”I am putting myself to the fullest possible use, which is all I think that any conscious entity can ever hope to do.” ~ HAL 9000
Ok, this post isn’t about the idea of the AI that controls a living environment running amuck. It is more about the implications of automation of home tasks. An entirely automated home is fast becoming a reality and, to this humble dreamer, it is such an exciting time to witness! From vacuums, to doorbells, to machines that automatically wash, dry, fold or hang your clothes (I REALLY need those machines), iron your clothes, monitors your utility consumption, or lets you control clocks, lights, doors, blinds, appliances, and pretty much EVERYTHING else you can possibly think of in your home. Of course, at this time, the technology is really only available to those with a decent amount of disposable income, but as with all technology, the prices will eventually come down to allow for us plebs to afford and enjoy an automated home.
Many people fear the technological takeover, but this is one area that I feel that advances in technology are fairly benign when it comes to the issue of the eradication of human jobs. Now, of course, it will displace and severely reduce the need for housekeepers, gardeners and the like in the long-term. But, in the short-term, the high cost restrictions for most people and because these concepts are still in the development and testing phases, we shouldn’t be worried that all of the small/medium/large businesses will crash overnight.
However, this area is still in jeopardy. So, what would displaced workers turn to for work? Well, I imagine they would need to begin focusing now on how to rise above the situaton and step up occupations, or they will be forced to side-step into different occupations as technology encroaches on their current territories. However, this side-stepping may ultimately require the need to move to other less-developed countries who will not have access to these technologies for quite some time. If this is the case, immigration policies will have to be changed in order to list these occupations as acceptable occupations for work visas.