Here’s part 2 of the interview, stimulate your senses.
Here’s part 2 of the interview, stimulate your senses.
Initial thoughts, this thing is goddam adorable. And I think possibly all my problems could be solved if it would just tell me it loved me. But after the momentary hysteria settled I began to question the idea at the heart of this strange commercial. The notion that a human might have an emotional connection to a machine.
With regard to jobs, we hear a lot about the idea of collaborating with robots, and that this will be the future of our workforce. But could we collaborate in the same way with a robotic mind? The camaraderie and collective motivation that exists in many workplaces seem like they might be the very ingredients that have brought about some of the greatest human creations to date. Discovery, design, art, invention… that cinematic moment we all know so well where the group bands together and achieves something incredible, and it gives you goosebumps and makes you want to become a Mighty Duck. How would this work if our co-conspirators were non-human?
And on another level.. how much would it change the very nature of the human experience if we were no longer the builders of our world? If everything was outsourced… wouldn’t there be a sense that we were no longer the designers of our space, even if the robots weren’t out of our control. Isn’t there something to humans being responsible for our own environment?
Steve Hughes is not only a classy, classy man but also an economic trailblazer.. read on as I prove it with a level of finesse only previously achieved by Russian gymnast Svetlana Khorkina. There is no need to follow that link it is completely irrelevant.
I touched briefly on the idea of allocating a universal basic income. This seems to be the only viable solution if we’re all pushed out of the workforce. It also sounds like a really good bloody time. There is enough wealth to go around, we know this. It’s just about distributing it in sensible ways. And having a little faith in ourselves to live meaningful lives even if we don’t have a 9 to 5 from which to gage our entire identity. You are more than your LinkedIn profile. I believe in you. Drum circle on the beach, WHO IS IN?
In case you’re too lazy to click the link I am copying in one of the author’s more pertinent insights because I’m just such a sweetheart.
“By redirecting that money pooling at the top doing comparatively very little, accumulating in ever increasing amounts through continual redistribution upwards from the bottom and the middle of the income spectrum, and recirculating that clotted money back down to the bottom and middle, this would actually expand the entire economy while making it more sustainable and more inclusive. This is how the body works. This is how engines work. This is how systems work.”
Humans are quickly becoming redundant. The rise in automation will see an unprecedented level of unemployment. From truck drivers to doctors, no one’s job is safe. And with the exponential rates of development in technology, the influx of intelligent machines is going to hit us far sooner than we care to imagine.
What I’m suggesting is not a revolt against technological advancement. Would there not be more merit in coming to terms with the not so awful idea that there is no need for every person to have employment? When Kodak and it’s 145,000 employees were usurped by Instagram’s 13 there was a major lesson to be learned.
Very clever man.
The way to make such a system economically viable for the rest of us; a basic income. Governments heavily tax corporate entities, try very, very hard to resist their corrupt inclinations (robots can no doubt assist in policing this) and distribute the money amongst the entire population as a sort of unconditional welfare payment. The idea has already been seriously considered, with Switzerland’s government coming very close to passing a law for basic income. And you know if the Swiss are thinking about it it’s probably a good idea.
While the proposition obviously requires a change in policy it also requires, more fundamentally a change in mindset. Perhaps the purpose of life is closer to achieving a state of being in which robots are in fact doing all the work and society is allowed the time and the means with which to do whatever else it is they might, conquering the rubix cube, reading Plato, mastering the art of Tai Chi, for instance.
There seems to be a persisting idea that the purpose of our homogenised lives is to work, consistently, for an income with which we can purchase all the things we do or, more likely, don’t need. Just because this is the way things have always been does not necessarily mean it needs to continue.
Buckminster Fuller said it best about 40 years ago:
“We should do away with the absolutely specious notion that everybody has to earn a living. It is a fact today that one in ten thousand of us can make a technological breakthrough capable of supporting all the rest… We keep inventing jobs because of this false idea that everybody has to be employed at some kind of drudgery because, according to Malthusian-Darwinian theory, he must justify his right to exist. So we have inspectors of inspectors and people making instruments for inspectors to inspect inspectors. The true business of people should be to go back to school and think about whatever it was they were thinking about before somebody came along and told them they had to earn a living.”