Interesting article on AI / Robots and future employment - Page 3
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  1. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by Thunderjet View Post
    "Decent wage" depends on the situation.
    We can't pay Honeywell wages, but we can get close, and offer the opportunity to design and build your own tools. And we offer flex time.

    For apprentices we start them low, and if they show up, and show drive and mechanical ability, they move up quickly.

    as far as a toolmaker being "very specialized", I don't understand this thinking. To me, a toolmaker is the opposite of specialized. They can and do anything in the shop. From fixing the downfeed on a Bridgy to welding a broken office chair.

    But that's just me.
    I was in a local shop, they hold 20 millionths every day.

    They don't do any welding, nor repairs of machinery.

    But they doo stuff to molds I can't even imagine.

    They don't design either.

  2. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by kustomizingkid View Post
    I'm not even a little bit worried, but I'm a mechanic. There will always be broken shit that needs fixing.
    Maybe, but even that is changing as we become more and more a "disposable / I need it now society". And disposable does not always mean the cheapest of the cheap, we've seen numerous threads here about quality going down on everything. Not to mention new cars come with 100k warranties, and some even advertising that mileage before an oil change or tune-up. Times are definitely changing.

    A year or so ago I bought a battery weed eater for my relatively small yard. Last time I used it the battery didn't have enough guts to finish. Why would I spend $20-30 on a new battery when I bought the entire thing for $50ish? I went and bought a slightly better brand for less than $70. Depending on how long that lasts will determine if I pony up for a new battery when it is time, or upgrade again.

  3. #43
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    One thing that is never explained in this "robots will have most of the jobs and idle workers will get guaranteed minimum income" concept is how this is supposed to work as a functional economic system over the long term. With an increasingly small owner class providing the funding as the idle class increases its size there would be three choices.

    1. Milk the owner class for more money.

    2. Pay the idle class less.

    3. Forcibly enact population control on the idle class.

    Any of these choices will make somebody unhappy. Since presumably the owner class at this point would have virtually all the economic power and probably most of the political power they would reject choice number 1 in favor of the other two.

    Now you have a population with lots of time on their hands who might riot if their meager subsistence were cut. The younger ones MIGHT accept choice number 3 if older people were culled but eventually they would run out of the old while the population still grew ...

    And then there's the issue of where the owner class's income comes from. If consumer goods are purchased with Universal Basic Income (UBI) they are essentially recycling their own taxes with no compensation for their expense. The effect would be a net loss. And since this worker displacement would be worldwide exports would not compensate.

    Sell to the government? Sounds great but where is their money coming from? Since the idle don't pay taxes the owner class would pay for not only the idle class's "wages" but also all the costs of government, and as automation increased government workers would also become idle. There would be no need for all those IRS workers with fully automated systems and very few tax paying entities. All money would be automatically routed by computers in a closed system with no chance of tax evasion.

    And then there's the natural consequence of masses of idle population barely receiving enough to live on. An underground economy would flourish, competing with the products of automated manufacture. Fifty bucks for a new "Mao suit"? How about twenty five for a refurbished one from a street vendor? Payment would be in trade goods. We already see something like this in many U.S. cities where unlicensed street vendors compete with established retailers in lower income neighborhoods.

    What is portrayed as a viable economic system and a dream of the future looks more like a failure and a dystopian nightmare when you take the time to think it through. This future already exists in many parts of the U.S. where large numbers of people are out of the official economy. They are places plagued with drugs, crime and violence. The only reason they are currently sustainable is because the rest of the greater economy is large enough to tolerate them. Put more people out of work and they will be the rule rather than the exception.

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  5. #44
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    "Soylent Green"

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    Quote Originally Posted by digger doug View Post
    "Soylent Green"
    Them's my favorite kind of people.

  7. #46
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    Quote Originally Posted by gear cutter View Post
    I wish I had robots to load gear cutting machines in my shop now.
    Easy-peasy. Almost all Liebherrs these days come with autoloading. All you have to do is come up with the money

    Quote Originally Posted by Scottl View Post
    3. Forcibly enact population control on the idle class.
    This needs to happen because we are eating ourselves out of house and home, but it can't work the way you describe. The one child policy was absolutely necessary for China's survivial, and they were smart enough to not institute it the way the US would. I've heard from so many retarded 'murricans, "Why don't they just use economic incentives ?"

    You dumbfucks. That's the WORST possible way for a society to deal with overpopulation -- make it okay for rich people but against the law if you are poor. Americans are perverted.

    They have not "dropped that policy" either. They made some miniscule changes to shut up the bleeding-heart imbeciles overseas, but in general it's still a one-child society. The program achieved its goals, they can afford to play propaganda games now.

  8. #47
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    I notice that all of the people I see pushing this universal basic income (UBI) idea seem unwilling to flesh out the details. I still think the idea is being sold to pacify those who will soon be displaced. It reminds me of our local politicians who keep talking about the need for "affordable housing". What actually gets built is 85% high end market rate and they often demolish the existing affordable apartments in the process.

    The reason I think none of them will offer a detailed plan is because even the most basic analysis of the numbers would immediately point out the flaws. If you started with today's USA population and assumed a near-term idled population of 50% at $15 dollars per hour (what they demand for minimum wage) the initial outlay to sustain the idle would be about five trillion dollars per year. Since this UBI would now raise the threshold for wages those who still worked would demand well above the $15 dollars per hour simply handed out, which would be the new zero basis. Faced with those demands the owners would accelerate the pace of automation, displacing even more workers. Add in millions of new people from uncontrolled immigration and the annual payout would soon approach the annual GDP.

    Such a system would soon break down and one (or more) of the 3 solutions I mentioned in an earlier post would have to be enacted. Then, as the economy degraded further it leads to an unpleasant question...

    Who will the automated producers sell to in order to make a profit?


    Without profit there would be no justification to purchase better equipment or even raw materials and you can't recycle forever without needing some new materials.

    I can't see any way this will end well and suggest that instead we seek ways to integrate AI and automation with human workers earning a decent wage.

    "If men have the talent to invent new machines that put men out of work,
    they have the talent to put those men back to work."
    -President John F. Kennedy

  9. #48
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    I have seen the future and it is now.

    On a recent trip to a Stop & Shop I encountered "Marty the robot" at the end of an aisle. The foolish looking thing took quite a while to figure which way to go so I could continue moving forward. As I stood there waiting it made hesitant moves in several directions before finally calculating a clear path. They are supposedly using these to detect spills and other issues. They should program it to detect mobile obstructions!

    At the registers self check out lanes outnumbered cashiers by about 4 to 1. It looks as though they are hell bent on replacing employees with machines. Gives me one more reason to shop at other stores.

    At many Whole Foods you have to slice your own bread. You pick out a loaf, place it in a machine, close the lid and select slice thickness. While it's slicing you search for the PLU at a kiosk and then print a label to stick on a bag. Then you retrieve the slices which the machine has allowed to separate and stuff them in a bag. All this while others wait their turn. The whole process doesn't appear too sanitary and I wonder how the Board of Health lets them do it.

    Some automation can make life easier but too much of this stuff appears to be a hardware implementation of voice mail hell.


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