Robots Working For Us
Over the past year or so, I’ve grown more and more obsessed on the topic of robots replacing humans in the workforce.
I found a handful of links recently.
From Marcus Wohlsen at Wired:
The redefinition of work itself is one of the most intriguing possibilities imagined in a recent Pew Research report on the future of robots and jobs. Certainly, the prospect of a robot-powered, post-scarcity future of mandatory mass leisure feels like a far-off scenario, and an edge case even then. In the present, ensuring that everyone has enough often seems harder for humans to accomplish than producing enough in the first place. But assuming a future that looks more like Star Trek than Blade Runner, a lot of people could end up with a lot more time on their hands. In that case, robots won’t just be taking our jobs; they’ll be forcing us to confront a major existential dilemma: if we didn’t have to work anymore, what would we do?
The New York Times also has an article reporting on the Pew Research Report.
Tyler Cowen also has a good, short post on his views:
1. The law of comparative advantage has not been repealed. Machines take away some jobs and create others, while producing more output overall.
2. That said, some particular kinds of machines increase the relative return to skilled labor. If the new jobs require working with computers, and working with computers effectively is hard, reemploying lower-skilled workers at good wages may be difficult.
If you think robots can’t replace creative jobs, you’re being short-sighted.
It’s all just a matter of time.