subscription price. It also mulled adding advertising to the mix, and so on. These endless maneuvers irritated its audience, even as the company has been unable to decide which way it wants to go. So, slowly but surely, we see it drifting toward enshittification.

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