When Analogies Attack

3:00 PM -- This week, when I read that Xchange's Tara Seals had attempted to compare legal, same-sex marriage with the widespread adoption of mobile broadband technologies, I had to draw a long breath.

When finished drawing the long breath, I sketched a couple of aspirin, a cold compress, and a couch -- all of which I would soon need after having Tara fail to explain exactly how gay marriage is like, say, WiMax.

My head hurt because, in fact, gay marriage and the next generation of wireless technologies are not alike at all. But you have to admire the writer's effort. With no point to make, and nary an editor in sight, Seals clubs away at the topic with wild abandon:

Point is, the discussion on the wireless approaches we'll see in the next few years will be just as epic and just as game-changing to the tech landscape as the discussion on gay marriage in America is to the social landscape.

Pretending that Seals's barking has a point: What if LTE or WiMax fails? What happens? Well, a few companies will have to adjust their businesses and throw their support to the winning technology. A few companies may close. But what's more likely to happen is that vendors find a market and a use for both. The "loser" becomes a niche play, but doesn't cease to exist.

And now the analogy: What if gay marriage fails to become legalized all over? Will gay men adjust their plans and throw their support behind the winning marital arrangement?

Alas, the argument dries up faster than the ink on Xchange's last issue.

— Phil Harvey, Editor-in-Chief, Light Reading

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