The future of work is often discussed in the context of the so-called ‘Fourth Industrial Revolution’ — a time when robots and algorithms will displace humans in the workforce. To some, it seems like a thing of impending doom; to others, as progress in its purest form. But what does the future hold?
As a matter of fact, Artificial Intelligence (AI) finds itself in the thick of this discussion. It won’t be an exaggeration to say that it is currently changing the ‘way’ humans work and altogether ‘perceive’ work.
Many occupations have already seen a change as AI has been implemented into some roles. It’s predicted that an upcoming wave of automation will lead to increased joblessness, but it’s also predicted that it will create an entirely new economy of work where people work in teams instead of hierarchies and workers are more loyal to their employers because they are rewarded with bonuses for individual contributions.
Whatever may be the case, it’s certain that this decade would witness massive changes — in terms of working, the idea of working, the path to work, and the life amidst such work.
And one thing’s for sure that we are stepping into a world that would value the creativity of the mind more than the tenacity of the body.
The New-Found Insecurity of Job Being Replaced by a Machine
In all honesty, no one should be blamed for being insecure about AI. After all, we have been watching it sneaking in our lives, encroaching on tasks that we once thought were impossible. From driving cars to reading X-rays and translating languages and even writing articles like this one (Damn!) — tasks that were once thought to belong to humans alone are now being executed by AI.
And the insecurity is only growing by the day. While many fear the rise of robots and algorithms, others are worried about the vacuum the said robots will leave behind. What happens to the middlemen? What happens when AI takes over clearly essential roles? What will happen to the human touch?
For a second, let me be brutally honest in admitting that machines will eventually take over some professions and push them into obsoleteness. However, and I want to be very clear here, AI would never take over you (HUMAN), NEVER. How? Read along.
Mastery of the Machine and Slaveship to It – Wait! Will that be the case?
I don’t think so. You see, humans have confronted technological revolutions in the past; however, their minds have always been able to identify a progressive path. You can call me over-optimistic, but that’s how it is.
Consider this; for the first time, technology is bringing us to a place where we don’t want to appear as machines. We want to remain unique. We want to be HUMAN. That’s why AI shouldn’t be seen as an imminent threat. Rather, it should be seen as an opportunity to finding out new ways of doing things and discovering new opportunities of being human.
I’m a writer, and within few years, organizations would start hiring AI assistants. The recent GPT-3 technology is showing all the signs of penning quality content. In that case, what should I do?
Should I become a slave to AI taking over my job? Should I confine my thoughts to the endangerment of my career? Or should I find ways about how I can be different in my delivery than a machine?
Shouldn’t I stick to creativity and innovation? Or should I keep downcasting myself over the possibility of turning in redundant work?
Well, the choice lies with me (and YOU). It always has.
Outlook of the Future – AI Will Beat One-Legged Brains
I would suggest to my generation that you should not be worried about machines taking over your job. You should begin to learn, understand and embrace AI. It is more about mastering the machine rather than slavery to it. Period!
Understanding and leveraging AI for good is a skill that will surely empower you in this era of unprecedented technological progress and change.