Does more technology equal fewer jobs?
Electronic books don't need retail salespeople, and web-based newspapers don't need printers or delivery people. Are we "teching" ourselves out of jobs?
Perhaps, according to the story, "How Computers Are Creating a Second Economy Without Workers," in the The Atlantic. This "Second Economy" has been embraced by corporate America, as one computer talks to another, or sensors update monitoring equipment, all without a person involved. Why? Money. Walmart's sales are about $100,000 per employee, while Amazon's is over $800,000 per employee.
Just over two years ago, Singularity Hub's "Martin Ford Asks: Will Automation Lead to Economic Collapse?" focused more on robotics. In The Lights In the Tunnel, Ford argues lower skilled workers will be replaced by automation, as will some well-paid careers such as research lawyers and radiologists. Fewer jobs mean people can't buy the products automation creates, depressing the economy.
Job? What job?
But there’s been a lot of technological growth in the last 25 years, and our workweek hasn’t shortened, and unemployment on average hasn’t skyrocketed.
turtles_allthewaydown on singularityhub.com
That what tries to displace me becomes my enemy. I’ll try kill it.
Khannea Suntzu on singularityhub.com
Among the most viable of all economic delusions is the belief that machines on net balance create unemployment. Destroyed a thousand times, it has risen a thousand times out of its own ashes as hardy and vigorous as ever.
danbeaulieu on singularityhub.com
Did computers and email eliminate the secretaries that filled every office in the 1960s and 1970s? Or did they liberate the women (statistically, secretary meant female) to get better jobs?