Worried that a robot might take your job? Perhaps you should be.
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."
But it's not only about large manufacturers.
At the University of Texas, a startup called Briggo LLC has installed a coffee kiosk run by a robotic barista in the academic center, which is visited by 10,000 students a day.
In New York, courts are using predictive coding, a computer-assisted document review that turns much of the legal grunt work currently done by underemployed lawyers over to the machines.
Has automation meant displacement where you work? Or have things actually improved as a result?
By Gordon Powers, MSN Money
Posted by: Hank | Aug 30, 2021 7:39:05 PM
The article seems to suggest that automation = robotics, but this is not the only case. instrumentation and control systems are also automation and critical in my industry for the safe and efficient operation of all critical equipment. If we are talking specifically about robotics, I don't see this in my industry at all and have no concern about being replaced, unless robots like the ones in the sci-fi movie "I, Robot" are developed.
Posted by: Mr. Negative | Aug 31, 2021 11:58:49 AM
A robot can have my job - they can add me to the unemployement line with the rest of the world if they continue.
Profit, Profit, Profit - we humans!
Posted by: rogers dad | Sep 1, 2021 11:27:22 AM
maybe so, but someone has to design, build, maintain and repair these robots...so there is a whole other industry opening up...will people get on board an accept the new world or will they whine and cry about losing their jobs without making an effort to move ahead?
Posted by: Steve | Sep 3, 2021 5:36:34 AM
Imagine how well our society could run if we could use robots/computers & automation to replace the power mad kleptocrats who sit as Legislators, police, business owners/managers and members of the judiciary.
Perhaps,... perhaps in a few years when we've finally "off-shored " domestic stability...
Posted by: Graham | Sep 4, 2021 8:38:12 AM
I'm cheering for the machines: mankind deserves what it gets.
Posted by: Mark | Sep 4, 2021 8:56:14 AM
Nice try, but more jobs are lost to overseas outsourcing than to automation.
Very few jobs require extreme precision offered by automation. While no jobs require to be shipped off to a different country.
It will only be a matter of time before the unemployment rate grows massively again, and when it happens people will go crazy, and I'm pretty sure they'll be burning banks and corporations down to the ground.
Posted by: Mr. Negative | Sep 4, 2021 9:07:04 AM
Rogers dad - you are right - what is your advice to keep up with the times and the ever changing economy? I don't like to whine, i am just scared for the future, that is all.
Any advice you have for the future would be great. Should i get into robotics?