Friday, October 28, 2016

Futurist Friday: Humans Need Not Apply (Even Us Creative Types)

We're entering an era in which robots are not only building but also driving cars, chatbots are delivering customer service, and artificial intelligence is preparing legal briefs and delivering medical diagnosis.

Today's Futurist Friday assignment: a 15 minute overview of how automation is comprehensively undermining traditional jobs across the spectrum, and why that matters to you, no matter what field you are in.

As the narrator points out, low skilled workers, white-collar workers and professionals are all threatened by increasingly sophisticated automation of physical and cognitive tasks.

And before we get complacent about our irreplaceable, uniquely human skills, o museum folk, listen what he has to say at about time mark 11.16:

"Perhaps you are unfazed because you're a 'special creative snowflake.' Well guess what, you're not that special." "Creative bots" are  already writing, painting, and composing music. "Creativity may seem like magic," he concludes, "but it's not." 

Whether or not you think we will live in a future in which AI can design exhibits, write label copy and conduct visitor evaluation, automation is going to reshape our economy and our communities. The result might be a dystopic scenario of mass unemployment. It might finally bring about John Maynard Keynes' 15 hour work week, accompanied by both prosperity AND leisure time. Either way, this is a wake up call to be prepared for massive change. 

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