Science and technology matters are not top campaign issues, so to have very little discussion of them at the major party conventions is not a big surprise.
However, there was (as I mentioned on Monday) the appearance of retired astronaut Eileen Collins on Wednesday. She spoke about American space exploration, and reiterated her disagreement with the current U.S. approach to returning humans to space (a view not universally held) without endorsing Mr. Trump. That Trump has not committed to more space exploration in his public remarks seems beside the point, given how the convention was focused on painting a picture of a country in long decline.
On Thursday there was another speaker who had some connection to technology. eBay co-founder and Facebook board member Peter Thiel. Coverage of his remarks focused on Thiel’s comments about being gay, but his background in technology did come through. He noted the prosperity of Silicon Valley and mentioned problems the government had with some of its technology. But he offered no proposals. Again, this strikes me as consistent with a convention more focused on painting a bleak picture of America than providing details about how it would address those problems.
Next week the Democrats will have their turn with the multi-night staged presentation of political theater. I don’t expect them to be that different from the Republicans in the amount of attention paid to science and technology matters (outside of climate change), but I do hope to hear some policy proposals. Check in next Friday to see if how cynical I get about it.