Mindset List vs. Mindlessness List

The Class of 2017 Mindset List has arrived and we’ll soon be scrutinizing its entries.

But first, we compare the Mindset List to our own Mindlessness List.

We generated our list using by copying the Mindlist’s method:

 Our list was compiled by a couple of guys without any assistance from or contact with anyone from the Class of 2017. Although we didn’t use microfiche, we did pay special attention to things that happened 18ish years ago since each cohort’s mindset is shaped by stuff that happened around when they were born. We also relied on lazy stereotypes and trivia of interest to us. We didn’t spend much time putting this together and we didn’t check it for accuracy or comprehensibility.

So how did we do? We predicted around 20% of the Mindset items. Here are some comparisons between the two lists:

For this generation of entering college students, born in 1995, Dean Martin, Mickey Mantle, and Jerry Garcia have always been dead. (Mindset List)

For this generation of entering college students, born in 1995, Howard Cosell, Jerry Garcia, Mickey Mantle, Dean Martin, and Ginger Rogers have always been dead. (Mindlessness List)

Our list had two more dead celebrities.

1. Eminem and LL Cool J could show up at parents’ weekend. (Mindset List)

1. They should keep their eyes open for Olympians Missy Franklin and McKayla Maroney and reality show star Kendall Jenner at freshman orientation. (Mindlessness List)

We chose different sets of 18-year-olds to pretend might attend your college.

4. As they started to crawl, so did the news across the bottom of the television screen. (Mindset List)

10. A crawl is no longer just a way for babies to move forward on their hands and knees. (Mindlessness List)

News crawls.

6. As their parents held them as infants, they may have wondered whether it was the baby or Windows 95 that had them more excited. (Mindset List)

2. They have never been dependent on MS-DOS as a standalone operating system. (Mindlessness List)

The Mindset guys have a bleak view of parenthood.

16. A tablet is no longer something you take in the morning. (Mindset List)

6. A “tablet” has never been just a slab of stone for making inscriptions. (Mindlessness List)

Tablet computers.

19. Plasma has never been just a bodily fluid. (Mindset List)

8. Plasma is no longer just a pale liquid component of blood. (Mindlessness List)

Plasma TVs are around 18 years old.

27. Thanks to Megan’s Law and Amber Alerts, parents have always had community support in keeping children safe. (Mindset List)

23. When kidnapped by estranged parents they have always been able to come home via the Amber Alert System. (Mindlessness List)

Amber Alerts are around 18 years old.

29. Java has never been just a cup of coffee. (Mindset List)

17. Java is a computer language, not an Indonesian island, early example of Homo erectus, or slang term for coffee. (Mindlessness List)

We get extra points for having two more meanings of “java.”

34. Yahoo has always been looking over its shoulder for the rise of “Yet Another Hierarchical Officious Oracle.” (Mindset List)

21. Yahoo has always been a web portal, not an imaginary race of brutish creatures in Gulliver’s Travels. (Mindlessness List)

Yahoo! is around 18 years old.

41. As they slept safely in their cribs, the Oklahoma City bomber and the Unabomber were doing their deadly work. (Mindset List)

15. There has never been a Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City. (Mindlessness List)

26. The Unabomber has always been a published writer. (Mindlessness List)

I guess we got carried away with the “aways” & “never” stuff.

 47. Dayton, Ohio, has always been critical to international peace accords. (Mindset List)

13. Dayton, Ohio, has always been known for the Bosnia-Herzegovina peace treaty rather than as the home of Paul Laurence Dunbar and the Wright Brothers. (Mindlessness List)

The Class of 2017 is ignorant about Paul Laurence Dunbar.

49. They may have been introduced to video games with a new Sony PlayStation left in their cribs by their moms. (Mindset List)

29. Good-bye, NES! Hello, PlayStation! (Mindlessness List)

Two different previous Mindset lists (Classes of 2009 & 2012) claimed that students may have had Gameboys in their cribs. We claimed in our opening paragraph that  “They may have had PlayStations in their cribs.” This was a joke because, unlike Gameboys, the Playstation isn’t a handheld device. But apparently the Mindset guys don’t know that.

50. A Wiki has always been a cooperative web application rather than a shuttle bus in Hawaii. (Mindset List)

5. Their grandparents had the Bible, Shakespeare, Homer and other great works of Western Civilization. They have wikis. (Mindlessness List)

I like ours better.

52. They have always been able to plug into USB ports. (Mindset List)

28. They’ve always been getting connected with USB. (Mindlessness List)

The universal serial bus is around 18 years old.

In the coming days, we’ll be scrutinizing the Class of 2017 Mindset items, and we invite the Mindset team to do the same to ours. And as we claimed in the introduction to our list:

Even if the Class of 2017 Mindset List isn’t identical to ours, they are equally valid, accurate and useful. So feel free to mix and match items as you choose.

3 thoughts on “Mindset List vs. Mindlessness List

  1. Pingback: #22 in a Series Examining Every Item on the Beloit Mindset List | Beloit Mindlessness

  2. “The Unabomber has always been a published writer.” is a perfect parody of the Beloit style, even if the actual writers did choose a different approach to that one.

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