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Education vs. Values

Discussion in 'Politics' started by Taure, Nov 24, 2016.

  1. Darth_Revan

    Darth_Revan Secret Squirrel Prestige DLP Supporter

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    There are still plenty of lines of work that can't be automated. Good paying ones, too. Plumbers. Electricians. Construction workers. Welders, joiners, carpenters. To name a few.
     
  2. Banta

    Banta The Chosen One DLP Supporter

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    Plumbers and electricians I'll give you (for now), but the rest?

    We already have 3d printers large enough to print small houses and apartment buildings, minus things like the wiring, windows, and roof. Soon enough they'll be able to make homes that are actually aesthetically pleasing to live in.

    As for carpenters and joiners, you'll probably always have a market for the more finely crafted, delicate stuff, but for most products an automatic woodworking machine will get the job done just fine.

    As for welders, again we already have robots doing that job, and it's only a matter of time before it's versatile enough to work outside the factory floor.

    Mechanical muscles are coming for all the jobs we need human muscles for. The only question is when, not if.
     
  3. Darth_Revan

    Darth_Revan Secret Squirrel Prestige DLP Supporter

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    Perhaps, but not for a long time. We still are able to do the fine detail work or fit into strange or irregular spaces. Welders still hang from straps on skyscrapers to weld ironwork, or build ships.
     
  4. Banta

    Banta The Chosen One DLP Supporter

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    Perhaps, but I expect that, within our lifetime, things will change dramatically as far as automation replacing human workers is concerned.
     
  5. Agayek

    Agayek Dark Lord

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    Of course it will. Personally, I give it 30, maybe 40 years, before a large majority of routine labor jobs, unskilled or otherwise, will be filled by robots of one stripe or the other.

    The thing that I contest that so many in this thread seem not to, is that that means there won't be jobs for humans to do. All the advance of technology does is move the human-filled jobs into different fields. It's exactly the same phenomenon as when agricultural breakthroughs pushed people to cities to find work, and when factory automation pushed people to education and skilled labor to find work. Automation of skilled labor just means it's going to push people into the new, emerging markets that form from the advance of technology.

    There is never going to be a point where human labor ceases to be a thing until we reach post-scarcity. People, as a general rule, always want more than what they have, and so they try to find ways to better their situation. They will always find a way to turn a profit on something, and so people will always find work. It's just hard to envision what that work will be sometimes.
     
    Last edited: Dec 1, 2016
  6. Banta

    Banta The Chosen One DLP Supporter

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    I don't buy that because I don't consider any job, known or not, that couldn't possibly be done safer or more efficiently by a robot. Once we figure out a new kind of labor (physical, mental, creative, etc.), we immediately begin working towards making a robot to do it. That, more than anything else, has been a constant since the industrial revolution.
     
  7. Agayek

    Agayek Dark Lord

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    Yes, and?

    That's exactly the progression I've been talking about. We start doing something, we come up with a machine to do it for us, then we start doing something new, and we come up with a machine to do that for us too, so we then start doing yet another new thing, etc, etc.

    This is a very clear pattern that has repeated itself several times throughout human history. We build tools to make life easier, which then frees us up to move to a new type of life, where we build new tools to make that life easier and move on to a new type of life.

    There's zero reason to think that this latest round is any different. Once we have automation for skilled labor, that then frees up all the time people would have been putting into skilled labor for people to pursue other things, which will lead to the creation of entirely new fields as people use and leverage our ever-growing understanding to improve their lot in life.

    This process isn't going to stop until we hit the point where it is physically impossible to progress, at which point we will be post-scarcity and it won't matter in the slightest.
     
  8. Banta

    Banta The Chosen One DLP Supporter

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    By the time we have automation pervasive and practical enough to remove the need for people to do skilled and unskilled work, I believe that we will be able to replace any new jobs with robots quicker than we have in the past. Right now we're going through the growing pains of automation (think 1960s and 70s for computers). By the time we reach the equivalent of computer tech in the 90s and 00s for automation (which I think will be sometime in the next 20 to 30 years), new jobs for people will last (maybe) a decade before a robot replaces it. As fast as we think of new kinds of work, a robot will exist to do it, even before we reach post-scarcity.

    Edit: You're assuming that just because better technology in the past meant better jobs for people that it will continue until we reach post-scarcity. That is what I'm taking issue with, because I don't believe we can or should rely on that assumption. As much as people were not ready for the impact of the industrial revolution, we are even less ready for the impact of the automation revolution.
     
    Last edited: Dec 1, 2016
  9. Agayek

    Agayek Dark Lord

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    Probably. All that really means, though, is that people are going to become more 'Renaissance men' types, where being acceptably skilled at a lot of things will be more important than the mastery of a specialization that the last couple of centuries have preferred.

    Edit:
    The way I see it, with automation taking over, the job market is going to end up being more about creating new industries and avenues than creating actual products. It's the next logical step. Human efforts will shift to being focused on the creative and innovative side of things, while the actual implementation will be handled by robots.
     
    Last edited: Dec 1, 2016
  10. Chengar Qordath

    Chengar Qordath The Final Pony Prestige

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    Indeed. Back when I was living in a rural area, everyone bitterly complained about Wal-Mart driving all the mom-and-pop stores out of business with their low prices, and said people should suck it up and pay a bit extra to support local small businesses. Other people should do it, not them. You know, they'd like to, but...
     
  11. Paragon

    Paragon Squib

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    Very true. It's only through the concerted effort of my area's town council that places like Walmart have been kept out. It's a double edged sword though: mom and pops are supported, but you have less income to spend on things you want, and the availability of certain goods stinks and you have to order online. Of course, it may be before too long that online orders will become convenient enough that they drive the mom and pops out of business too.
     
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