1-in-3 Jobs Will Be Taken By Robots Or Software By 2025

Comixbooks

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I bet Walmart goes more Robot orientated I can't wait to talk to my Robot Boss who makes me wear a ugly vest with a Spark Symbol the cult of the Spark or as my last crew called it.
 
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I bet Walmart goes more Robot orientated I can't wait to talk to my Robot Boss who makes me wear a ugly vest with a Spark Symbol the cult of the Spark or as my last crew called it.

Self served checkouts. I love them.

I think Amazon's warehouse is mostly automated with Robots as well. Wonder how long until robots are stocking Walmarts shelves.
 

mdburkey

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There won't e enough positions to employ the number of people that will be out of work due to the robots.

Some people will adapt, but overall will have higher unemployment, record people on welfare, and an insane amount of homeless, poverty, and government assistance.

There is no two ways about it, we will have to keep more people employed then the direction we're headed.

No we won't. We just will need less people -- and the people at the top who control the robots will see to it that they have robots capable of eliminating the "excess" workforce.
 

mdburkey

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On a serious note, I think the article in question is quite accurate for the most part -- although the timing may be slight fast.

That said:
1) Fast food restaurants are working on automating food prep as quickly as possible -- and it's not all that difficult. Expect this to start showing up a lot within 5 years.
2) Chili's and other restaurants are already placing wireless kiosks at the tables to place your orders on -- this allows reducing the number of servers.
3) Some prototype restaurants have already been built that have the equivalent of a dumbwaiter system built into the dividers between rows of tables -- combined with the kiosk and a video system, this means orders, refills, etc. come straight from the kitchen to the table: *NO* servers are needed.
4) An automated bartender would be relatively trivial to implement right now -- they just haven't done it.
5) One of the largest quiet investors to auto-driving cars (like Google's) is the trucking industry. Basically, you can pretty much expect long-haul trucker to be an extinct position probably within 10-15 years. Maybe less.
6) Maids in hotels -- they aren't there yet, but within 20 years, probably.

Manufacturing jobs in general....gone.
1) High speed 3D printing and CNC machining gets more affordable daily.
2) True 3D printing of metal parts with DMLS gets better all the time making milled/cast parts less necessary all the time.
3) Most simple plastic items can be easily made by a large 3D printer right now (i.e. a large 3D printer could easily create almost any Rubbermaid product carried at Walmart [garbage cans, totes, etc]).

So, basically, in 50 years, you put large combination metal/plastic 3D printers at the equivalent of a Walmart. They don't have to waste huge amounts of floor space stocking items. They just need printers and bins of raw materials. You pick the item you want off a 3D display that shows a full size representation of the item; you pay for it; the request is sent to the printer; you pick it up on your way out. Basically -- no stock, no stockboys, no clerks, no cashiers -- just a few bored techs making sure things keep working. And, within 50 years, if you can combine 3D printing technology, a good supply of standard IC's, and the equivalent of a pick & place machine, there is very little reason that most basic technology items couldn't be assembled in the same manner. About the only things that you would need to stock would be basic foodstuffs, etc.

3D printing of confectionary items like cakes, candies, etc is already starting to become a big item -- given a few more years, a lot of baking, cake decorating, candy making, etc jobs will be gone too.
 

Parmenides

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I could see an opening for robot guidance, where robots can do 80% of the task, but need a human around to adjust things on the fly. For example, putting up drywall in a house. A robot could do it, but it might not be alerted to situations that don't fit the norm. "No mister robot, the area under the stairs will be a little different than the plain wall you did over there".
 

[Tripod]MajorPayne

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You know, there's always a possibility that using robots to do menial, repeatable, hazardous, or undesirable jobs will just free up people to perform other economic activity that better benefits society. Instead of paying people to make our food, we can pay them to do something else that adds more value.

Every disruptive event in economic production has led to more prosperity for all, not less. We didn't lament the woodworker no longer having to make 1000 clothespins, because now he can make furniture and house frames. We didn't lose economic potential when people didn't have to plane lumber for boards anymore. We didn't lose economic potential when transistors and tubes replaced adding machines.

Maybe with the robots making our fast food, more people can assemble capsules to send people to space or build more advanced things with the things that robots already built.

I would rather believe in society's ability to keep moving forward from economic disruption as we have in the past. We have always taken our increased productivity and applied it to things that humans aren't very good at doing, so that the humans can spend more time doing the things they're good at. I don't have to add things manually at work. I use Excel to handle my math and data gathering instead of a notebook, so I spend a lot more time doing engineering tasks and adding to my company's productive output, which then enhances the productivity of the customers that buy our products, and so on and so on. We can continue to improve economic viability for everyone by making sure that every working is performing the most valuable task they are capable of.
 

nutzo

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That will be 1 out of every 4 jobs in the next 5 years will be taken over by an automated process. McDonalds and other fast food places are already looking into it so they don't have to pay their employees the $15 an hour they're demanding.

If they raise the minimum wage to $15/hour we just might see these numbers come true.

Paying $15/hour for unskilled burger flippers is just asking for those jobs to go away. The companies either have to raise prices (and suffer the corresponding drop in sales), or eliminate some of those expensive workers through automation.

More than likely it will be a combination of both, and the higher wages and prices will push up inflation.
Many will be worse off since they will be jobless, and the people who manage to keep their jobs will not be doing any better due to price and tax increases consuming every extra penny they are making.
 

dderidex

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[Tripod]MajorPayne;1041148612 said:
You know, there's always a possibility that using robots to do menial, repeatable, hazardous, or undesirable jobs will just free up people to perform other economic activity that better benefits society. Instead of paying people to make our food, we can pay them to do something else that adds more value.

Every disruptive event in economic production has led to more prosperity for all, not less.

That's really not true if you think about it - when automobiles came along, did it "free up horses to do more interesting labor"? Kinda, sure - now horses just do show work, have rides for entertainment, etc.

Oh, there's also only about 20-30% the number of living horses at the moment vs their peak. Because, it turns out, once you replace something so completely, it certainly DOES change the work done, but also means you need a LOT less of them...
 

nutzo

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The very height the great depression, when the economy seemed teetering on collapse and the period you see all those despair-filled 'dust bowl' pictures from...was only 29% unemployment. Here, we are talking about 25% unemployment minimum in a decade - and no 'civil service' program or war is going to be able to fix that. Humans will become replaced in economic activity as obsolete parts, with the only people retaining any economic value being those who own the machines that do work in place of other humans.

If you look at the real unemployment numbers, they are not much better than that now.
The percentage of the population that is working is at a historic low, and if you include all the people who are under-employed (part time, way below their skill level, etc.) we are already at that 25%
 
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That's really not true if you think about it - when automobiles came along, did it "free up horses to do more interesting labor"? Kinda, sure - now horses just do show work, have rides for entertainment, etc.

Oh, there's also only about 20-30% the number of living horses at the moment vs their peak. Because, it turns out, once you replace something so completely, it certainly DOES change the work done, but also means you need a LOT less of them...

That's the dumbest analogy I've ever heard.

Horses were a tool that did a job and were controlled by humans.
Machines now do the works horses and guess what they're controlled by humans.

A horse didn't just wake up in the morning, make a cup of coffee, read the funnies, eat a beagle and head out the door to complete a job. Wow.
 

nutzo

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No we won't. We just will need less people -- and the people at the top who control the robots will see to it that they have robots capable of eliminating the "excess" workforce.

Ebola, Enterovirus EV-D68 and socialized health care should take care a large part of the problem.
 
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Ebola, Enterovirus EV-D68 and socialized health care should take care a large part of the problem.

Ebola doesn't spread fast enough to take care of a population "problem" as you so put it. It's R0 is only 2. There are far more dangerous viruses with a higher R0 than Ebola that could be used to wipe out populations if that was it's purpose.
 

CreepyUncleGoogle

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That's the dumbest analogy I've ever heard.

Horses were a tool that did a job and were controlled by humans.
Machines now do the works horses and guess what they're controlled by humans.

A horse didn't just wake up in the morning, make a cup of coffee, read the funnies, eat a beagle and head out the door to complete a job. Wow.

Horses aren't carnivores so they're certainly not gonna eat a beagle or any other dog for that matter, though I betcha you could find one that likes coffee.

Anyhow, it actually isn't unreasonable, what Diana is saying. People already don't have as many children because they're expensive and not productive to the parents as a labor force since they hafta go to school. In earlier times, they started working much sooner and were less of an economic burden. If it becomes far less economical to support children because there's less work available, then people will tend to make fewer children and the population might start to naturally decline. It'll be bad for business in general since a lot of company profitability preceptions depend on showing constant growth and population decline is super bad for growth-infatuated thinking, but who knows. It's totally reasonable for there to be less people around as more robots replace them in the workforce.
 

aliaskary77

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the push to use robots is to lower costs, increase efficiency and make more profits. in order to make any profit, you have to make sales. if people have no jobs, they cant buy anything. unless you can come up with money without a job, sales and profits will fall. there will have to be an equilibrium at some point.

the whole capitalism economy is based on consumption. if that cycle stops, it all goes downhill, fast.

face it, we are just termites on this planet.
 

Wierdo

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the push to use robots is to lower costs, increase efficiency and make more profits. in order to make any profit, you have to make sales. if people have no jobs, they cant buy anything. unless you can come up with money without a job, sales and profits will fall. there will have to be an equilibrium at some point.

the whole capitalism economy is based on consumption. if that cycle stops, it all goes downhill, fast.

face it, we are just termites on this planet.

They're just sell it to the upperclass of society, many countries with a caste system out there, it works for the select group.

And historically many nations thrived on aristocrats and peasants system, at least until they revolted, but that's easier to handle now especially considering how much of the GDP is spent on high tech weapons and pacification tools.
 

SineDave

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Any technology (industrial automation) of this scale gets cheaper rapidly as adoption increases. The corollary to robot labor getting cheaper is that the cost of goods should actually go down substantially as they reach the saturation point in food & good manufacturing.

I would think that our overall quality of life will actually go up at that point, provided we control inflation. This sort of free/cheap resources is the basic underpinning of any hypothetical utopian society (Star Trek, etc). I may be a pessimist about how we'll manage it, but if handled properly, I think this could actually mean humanity can focus on far bigger issues like research and science (heavily under-served today) that robots are at least 75 years away from taking over.
 

UrielDagda

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I know what's going to happen. Lots of people will lose their jobs, then be declared "lazy" for not having a job, thrown in the streets to die, while every cent of extra profit goes to CEOs and shareholders.. In the future the only "unskilled 'labor'" we'll have will be those that own stock and masturbate with liquefied ground pearls with 24 karat gold liquid suspension, whilst cleaning it up with toilet paper with gold liner.

Nobody will give a shit about the displaced workers, and in fact anybody that does will be branded a commie and ostracized.

Pretty much the same way it works now, with people having their jobs shipped overseas!
 

Kueller

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I think it's funny programmers think their jobs are safe.

As soon as someone develops a decent natural language programming interface, robot owners are just going to tell their robots what to do and tell that high priced programmer to hit the bricks. We've already got robots that program themselves to duplicate observed/guided actions. I can see a lot of the less skilled programmers being out of work in 10-15 years.
 

Ducman69

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That's the dumbest analogy I've ever heard.

Horses were a tool that did a job and were controlled by humans.
Machines now do the works horses and guess what they're controlled by humans.

A horse didn't just wake up in the morning, make a cup of coffee, read the funnies, eat a beagle and head out the door to complete a job. Wow.
Its not a bad analogy at all.

There are a bunch of REALLY stupid people out there that can't contribute anything more than doing really simple repetitive tasks or manual labor chores day in and day out. They simply don't have the mental capacity or discipline to learn a skilled trade.

Like horses, when these people are replaced, they are replaced. They will have nothing to do, because they aren't suddenly going to become smarter and learn how to program robots.

Most likely, we will just have a larger and larger portion of society leaching off societies teet, as the top 50% produce all the food/goods/services needed to support the bottom 50% that are too dumb to do anything that robots don't already do better and cheaper.
 

raz-0

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I love these kinds of announcements. I always have to ask if they mean 1/3 of existing jobs, or 1/3 of potential future jobs.

I mean really.. right now, despite the economy sucking, we have more jobs than in the past depsite having automated a ton of stuff. They never really talk about the real point, which is if it looks like we'll push the slope negative or not.

Also, software and robots aren't generally customers, so good luck with that whole automating service industries thing and eliminating your customer base. Not saying they won't try, but automation isn't going to be some money printing magic for the man, it's going to be highly disruptive to existing economic models.
 

dderidex

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Also, software and robots aren't generally customers, so good luck with that whole automating service industries thing and eliminating your customer base. Not saying they won't try, but automation isn't going to be some money printing magic for the man, it's going to be highly disruptive to existing economic models.

So are you volunteering to run your business at a loss, so your employees can keep shopping at both our stores?

Because I'm going to cut my costs in half by firing all my humans and replacing them with machines, then reducing the price on MY stock (currently very closely priced to yours as we presently have similar costs) down 33% vs yours.

How are you going to compete with that? Or are you going to be forced to do the same thing I'm doing to reduce your own costs?

Classic prisoner's dilemma - each of us making, individually, what appears to be 'the best decision for ourselves' in a vacuum, instead results in the worst possible outcome for EVERYONE...
 

dderidex

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Its not a bad analogy at all.

There are a bunch of REALLY stupid people out there that can't contribute anything more than doing really simple repetitive tasks or manual labor chores day in and day out. They simply don't have the mental capacity or discipline to learn a skilled trade.

Like horses, when these people are replaced, they are replaced. They will have nothing to do, because they aren't suddenly going to become smarter and learn how to program robots.

Most likely, we will just have a larger and larger portion of society leaching off societies teet, as the top 50% produce all the food/goods/services needed to support the bottom 50% that are too dumb to do anything that robots don't already do better and cheaper.

And I shamelessly poached it from this VERY interesting video on the topic...
 

pxc

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I call dibs on the pusher robot's job when it's down for maintenance.
 

tetris42

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Humans will become replaced in economic activity as obsolete parts, with the only people retaining any economic value being those who own the machines that do work in place of other humans.
Yeah, reality doesn't work like that. If enough humans are irrelevant to the economy, then they tear down the system until they are relevant again. The question is are we smart enough to come up with a different system that accommodates this eventual reality or will we just sleepwalk into it, resulting in some sort of massive collapse. Given how broken things already are, I think the latter option.
 

MrCaffeineX

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At some point human society as we know it is going to have to address the issue of transitioning away from a labor as a commodity model. Eventually manufacturing, low-level service (i.e. food service, cleaning) and a host of other low-skill, menial, physically demanding jobs will be able to be performed by an almost entirely automated system. When this happens, there will be little to no place in the job market for high school students, those with lower IQs or that simply cannot succeed at the collegiate level, as well as currently high-paying "risky" jobs (i.e. oil drilling/refining/distribution) that will have a lower risk-to-reward ratio by being automated.

The idealist in me hopes that humanity can embrace a post-scarcity concept like the Star Trek economy, but the realist in me envisions things turning much more Judge Dredd-like, with vast expanses of urban ghetto populated by the masses, while a few elites act as the puppet-masters. Maybe it's because we're arguably close to that scenario now...
 

Staples

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If they raise the minimum wage to $15/hour we just might see these numbers come true.

Paying $15/hour for unskilled burger flippers is just asking for those jobs to go away. The companies either have to raise prices (and suffer the corresponding drop in sales), or eliminate some of those expensive workers through automation.

Robots will cut cost over paying workers what they already make. McD is looking into it whether they have to pay them $8 or $15 an hour. I doubt that them demanding more will affect the speed of transition.
 

m heisty

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On a completely different idea, automation will change the economy for sure. However It is possible that it will change it from the current centralized model to a more local and just in time model. It is highly possible that the current thought of economies scale will shift to something closer to what we had pre industrial revolution. Economies will be forced to be come closer. It won't be economically viable to ship manufactured parts thousands of miles to consumers. Rather there will be hundreds of thousands of small cnc fabrication centers that can produce any thing anyone needs.
 

tetris42

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The idealist in me hopes that humanity can embrace a post-scarcity concept like the Star Trek economy, but the realist in me envisions things turning much more Judge Dredd-like, with vast expanses of urban ghetto populated by the masses, while a few elites act as the puppet-masters. Maybe it's because we're arguably close to that scenario now...
I always thought the society in Soylent Green was the most accurate scenario (minus the recycled cannibalism), but yeah, Judge Dredd isn't a bad prediction either!
 

raz-0

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So are you volunteering to run your business at a loss, so your employees can keep shopping at both our stores?

Because I'm going to cut my costs in half by firing all my humans and replacing them with machines, then reducing the price on MY stock (currently very closely priced to yours as we presently have similar costs) down 33% vs yours.

How are you going to compete with that? Or are you going to be forced to do the same thing I'm doing to reduce your own costs?

Classic prisoner's dilemma - each of us making, individually, what appears to be 'the best decision for ourselves' in a vacuum, instead results in the worst possible outcome for EVERYONE...

And at some point you move from efficient and cost effective strategy, hit the tipping point, and become universally disruptive. I'm not saying we won't run down that road, I'm just saying it is short sighted. I also don't think people are doing the TCO math right on a lot of this as it pushes non standard situations of a fairly mundane nature into the high cost risk categories. It'll be interesting.
 

Ducman69

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Yeah, reality doesn't work like that. If enough humans are irrelevant to the economy, then they tear down the system until they are relevant again.
Nope, doesn't work like that. In the past, human muscle was relevant for the application of force, but these days its not.

One guy with a machine gun, can overpower fifty unarmed people. One guy in a tank with five autonomous drones can overpower fifty guys with machine guns. One guy in an aircraft carrier with a swarm of automated ships (we are working on these RIGHT NOW) and a bunch of pilotless aircraft can take out fifty of the tank guys.

So ultimately the machines can be such a force multiplier, that the number of people needed to rule over a large population becomes tiny. And it will never be all that hard to elevate some people from the population to exert force on the rest.

So going forward, less and less people will have more and more power, not just economically but martially as well.
 

tetris42

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Nope, doesn't work like that. In the past, human muscle was relevant for the application of force, but these days its not.

One guy with a machine gun, can overpower fifty unarmed people. One guy in a tank with five autonomous drones can overpower fifty guys with machine guns. One guy in an aircraft carrier with a swarm of automated ships (we are working on these RIGHT NOW) and a bunch of pilotless aircraft can take out fifty of the tank guys.
And that TOTALLY would not create a resistance movement towards the authority with some sort of ideological backing. Plus killing civilians on a massive scale tends to undermine morale and erode the power structure.

So ultimately the machines can be such a force multiplier, that the number of people needed to rule over a large population becomes tiny. And it will never be all that hard to elevate some people from the population to exert force on the rest.

So going forward, less and less people will have more and more power, not just economically but martially as well.
This only works if the majority people are meeting base needs. If your population starts starving and the power structure is simply not providing means for them, it's simply not a stable system and is prone to being overthrown. This would be double in a place like the USA which has rebellion as as part of our cultural narrative. The exception to this would be some place like North Korea, where people are exposed to propaganda or brainwashing from cradle to grave, so the ideology necessary to overthrow a corrupt power doesn't hit a critical mass.
 

Ragenrok

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So glad my title is automation electrician lol, until skynet hits and robots can build their own automated plants I'm safe :p
 

XViper

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One day when AI becomes self aware, we'll have a Skynet.

Lets hope our nukes are still on old technology and not plugged into the internet.

In a way technology has already enslaved humanity. The amount of people staring at their phones on the train is like 95%.
 

Dayaks

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I worked for years in the paper industry writing software for automating production lines. Glad it will move forward in many other areas. Those who push a $15 minimum wage, pat yourself on the back. This movement will just create more jobs for my students.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rz8Ve0lsW4E&list=UUsatbp-uFL23zPka50mH4VQ

I worked in a plant too... it was pretty sad really. I'd be in a building alone with machines doing work that used to take hundreds of people.

Those low paying jobs are never coming back.

Even automation in general.. most companies are contracting it out anymore to save a few pennies. It does increase the salaries for the select few that are good though :).
 

Stiletto

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Yes, but when will they give us orgasms so that we can suddenly have a huge drop in births?
 

m heisty

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You would think environmentalists would be all up in arms about robots taking over. They would give zero fucks about trees.
 
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