I have written several pieces already on my deep concerns about the kind of society we’re moving towards in the next 30-50 years as technology-induced changes sweep through society, rendering hundreds of millions of people unemployable.
Future of Work: Utopia or Dystopia?
Future of Artificial Intelligence: Brexit, Trump and Other Calamities
Artificial Intelligence: Just Because We Can, Does It Mean That We Should?
Future of Artificial Intelligence: All Play, No Work Society
Future of Artificial Intelligence: Demonetization
It seems to me that the end game in this thought experiment is the triumph of communism. Let me explain.
As a follow-up to my series of articles on Artificial Intelligence, my friend Som Das sent me an article by Peter Diamandis on demonetization and the “abundance” that will be created with the help of technology.
People are concerned about how AI and robotics are taking jobs and destroying livelihoods… reducing our earning capacity, and subsequently destroying the economy.
People have speculated for centuries about a future without work, and today is no different, with academics, writers, and activists once again warning that technology is replacing human workers. Some imagine that the coming work-free world will be defined by inequality: A few wealthy people will own all the capital, and the masses will struggle in an impoverished wasteland.
According to Gartner, worldwide IT spending is estimated to grow to $2.77 trillion this year. Gartner projects the overall security market to grow 7.8% annually over the next three year period through 2019. Another report by MarketsandMarkets projects the global cyber security market to grow from $106.32 billion in 2015 to $170.21 billion by 2020, translating to an annual growth rate of 10%. Billion Dollar Unicorn player Cylance is making a mark in this high growth market.
As a technologist, Artificial Intelligence fascinates me. It always has, since the beginning of my forays into Computer Science. I did two startups in the nineties, at the heart of which were AI-driven innovations.
The world’s recent embrace of AI, thus, also fascinates me.
Driverless cars are all the rage these days. Uber is chomping at the bit to replace the headache of having to pay anything at all to their drivers, having driven the labor cost down already to the minimum. Drivers still cost them 75% of the fare.
Yes. An entire profession of drivers of trucks, taxis, buses and such are about to get wiped out.
I believe, over time, the entire profession of media buying will be obliterated. Algorithms will do all the work. This is one of the sectors most vulnerable to be entirely automated by AI. Or Shani speaks on the theme and provides a great example of what is already happening.
Sramana Mitra: Let’s start by introducing our audience to yourself as well as your company. Tell us a bit about both.
Or Shani: I started off in marketing almost 10 years ago in the lowest position possible. Then I worked my way up and became a data scientist at a number of companies mostly working with big brands across various countries and continents. Everything was already digital at that time. By the time I decided to leave marketing, I was in a VP Marketing position. I was in charge of huge advertising budgets and leading large teams across countries. >>>
On Friday, June 24, 2016, the world watched in horror as Britain voted to commit economic suicide as a nation.
On November 8, 2016, America will vote. Will it also commit economic and political suicide?
Increasing inequality is building up great stress in the world economic system. The disenfranchised masses are expressing their anger, including in irrational ways such as the Brexit vote.
The trends are worrisome.
There’s a lot of discussion in every media outlet right now about the impact of Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, Robotics, and over-automation. The Economist has an article titled Basically Flawed, Rethinking the Welfare State:
WORK is one of society’s most important institutions. It is the main mechanism through which spending power is allocated. It provides people with meaning, structure and identity. Yet work is a less generous, and less certain, provider of these benefits than it once was. Since 2000 economic growth across the rich world has failed to generate decent pay increases for most workers. Now there is growing fear of a more fundamental threat to the world of work: the possibility that new technologies, from machine learning to driverless cars, will cause havoc to employment.
There are two schools of thought on the subject, though.