The Future of Automation.

United (States) Parcel Service.

United (States) Parcel Service. (Photo credit: matt.hintsa)

The future of automation.  Doesn’t this sound like an oxymoron?  Of course automation is the future.  Yesterday’s article from Associated Press A World Where Jobs Go Extinct Wholesale was fascinating and unnerving.

Imagine you are fifty-five years old and you lose your job.  As the article stated, the odds of you getting another job in your field are all but zero.

Vehicles driving themselves?  All these schools teach people from other careers to drive tractor trailers.  Gone!  Immigrants becoming taxi drivers in major cities.  Gone!

This sort of thing is not a new phenomenon.  English weavers rioted and attacked immigrant Flemish weavers in the Middle Ages.  Then you have Luddites, who Historian Eric Hobsbawm classified as “Collective Bargaining by Riot.”  This was the Industrial Revolution and scores of cottage industries were being wiped out.

It was thought computers would wipe out the jobs requiring brawn.  There was some of that.  As the article stated, robots are still too clumsy to be hotel maids and restaurant dishwashers.  If they got better, I can see restaurant dishwashers, but hotel maids?  I am sorry, I am bordering on naughty silly behavior and shall stop. 🙂

I liked the long time United Auto Workers head Walter Reuther, when he was asked about robots building cars.  “That’s great, who’s gonna buy ’em?”

Computers have replaced many jobs, that are much of what make up a middle class.  For years in the United States, people have been talking about a declining middle class.

There may be years of upheaval.  There are scenarios in the article that may be Science Fiction now, but may not be so in the near future.    Also keep something in mind.  Futurists can only predict with what they have today.


About tucsonmike

I am originally from Brooklyn, New York and now live in Tucson, Arizona. I have discovered a passion for writing. I have five books out now, with a sixth on the way. Take a look @ my book list: The Search for Livingstone An Affair of the Heart The Search for Otzi Griffith Justice in Space. Moriarty The Life and Times of a Criminal Genius Available now on Smashwords - Amazon and Barnes and Noble As to not bore my public with just "Buy my book," I am also interested in baseball, the outdoors, art, architecture, technology, the human mind and DNA. I learned Ashkenazi Jews, of which I am one, have to lowest rate of Alzheimer's in the world. Therefore, I treat my brain as a muscle needing a workout. I enjoy good food, flirtation, beautiful women (I am happily married for thirty years), so just flirting ;) I was considered autistic when I was young, trying to figure out if I have a mild form of Aspergers and learning from that. That is for future posts. You can also see I love history. Enjoy my sarcastic silly look at the world, and making History more interesting than a textbook.
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4 Responses to The Future of Automation.

  1. Alex Jones says:

    The fear of technology stealing jobs is an ancient notion, and totally wrong. Yes jobs are taken up by automation but that often creates new jobs in turn. Someone has to maintain the robots and computers for example.

    • tucsonmike says:

      You may be right and again, much of it is based on futurists who I basing their predictions on what they see today. One new invention could change the entire story.

      • Alex Jones says:

        Imagine this, the move to colonise and populate Mars. the mining of asteroids and the moon. Lots of jobs.

  2. tucsonmike says:

    Good point. Wouldn’t that be amazing?

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