Drivel, but probably not totally meaningless! Compared with a typical career in Industry, would you agree that a software engineer's career in academia is less rewarding, both in terms of money and professional development?
no, i would'nt. it is true that it is financially less rewarding, but not in professional development. teachers have to stay current. they take sabaticals and attend seminars. my brother worked for the same company for many years and he was way behind the times when he had to go back looking for a job. sure he had kept current, but in very limited area. teaching is also personally satisfying, otherwise the best of them would be working in industry.
What if the job is not a teaching job? A software engineer (non-phd), working as a developer in a research lab engaged in some XYZ research? I think many software engineers are employed that way. In general, my feeling is that the environment in academics is more "lousy" compared to industry. Deadlines can be moved around, people are nicer and less competitive and the "its OK" syndrome sets in soon. Is that why the salaries are low?
i really dont know why teachers arent paid as well as they perhaps should be. maybe its because much of the funding comes from the government. i bet teachers at private colleges make more. in my opinion, one is either a teacher or a doer. i could teach, in fact i tutor at school now, but i think i like doing better. anyway, in not taking education courses.