The Fourth Industrial​ Revolution

Robots – I read the article “AI, robotics, automation: The fourth industrial revolution is here” today. It is another article that addresses the displacement of jobs by AI, robotics, and automation. Some of the points mentioned:

  • “You are not going to stop technology. The question is whether workers will be partners in its deployment or bystanders that get run over by it”
  • new industries and job functions will be created and will make up for the loss of existing professions
  • widening skill gaps are short-term problems that will be righted
  • Currently, companies estimate that 71 percent of the total task hours are performed by humans and 29 percent are performed by machines. By 2022, companies predicted that humans would complete only 58 percent of total task hours and machines would complete 42 percent.
  • 54 percent of today’s employees will require significant re- and upskilling by 2022
  • China faces the largest number of workers needing to switch occupations—up to 100 million if automation is adopted rapidly, or 12 percent of the 2030 workforce
  • up to 33 percent of the 2030 workforce in the U.S. and Germany and nearly 50 percent in Japan may need to learn new skills and work in new occupations

One of the things that I continued to see regarding AI and automation is “Part of the promise of AI/robotics has always been to liberate human beings from the ‘3Ds’—dirty, difficult, and dangerous jobs—so that they can focus on creative, personal, and original activities”. I think that this is a wonderful goal, but I don’t think that all of the people displaced will pursue such lofty aspirations.

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