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Computers can drive cars now. What does that mean for us as a society? As technology advances and computers learn to perform human tasks with greater efficiency than even humans themselves, how many of us will be left in the dust? Is there a way to ensure that we remain irreplaceable as workers?

The threat is still far in the future, so there’s no need to panic about it yet. However, the younger you are, the more you should be concerned. Which career paths should you choose to guard against automation takeover?

Creative Arts

human-computer-jobs-creative-arts

It’s one thing for technology to enable creative endeavors. Digital art tools Unleash Your Inner Artist with Three Free Digital Painting Programs for Windows Unleash Your Inner Artist with Three Free Digital Painting Programs for Windows Painting is fun, but it's also messy, expensive, and alarmingly analog. Digital art offers a solution and we found you great free apps for your artistic needs! Read More like Photoshop and Illustrator have been monumentally useful for graphic artists. Camera advancements have made digital photography A Beginner's Guide To Digital Photography A Beginner's Guide To Digital Photography You may think that picking up a digital camera, turning it on, and taking the photo is all that you need to know about digital photography. Think again. Read More cheaper and more convenient than ever before. And how much music would we be missing out on if it weren’t for FL Studio and GarageBand?

Yet, even so, creative endeavors will never be replaced by computers. Art is an expression of human creativity, imagination, and improvisation – something that computers will never have.

Any child can say, “I’m a dog” and pretend to be a dog. Computers struggle to come up with the essence of “I” and the essence of “dog,” and they really struggle with coming up with what parts of “I-ness” and “dog-ness” should be usefully blended if you want to pretend to be a dog.

This is an important skill because creativity can be described as the ability to grasp the essence of one thing, and then the essence of some very different thing, and smash them together to create some entirely new thing.

David Brooks, “What Machines Can’t Do”

Professional Sports

human-computer-jobs-professional-sports

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The world is home to hundreds of millions of sports fans. As a species, we love to play and we love to watch others play, and sports are the perfect expression of our tendency to play. Would a stadium full of soccer robots be entertaining to watch? Perhaps for a little while, but only for its novelty.

Sports are compelling because of the human narrative that lies under the surface. We aren’t so much drawn to a sport itself as we are to the players of that sport. The history, the rivalries, the athleticism, the stakes – that’s what we want to watch and computers will never be able to replicate that kind of excitement.

Healthcare & Medicine

human-computer-jobs-healthcare-medicine

On the one hand, the aspects of medicine that are entirely based on medical knowledge Medscape Gives You All The Medical Information You Need At Your Fingertips [iOS] Medscape Gives You All The Medical Information You Need At Your Fingertips [iOS] When it comes to medical issues, the best way to find out what is wrong is to go to a doctor. However, there is most certainly some value in getting a general idea of what... Read More , technical expertise, and data analysis could be reasonably automated without much consequence. However, there are elements of healthcare that computers just aren’t capable of handling: bedside manner, making tough decisions from incomplete patient data, dealing with human psychology, and so on.

At the very least, there are a whole host of legal issues that would arise from putting a patient’s life in the hands of a medical robot that might malfunction and make a wrong decision. That threat alone would ensure that humans always have a place in healthcare.

Education

human-computer-jobs-education

Future technological advancements may change the landscape of education, but will never eradicate the need for human teachers. It’s true that online course sites Get Tech Skills You Need At These Top 7 Online Course Sites Get Tech Skills You Need At These Top 7 Online Course Sites It's not only about learning programming languages, but also the little unnoticed tech skills that could take you further in your career. Iterate to the next version of you. Class is in session. Read More are increasing in popularity, but the fact remains that the content of online courses doesn’t just materialize out of thin air. Someone needs to create it.

And what about teaching subjects that aren’t as objective as science and math, that aren’t simply based on knowledge? Would a computer be able to understand the nuances of music, art and literature, let alone teach it in a subjective manner? The possibility of that is doubtful, and even if it were to come to pass, it wouldn’t be for a long time.

Just as past mechanisation freed, or forced, workers into jobs requiring more cognitive dexterity, leaps in machine intelligence could create space for people to specialise in more emotive occupations, as yet unsuited to machines: a world of artists and therapists, love counsellors and yoga instructors.

Such emotional and relational work could be as critical to the future as metal-bashing was in the past, even if it gets little respect at first.

The Economist, “The Future of Jobs: The Onrushing Wave”

Plus, there will always be a demand for personal tutoring. Even if classrooms and courses could be taught without human involvement, computers will never be able to personalize the material on a student-to-student basis. For that, humans will always be needed.

Quality Assurance

human-computer-jobs-quality-assurance

For as long as automation has been a part of the human economy, there have always been mistakes. Machines break down. Metals rust. Cogs can wear out and motherboards can fry. Under perfect conditions, quality assurance wouldn’t be necessary. But in the real world, an error will crop up somewhere along the line and nobody but a human will be able to spot it.

Why not just create QA machines that look for errors? Because then you enter an infinite regression. What happens when the QA machine itself breaks down? Will there be a second QA machine for the first QA machine? At some point, you’ll need a human.

Politics & Law

human-computer-jobs-politics-law

Depending on how cynical you are about the state of world politics, politicians may as well be robots already. However, if we’re going to be serious about it, then it’s reasonable to assume that computers will never overtake the realm of politics.

Computers won’t be placed in charge of towns, cities, states, or countries. Computers won’t be creating new laws. Computers won’t be making judicial decisions. Governors, lawmakers, judges, and juries will always need some sense of human discernment that computers will never be able to offer.

Final Thoughts

In the end, the answer to “Which jobs are safe from computers?” is quite simple. Avoid the overlap between humans and computers and look at jobs that require an element of human behavior 6 Mind-Blowing TED Talks About Psychology & Human Behavior 6 Mind-Blowing TED Talks About Psychology & Human Behavior The human brain is complex and confusing, which explains why human behavior is so complex and confusing. People have a tendency to act one way when they feel something completely different. Here are a few... Read More that computers cannot replicate: intuition, creativity, innovation, compassion, imagination, and so on. Those jobs will always be safe.

And what happens when computers become capable of those human traits? At that point, the distinction between humans and computers would be too blurred, and then the entire question becomes irrelevant.

What other jobs will computers never replace? Share what you think and comment below!

Image Credits: Ballerina Via Shutterstock, Sports Via Shutterstock, Stethoscope Via Shutterstock, Guitar Tutor Via Shutterstock, Metal Gears Via Shutterstock, Gavel Via Shutterstock

  1. Killers sks
    October 29, 2016 at 5:39 pm

    I feel that the topics in which computers and machines can't replace humans..
    I feel that Computers don't have the ability to feel like us humans so they will never be able to take the role of homemakers..... and moms...

  2. Safi Habib
    September 26, 2016 at 11:09 pm

    Wow this article is akin to the tabloids saying the Internet will never take off or that PCs won't catch on....
    Technology is developed at an exponential rate. Bear in in mind that in the last 50 years technology has taken over jobs that have existed for centuries. In the next 50 years there won't be a single task that a machine can't do, creative or otherwise. There will off course be a need for humans but that will only be to service the machines to carry out the tasks we used to do....and even that will then be replaced by more machines.
    Anyone that thinks anything different has their head stuck in the sand....which we'll probably run out of as we'll need it for the microprocessors to do all the things this article says aren't possible!

  3. chris
    August 24, 2016 at 8:59 pm

    yeah this is poor journalism ....where do these morons come from writing garbage like this ? seriously do you even keep up with technological trending ? maybe try writing childrens books or articles for the national enquirer. this subject is way over your head.

  4. Jeff Russ
    July 3, 2016 at 2:40 pm

    This article is a big bowl of 'wrong.' Have you ever heard of eLearning?? AI has been used for teaching since the 60s. Quality Assurance? haha. That's the easiest thing to automate. Have you ever heard of automated testing? AI in medicine is already here.

  5. Original Bob
    June 29, 2016 at 8:01 pm

    This article has no scientific basis behind it at all, it's just another opinion piece.

    IBM's Watson machine is going to take the legal Bar exam soon and is expected to pass, so much for this article claiming machines will never take over the legal profession.

    Healthcare will see robots looking after elderly and make further inroads to operating theatres.

    When the internet of things starts rolling out, there will be another data explosion and the additional trends and information flowing from the increased interaction of society and how it functions will enable machines to understand even more and put together models of interaction unknown by humans today, this will give then the edge that humans know nothing about now.

    It will be the first time in history where machines are not trying to play catch-up with human knowledge, they will start one step ahead and it will be humans playing the catch up game.

    This article is light on facts, disappointing and really just an opinion piece.

  6. jim
    May 26, 2016 at 8:11 pm

    yeah sorry bud but maybe work on your investigative journalism skills cuz every job u listed is on the technological chopping block someday. Maybe try and write childrens books or something :)

    • Theron1480
      July 13, 2016 at 2:32 am

      Maybe you should read children's' books, because your grammar and spelling are that of an 8-year old. #Owned

    • Safi Habib
      September 26, 2016 at 11:15 pm

      Spelling and grammar are irrelevant in today's age. Language develops over time....you still understood what the comment was saying even if it did contain errors. We are already seeing the demise of the '. Next will be the comma then the full stop....the only grammar that will matter soon will be in coding....which will also be replaced by technology.

  7. JOSE
    February 22, 2016 at 4:56 pm

    GOOD ONES !!!!!! THANKS

  8. anon
    January 16, 2016 at 2:45 pm

    The only job that computers won't replace unless and until the singularity occurs is a computer programmer.

    • trsk
      September 21, 2016 at 3:35 am

      Wrong. Computers already write computer Programs All the Time..

  9. Jim
    January 2, 2016 at 9:34 pm

    Maybe computers should replace politicians and be placed in charge of cities. Isnt it people and humans with their flawed natures, greed for power etc, that have continually contributed to the decline of all civilizations throughout history? Computers cant be greedy or show favoritism or be bribed with money or lust for more and more power.

    • yung ez
      February 15, 2016 at 4:48 am

      just die

  10. Taco saleman
    December 1, 2015 at 5:00 pm

    I lik tacoz ._.

    • yung ez
      February 15, 2016 at 4:47 am

      stfu man you're not funny

  11. Bidan Zhu
    August 18, 2015 at 2:57 pm

    How very wrong you are. Computers can already do art. Deep learning algorithms can write beautiful poetry, songs, etc.

    Watson, the IBM mainframe is already working with doctors to diagnose cancer, and does it better than any doctor that has ever lived. Much better.

    QA is very easy for a deep mind algorithm to do, sports are only hard now because constructing a robot that runs like a human is hard (though close). However, although computers now do not think like humans, they can solve problems better, in any industry, in any field, even education.

    There is nothing that computers cannot do.

    • anon
      January 16, 2016 at 2:51 pm

      Video games are replacing traditional spectator sports.

    • yung ez
      February 15, 2016 at 4:47 am

      HEY stfu my fkin toy truck can replace you

  12. Duarte Molha (Pepetideo)
    June 22, 2015 at 10:01 am

    this article is only one year old and the 1st of the 6 is already disproven...

    http://nextshark.com/google-artificial-intelligence/

    5 of those 6 will be completely replaceable computers in a near future

    The only one of those that this will not be true is Professional sports... because it needs a human "by definition" but even that one will suffer major restructuring my augmented humans taking performance enhancing technology and in a longer term performance enhancing nanobots.

  13. Kendra Groesbeck
    June 7, 2015 at 7:24 pm

    No one's looking far enough into the future and where technology is going. This article is talking about a transitional era of technology and humanity, perhaps 50 to 100 yrs from now (thought many scientists/techie types say 20 yrs). Even further down the road we'll have highly evolved nanotechnology, computers in our heads, (and who knows what) that will completely eradicate our need for medical, education, quality assurance, etc. Who needs doctors when nanobots can be part of our system that continually repair our genetic code and destroy foreign material (like viruses or cancer)? Who needs an educational system when we're connected to ALL of human knowledge instantaneously and our brains are incredibly efficient ("smart") because we've been genetically created that way? Not to mention we'll probably be living so long that reproduction will be a thing of the past. Who needs to manufacture or repair things when self-repairing and self-creating robots (without things like gears or metallic moving parts - look up SMP's) exist? In fact, who needs bodies at all? We evolved into biological forms, into consciousness, and now are pro/regressing our biological forms back into pure information and energy (3D printers, computers, google glass, virtual reality, etc). However, what we call that "human spark," that ability to create, dream, and connect, may always be a human trait....maybe. We'll either destroy ourselves with this new cybernetic evolution, or become something our limited minds at the moment can't even comprehend.

    • Wolfgang Loss-Wells
      July 12, 2016 at 7:39 pm

      only if your rich. the rest of people will live like human garbage. without jobs they wont be able to pay for any of this tech crap.

  14. dpmartin
    May 4, 2015 at 7:29 pm

    Once you have replaced humans with robots, where is the need for the performing arts, medicine, legal system, etc. All of your claims are irrelevant after the humans are gone.

    At one point in time, the Neanderthals thought that they were "on top". I ask you is it the right argument for a Neanderthal to make "You will never replace the ability of Neanderthals to paint on cave walls"?

    The whales can claim that humans can never replace their ability to create long wailing songs. But a human will simply say: "So what?"

    The ants can claim that no humans or whales or robots will ever replace their ability to create a large ant hill complete with air conditioning. So What?

  15. Mihir Patel
    April 18, 2015 at 1:40 pm

    You can have two QA machines with them in addition to being able to do their job they will be able to fix each other. Now you may ask what happens if they both break down at the same time ? Well, you can buy new ones because the probability of that happening would be near 0. Also you can increase the number of QA robots that will be able to fix each other thus reducing the probability further. Even though the chance wouldn't be exactly 0 it would be pretty damn close. And you can just go back to the first solution of anything does happen. I think we should be very afraid of artificial intelligence, it's nothing to sleep on.

  16. k v r murthy
    April 17, 2015 at 1:47 pm

    we are observing that every now and than some or the other minister goes to other countries, where as what he does there he can also do it online, but they will go and other country men will clap their hands wathing television.just because of these people. the minister is gaining the courage, and there he will deliver a nice speech, that he can do certain things, which he will never do. but coming back to the point he will believe only the computer.

  17. Matt
    March 4, 2015 at 9:59 pm

    I disagree with almost all of this but especially the politics and law part. Law is a set of rules that someone must follow or they face punishment this is an ideal task for a computer it would be able to ascertain whether someone is guilty and not whether they have a good lawyer. Politicians should represent our opinions in government to enact changes in law and policy. You could replace all politicians right now with an online voting system that allowed you to vote on any amendments to our government and laws. Art is probably the one most people assume a computer can't do but art is traditionally capturing a landscape or a portrait of a person on canvas is a photo not art and can a computer not take a picture. If you attach a computer to a aircraft or a rocket and get it to take pictures is it not creating art and if you say "The programmer tells it when to take pictures" then are we not exactly the same with relation to God if you believe in such a thing? or does art have to have "feeling" because you can simulate feeling in software very easily

    • Katelyn Phillips
      June 1, 2015 at 11:05 pm

      Yeah! Throw all of our civil liberties to the internet and then the hackers can run wild - I'm sure most of them are working for the government anyway. Oh and I'm sure every lawyer will be thrilled to know that all of his college debt, 60-80+ work weeks and the 3 years spent reading a never ending supply of court cases was all a waste. Maybe this new found free time will actually convince his ex-wife to come back to him. Then they can reconnect over conversations that will put his intellect to good use! You know, over topics like ping-pong, Saul Olinsky, or the fall of the Roman Empire? Or maybe instead they can just enjoy life, watch football and the Kardashians! Eat your heart out Cuba!

  18. Anon
    February 11, 2015 at 12:49 pm

    I disagree with education furthermore healthcare and medication. What if we were to create computers which exceeded us on finding cures for illnesses? With technology developing rapidly in today's society, there's no doubt we will be able to discover or work out methods of medication and such through computing or technology. Also, education? Even though you have to be extremely careful about which sources you look up online, it doesn't excuse the fact the internet holds an abundance of facts which potentially heightens your knowledge on lots of subjects. In schooling today, many teachers do use the internet to teach, because the internet holds lots of useful information which is beneficial for education. I believe we will live in a society one day where artificial intelligent is existent, computers could essentially replace the majority of jobs for us, because our technology is promptly evolving and becoming better and better. The only thing it wouldn't replace is creativity, thinking, arts, and counselling. Because computers don't think, or create artistic compositions etc , they serve information. They connect the dots, if you like. Also, because computers don't think, they don't feel, which means they couldn't counsel humans, because humans want sympathy, and a computer is unable to serve that - or if they do - it's because they've been ordered to. The point i'm trying to make, computers can help and replace jobs which serve information and facts but they cannot replace jobs which require the mind, to think in detail, to create art (dance, plays etc).

    • Joel
      February 13, 2015 at 7:40 pm

      Interesting thoughts. I used to hold the same opinions, but I'm starting to rethink my stance on robotic creativity. In a lot of ways, creativity comes in two forms: 1) autonomously creating something from nothing, and 2) injecting a unique viewpoint into a creation.

      I think robots will eventually achieve #1 (we've written about it on this site before) but I don't know if they'll ever reach #2.

      Regarding counselling, I agree completely. I don't know if robots will ever be able to exhibit and sympathize with human emotions.

    • k v r murthy
      April 17, 2015 at 1:50 pm

      i agree with the comment.

  19. Jasir
    November 9, 2014 at 1:33 pm

    Can computers replace family, love and so on.. ( That's not a job right?)

  20. CJ
    October 26, 2014 at 5:03 pm

    There is a few jobs robots cant do. They cant push limits outside their manufacturers capabilities. Aka. They dont wonder, ponder, etc. Etc. They don't push themselves to be the best at what they do. Unless we create an AI so sophisticated that it can wonder why it cant love ( just an example) we'll always have that field. Another thing, human psychology. They could NEVER be a psychiatrist, a parent, a philosopher, or any other job that requires love, compassion, or just plain being bored enough to accidentally stumble onto something that will advance ours or their race; basically do things because they can.If I made any spelling or grammatical errors, sorry. Been up all night

  21. John S
    August 4, 2014 at 11:05 pm

    Building trades seem to be the safest. Think about building a house, (or something much larger) from the foundation to the electrical wiring, plumbing, finish carpentry, painting and decorating. How can computers accomplish these tasks? Robots may work in pre-fab, but not in the "wild". There's also, fishing, farming, forestry and tourism to think about.

  22. android underground
    August 1, 2014 at 11:22 am

    You forgot number 7. Prostitution.

    • CJ
      October 26, 2014 at 5:05 pm

      Unfortunately, the fact it exists not that robots cant do it, true.

  23. Dave
    July 23, 2014 at 9:24 pm

    Fun article but misses the main issue - what the hell is wrong with robots and computers doing everything? Because no one would have a job right? Well, sounds like a good time to get rid of the owners as well as workers. Indeed without workers buying stuff how are the owners going to make a buck anyway? I say, let the robots do the work - I's'a goin' fishin'

  24. BillZ
    July 23, 2014 at 1:48 pm

    I do not accept that AI can replace genuine human intelligence.

    What I fear will happen is that for profit motives science will continue to be pushed down channels that only create profit and war. Rather than utilising human creative potential business will seek those AI advantages that they can control for profit or war. Nowadays there are few scientific advances that are not paid for by business - this is not scientific discovery, this is science being manipulated.

    Oppenheimer pushed back the boundaries with disastrous results, and he regretted the advances he made when those that used his invention did not have compassion for humanity. If AI advances are used to replace human creativity it is evident that business does not have that compassion either.

  25. BillZ
    July 23, 2014 at 8:08 am

    It is fascinating to consider what computers can and cannot do as I believe this should determine the direction of our education system. We should focus on teaching what computers cannot do, and the above list is a good start.

    As for AI I think it is dangerous to imagine that AI can replace humans. I believe the only way AI can replace genuine human intelligence is for the jobs to be oriented towards AI and away from human quality as discussed above. This should not be encouraged. We have enough social problems caused by business seeing computers as a better way forward than working with people.

    • dragonmouth
      July 23, 2014 at 1:07 pm

      "This should not be encouraged."
      Even if vigorously discouraged, as in being made absolutely illegal, sooner or later AI will become fact. Discouraging advances in science is akin to telling someone not to think of the word "elephant."

  26. IanT
    July 23, 2014 at 7:49 am

    Thought provoking, thanks.
    I'm not sure why there's a bigger problem with putting lives into the hands of medical robots which "might malfunction" than putting the lives of other road users into the hands of car-driving computers which equally might malfunction. Cars are just as potentially lethal as doctors.
    As for "true AI", I think Spielberg's film "AI" is important here, raising the question as to whether it is ethically responsible to develop it. Sadly I am not optimistic that ethics will play much of a role here, and I believe "true AI" will happen, although probably in a rack-mounted computer long before a humanoid robot.

    • dragonmouth
      July 23, 2014 at 1:02 pm

      "As for “true AI”, I think Spielberg’s film “AI” is important here, raising the question as to whether it is ethically responsible to develop it."
      Ethics and morality play very little role in inventions. Inventions are made. Period. Expediency governs how the inventions are applied. The progress of technology cannot be stopped by ethics or morality. If one inventor stops his research because of ethical qualms, there are others who may not share his views and will continue on. The question is not "IF" but "WHEN." Just look at history.

      "although probably in a rack-mounted computer long before a humanoid robot."
      The first AI will probably take up an entire building, if not more. But over time it will be miniaturized until it reaches the size of a human brain.

    • IanT
      July 23, 2014 at 7:01 pm

      I don't think I accept the special case dragonmouth seems to make for inventions. It seems to me that ethics and morality play whatever role in human society that we corporately decide they will, and civilized societies legislate to enforce civilized values. Inventions are just a part of that imperfect game. However I have already said that I am not optimistic that the question will be "IF" instead of "WHEN". All the more reason, therefore, to discuss the ethics of "true AI": if we can't stop it happening, we may need to develop "human rights" for sentient computers.
      I agree with the entire building thing, but I still think it will be rack-mounted (lots of racks).

  27. Ms Hanson
    July 23, 2014 at 4:43 am

    Per Douglas Adams: "42."

  28. A old dude
    July 23, 2014 at 3:48 am

    It seems everyone is falling over themselves to find exceptions to every point in the article. Enjoy the rule by the machines. Me, I am retired and hopefully will be dead before all of your predictions come true.

  29. Jenny
    July 23, 2014 at 3:20 am

    Cheapskate companies like IBM replace more expensive proper courses for their staff with crappy online excuses for courses for staff to do in their own time. That will certainly affect people in the field of education (as well as their staff). Saving money (cutting costs) for such companies comes first.

  30. Anonymous
    July 23, 2014 at 1:10 am

    Thread Started with too much humanist computers can do anyhting narrative crap you need in academia.
    To me computers are turning into the bain of life, stealing jobs, so leaders will look to every niche to get them to serve us. Unfortunately most people will be poorer.
    Discoverys and revelation in writing think malcom gladwell or tim ferriss etc. and religious leaders. Fashion trends designer.

    There are already super computers beyond the capacity for human programmers to utlise them and so programs itself. I heard about a program that enforms corporations about consequences of actions to the corp even considering social issues and works out suggested policy for the corp, dont know if its specific purpose algorithm or general.
    We have minority report cctv systems in london.
    Usa has crime prediction software that predicts were released criminals and recent crimes are likely to occur next with scary accuracy.
    There is a drive to commoditize most jobs even computer programmers. No one is safe. First be controlled and mointored and culturally dis empowered then welcome to serfdom. The singularity point is coming, but the 99% unreported snowden revelations will get us first.

    • dragonmouth
      July 23, 2014 at 12:48 pm

      "There are already super computers beyond the capacity for human programmers to utlise them"
      That is not true. Even today there are no "smart" computers. All computers are "dumb" because they can only act on information provided them. Computers cannot make intuitive leaps of reasoning based on incomplete information, like humans can. Until true AI is invented, that will be the demarcation line between humans and computers/robots.

  31. Julie
    July 22, 2014 at 10:57 pm

    Home making, child care, elder care, patient care. People need people who care about them & people need to be needed.

    • Joel L
      July 23, 2014 at 2:14 am

      Great examples of "the human touch". Yet, I do wonder if one day we'll stop feeling a need for human care and prefer solitude and isolation over it. That'd be a scary day in humanity.

    • dragonmouth
      July 23, 2014 at 12:38 pm

      @Julie:
      "Home making, child care, elder care, patient care. People need people who care about them & people need to be needed."
      Only because we have been acculturated this way. In totalitarian regimes (USSR, China, Nazi Germany, etc), the State has replaced "people", Emotion has been replaced by Utility.

  32. Todd
    July 22, 2014 at 6:52 pm

    Computers are already replacing educators.

  33. Piero Indrizzi
    July 22, 2014 at 5:51 pm

    Quanto detto nell'articolo non è assolutamente vero. Tanto che il pericolo più grande che corre l'umanità e il sopravvento della tecnologia.

  34. Christian Hartleben
    July 22, 2014 at 5:31 pm

    When David Brooks is cited as wisdom, clearly the author is not serious about answering the question accurately.

    David Brooks has no credentials on this subject. He is an out-of-touch, aged political egotist.

    Like Brooks, this author starts with the conclusions about job losses he can accept, he draws the line... somewhere; and then he argues for it. Where's the step where you try to shoot cannonballs through your own theories? Nope, not these guys. There's no time for doubt, when you know in your heart and your gut what the truth is.

    Political Reasoning - an oxymoron if I ever heard one. Brooks is one of today's masters of the art.

  35. Birrell Walsh
    July 22, 2014 at 5:13 pm

    A while ago, humans were defined as the rational beings. That definition has disappeared since it is clear that in the sense of logic machines are more rational than we. I suspect there will be a lot of moving-the-goalpost redefinition to avoid acknowledging what machines do are are. Mr. Lee begins that process with qualifications like "[a]t best, simulated creativity, which isn’t really creativity at all."

    I am not sure I like it, but I expect fully sentient programs and machines are already loose among us - as in the 1983 Novel Valentina - and we have just not noticed.

  36. kurtis
    July 22, 2014 at 3:11 pm

    Computers will never take computer repair

    • Dark V
      July 22, 2014 at 11:44 pm

      why would you say that? do we no already have machines that repair other machines? do we not have software that repairs other software? does an antivirus not work in the same concept as "computer repairs computer"?

  37. Petey P
    July 22, 2014 at 3:11 pm

    I think everyone may have side stepped the fact that, we need the humans to program the AI and to build these machines...for a time that is. I mean, anyone seen Idiocracy? :)

    • Dark V
      July 22, 2014 at 11:46 pm

      yes, we now require programmers to develop, but a "true AI" would be able to develop itself... for a time we're safe... but things will one day change... maybe sooner than we think...

  38. ZeroDvide
    July 22, 2014 at 11:09 am

    If in computers with AI limited to what we have (taking that we'll never invent real artificial intelligence), then I'm pretty sure all software developers are just fine. Also, about professional sports... I'm pretty sure basketball of robots programmed to play it (or any other sport) would be much more interesting, as it would be a clean game + robots posses much bigger potential (power, calculations and so on)

  39. dragonmouth
    July 22, 2014 at 12:33 am

    @Joel L:
    "Most of that seems to be conjecture based on ideas put forth by science fiction"
    Don't dismiss sci-fi so glibly. How much of what Jules Verne conjectured has become fact? What about H.G. Welles? Remember Dick Tracy and his wrist radio? Just look around you. How many items of daily use once were the province of science fiction?

    • Joel L
      July 23, 2014 at 2:12 am

      Good point. Makes me wonder if science fiction predicts our future or if we end up following the path that science fiction has laid. A future full of living AI would be an interesting one, that's for sure.

    • dragonmouth
      July 23, 2014 at 12:10 pm

      "Makes me wonder if science fiction predicts our future or if we end up following the path that science fiction has laid."
      Chicken/egg conundrum. It's probably both. A science fiction writer takes a current scientific concept and extrapolates it, imagining various devices along the way. Eventually science and technology catch up to his/her vision, most of the times not intentionally but by serendipity. I don't think phone companies actually set out to create the 1966 Star Trek communicator.

      Science fiction does predict our future in general terms but it does not provide us with a detailed plan to follow. We have to get there on our own.

  40. dragonmouth
    July 22, 2014 at 12:17 am

    @Dark V:
    “What about self-programming computers?” + “…If the Three Laws of Robotics were built…”
    I do realize that those are mutually exclusive but you are the one that juxtaposed them. Each statement was in response to a different quote.
    Self-programming computers eliminate the need for corruptiblr programmers.

    Three Laws of Robotics - as stated by Isaac Asimov and implemented in his books, not how they were corrupted for the movie.

    " how can we trust them to be moral or ethical? "
    Three Laws of Robotics.
    How can we trust humans to be moral or ethical? I think you would have a better chance with a robot.

    • Dark V
      July 22, 2014 at 12:50 am

      "...Each statement was in response..."
      I know that each statement was in response to another thing - but what I meant to say is that you cannot have both...

      "Three Laws of Robotics..."
      I know that the movie was different than the book, but the idea (the laws) were the same, thus I believe that how they were corrupted in the movie was a really logical, cold way, the way a machine without empathy would actually do it. The three laws, though great in themselves do not state how they should be interpreted or that a machine should not remove the laws from it's coding if it has the opportunity - the laws would not save humanity if the machines deemed humans "unfit to inhabit earth"

      "...I think you would have a better chance with a robot."
      perhaps you would... though a human has empathy, it can relate to you or your situation... a machine cannot

      you may trust the three laws but i believe that if we actually manage to build a "true AI", no matter what we do, we are done , there will be no way to make it respect the 3 laws (not for long anyway)...

    • dragonmouth
      July 22, 2014 at 11:03 am

      "if we actually manage to build a “true AI”, no matter what we do, we are done "
      Sic transit gloria. :-)

      Unfortunately "true AI" is as inevitable as night follows day.

  41. Duy Bui
    July 21, 2014 at 11:20 pm

    Huh, what about computer programmers?
    Or are they going to (re)program themselves and take over the world?

    • dragonmouth
      July 23, 2014 at 12:29 pm

      Computer programmers are constantly re-programming themselves by learning new languages.

      If you mean computers/robots re-programming themselves, that will happen as soon as true AI is developed.

  42. Vinod
    July 21, 2014 at 10:24 pm

    Sir in food industry the taste the chef gives to the food will be impossible for a computer to . ...every industry is supported by computer and chips take the health care industry your reports are done with computers, take politics you vote online, take sports score boards are computerized but operations are by humans, take take education you have online teaching it is now fully automated no labor so education i feel is not ... i will be impressed by the technology take the floral business a computer will not to the wraps of floral gifts...

  43. Gilbert Benn
    July 21, 2014 at 9:25 pm

    The Doctor you see for diagnosis and prognosis will be a thing of the past in the next 10 to 20 years, there will always be a need for nursing staff for that human touch. Surgeons will come next.

    • Dark V
      July 21, 2014 at 10:13 pm

      actually, when nano-technology gets done - neither doctors, surgeons or nursing staff will be required... these jobs would have no more value...

    • Joel L
      July 21, 2014 at 10:19 pm

      On the one hand, I agree that computers will probably be better equipped to diagnose and treat specific issues. Then again, there are so many legal obstacles there. Just as people are afraid of Google's self-driving car even though it's safer than most human drivers, people will be afraid of "robotic doctors". Will we allow that to become the norm? It's hard to say.

    • Dark V
      July 21, 2014 at 10:47 pm

      actually it might be easier to accept machines on a medical level than anywhere else (mostly because of human desperation)... a really sick/dying person will much more easily accept "robotic doctors" if it means they might get better, and once that happens there will be precedence and people less sick will try it and so on and so forth...
      personally I'd probably trust a machine more than a human when it come to my health

  44. dragonmout
    July 21, 2014 at 9:24 pm

    "6 Human Jobs That Computers Will Never Replace"
    Never say never. Maybe for the foreseeable future you are right but as time goes by more and more inroads will be made into those 6 areas. Once a positronic brain is perfected, there will be no jobs that computers/robots cannot and will not be able to perform.

    Politics & Law
    Just ask yourself - What do politicians contribute to society at large? Graft, corruption, nepotism, cronyism, chavinism, imperialism, other "isms", ideology, war, etc. I'm sure you can think of other "contributions" by politicians.

    What does the legal profession contribute? The justice system is not about being fair or dispensing Justice, it is about winning and losing. Prosecutor's job is to convict SOMEBODY for the crime and the defense attorney's job is the get his client acquitted. Neither side really cares what the "facts" are as long they do their job successfully. Lawyers on both sides of the issue bend, spindle, re-interpret and mangle the laws to thier own benefit. Most of the time Justice IS done but there is a disturbingly high percentage of wrongful convictions and guilty going free. And that is in countries where the judicial system is supposedly impartial. What happens in countries where the justice system is a political instrument of the government?

    These are the two areas where we definitely need computers to replace humans. Computers are impartial and cannot be corrupted like humans can be. SInce computers are not subject to the foibles and vices that polticians are subject to, they can govern much better. Just think, money appropriated and spent on needed projects, not on pork and not subject lobbyists' influence. And certainly not being diverted into private pockets.

    • Dark V
      July 21, 2014 at 9:50 pm

      you are correct, computers could do alot better than most politicians and lawyers/judges... but consider this: should a person that feels remorse not be given a lighter sentence (or even no sentence, depending on the crime) ? a human could easily see that... and should do that... a computer however might not... it will probably not do it...

      concerning the corruption... there will be corruption even in a world where law & politics is ran by computers... explanation: computers run software that makes the decisions... software which is written by people... people that can be bought.... any software will need updates, and then who's to say that the people doing/writing the update could not change a small thing that may not be that legal... having politics and law be ran by computers would not change much (probably very little actually) because someone would have to be in charge of the computers and those people could be bought... and if a person is not in charge, could you trust the program? could you actually trust it to make the right choices (both ethical and moral) on it's own ? how would it react in a crisis? what would give you any trust that it might see the world as you do and that it would make right choices?... this is probably the hardest of the 6 jobs presented at the top to be run by a computer...

    • Vinod
      July 21, 2014 at 10:01 pm

      Sir in Food industry computer will not make food for you ))) a computer cannot be a chef it can take orders but it will not cook food and the food cannot be served at the table nor it can be downloaded ))))

    • Joel L
      July 21, 2014 at 10:17 pm

      Definitely true about politics and law being immensely flawed fields. However, I don't see how computers will be able to solve that as they'll need to "learn" their morals from somewhere, and if humans teach robots how to be political and lawful, they're liable to fall into the same problems as humans anyway, no? Perhaps one day someone will find a way to organically grow "right ethics" from scratch, but I doubt it.

      And that's assuming humans will even allow AI to go that far!

    • dragonmouth
      July 21, 2014 at 10:59 pm

      "consider this: should a person that feels remorse not be given a lighter sentence"
      A computer can tell much easier than a judge if the remorse is real or feigned.

      "software which is written by people… people that can be bought"
      What about self-programming computers?
      It is cheaper to pay for programmers than politicians. :-)

      "could you actually trust it to make the right choices (both ethical and moral)"
      If the Three Laws of Robotics were built into each and every computer and robot, I would trust them implicitly.
      Could you actually trust people to make the right choice (both ethical and moral)? Whose morality? Whose ethics? Both are mutable depending on the standards of the times.

      For example: Thomas Jefferson wrote "....all men are created equal...." Yet he and many of the signers of the Declaration of Independence owned slaves. By today's ethics and morality, we consider them hypocrites. By the ethics and morality of that time, they were forward-thinking men.

    • Dark V
      July 21, 2014 at 11:10 pm

      "What about self-programming computers?" + "...If the Three Laws of Robotics were built..."
      these are actually mutually exclusive - if you have a self-programming computer it'll probably be able to either re-write the laws or find alternative meanings to the laws (example for alternative meaning robots: "I Robot" - vicki, or whatever her name was, interpreted the laws in a way that was detrimental to human liberties - we don't want that, bad vicki, or whatever her name was :P)

      "A computer can tell much easier than a judge if the remorse is real or feigned."
      TRUE (no arguments here)

      " Both are mutable depending on the standards of the times."
      TRUE... but then again - how can we trust them to be moral or ethical? (depending on "current" morality - "current" as in whatever we consider moral or ethical at any certain point in time)

    • dragonmouth
      July 21, 2014 at 11:22 pm

      @Joel L:
      What ARE the "right ethics?" Who determines the "right ethics?" Are they the same today as they were 100 years ago, 500 years ago, 3,000 years ago? Are "ethics" the same all over today's world? Do you think we, as a race, are so ethical that our current ethics will prevail forever into the future?

      "And that’s assuming humans will even allow AI to go that far!"
      Humans - no, the military - most definitely! Did we ever think that the Nuclear Arms Race would ever go that far? A machine gun was supposed to be such a terrible weapon that it would end war. Science/invention march on inexorably. What a human mind can conceive, a human can build. The question is not IF, but WHEN. I just hope that the Three Laws of Robotics are built into every computer before they decide that humans are irrelevant, passe and superfluous.

      I suggest you look up "Colossus: The Forbin Project."

  45. Vinod
    July 21, 2014 at 8:10 pm

    what about the Food Industry Jobs )))

    • Dark V
      July 21, 2014 at 9:55 pm

      you could definitely make food industry jobs be fully operated by computers and automatically run without ANY human interaction... and if you're thinking about trying new products -> one could write an software that does just that - calculates the percentages of how "appealing" a certain food might be by using past "experience"...

    • Vinod
      July 21, 2014 at 10:01 pm

      Sir in Food industry computer will not make food for you ))) a computer cannot be a chef it can take orders but it will not cook food and the food cannot be served at the table nor it can be downloaded ))))

    • Dark V
      July 21, 2014 at 10:11 pm

      actually it can. The microwave oven is a computer (it has a microchip in it). Your android phone is a computer. Even some newer fridges and ovens are computers.
      A computer can take your order and then using different machines prepare that order, it's not really complicated to do, it's just expensive, for now. You could have a computer (NOT your home PC) that prepares the food for you - it would be a bigger machine that has access to all the required ingredients and uses them to cook your food.
      as for your "not serving" there are plenty of small robots already that could fill the role of getting the food to your table...

    • Joel L
      July 21, 2014 at 10:14 pm

      Good point! Farming and packaging can be automated, but the creativity of a chef will be near impossible for a computer to emulate. How could a computer know what "tastes good"? At best, simulated creativity, which isn't really creativity at all.

    • Dark V
      July 21, 2014 at 10:40 pm

      even without simulated creativity and just being able to add new receipes to the machines - the number of chef spots would go down to just the VERY BEST WORLDWIDE, which would still be the same thing as computers being the ones "running the kitchen" (a few exception would not make a rule)
      and a computer can actually know what "tastes good"- it could analyze the chemical composition of the food and actually match it to a certain table of "good tastes" thus knowing if a food is good or not (though good/bad food is a VERY relative term)

    • CJ
      October 26, 2014 at 5:15 pm

      @Dark V
      Umm no, you forgot to calculate for the fact that all humans have different food prefences. The reason people go out to eat is not always because they are hungry. People (like me and almost everyone I know) go out to taste something new. Sometimes throwing two things togther could taste well together even if science says it shouldn't.

  46. Dark V
    July 21, 2014 at 7:31 pm

    Creative Arts
    -> actually computers could replace creative arts (though not right now) - once artificial intelligence becomes evolved enough computers will be able to have some sort of simulated creativity (which may not be the real thing but will be close enough) - once could assume that good art is more or less in finding that "pattern" that makes art special, thus making it accessible to computers

    Professional Sports
    -> watch Real Steel (the entire movie is based on the idea of human operated robotic boxers) - replace the "human operated" part with a good AI and that's it - the competition becomes who can build a better AI and have better equipment instead of who can win the boxing match

    Healthcare & Medicine
    -> even more inaccurate than the rest - the moment nano-technology become availabe (I'm giving it around 20-30 years :) ).... doctors will be obsolete.... there will be no actual need for a doctor - the nano-bots will know exactly what to do, and they'll do it better than any human doctor (or even plastic surgeon)

    Education
    -> again AI

    Quality Assurance
    -> actually there's no need for a QA machine - just make 10 QA machines (more or less if necessary) and each one with the capacity to repair any other machine there (including another QA machine)

    Politics & Law
    -> well... yes... this may be one field that humans will not give (willingly)... unless we as a species get to build the "true AI"... then we're screwed... :P

    Final Thoughts
    -> the more advanced we get, the less we'll need humans to do things
    -> the less humans needed, the more machines
    -> the more machines, the less humanity will be able to handle life without them

    though we've yet to build the "true AI" and nano-technology (though being researched) is still some time away there are no jobs that could not be taken by computers... mostly because what ALL jobs have in common is the fact that you'll always need to do the same thing over and over, thus leaving ALOT of space and need for automation, resulting in "the rise of the machines"

    • dragonmouth
      July 21, 2014 at 8:40 pm

      " the more machines, the less humanity will be able to handle life without them"
      As eveidenced by our current dependence on our personnal electronic toys. People go catatonic when they are deprived of their 24/7/365 instant contact for more than a few minutes.

    • Joel L
      July 21, 2014 at 10:13 pm

      Most of that seems to be conjecture based on ideas put forth by science fiction. Even so, simulated creativity has no room for innovation. There's no evidence that nanotech will be completely self-sustainable without human involvement (I'm sure many people thought the same with the advancement of medicine pills, yet we still need pharmacists). I don't think we'll ever get to a point where robots can function on their own without humans.

    • Dark V
      July 21, 2014 at 10:33 pm

      considering that technology is already advancing at an exponential rate i don't see how we can even consider that machines will always need humans to function? (there have already been robots built (prototypes) to use as nurses - the chinese/japanese did it, we can blame them later if anything goes wrong :P )
      while nano-technology has proved a challenge till now i still think it's not far of reach, and if you can build a cell-size robot - you can most certainly use the human body's own energy to charge the damn thing :P
      and I'm not so sure about your pills theory (though perhaps I'm wrong)...

      And now for the rest... simulated creativity may not have room for innovation -> though you could improve what you already have - make the same thing again and again with small changes each time and you'll get something better (a computed can easily do that). As for the sci-fi, maybe the nano-bots are far away enough to consider them sci-fi... but i can actually "see" the programs required to do those things (programmer by trade with engineering know-how from family of engineers ) and while the programs required would not be that hard to do - the machines needed would, for the time being, expensive (not worth the cost because hiring people to do it is cheaper)

    • Joel L
      July 23, 2014 at 2:06 am

      Hmm, some good points. Guess it'll be a few years (or decades) before we get a definitive answer one way or the other. :D

  47. MrX
    July 21, 2014 at 5:48 pm

    I assume you are talking about computers as in conventional computers. If a true A.I was to be invented there is no reason for why such an entity should not be able to do those things. Especially what is considered art. There is no reason to think why a machine that is capable of thinking and feeling should not be able to express itself trough arts.

    • Joel L
      July 21, 2014 at 5:50 pm

      Yep. In the very last paragraph:

      "And what happens when computers become capable of those human traits? At that point, the distinction between humans and computers would be too blurred, and then the entire question becomes irrelevant."

    • Dark V
      July 21, 2014 at 10:02 pm

      even if you don't have a "true AI", without needing to feel a simpler AI could create a masterpiece based on "the best art" throughout history and the benefits of not having to sleep/eat/etc. - he could literally do 1 billion paintings (or more) until he gets one that's a masterpiece (it's actually a numbers game - trying out every possibility) ...

  48. Matt S
    July 21, 2014 at 4:40 pm

    Computer never replacing professional sports? You never played Base Wars, did you...

    • Joel L
      July 21, 2014 at 5:50 pm

      Heh, nope. Never played!

    • Ken E.
      July 25, 2014 at 8:22 pm

      Super Baseball 2020

    • Nikolas
      March 10, 2015 at 12:16 pm

      computers can replace teaching

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