"Luddites weren’t wrong, just premature."

The end of work


Fri, Jun 26th, 2015 11:00 by capnasty NEWS

With automation slowly replacing human workers more and more each day, The Atlantic explores what "the end of work" actually means when the consumer is removed from the consumer economy. Amusingly, while humans have always wanted machines to free them from labour, people are "considerably more miserable doing nothing."

In the past few years, even as the United States has pulled itself partway out of the jobs hole created by the Great Recession, some economists and technologists have warned that the economy is near a tipping point. When they peer deeply into labor-market data, they see troubling signs, masked for now by a cyclical recovery. And when they look up from their spreadsheets, they see automation high and low—robots in the operating room and behind the fast-food counter. They imagine self-driving cars snaking through the streets and Amazon drones dotting the sky, replacing millions of drivers, warehouse stockers, and retail workers. They observe that the capabilities of machines—already formidable—continue to expand exponentially, while our own remain the same. And they wonder: Is any job truly safe?



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