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. 🙂
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.
- Will smart machines create a world without work? (seattlepi.com)
- The Robots Are Coming (metafilter.com)
- The Job Market of 2045 (spectrum.ieee.org)
- Will Automation Cause Mass Unemployment? (futurepundit.com)
- Will smart machines create a world without work? (kfwbam.com)
- Luddites: They raged against the machine and lost (ktvb.com)