When there are finite resources it’s almost a certainty there won’t be sufficent pie for all in every capacity at all times. That’s why there is trade. But I see your point. You’re worried will everyone have enough food to eat, shelter, power, clean water, etc etc. To solve that problem one needs to address self sufficiency not just try to take from the haves and give to the have nots. That’s a bandaid solution at best because there will always be haves and have nots. There will always be poverty because there will always be the pursuit of power. Poverty is an artificial man made construct. There is no logistical reason, even in our modern capitalistic 20th century civilization, for it to exist. We have all the technology to get rid of poverty. In fact we wouldn’t need to use massive funds to do so. A few compost programs and community gardens here, some shipping container homes and walipinis there and it would be done. There is no need to tax or coerce. The problem is strictly cultural and psychological.
You’re right, you hire someone to do work so you can have time to do other things. Sometimes that’s so you can do more work and sometimes that’s so you can play golf or something. But consider that money was gained through work and trade. True it could be argued it was inherited but that’s still SOMEBODY working for it. Still I agree we shouldn’t assume that because someone is poor that they’re lazy. It takes a minimum amount of resources to get job and then there are other factors that play into employment as well. Children, addiction, mental health issues, physical health issues, and then one has to take one’s education, skill set and personality into account as well. So it’s not just a matter of “Go get a job.” Especially when automation is taking over a lot of the entry level jobs and minimum wage laws are cutting off the bottom rungs.
I don’t really think it’s accurate to compare what was “Liberal” or “Conservvative” a couple centuries ago and argue if they were by todays standards. Definitions and ideologies change over time. From what I’ve read so far Burke sounds exactly like a modern conservative, rebelious against an imperialistic government and economically minded and concerned with the free market and free trade. Granted I didn’t get all the way through the article as I’m in a hurry but I’m trying to illistrate a point here. Neither you nor the author defined what you thought being “conservative” ideals were so there’s no basis for comparisan. Abraham Linchon was a Democrat but he’s spoke of many of the ideals that the “conservatives” and libertarians now believe in. So consider comparing ideologies instead of branding labels. Also consider modern “Conservatives” are heavily influenced by constitutionalism and their constitutional rights which were written by those rebelling against the British Empire. So again if you don’t define your terms clearly making such comparisans is a rather moot point.
Its enough for me if we can find a way to make sure work is entered into on a voluntary basis and not because some are the victims of artificial scarcity and stuff like supressed wages to intorduce more debt and control. The ideal for me is homesteads that are essentaily self sufficient and highly automated without bills and debts. Under those conditions work is voluntary and the basis of society becomes friendship instread of fear, coercion and denial. The kind of equality we want is the kind that exists in friendship because friendship is the environment most conducive to human development and having a life time be a worthwhile experience.
That is a perfect description of the preaggrarian state of affairs. But we are entering the post work era. This not just philosophical. Unempolyment is increasing everywhere in structural vice cyclical way. If you could find a wilderness commons people could work to support themselves there. But in general they will simply not be able to compete with machines and their labor will have zero market value. They and their parents have worked themselves out of a job. They are retired by default. That retirement should not be a punishment but a reward for a solution to much of the basic economic problem. This is possibly the key economic issue discussed at Davos this year.
Also the current market based economy needs people to continue to spend to keep from collapsing. Everyone has skin in this game.
The idea that work can be reliably incentivised in the face of overwhelming machine superiority isn’t credible as there is no future in that and surely no investment future in it. Aside from planning for full unemployment with a secure and substantial basic income the best I’vd heard of is retooling for maybe 40 years more of work with a green tech infrastructure rebuild. Coops and things like that might mitigate some pain but they don’t stop this change. According to Google in less than 10 years time its all quantum AI learning machines. Even if the odds were only %25 on this scenario we have to start addressing it now.
Cross a certain threshold with real unemployment and historically you get civil war. But you can’t just put people to work digging ditches and filling them back up this time. Other people not working scares elites because the think it means they might have to work. Replacing work with some other developmental pass time will be needed. Work not being developmental as of late has been a huge problem. But I doubt whatever it is will vere far from an entertainment format. I think the days of creating artificial scarcity to force work and keep coercion alive are over.
Have you ever worked in a factory or on a farm and seen how things are actually made? Have you driven a truck? Have you tried to build a machine to bring about this amazing revolution your academic friends are talking about?
Work is what makes stuff. Machines make making stuff faster… But they also make broken machines, and expensive piles of unsellable inventory and scrap faster than any human can.
You always have quotes and academic mumbo jumbo, but show absolute ignorance about how the world really works.
A couple months again I came across this academic skeptic. I think he was a MD and professor at Stanford. He was all crestfallen picking up the pieces of his shattered world view while looking around at the floor while trying to explain to another researcher with interview camera rolling about how he was very skeptical about AI and had no confidence in it. Then over the summer he started to understand that in area after area the machines were not just at human parity but radically superior. In interviews before that I saw one of the world’s AI experts big name department chair etc. asked how long it would be until certain tasks were completed in his field. He guessed 20 years or “2 cycles” and then a month or two later he is shown a film where the fundamental super hard problem that was going to keep the AI revolution from happening has been solved. Then another expert that said human level AI was proficiency in maybe 20 fields and sowing the all together would produce what we would recognize as AI. Well those areas are coming together rapidly. More than that over prior summer neural learning systems took a leap identifying dogs breeds with greater accuracy than humans, being able to describe social scenes in ways that weren’t really understood or really even traceable with human understanding of the code generated. Self modifying code that is appearing creative is arriving. We have robots now that mimic human face responses and sync it with speech in a compelling even chilling ways. There are robots that can pass the DARPA challenge and walk and do all these repair tasks- the speed is increasing rapidly. IBM did its first neural chip a few years ago but just recently announced it was about to speed that chip up by 30000x and no quantum sauce was required.
Its not academic nonsense anymore its happening, there is no way to deny it. And just as solar is causing the fossil fuel world huge problems because its gotten underneath grid parity and the built out scaled out fossil fuel industry can’t follow and faces a negative growth, profit free future the world of policy is getting seriously rattled over this AI displacement. The fossil fuel industry is already whining that solar is causing it losses- more than 2 billion last year and investment in renewables exceeded fossil fuel investment last year- its the same with this stuff. Its like trying to tell some people that ghosts are real, but the reality is we’ve crossed a threshold recently that was at least a great as the advent of the first working electronic general purpose computer coming into existence. What is important in computer science is shifting. Self coding machines are certainly a threat to coders or certain types of programmers and coders. The first robots that can reproduce themselves have apparently just come out. I am not saying from scratch but you make a chicken from atoms/scratch- you get point.
The sign of a healthy society is where there is a high level of unemployment. That is to say where the populace is so self sufficient they don’t have to work and focus instead on a ludic experience, that is they can have fun and create. I’d have to agree with @jreighley that the presence of machines may expedite the pace of work but it doesn’t get rid of the need for jobs to be done. Did the invention of the computer get rid of the need for secretaries? No. And with computers came new jobs like programming and web design. If we have robots running around everywhere who’s going to look after them? Who’s going to fix them when they break down? Who will help teach them what’s junk and not junk?
Work for work’s sake is pointless. If a robot can easily grow food then why doesn’t everyone own one? If a robot can purify water why doesn’t everyone own one? If a robot can generate and manage your power why doesn’t everyone own one? If the answer to this is cost then doesn’t this speak to the need for additional human innovation to bring down the cost? There was a time when telephones and washing machines were a luxury item and now it’s hard to imagine a home without a washer or dryer, or at least access to one, and phones seem to have taken over the world. So just as it was once considered a luxury to have a phone but now it’s not so it might be considered a luxury to have a garden bot but at some point it won’t be. But consider how much human innovation and work is considered to get one from a to b.
I have to agree. True work is much like the physics definition: W = F * s Work = Force * displacement. If you invest energy into something and affect change you are doing work whether you get paid or not. Force being the amount of energy one puts in and change being how much “displacement” one affects. And for things to happen that still takes actions by human beings and work to occur.
As usual @Warren failed to answer my questions entirely, and spouted out more booklearning gibberish.
Science fiction has been around for a very long time.
Robots generally suck at doing most everything. And I know, because I program them, install them and watch them work. Yes they will get better. But no, they will not be able to run the world for a VERY long time. What kind of robots have you installed?
This stuff is hilarious. What haven’t you done? Coop software and now robots. Technical jack of all trades. Although I do see your tech contributions to SAFE so I’ll cut you some slack. But come on ,you can’t appeal to: respect my authority! What was that bit about Asimov, super brilliant guy who liked to write about robots and everything else but somehow had an issue with computers as if he considered the subject a personal handicap but still would at times write about them eloquently. If you’re going to appeal to authority to try to stfu another at least don’t appeal to your own because its too funny because no one not even the super heavies can get away with it. And also its better not to dismiss academia out of hand because they do have a solid track record with tech, a lot of tech and a lot of it apropos to the above came/comes out of academia. But I know I am pushing buttons.
I am saying tech is changing the political climate of the world and retiring certain perspectives or world views and that is a super irritating thing to assert! Its like oh no you don’t because your world view has been made obsolete. That is going to piss some people off especially tech people who happen to hold those views. Naturally by design.
Reminds me in the Davos forum where MIT economist Erik Brynjolfsson who co authored “The second machine age” and the Google guy whose AI company beat Captcha were squaring off. Erik said what I consider the be the evil stupid infuriating thing of we don’t want to disincentive work. And the Google guy said we want full unemployment because we want to encourage play and the first rule of play is inclusiveness- wonderfully quoting Arthur C. Clark. Erik was being a damn sell out and helping to F up the world- but I am not surprised given his’s books chapter about tech enabling the BS about worth it super star CEOs. Really his mentality is in the way. But Dileep George the Vicarious guy was right on.
This is actually the exact argument economists make but its come out lately this isn’t holding anymore.
Yes and those actions were in the past. You can start a fire in the past and it can burn until it runs out of fuel. Seth Lloyd wrote this book that say the universe is one big quantum computer and everything is computing, its all computes. We’ve just discovered a new kind of fire. It won’t free us from using our minds but time where we are compelled to use it and our bodies over our biological needs in ways we don’t care about by others no less- is over.
No you aren’t simply asserting that the world is changing. We agree the world is changing. It’s obvious the world is changing. You’re asserting that there is no more need for human contributions and that machines will just take over every single job there is.
Your words Warren. Your premise. Then you go on for two posts supplying examples of how robots are supplanting humans in the work force however you neglect to mention the new jobs that are emerging because of technology as well or the jobs that are required to provide that technology. Nor do you acknowledge that this kind of thing has all happened before on numerous occassions.
I address the second point above. And as to the first I really do think we are quickly crossing the threshold and its all foreseeable now. You don’t have to replace all of them just most of them and you have most people out of work.
I think you are implying that machines will allow us to rapidly economize our environment but we still need to worry about supply and demand of resources which is true. But that’s not a problem with having machines do the labor but rather a flaw in what task is being performed and how the machine is designed in the first place. A solar generator is a machine just as much as a gasoline generator is. Both generate power but one uses sunlight which is effectively infinite while the other uses a finite, or in the case of biofuel a much costlier fuel source. Both machines will increase the rate of production but it’s not the fault of machines that either was designed a specific way. That’s the human’s fault.
And? Therefore? So? This is only a problem if their base needs are dependent on them earning currency to exchange for goods. If they can produce the goods themselves or otherwise generate currency then there isn’t a problem.
Yes. I have done both, in my current job. I work for co-operatives that actually make things that you buy in the store, and if you pick the right hardware platform your software can be quite encompassing.
It isn’t that I appeal to my authority. I have just seen the real world, then I look at what you describe, and they don’t jive. So where is your authority to tell me that my observations that I saw with my own two eyes and cranked with my own two hands is less accurate that what you are telling me? I am begging for you to tell me how you know things that you very clearly are totally ignorant of. Because you are. Trust me, I have been in the trenches. You, quite clearly have not. If you have, please describe… Otherwise you are exactly what I think you are – an expert on your own fantasy…
We can appeal to that authority known as @jreighley you see he believes this stuff too its just that he thinks its going to take 100 years and has his head in the sand on this despite being in the trenches and being a subject matter expert.
We know of the classic examples like agriculture where the jobs did transfer and also textiles but in these cases the reduction was to maybe 3% of the prior workforce even if the workers successfully transferred to other areas. CNC machines hit machines shops starting in the 70s. Machinists didn’t find perfectly equivalent jobs but they could find other jobs.
Ask yourself in each of the cases that follow if the job is coming back in the same quantity and if so will it be anything like the quality or pay remotely as much? It’s not just robots or AI, a lot of the time its narrow AI or simple automation.
School teachers against adaptive learning software, fast food workers against the plan to automate them out (McDonalds,) machinists, people working in the petroleum industry against its green replacement including from super tankers right down to retail gas stations, auto mechanics (against electric cars,) aviation mechanics against electric planes (its coming) driving jobs against self-driving vehicles including taxi drivers, people working in auto insurance, ER staff when the accidents radically reduce, long haul truckers, delivery drivers, fork lift operators, pilots both military and civilian, librarians, people working in retail including cashiers, bank tellers, warehousemen , retail stocking staff- 99 percent of the Wallmart work force against Amazon’s automated model, people working in the paper production including lumber jacks, people working in xerography, quarter masters, cartographers, draftsmen, ground troops, research jobs in the legal and paralegal profession, some working in the accounting profession, people in the system admin and system trouble shooting profession when SAFE cuts down on servers. Telco Lines men when soft radio really hits, all those board members, execs, managers and supervisors when we scrap their roles with DAO coops etc., what of the advertising industry when better non conflict search kills it. Think about the people who build and maintain office buildings when you can do everything from home or on your phone and don’t need to come in. Think about the people who pave roads when its covered over with solar tile or mat that cuts the erosion. What of jobs at the record labels?
So many of the lower paying jobs are going away. Even sanitation and grounds keeping could be gone soon. There are some coordination thresholds on automation that are being quickly exceeded. A lot of what is missing is just a machine with a quicker learning cycle and something more like hand eye dexterity but that hard problem is being cracked now. There will be no point in a hand washed when this is cracked. Some shadow of these jobs will remain but in an environment where one in 30 family members has a job.
Take the auto example. GM and others project the self-driving car model will result in a 18x less demand for cars but then add in the multiple for electrics which can have a 5x longer service life. Is that a 100x reduction. What does that do when they already don’t need mechanics and brake mechanics and solid state stuff doesn’t provide an equivalent job or business opportunity. It’s not just academics it’s the policy people and presidential advisers that are very very concerned about this.
This current society is a based around the needs of people who often know nothing and contribute nothing except their marginal consumption but walk to the mail box quarterly to collect the dividend on their million inherited shares. They get a dollar a share and collect 4 million a year. We’re about to flatten all that out. Right now the Millennials are 34% of the work force in less than 10 years they will be 75% and they are pretty much all socialists, the society will be socialist by that time. Part of this is they perceive the need for a basic income. It was like this understanding came in with the mother’s milk.
Let me tell you something about automation. Machines always break down. Always, without fail, always. And if 90% of your system is automated then you’ll be centralizing tech skills to some human who has to make sure it all works. Which means he’ll be sitting in his office somewhere monitoring umpteen thousand readouts when an alarm goes off telling him that some robot in sector 7G across state lines has just failed and he has to get his ass in a truck and drive all the way out there to fix it only to get another alarm going off half the way there on his phone to tell him of another failure that’ll take another 3hrs of driving to get to. Also while tech might be cheap it’s like the stuff you get from China. Ever called someone up and got a cheap automated answering service? “Please hit 1 to listen to our blurb and get refered to another blurb that tells you to call another number that tells you absulutely nothing and makes you want to throw your phone across the room. Have a nice day and we value you as a customer!” Having automated everything does not mean an increase in quality. Things at the dollar store might be CHEAPER but that doesn’t make them BETTER than what a human can produce. Moreover a human can add customization and do repairs while a machine cannot because a machine needs to do things to preprogrammed specs.
Furthermore the world is big and not everywhere has high tech or heavy corporate influence. You go out to the country and you’ll have less and less corporate influence not to mention less tech. The internet isn’t so hot either. Hopefully we can start building SAFE and a mesh net up to hellp with that. If you fire everyone who’s buying your product? You can have the fanciest most amazing advertising on earth but if people don’t have money to buy anything then it’ll be a lot of inventory that isn’t going to sell. And if you’re in the food industry you’ll be operating at a loss because if people don’t buy your product will go bad and you’re burning money. So a business only succeeds if it can cater to a local market. If multiple busineses were to all switch to automation at once then they’d likely go out of business because there would be no emerging markets to sell to. Either that or they’d have to ship it overseas in which case they aren’t one’s problem. I don’t care if Walmart or Staples or whatever takes their business to China or whatever. I care about what’s here.
Lions tigers and bears oh my. Think dude! I’m not even sure where you’re going with half of these but think! McDonalds needs to die anyway but let’s take the concept of automated services. Who’s growing that food? Who’s putting it on the trucks? Who’s checking it for quality? Who’s making sure it hasn’t spoiled? Who’s designing the art for the interface and menus? Who’s cooking the food? Who’s managing the money and if said money is managed by a bot who’s making sure it’s managed CORRECTLY and gets from account to employer/employee? Who handles complaints? More than likely there will be humans involved.
Solar = self powered homes and self powered devices. It means more disposable income for people. It means less people having to decide between paying their rent and paying for their electricity. Do you have any idea how much Hydro costs these days? More disposable income means more money to spend on stuff and on starting up busineses. And solar panel installation and maintanance IS a job. Those solar panels don’t climb up on your roof and install themselves you know.
Automated self driving cars = people that can’t drive will have a measure of independence they didn’t have before. They’ll be able to GET JOBS they weren’t able to get before and start businesses they weren’t able to start before. Not to mention they’ll be a convience for those that just want cheaper taxi servce and thus will allow people to save moeny.
aviation against electric planes see electric cars and in addition see the price of airplane fuel. If you don’t want to switch to electric then I hope they lose their jobs. THEY can pay for the fuel out of their pocket instead of the customer.
If ER staff are against accidents reducing they shouldn’t be in medicine. Hypocratic oath and what not. Not to mention people will always get hurt. People are critically and even terminally stupid at times.
Transportation of goods getting replaced by drones of one kind or another? What happens when there’s a glitch in the program or something like say a rockslide or an avalanche? Or god forbid the cops pull the truck over because the tail light is out? But let’s assume all that could be solved. There are still going to be jobs for local deliveries because someties you just want to hand someone $5 or $10 and tell them to go up to such and such and drop off the dinglehoofer. Sometimes you want a special delivery like a singing telegram or something. Or maybe someone just prefers dealing with humans and not robots. If you can’t figure out a way to reapply skills then you deserve to be unemployed. Be creative and think outside the box. Trucker = can stay awake for long hours, knows the roads and how to drive. Hmmm maybe start a tour bus business or something? Or shuttle people out of town and into the country or nearby wilderness.
Service sector jobs like retail are basically robots anyway so I don’t see the issue. Those jobs suck in the first place. But one should consider you can’t flag down a robot checkout counter and have it come help you find the underwear section in the store. Nor do robots have the best record of customer service. Nor can a robot answer questions only a local resident human being would know, again with the customer service.
Computers trouble shooting computers… yeah that’s a bright idea right there. What could possibly go wrong?
SAFE cuts down on servers and opens up a whole new world of business possibility nevermind the whole PtP and PtD thing. Have you seen the MWA thread?
Read that again slowly. One job is being replaced by another.
yup. They’ll need to find new jobs.
It’ll evolve. Word of mouth is advertising, references in a book or movie is advertising, posting a link on a blog is advertising, the difference will be who will be carrying the message forward. I think the onus will be on marketers to make their message mean something and be something that will be attractive to people to share with others. Think of the “I AM CANADIAN” beer comercials. Even if you don’t drink beer, or don’t ever have any intention of drinking beer they’re entertaining in their own right and therefore sharable. And if they’re shared the message, and therefore the brand gets passed on. Or one could make a quality product and rely on the word of mouth method to get their product out there. Or there’s what some blogs do and post quotes and what not about stuff and add a url to their site at the bottom. Or how they have articles about desirable content and then include links to products one can buy within the article. Say a recipie for something, you link to a store that sells the ingredients. No advertising isn’t going to die but it will mutate significantly.
Those poor middle class shmucks. Whatever shall they do? No where in the world could there possibly be a building or office that needs to be built that can’t afford a robot to maintain it? Or god forbid they could design something better?
think of all the dirt and gravel roads that don’t have pavement yet. Woop-ti-do. Adapt or die.
It’s 2016 not 1980.
Statements like this make me laugh in light of the high statist regulations on what people can actually do as a job. Why isn’t prostitution legal? Urban gardening? Professional composting? Collection and refinement of scrap metal and glass? Street performers? Why don’t we have mass cottage industry popping up? Why do we have so much bloody regulation on food related business, especially concerning small scale operations. Is someone selling lemonade or home backed cookies really going to incite an epidemic? No but they might make a few bucks. i mean it’s ridiculous really how much regulations and red tape there is to cut though. So when people complain about jobs going away it’s just hilarious because in the next breathe they’re wanting to shackle the creation of new businesses that would allow new jobs to be created.
First off as I pointed out before self driving cars will allow more people to get from a to b and participate in the economy. Second did it ever occur to you a mechanic can work on more engineering projects than just cars?
That would be a good thing I’d say. If you don’t produce anything what are you being paid for?
God help us. Have they not seen the problems China is having? I don’t have a problem with basic income so long as it’s funded voluntarily. if you have socialism you centralize power through the state. How is that different than centralizing power through a corporation? You’re just exchanging one central point for another. Did I mention humans were stupid?
I didn’t deny automation causes turnover of jobs and industries…
Just that There is Zero chance that “Everything will be automated” in any near timeframe.
Because stuff is expensive. Stuff breaks. Making stuff that isn’t expensive and is self repairing and self maintaining isn’t even on the radar in most industries. That doesn’t even address the issues with constant re-tooling and adaptation to changing markets and changing needs.
They cannot even get software right. It will be a very long time before they get manufacturing, shipping and welding automated to the point where humans aren’t needed…
Anyway, Once again you failed to show one ounce of real world experience — Let me give you a clue – Books talk about the cutting edge stuff and the most interesting frontiers. 95 percent of the workforce is in everyday boring non cutting edge WORK… You can read all you want, but if you haven’t been there you are still clueless, no matter how long you can drone on with the same academic bather.
Stuff goes from multistate physical to solid state with centralized software to distributed software. At each step jobs are permanently shed. A lot of what counts for physical labor and mental labor is in trouble. There is no case where the job market over all is going to expand. Breakthroughs which are coming faster will only accelerate this shrinkage. The point of civil war on real unemployment tends to be 20-25% The time for transition is now!
Tech addresses depreciation and addresses the needs of the physical human body, neither is an unlimited market. Progress in tech means it addresses these in ways that require less and less labor.
In a capitalist market economy the capitalist controller is rewarded for reductions in work force in two ways. First the local wage payouts go down leaving more for the local capitalist controller. Second when the capitalists controllers are able to reduce positions as a group it puts downward pressure on the wages of the remaining workers even as they become more valuable to the controllers untill those positions can be eliminated. Of course animosity builds as this process moves along and there comes a point of collapse where the controllers whose position was never just or justified can no longer be supported by a population with no income. But its also increasingly clear to the population that these plantation bosses were never value added despite their horn blowing industry and now have no income themselves. All they have to make it through a civil war is their savings chequed by their bad name and the hope of concentration camps. They also have no where to run.
The time to transistion from capitalism made obsolete by tech is now. It always been a stupid game. I have enough to be independent, my vocation is causing you to chase after what will never be enough so you have to do what I say. Incredibly stupid system. I also hold out the carrot that you could be an oppressor like me if you’re corrupt and mechanical enough.
Its whole point is to put the legal criminal capitalist on the other side of the built out completed tech picture before that point has arrived but once it has arrived faking it can only last so long. Because if tech the capitalist has been on increasingly obvious borrowed time for a while. A retributuve debt is accruing.