Since 60 Minutes (CBS) popularized the idea of the ‘Rise of the Machines’, articles and posts appear frequently about robots competing for jobs, the end of work, or what’s come to be known as technological unemployment. Robert Solow had an article published by the Huffington Post (. Paul Krugman has been talking about automation and jobs, and Henry Blodget published “Don’t Worry About Robots Stealing Jobs — This Has Been Happening For Centuries!” in Business Insider. More recently, the topic has been addressed by CBS News again, Google’s Eric Schmidt, the Huffington Post and commentary in The Courant.
The rise of the machines, and technological unemployment are now a part of our national dialog. Headlines blare, “Don’t Worry…”, and we worry. We always worry about the future.
This time, however, it’s different. We stand at the beginning of a new epoch in our history defined by the rise of the machines. We know that Machine World lies over the horizon, and it’s becoming clear that the future of large portions of the human workforce in all sectors is in doubt.
The future belongs to those who make it.
It’s time we define our role in Machine World. The end of work is possible.