If there is one thing AI is good at, it is creating an environment of change; the euphoric sense of a future so near that you can almost taste it (err, AI has not really mastered the world domination thing yet so we can’t list it). We know that Technology is always the next big thing but “The future is AI” is such an overused axiom that the world is literally tired of and if we hear one more motivational speaker saying it, shoes and other throw-able objects will be lunged.
Out of the jokes, there is a pressing issue to be addressed here. AI is moving and is moving fast, things are changing and there is a lingering fear of security when it comes to jobs. On Reddit a few years ago, a guy was assigned a job filling out data on excel. A time-wasting task, the guys designs a program to automate his duty. He did this for 6 years, lounging and playing video games on company time till the management got wind of this development, lauded him, then fired him.
As technology looks to make life easier and alter our definition of ‘work’; getting replaced by a machine, especially while performing a labour intensive task is definite. A machine is capable of doing 10 people’s duties in a fraction of the time. Taking less space without the constant worry of workers protesting, collusions at the workplace and an employee putting through a sick call without due preparation.
This sounds like a win-win situation with absolutely no downsides till you realize that the installation of one machine means roughly 10 people with mouths to feed out of jobs. Technology has its way of optimizing resources to provide immense benefits to the upper management. However, it is a major contribution to the world’s unemployment. So, it should not come as a surprise when people kick against the rise of AI or its integration into society.
There is a moral dilemma here… do we, in fear of a rising rate of unemployment dial back on our technological advances… do we remain backwards to pacify the people?
The Coal Industry in the US is currently dying despite the promises President Donald Trump has made. Formerly the most lucrative industry in the country, coal has little use for their economy now. And this list of uses grows shorter with each passing innovation. Yet, the miners still clamor to the Presidency to save their jobs.
This is understandable. However, when observed keenly… history has never been nice to the glories of the past. The unceremonious shutdown of huge mammoths like Blockbuster and Toys R Us are examples. Kodak, which was a leading outfit back when Cameras were analogue developed a digital camera but kept it under wraps since their flagship cameras was moving huge numbers, now they are known for manufacturing durable USB cords. Sears had the perfect platform to be Amazon before Amazon ever reared its head yet failed to capitalize on the opportunity.
We live in a shark world that wears an ‘innovate or die’ mantra proudly on its neck. It is very important to evolve and stay developing as a human being. The paradigm change that is A.I takes away jobs yet, it opens up opportunities for the skilled.
Change is constant. It will be wise to get with the program and learn a skill today.