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The AI Threat Isn’t Skynet. It’s the End of the Middle Class

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posted on Feb, 12 2017 @ 08:14 AM
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AI which will control the creation & operations of Robots & Automations to replace the middle-class worker is only one facet of the future

Augmented DNA humans, with quintessential Super-man traits, is the most fierce competitor of the natural-selection process which has long been the model that we humans blissfully practice without any thought


imagine a world of 'Conan-the-Barbarian' bouncers at the door of the local bar
R2D2 mixing drinks.... and C3PO 'hosts' and janitors and such




posted on Feb, 12 2017 @ 08:21 AM
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a reply to: soficrow

If you don't like an existing UBI plan, then rather than discuss it. Come up with something better.



posted on Feb, 12 2017 @ 08:25 AM
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originally posted by: trisvonbis

Find out your chances of being replaced by an Automaton:


www.bbc.com...


8%. It's almost like I picked a career with some degree of foresight as to the world decades in the future.



posted on Feb, 12 2017 @ 09:24 AM
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originally posted by: snowspirit
a reply to: mikegrouchy

Used one of those the other day. It was good to see that they had about 20 people still working in the kitchen.

It's also the self-checkouts at IKEA, some of the bigger hardware stores, coming likely within a decade to most retail checkouts...
That's a lot of jobs gone


A few years ago at Lowe's, they had three aisles of do-it-yourself checkouts, and about two live cashiers. There were lines for the cashiers. Nobody much was using the do-it-yourself. I notice now, they have only one do-it-yourself aisle, and three or four registers open with live cashiers.

That's one way to do it. Just don't use them. We can always boycott them?



posted on Feb, 12 2017 @ 09:35 AM
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a reply to: angeldoll

I don't think checkout clerks count as middle class.



posted on Feb, 12 2017 @ 09:38 AM
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originally posted by: angeldoll
A few years ago at Lowe's, they had three aisles of do-it-yourself checkouts, and about two live cashiers. There were lines for the cashiers. Nobody much was using the do-it-yourself. I notice now, they have only one do-it-yourself aisle, and three or four registers open with live cashiers.

That's one way to do it. Just don't use them. We can always boycott them?


I don't disagree with you, but I think most people eventually started opting for live cashiers primarily because the self-checkouts were rife with problems. Initially, people were very much on-board with self-checkouts until their miserable failings and errors made waiting on lines or in queue much more appealing. I assure you it was not out of any sense of 'humanity'.

Now, with that said, you can't boycott EVERYTHING....can't boycott filling stations, or grocery stores etc. And when we're not the ones pulling the purse strings of large corporation, if they decide to implement completely robotic staff will you be the first to stop eating or filling your car out of a sense of humanity? Somehow I would challenge that.



posted on Feb, 12 2017 @ 01:04 PM
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a reply to: alphabetaone

I always use the self checkouts personally. Shorter lines, they're faster, and I don't have people digging through what I'm buying. I think that when they came out, stores went a bit overboard on them because they had the new and shiny appeal so there was more demand. Now they're scaling back to the amount of demand that can actually be sustained. There's also a group of people (though I don't know how large) who don't use them because they don't like taking jobs away from others. I don't know how much that factors into their overall use though.



posted on Feb, 13 2017 @ 07:18 AM
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originally posted by: Aazadan
a reply to: soficrow

If you don't like an existing UBI plan, then rather than discuss it. Come up with something better.


Discussion is the first step towards change.
edit on 2/13/2017 by angeldoll because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 13 2017 @ 08:03 AM
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Would 'heading towards the stars" be a potential solution? Or would that also be dominated by robotics?



posted on Feb, 13 2017 @ 08:24 AM
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originally posted by: whismermill
Would 'heading towards the stars" be a potential solution? Or would that also be dominated by robotics?


lol. No doubt.

PS. "Heading for the stars" is just the pitch to get people onside. The main goal-first step is asteroid mining.



posted on Feb, 13 2017 @ 08:27 AM
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originally posted by: angeldoll

originally posted by: Aazadan
a reply to: soficrow

If you don't like an existing UBI plan, then rather than discuss it. Come up with something better.


Discussion is the first step towards change.


So true. And there's no discussion, ever, if there's no perceived problem or reason for discussion.

Also note: There is no existing UBI plan - only some discussion in fairly rarified academic, business and policy circles. Need to get the awareness filtered down to the general public.



posted on Feb, 13 2017 @ 10:27 AM
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originally posted by: angeldoll

originally posted by: Aazadan
a reply to: soficrow

If you don't like an existing UBI plan, then rather than discuss it. Come up with something better.


Discussion is the first step towards change.


The first step is to have a replacement plan. How else can you critique if you can't come up with an alternative for comparison?



posted on Feb, 13 2017 @ 01:39 PM
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originally posted by: Aazadan

originally posted by: angeldoll

originally posted by: Aazadan
a reply to: soficrow

If you don't like an existing UBI plan, then rather than discuss it. Come up with something better.


Discussion is the first step towards change.


The first step is to have a replacement plan. How else can you critique if you can't come up with an alternative for comparison?


Well, for the same reasons people go to the doctor sometimes. They know something is wrong, but they are not ideally suited to diagnosing nor procuring a solution. You don't NEED a solution or a critique to know something is not right.



posted on Feb, 13 2017 @ 01:41 PM
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originally posted by: Aazadan
a reply to: alphabetaone

I always use the self checkouts personally. Shorter lines, they're faster, and I don't have people digging through what I'm buying. I think that when they came out, stores went a bit overboard on them because they had the new and shiny appeal so there was more demand. Now they're scaling back to the amount of demand that can actually be sustained. There's also a group of people (though I don't know how large) who don't use them because they don't like taking jobs away from others. I don't know how much that factors into their overall use though.


On this, I sincerely believe you're in the minority. While the points you make (about privacy of purchases)rings true, I honestly don't believe that the majority of people use them simply because the self-checkouts can still be more to manipulate as opposed to letting someone else do the work for you. Currently that is people, full-scale AI though, likely could do the job much more efficiently and effectively.


ETA: The part where you said that they're faster, that is not always the case, as anyone who has ever waited for a lengthy period of time for a human to come to the rescue when the machinery fails, can tell you.
edit on 13-2-2017 by alphabetaone because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 13 2017 @ 04:20 PM
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originally posted by: Aazadan

originally posted by: angeldoll

originally posted by: Aazadan
a reply to: soficrow

If you don't like an existing UBI plan, then rather than discuss it. Come up with something better.


Discussion is the first step towards change.


The first step is to have a replacement plan. How else can you critique if you can't come up with an alternative for comparison?


Azadan, you know full well before a solution can be found for any problem, you must first identify the problem, and ascertain it's shortcomings and possible repercussions. This is the reason for discussion, and why people 'brainstorm'.

Maybe these are not "middle class" paying jobs, but they are jobs. When two people in a family (say, wife and husband) both have such jobs, it is certainly a liveable income. Plus, human beings need work. Not to be displaced, and watch TV all day jobless, or turn to other possibly illicit ways to earn income. I'd rather have a low paying job, than no job. Wouldn't you?

It's coming, anybody can see that. And it's going to be a problem. What happens when unemployment is 50%?
I don't look forward to it.



posted on Feb, 13 2017 @ 05:37 PM
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a reply to: angeldoll

Did you catch this article?


Elon Musk thinks humans need to become cyborgs or risk irrelevance

Human beings are in danger of being eclipsed by artificial intelligence and need to evolve the ability to communicate directly with machines or risk irrelevance, Elon Musk said in a typically heartwarming speech from everyone’s favorite billionaire technologist.




posted on Feb, 13 2017 @ 06:15 PM
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a reply to: soficrow

from your link


“The hope is that, in not too many years, human brains and computing machines will be coupled together very tightly,” Licklider wrote in his seminal 1960 work Man-Computer Symbiosis, “and that the resulting partnership will think as no human brain has ever thought and process data in a way not approached by the information-handling machines we know today.”


Simultaneously exciting and foreboding!



posted on Feb, 13 2017 @ 06:40 PM
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Machines taking over that's a forgone conclusion.



posted on Feb, 13 2017 @ 08:15 PM
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originally posted by: alphabetaone
Well, for the same reasons people go to the doctor sometimes. They know something is wrong, but they are not ideally suited to diagnosing nor procuring a solution. You don't NEED a solution or a critique to know something is not right.


No, but we've had decades to see that things aren't right. The time to state the obvious has passed. Most people know the economic system isn't right. And just about anyone who has looked at the world knows that more unemployment is coming. So rather than ring the alarm bell over and over again, quoting others opinions about something. Why not actually sit down and discuss the issue. How do we design a working economic system in a world of high unemployment?


originally posted by: angeldoll
Azadan, you know full well before a solution can be found for any problem, you must first identify the problem, and ascertain it's shortcomings and possible repercussions. This is the reason for discussion, and why people 'brainstorm'.


Then brainstorm. What I'm seeing here is the usual, concern over machines and unemployment not solutions. Let me give you two different possible solutions. In the Above Politics forum I've written threads on each of these:

1. Move to a dual currency system. This involves fully electronic transactions. Items are purchased using a mix of dollars and ameros. Items purchased outside the country get an amero tarriff at the border. If something costs 2 it costs 2 of each type. Dollars continue to function exactly as they do now, but amero's are handled different. A static number is always kept in the system per capita. If someone buys something for $316,000,000 amero's it's evenly distributed across all people in the US as $1 each. If a person dies, theirs are distributed. Furthermore, we make an exchange system so that people can sell amero's for dollars or dollars for amero's.

Amero's would be part of the purchase of anything other than qualifying food items, rent, and fuel. For those who don't work and have no incoming cash flow, they could sell their amero's as they accrue, in order to raise funds to cover necessities. For those who have money, they can buy amero's in order to purchase more luxuries, since they would accrue slower than you can spend them.

This system establishes a deficit neutral welfare system, without taxes or inflation, by monetizing a persons desire to purchase things. Addtionally, it functions as a UBI.

2, Establish a pool of communal assets, either managed individually or buy the government. This would involve taking kiosks and such in fast food restaurants, and selling those products to a middleman (government). Government would then use the revenue generated by these products to pay the wages of those who aren't working. Alterntively, the machines themseves could be given to individuals. In either event it involves covering welfare and UBI needs with revenue producing assets that prsesumably appreciate in value, opposed to cash which depreciates.



Maybe these are not "middle class" paying jobs, but they are jobs. When two people in a family (say, wife and husband) both have such jobs, it is certainly a liveable income. Plus, human beings need work. Not to be displaced, and watch TV all day jobless, or turn to other possibly illicit ways to earn income. I'd rather have a low paying job, than no job. Wouldn't you?


I would rather do something productive, but I'm not necessarily tied to working a low end job just to get out of the house. The exact amount varies a bit by wages earned, by it's my opinion that if you can't start a job at atleast 70% of the median wage in your area, you're better off learning more skills than trading your time for less.



posted on Feb, 13 2017 @ 10:06 PM
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originally posted by: mikegrouchy
The following is a picture of a customer service counter in a working McDonalds.











I find it interesting that the manager has scheduled the screens like regular employees.
Only one register is open in this picture.
It is the slow period of the day.


That's just depressing to look at. How far we've come to lose contact with one another through work and service.




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