Machines are now getting so advanced that they’re soon going to be
better than human beings at doing, well, everything, suggests Martin Ford in his book The Lights in the Tunnel: Automation, Accelerating Technology and the Economy of the Future.
Today, robots and automation are a greater source of job loss than outsourcing, he maintains. And things are only going to get worse, he predicts.
At the Flextronics solar panel factory in San Francisco, there are robots everywhere and few human workers, according to the New York Times.
All of the heavy lifting and almost all of the precise work is done by robots. The human workers trim excess material, thread wires and screw in a handful of fasteners.
"As production speeds continue to increase, there has to come a point
where the only option is to get the humans out of the loop," Ford predicts. "In many
industries, automation may penetrate more rapidly than we expect simply
because a threshold is reached where people can no longer keep up."