Wired's Kevin Kelly argues that loss of jobs caused by automation isn't a recent phenomena, but something that has been happening since the invention of Watt's steam engine. Robots will become more affordable, human friendly and smart, leaving us not unemployed, but doing instead jobs that no farmer from the 1800s could have imagined.
It may be hard to believe, but before the end of this century, 70 percent of today's occupations will likewise be replaced by automation. Yes, dear reader, even you will have your job taken away by machines. In other words, robot replacement is just a matter of time. This upheaval is being led by a second wave of automation, one that is centered on artificial cognition, cheap sensors, machine learning, and distributed smarts. This deep automation will touch all jobs, from manual labor to knowledge work.
First, machines will consolidate their gains in already-automated industries. After robots finish replacing assembly line workers, they will replace the workers in warehouses. Speedy bots able to lift 150 pounds all day long will retrieve boxes, sort them, and load them onto trucks. Fruit and vegetable picking will continue to be robotized until no humans pick outside of specialty farms. Pharmacies will feature a single pill-dispensing robot in the back while the pharmacists focus on patient consulting. Next, the more dexterous chores of cleaning in offices and schools will be taken over by late-night robots, starting with easy-to-do floors and windows and eventually getting to toilets. The highway legs of long-haul trucking routes will be driven by robots embedded in truck cabs.
|Why The PirateParty Calls Itself a Pirate|
|Steve Job's Radical Trust Fail Whale|
|"Almost everyone has a camera and is a photographer." In an Age of Likes, Commonplace Images Prevail|
|Tunisians Read WikiLeaks and Lose Their Shit|
|“Cultured meat is finally on its way towards becoming a commercial reality.”|
|Japanese Robot Serves Ice Cream From Inside a Vending Machine|
|“There are but two powers in the world, the sword and the mind. In the long run the sword is always beaten by the mind.”|
|“If you really want to save the planet, you should die.”|
|How to Avoid Jury Duty|
|“Although this transition is irreversible, it carries potential for several robotic applications.”|
|Why, Typewriters Are Alive and Well, Thank you|
|CaptchaTweet: Write Tweets in Captcha Form|
|Somebody Needs to Build a New Facebook Stat|
|The (Very Scary) People of Public Transit|
|When the Wrong Hastag Can Get You Killed by an Assassination Drone|
|Bizarre Record Covers|