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Will robots steal all our jobs ?

Posted on Wednesday, 6 February, 2013 | Comment icon 50 comments | News tip by: the L

Image credit: Shadow Robot Company

As robots become increasingly sophisticated, concerns have been raised over future job availability.

There's no denying that technology has not only advanced in leaps and bounds over the last few decades but that it has enriched our everyday lives in more ways than one with computers, mobile phones and other gadgets being commonplace in most households. But while the future might seem rosy, behind the scenes a robot revolution is taking place that is seeing more and more jobs being rendered obsolete as they are taken over by automated systems and sophisticated robots.

So are we heading for a future where widespread unemployment will ensue due to the ever-increasing take-up of automated machines ? Will human workers eventually become a thing of the past ?

"In the past, robots were exceedingly expensive, and that limited their usefulness in the workplace, but as you will see later in this article that is rapidly changing."

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Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #41 Posted by Mag357 on 10 February, 2013, 3:48
If robots take over our jobs and people are out of work, won't that affect the owners of the companies in a negative way? Like since people will be out of work and they won't have money to spend so therefore no one is buying products that robots produced thus the companies will fold. hmmm
Comment icon #42 Posted by mickymanatiso on 10 February, 2013, 19:14
not unlike China
Comment icon #43 Posted by Render on 11 February, 2013, 10:25
Comment icon #44 Posted by Kludge808 on 11 February, 2013, 10:36
What will happen when there's a job too menial even for a robot?
Comment icon #45 Posted by Render on 11 February, 2013, 10:48
Robots are made for a purpose. It wouldnt be efficient to create an AI robot for this task for example. So i don't see that scenario happen.
Comment icon #46 Posted by Kludge808 on 11 February, 2013, 11:14
I know that's how things are now but will they be in the future? I can't help but think that at some time virtually all machines will have a high level core with task specific software laid over it. This works well with economy of scale factored in; build only one or two types of core machines and customize at a higher level. At some point, it simply won't be efficient to build machines with limited capabilities like that sign waver. At this point, do we get some human to do it because it's too menial for a robot?
Comment icon #47 Posted by Render on 11 February, 2013, 11:57
Well, of course in the mean time the world evolved too and the need for certain menial tasks will be non existent. Take this robot billboard thing for example: In the near future stuff like that will become obsolete since you'll have commercials and alike on parts of your car window. When driving through a certain area local store advertising will be projected on your windows/dashboard. The same will happen with other things. There is no need and there is no efficiency in creating a robot that is too intelligent for a certain task. Creating and getting an intelligent robots costs a lo... [More]
Comment icon #48 Posted by ReddWolfe on 12 February, 2013, 17:35
probably, but they cant quite yet get the perfection humans put into work.
Comment icon #49 Posted by Order66 on 12 February, 2013, 18:02
More productivity leads to cheaper products, which lowers the cost of living, so it evens out.
Comment icon #50 Posted by highdesert50 on 13 February, 2013, 23:30
It's interesting how we wrap the word robot. If we look robotics in the simplest sense, we have been using machines for a long time to largely expedite repetitive, menial, and perhaps dangerous tasks, for example grinding grain. I suspect no one complained a lot about a robot grinding grain. But, with the advent of robust computing, robotics has taken a decidedly more prominent role whereby instead of freeing people from the tedious tasks, higher level vocations are now threatened. I think this is evolutionary in that we as a species are creative and will foster further development. But, i... [More]

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