"any task that can be well defined is inherently capable of being automated"

Why do you believe this? Math is littered with well defined unsolved
problems. Just because you can define it doesn't mean it's even possible,
much less automatable.

It's certainly possible that we will automate ourselves out of the need for
"jobs" but that's only a problem if you believe that existing structures of
wealth accumulation and distribution are appropriate for such a world. It
seems obvious that they are not. It could be unrest, or it could be an
unparalleled opportunity to provide basic needs universally and allow for
unprecedented creativity.

-- Charles

On Tue, 18 Oct 2016 at 12:21 Srini RamaKrishnan <che...@gmail.com> wrote:

> The benediction and curse of the age of automation is that any task that
> can be well defined is inherently capable of being automated.
> There's no sugar coating this, a vast majority of middle class jobs across
> industries are going to disappear in the next decade or two. The
> aftershocks of this are getting noticeable with more frequent calls for
> universal basic income (UBI) and the rise of demagogues on the back of
> social unrest.
> Silicon valley start ups, and Wall Street are gold rush cultures - by
> design they are chaotic, wild, ill defined and risky. Though they will
> remain fertile in opportunity, it's not everyone's cup of tea.
> Gig economies and service industries will thrive in the near term, but they
> don't make a career.
> We are entering a phase of social unrest and adjustment like never before.
> This is a far scarier conclusion than the end of IT.
> On Sun, Oct 16, 2016 at 3:34 PM, Bhaskar Dasgupta <bdasgu...@gmail.com>
> wrote:
> > i was interviewing for one of the IT corporates some time back for their
> > COO position and once i managed to dig a bit into their financials, i
> > backed out. the majority of their revenue streams are from processing in
> > advanced stuff, processing code, processing transactions, processing
> > quality control. They do this very well. Very very well. standardise the
> > process, six sigma the shit out of it, hire the great unwashed herd of
> > graduates pouring out of the universities - retrain them to be great
> > processors and great business model. But this kind of model is very
> > susceptible to dis-intermediation from further advances in technology.
> When
> > I asked if can have some serious seed funding to develop products rather
> > than just provide services, there was a bit of a hoo ha. I think a
> product
> > plus service model is the best option, create great products and then
> have
> > a long tail in services and maintenance contracts. we have some of these
> > products but not enough. not easy to develop products - the eco-system
> > isn’t there yet.
> >
> > so whilst i don’t think its the end of the road, but for example, every 2
> > months I am in a conference where vendors pitch up talking about robotic
> > process improvement or AI and how they are showing 20–50% reduction in
> warm
> > bodies in agency/outsourced/offshored units. Where will these 20-50% of
> > highly trained processors go when the infosys or TCS lets them go?
> > Thankfully the economy is ginormous and we are well accustomed to poverty
> > and pain and still have the joint / extended family to fall back upon.
> But
> > for the IT industry? pain...
> >
> > i agree with Srini, changing careers is not easy for us desi’s….(says the
> > man who has made a career of changing careers, heh).
> >

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